Raise your hand if your group chat has ever given you the worst dating advice ever (even if you didn’t know it at the time). Maybe they encouraged you to text someone you shouldn’t have; maybe they told you not to text someone you should have. Either way, it’s likely that, at some point in your life, your besties’ relationship advice has left you single, heartbroken, and/or regretting asking their opinion in the first place.
If so, you’re not alone. According to new data from dating app Hinge, 54 percent of Gen Z singles “regret following their friends’ dating advice because they felt like they made the wrong decision in the end.”
Sure, your friends may give great insight on the best skin-care products or how that bubble dress looks on you, but their dating advice? Questionable. That’s mainly because a) they could be projecting their own relationship problems on you, and b) it’s likely you have different needs, wants, and desires in a relationship.
Believe me, I get it. Asking the group chat if you should send a “hi!” or a “heyy” may seem crucial, but Logan Ury, Hinge’s director of relationship science, says it’s important to remember that you are the one in the relationship, not your friends. Even though 80 percent of singles want their friends’ advice on who to date, “it’s critical that you learn how to tune into your own feelings and needs and figure out how you feel about someone,” Ury says.
You can start by using your friends for accountability, not advice. “Do the inner work to figure out your dating goals,” Ury says. “Then share those goals with your friends and ask them to hold you accountable. That way, they are supporting you on your journey, not projecting their priorities onto you.” This includes nailing down your deal-breakers and writing down what you’re actively looking for in a partner.
Ury also recommends talking to a therapist if you want guidance on your dating life. Not only can therapy help you learn more about your needs in a relationship, it can also help you feel more confident making relationship decisions without your bestie’s input. You can also read books like “Attached” and listen to relationship podcasts like “Girls Gotta Eat.”
Sure, your bestie may be your go-to confidant, but you’re the only one who knows what you need in a relationship. So while it’s definitely in your interests to trust your friends’ opinions on lipstick, maybe refrain from asking them about the person you just swiped right on.