Dating is a touchy subject for Muslim families. Of course, that complicates things for young Muslims when it comes time for marriage and they can’t find their soulmate because of a pandemic.
Muzmatch and Minder (now Salams) are two of the largest Muslim dating apps and boast millions of registered users. Targeted towards Muslim millennials and now Gen Z, these apps promise to help the younger generation of Muslims find their spouse.
I never had much luck pre-pandemic, so when one of my friends texted me asking me to try it out with her, I said no. It always felt like I was walking through a bazaar back home, filled with older unmarried men. Not a pleasant feeling for apps that prided themselves on being ‘halal‘.
Yet, I decided I had nothing to lose. Minder has a reputation for being a ‘Muslim‘ Tinder, and for good reason. The men on there seem much less interested in marriage, and more interested in ‘halal‘ meetups. I deleted the app in disgust a couple of years ago after getting a load of messages from one guy who asked if ‘loose‘ or not. Gross. And definitely far from what I would like in a future husband.
I’m not the only one. This lead to an attempt to rebrand as Salams late last year. It’s yet to be seen if it helps. I decided on Muzmatch.
I set up my profile, uploading a few selfies, adding my ethnicity and info on how religious I was (i.e if I drank, how often I prayed, etc).
I started to swipe through profiles and found myself swiping left nearly 99.9% of the time. I might be a bit vain and shallow when it comes to looks, but I genuinely tried to swipe right on at least a few people.
Most of the men being suggested to me were just not my type, or anywhere near my age. I’m not interested in men old enough to be my uncle. Where were the Zayn Maliks? I tried fiddling with the filters, and still, nothing.
I don’t expect to feel a spark from Heyyyyy but with dating apps, always listen to your gut
A quick trend I noticed was the number of older men still showing up in my requests, who were clearly lying about their age. Profiles are supposed to be approved, but seems like suspicious ones still slip through the vetting process.
Some are both. The few that I replied to I ended up quickly blocking when messages started to get into uncomfortable territory.
Conversations are encouraged to be kept ‘halal‘, but it quickly becomes clear when that’s not the intention for most guys. (As a rule of thumb, never give a man your Snapchat. That should be a red flag for every girl, Muslim or not.)
One guy that I did manage to go back and forth with for a day suddenly asked me if I would be okay with being a second wife. When he noticed I didn’t react well to the question, he backtracked saying it was just hypothetical. I wouldn’t be that surprised if he was married.
Another lied about being in New York City for a few hours before admitting he was back home with his family (and implying he wanted a Green Card.)
There were a handful of men who would Instant Chat me and then continue to message me, even when I never actually responded to them. One went as far as finding my Instagram and my younger brother’s Instagram, messaging him after ignored him on two different apps.
I never had any intention of meeting up in real life with any of the men I’d interacted with on the app. I can’t imagine what could have happened if I did. The problem with these apps is they make it easy for predatory men with bad intentions to talk to often innocent, or at least inexperienced, girls.
When you don’t have much dating experience in real life, dating apps can be a horror story for anyone. It’s so easy for men to make a profile and lie about how religious he is, which you won’t know until you meet him.
Of course, it seems like there free wiccan video chat are some happy endings to come out of Muzmatch, like this lucky happy couple.
Most of the men on Muzmatch (like all dating apps) are the guys who are too afraid to talk to women in real life or feel they’re entitled to them
But after using it last year for a few months, I don’t really feel like it’s going to work for me. Dating apps for casual relationships is one thing, marriage is something completely else. I wish I could say I met my Prince Charming online, but I don’t think that’s gonna happen anytime soon.