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Decoding Our New Dating Language 

by: Kelly Leary, M.S., The Florida Matchmaker


The love business is booming with new clients and engagement notifications post-lockdown. I can’t count how many dynamic duos will be enjoying the fireworks together because of us. Summertime is the kick-off of The Cuffing Season, the time when finding a girlfriend or boyfriend becomes even more appealing as the countdown to the holidays is only six months away. Plus, we are all a little more responsibly “free” than we were in the Spring. Twenty/Twenty has been tough on us all, but it’s about to turn around! The second half of the year will make you smile with appreciation and hope.


In the wake of our “new normal,” I have decided to bring you up to date on the new “terms” being used on the dating scene. As always, meeting through introduction by a friend is the best way to go…and that is what we recreate at my club. So Ready-Set-Go. Be aware and enjoy the next chapter of your life. Knowledge is power. The power of love knows no boundaries but first we must know who we are dating and what goes on “Behind the Screens!” (Yikes). Online daters beware today more than ever before…and social media lovers…heed my advice. It’s just too easy to get into trouble if you are dating via the internet in any way. In this day and age, dating begins and ends with our smart phones. So, let’s get smarter.


Learn the New Dating Dictionary, circa 2020:


Micro-Cheating: Inappropriate flirting or contact with another that lacks physical touch.  It goes beyond emotional infidelity, in that this usually occurs on an electronic device in one way or another. How do you know if you have crossed the line? If you are doing anything you would not want your partner knowing about (when it comes to dating or flirting) like texting inappropriately, sending photos or sharing intimate feelings with anyone other than your “exclusive” partner, then you are mirco-cheating.


Love Bombing: The flame that burns too fast dies quickly. You feel someone fell madly in love with you but they have never met you or you met briefly. In this case you definitely should think twice. Why is he or she falling so fast and they barely know you?  How many times have they done this before?


Catfishing: When a person lures someone into a relationship by pretending to be someone else online or has greatly altered their appearance. Catfishes often steal photos from strangers’ profiles, and sometimes even create multiple personas to make their stories more believable. They will try to continue a “fake” relationship for months–always avoiding a face-to-face meeting.


Ghosting: When someone you’ve been seeing vanishes without a trace. You could have been dating a few days, or months, but one day they simply disappear. They don’t return your texts, and may even block you to avoid having the break-up conversation with you. It’s cowardly, but sadly common, especially with a vast array of dating apps at our fingertips.


Zombie-ing: If you’ve been ghosted, the culprit may resurface. It’s usually a decent amount of time after they disappeared, and they often act like nothing happened, like a revived corpse.


Nexting: With all the apps at our fingertips and singles finding it so easy to communicate via a smart phone, anyone can be anyone. False confidence abounds and many just feel they can jump to the next in an instant…and guess what? They can. This is a weak testimony to a real man or woman who is looking to date sincerely as a romantic goal. If you feel you are in this trap, get out quickly.


Stashing: When the person you’re dating doesn’t introduce you to their friends or family, and doesn’t post anything about you on social media. Basically, you’re their secret boyfriend or girlfriend, while they feel justified in “stashing” you on the shelf, pretending nothing is going on to the outside world, and keeping their options open. If they proclaim you as their romantic interest, they will have to give up their search.


Benching: Before you have “the talk” with your new partner about whether you are in an exclusive relationship, you are at risk of being “benched.”  Like the sports term, where players are left on the bench as reserves, you might find yourself being someone’s back-up option as they continue to look around. They may come back to you if nobody better comes along, but that doesn’t give one high hopes for the relationship, does it?


If you are someone who has resisted dating because of all of the above, I don’t blame you. BUT you do have to stand up for what you want at some point and take a strong calculated risk. Not everyone is obsessed with his or her screens!  Not everyone would risk his or her safety, money or sanity on internet dating or blind flirting. You don’t have to either. Don’t think of what you have to lose today, think of what you have to gain. Be confident, smart, and carry on my friend! It’s time you start dating smart too. You got this–and so do we!


Let’s claim some internet-independence!






Kelly Leary, Founder of Revolution Dating has a master’s degree in psychology and 29 successful years in the dating industry. A top matchmaker, now known as THE Award-Winning Matchmaker, she has been profiled by ABC News, The Palm Beach Post, PalmBeacher Magazine, The South Florida Business Journal, and numerous other media outlets. Please call our hotlines seven days a week at 561-630-XOXO (9696) in the Palm Beaches and South Florida area or 772-932-HERE (4373) on the Treasure Coast. You may also visit our informational only website at All inquiries are confidential. All applicants must be prescreened in person at our private practice to be eligible. This is NOT online dating. 


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