When it comes to dating, whether you’re single or attached, we know it can be rough out there at the best of times. Then, 2020 came and threw a global pandemic into the mix, and life got real weird, real fast. So, in honor of our first Valentine’s Day in COVID-19 times, we asked you to let us know how you’re dating. Long walks outside with your love? Romantic conversations over Zoom? Making out with masks on? Nothing’s fair in love and COVID-19.

Congrats to the folks who found love and life partners during this crazy pandemic.

Redditor ZakMiller:

“I met my girlfriend through Hinge in April. We stuck to video calls for a couple of months (mostly conversations and watching movies together using Netflix Party.) After quarantining, we met up for the first time and have been dating in-person since. We have spent a lot of time cooking meals together, going on walks on the Cary Greenways, and watching things together, of course. When it was warmer, we played a game of chess at the fountain in downtown Cary. I’d also recommend The Adventure Challenge “couples” book. It’s a great way to get lots of different date ideas.”

Redditor jmp1993, who met their partner in January:

“We fell into quarantining and have lived together for the past 11 months. Honestly, it’s been pretty easy. It’s impossible to hide who you really are when you’re confined to a small apartment, and it’s allowed us to develop a strong relationship. We get along well, have similar cleanliness standards, and rarely argue. It’s been wonderful having a companion during the pandemic.

We are taking COVID very seriously and have only spent time with one another in close contact. If we see anyone else, we social distance and wear masks and only meet up in outdoor situations. I feel very lucky for a number of reasons but I’m most grateful for meeting my partner before COVID and developing such a warm, comforting relationship during these trying times.”

Emma Cohn sent us this amazing Facebook message:

My boyfriend and I met in March through a FB group for Jewish college students, and even though he lived 2,500 miles away, in Los Angeles, we started talking. Texting every day turned into phone calls that lasted three, four, five hours and stretched waaaay too late into the night. Those turned into video chats and finally admitting our feelings for each other in July. By early August, he asked me to be his girlfriend, even though we’d never officially met. In September, he (as safely as humanly possible) flew out to see me for just three days. Everyone asked me if I was nervous, if I thought it was going to be awkward, and I knew in my heart the answer was no. It was one of the best weekends of my life. When he left, we both cried for two days straight. Then, in December, he came back out to stay with me. We went from only being with each other for three days in our entire relationship, to living together for a month and a half. It seems bizarre, but it just worked. I felt more at home and comfortable than I could’ve dreamed. He was supposed to go back in the middle of January, but COVID in LA was getting really bad, and he didn’t feel comfortable flying. Instead, a friend suggested he move to D.C., since he was already on the East Coast. So… he did! He found a sublease through Craigslist, and I drove him up two weeks ago. Now, we’re only four hours apart, and while that probably seems like long-distance to most, it feels like nothing at all to the two of us in comparison to what we were doing before! Plus, it’s so nice being in the same time zone and not staying up until 3 a.m. to talk. I never would have imagined that I’d find my person through a Facebook group, but here we are.

COVID-19 or not, Redditor ElectrifiedPop learned there’s no escaping bad dates–they just look a little different:

“I went on a ‘socially distanced date’ a few weeks ago. We both got coffee and walked outside in the cold for about an hour, just chatting. Towards the end, I asked if he wanted to meet later that week, again outside, and he said, ‘Sure!’ He grabbed my arm, pulled my mask down, bit my upper lip as he awkwardly/horribly kissed me. Needless to say, I did not see him again and yelled at him for missing the point of being socially distant.”

Redditor Coadifer has been hitting the apps—safely, that is:

“Many apps have updated to include your preference with dates: Masked, social distanced, virtual. I’ve gone on a few dates over Zoom, which has helped significantly: If we can’t hold a conversation over Zoom, I don’t see a need to meet in person.

For in-person dates, we’ve met at parks or trails for masked walks. We’re lucky here to have a ton of green space, and many are easy to distance from other parties. We bring our own food and chairs and will sit and chat outside. The weather here makes this easy, too; we have nicer winter days than in most northern cities, so an outdoor masked walk is a great option.”

Redditor S4FFYR took a big life step:

“We got engaged in August. It wasn’t a huge surprise, but enough that I didn’t expect it during a pandemic. I had figured if anything, he would hold off until things were

better in Europe (we’re both expats.) Cooper issued the stay-at-home order the day of our anniversary, which was a bit of a punch to the gut, and we had to cancel all our plans. Even though we live together with his eldest child, we still have a lot of fun: Dance parties (us and the teenager, maybe her best friend occasionally) in the kitchen/living room, the occasional ordering in/takeout from our favourite restaurant, taking the dog for hikes together, movie nights on the sofa—just random stuff we never really did together before. We were always out socializing together with our friends, running errands, or just general daily life when we didn’t have the kids pre-pandemic.”

Redditor mittensfound came up with a plot twist:

“Does anyone want to date because of this thread?” she wrote. “Mid-thirties/female, fun-loving and immature, low mileage: No kids, no recent divorce, I like good times and chill vibes, gainfully employed, not serious about romance right now but a wholesome date would be fun.”

Then, she hit us up with the following:

“I got just a few messages for my date requests on the thread. Nothing set, but I think we will get there. So my answer is: I date in COVID times by thinking out of the box and being adventurous. Not many dates to be had, but people are valuing socialization more now. It makes it nice. My extroverted personality has been more appreciated these days.”

Redditor Bumpi_Boi has an untraditional relationship for untraditional times:

“I’ve been by the books this whole time. Following the CDC and Fauci’s guidelines to a tee. Which has been very hard for my wife. She doesn’t see the need to shelter in place for a year or longer to hide from this pandemic. Anyway, her boyfriend takes her out every weekend, where they go to Drivetime, axe-throwing, bars. He even took her to Myrtle Beach over the summer. They just don’t see how these times can be very dangerous for people who are scared of the outside world.

It has caused quite the arguments between her and me. But I just wear my double mask and sleep in my separate bedroom like a good husband. Maybe things will get better now that Biden is in office and the vaccine is here.”

Redditor Unlikely_Edge_467 knows their worth:

“I was freshly single at the start of the pandemic, and I did just fine until August, when the loneliness really hit. I tried a few dating apps, but quickly realized that men would swear up and down they had been quarantining, only to discover their social media painted a different story. One guy, I happened upon his Instagram just an hour before our date and dodged a huge bullet: From his feed/stories, you’d have no idea he was living amidst a global pandemic. So I just didn’t show up for the date and gave no justification.

Later in November, a situationship with an ex started to emerge again, but he soon showed that he also gave no shits about exposing me to his questionable circles. I ended that on New Year’s Eve, when he threw a fit over me not coming over because I knew he’d been going out, seeing friends, generally being reckless.

So I’ve had no further interest in dating for the moment, and I’m actually becoming quite happily single 🙂 2021 has been amazing, now that I’ve realized how little interest I have in dealing with dating drama. I’ve invested so much time and care in myself, and I’ve never been happier!”

Happy Valentine’s Day, folks! And we’re hoping each of you is able to celebrate the other V-Day—Vaccination Day—very, very soon.

Follow Editor-in-Chief Jane Porter on Twitter or send an email to jporter@indyweek.com

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