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8 (Honest) Parents Review a New Dating App
11.27.17

In partnership with Huggle

The very first story I wrote for Man Repeller was about teaching my parents how to use technology. I still do so on a regular basis, an endeavor I find equal parts charming and exasperating. On the one hand, it only seems fair that I would do this for them given all they’ve done for me (i.e. grow me from nothing), but on the other, I don’t understand why it takes them so long to come around to an unfamiliar concept.

Dating apps, in particular, have been the recipient of a stink-eye or two from my beloved creators. Every time my sisters and I talk about them, my parents can’t seem to get past the hump that people would rather sit at home and swipe “yes” on strangers than get up and go to a bar and meet someone they probably have a lot more in common with.

There’s nothing wrong with either method, though, which is why the dating app Huggle has sought to combine them in an unprecedented and rather fascinating approach. As Haley relayed in the first installment of Man Repeller’s three-part series with Huggle, the app matches people based on where they frequently hang out, essentially facilitating the plot of an old-fashioned rom-com with the ease and convenience of modern technology.

Curious what the older generation would make of this “best of both worlds” dating approach, I asked my friends to introduce their parents and grandparents to Huggle and relay direct quotes about what they thought. As predicted, each response was a treat for the funny bone. Read what they said below, and feel free to have your beloved creators chime in via the comments section.


The name sounds friendly. Kind of like hugging. I might have tried it when I was younger, if I am honest about it, even though I don’t typically believe in dating apps. Of course, I am married now, and am not accustomed to meeting people through apps. Most apps seem impersonal, but I like that this one matches you based on places you both like to visit.

James, 64


My kids use apps and the internet for everything so they would probably find this app useful. My husband and I, believe it or not, met in high school. We started dating at the very end of senior year and throughout college. We actually went to the same college. In college we had a yearbook we received as freshmen which had names, pictures and information on the incoming class. That was one way we could see who the new people we met were.

Diane, 54

My husband and I met through mutual friends. We were both at someone’s house for a dinner party and were both recently unattached, or at least I was. Another girl there was flirting with  him, which made him even more attractive, but he was cute anyway and had amazing blue eyes. I like that Huggle brings people together based on how you actually live your life instead of just a headshot. It feels more like how people used to meet, but probably more efficient.
Lauren, 55

I met Nanny (my wife) in college. We didn’t really date in college but we knew each other. One night I went out to a concert in New York and Nanny was there! I started talking to her, called her the next day and asked her out. I guess if Huggle existed back then it could have connected us based on the fact that we both had the concert location in common.

Ron, 84


I happen to think it’s the modern way of meeting people. I have no problem with it. Many have made excellent partners using the internet. I’m all for it. My husband and I were introduced at a party. But I would have used dating apps if it existed in those days too.

Sylvia, 57


My husband and I worked at GE Aircraft Engines in separate organizations but were both picked by our bosses to participate in a field trip to Southwest Airlines. We met at a planning meeting and then sat next to each other on the flights from Cincinnati to Dallas’s Love Field and back. We spent the day together and exchanged contact information afterwards. We began dating a few weeks later. I probably would have used this app if it had been available 25 years ago — I think it would be better than other dating apps I’ve heard about and probably more effective than hoping to randomly meet someone the old-fashioned way.

Chris, 53


I think Huggle sounds like a interesting/good idea — who knows who you may be overlooking right under your nose! Doesn’t make me feel wildly hopeful that people will stop being so surface about who they want to meet (I HATE swipe right/left!) but maybe learning a little more about somebody online who sounds interesting, who you might not necessarily be immediately attracted to, may warrant a second look? I feel fine about people meeting online. In fact, I think it’s great! It opens up such a larger potential group rather than a random chance to meet someone in life. But the apps where it’s based entirely on the looks make me crazy! It’s the summary of the terrible shallow pitfall and feeds the worst of human instincts. (In my opinion.)

Kathy, 57


I met my husband in 1994 at a financial conference in Paris. Our friend set us up, and we got married a year later. Of course I would have used something like Huggle if it existed back then. I’m very open-minded and into using all of my possibilities and options. I think that would be great. I would do it. I like how the way it matches you up isn’t so random. My daughter is so busy, she needs to stop and smell the roses. I would love for her to try a dating app.

Jennifer, 54

Download Huggle here!

Illustrations by Gabrielle Lamontagne.

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  • Adrianna

    My Polish mother met my father when he drove his alcoholic/drunk roommate, aka her uncle, from Warsaw to her family’s farm. The story goes that she and her cousin were peering through the window, and she asked, “why is that old guy still single?” My father was 21.

  • Noor

    This is so cute! My mum once asked me if there was a dating app (or “dating Facebook” as she calls it) to connect me with fellow Lebanese Muslims so I could find my “halal fate”. I nearly died, but IRL it’s a pretty good app idea.

    • antislice

      I’m 2 weeks late to the comments section (thanks feedly), but I know a couple guys who started muzmatch, a dating app for muslims.