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I'd never dabbled in casual sex until Tinder. I was a serial monogamist, moving from one long-term relationship to the next. I had friends who'd indulged in one-night stands and was probably guilty of judging them a little, of slut-shaming. I saw the negatives — that merry-go-round of hook-ups and guys never calling again.

Then, in Februarymy partner dumped me. We'd only been together eight months but I was serious, deeply in love, and seven months of celibacy followed. By summer, I needed something to take the pain away. Big loves don't come every day.

Guardian Radios 44 · Guardian...

Instead of "boyfriend hunting", searching for an exact copy of my ex, why not get out there, enjoy dating, have a good laugh — and, if I felt a connection, some good sex too? I could be married in five years and I'd never experimented before. This was my chance to see what all the fuss was about. There's a hierarchy of seriousness on the dating sites.

At the top is something like Guardian Soulmates or Match — the ones you pay for. You put in your pictures and add some information if you can be bothered. I started with one line "Single Canadian girl in London". It's superficial, based purely on physical attraction, but that's what I was looking for.

You go through what's there, if you see someone you like, you swipe right. If he swipes you too, it lights up like a game, then asks if you want to keep playing. My first Tinder date was with someone I'd seen before on OKCupid — the same faces crop up on all these sites. He knew all the cool restaurants, the best places and, as he was only in London occasionally, things moved faster than they should have. After just a few dates, he booked us a night in a fancy Kensington hotel.

I met him at a pub first A to z of hookup guardian liquid courage — and knew the second I saw him that my heart wasn't in it. The connection wasn't there for me. Not a great start. But Tinder is addictive.

For some, hookups and one-night...

You find yourself browsing and swiping and playing on. The possibilities pile up.

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