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Astrology in the Online Dating World: Are We Letting Celestial Bodies Decide Who We Date?

Never reveal personal info online, especially your birthday!

Two hands making a heart with a zodiac wheel surrounding it
CREDIT: SHUTTERSTOCK/SARAYUT_SY

It seems people are starting to take “it’s written in the stars” quite literally.

Astrology posits that the activity of celestial bodies has a significant bearing on what happens on Earth, including the success of your next Tinder date.

According to a recent report from Tinder, mentions of “astrology” in people’s bios have shot up by 106% over the course of a year and on Bumble the majority of users now choose to filter their matches based on astrological compatibility using the app’s “star sign filter”. Priti Joshi, Bumble’s vice president of strategy, has noted that these features are “especially popular with Gen Z.”

Apparently, there is a need for even more astral indicators in the online dating world which many newer apps cater to. Stars Align, for example, lets you view your potential date’s birth chart—which is said to reveal a lot more about a person than their star sign alonebefore you even swipe. It’s already not great that we dismiss people based on their looks before getting to know them…. but now are we really going to swipe left because we claim to “already know them” based on their horoscope?

Bored Black woman on a dinner date thinking he must be a Capricorn
CREDIT: SHUTTERSTOCK/PRO-STOCK STUDIO

“Zodiac Shaming” is a Thing, Particularly in Dating

Remember when “What’s your sign?” was just a cheesy pickup line? It’s now a loaded question which, if answered “incorrectly”, could result in the inquirer promptly walking away, rather than vice versa.

The shocking existence of “zodiac shaming” is confirmed by the results of a survey conducted by MTV Insights in 2019. Among the 1,000 participants, aged 14 to 29, 25 percent said “they would decide to not date somebody based on their sign”. One 21-year-old participant disclosed:

“My friend and I are definitely wary about Gemini men based on bad experiences with ones being very hot and cold or two-faced, which is what they are known for.”

This questionable thought process is echoed by many other astrology lovers. On Twitter, you can find an abundance of “I would never date [specific zodiac sign]” tweets and in YouTuber Jada Rae’s public interview most people already had an answer ready to go when asked, “What zodiac sign would you not date?”. Their reason for romantically excluding one twelfth of the population? Most people have beef with a certain sign either for personal reasons (e.g. their two-timing ex was a Gemini) or because of the bad reputation it has garnered (e.g. “Virgos are boring”). This mindset is especially concerning when “there’s a third of us that are considering astrology when it comes to making decisions about relationships.”

Some people find it necessary to check their astrological compatibility even after they’ve already met the person…

Katherine, 27, told Cosmopolitan:

“It’s actually gotten to the point where I’ll do someone’s natal chart on the first date ‘as a joke,’ even though I’m secretly totally serious.”

Similarly, Stephanie, 22, says: “Most often, the first or second actual date consists of me going over mine and my date’s birth charts”. “She also tries to weed out Scorpios, specifically”.

Turning the Tables on Astrology

If “zodiac shaming” is “becoming increasingly widespread, particularly in dating”, it only makes sense that more nonbelievers are feeling disinclined to be with someone who is interested in astrology.

“Zodiac compatibility is BS to me. In my experience it’s used as a superficial reason to accept or reject someone immediately. My sign (Scorpio) is particularly disliked and it’s often used against me. I judge others who base their opinions of someone on something as meaningless as that.”

Bradley, 25

Other skeptics have pointed out that even once you’re in a relationship with someone who’s into astrology, they can expect certain things of you because of your sign or use their own sign to excuse their behavior (just because you’re an Aries doesn’t mean it’s okay!!). When astrology is taken this seriously in a relationship, it can prevent both people from growing and actually getting to know each other!

White lesbian couple enjoying a picnic
CREDIT: PEXELS/PAVEL DANILYUK

Of course, astrology isn’t all bad. Though it’s not a science, it can still be fun to learn about. Andrea Liner, a Denver-based psychologist, even believes that “it can offer a useful starting point for understanding the people and experiences in our lives.” However, it can certainly never replace getting to know someone and so it probably shouldn’t play a role in your dating life!

Written By

Just graduated from UCC with a BA in music and English. My other passions include learning languages, astrology, and art.

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