In a world that’s constantly trying to figure out love, its complexities, and the ever-evolving concept of relationships, it’s not surprising that there seems to be an insatiable desire to understand it better. It’s the recognition of this desire that fuels the constant influx of surveys on modern love, which often come with a gentle reminder that one likes to hear once in a while: You are not the only one to feel this heavy emotion. Surveys work because they offer comfort through invisible communities masked as numbers.
While dating apps such as Bumble often use surveys as a way to introduce new features, and emphasise their relevance in the modern dating world, OTT platforms such as Lionsgate Play have now entered this space to promote new content. Ahead of its recent release, Minus One: New Chapter on Valentine’s Day, the streaming platform, conducted a survey on love, relationships, and heartbreaks. Turns out, the survey tool works well in connecting with the youth and steering them towards a new series or film that reflects all that and more.
The recent Modern Love Report 2023 by Bumble, a survey of 2000 single adults in August and December last year, and the Relationship Meter survey Lionsgate Play, conducted with 1000 Indians, reveal how daters today are looking at relationships and navigating their dating journeys today.
Live-in, an end goal
Every time there is a celebrity break up, you are bound to find at least one comment, “How can someone believe in love anymore?” So, now people question relationships in an attempt to understand whether marriage is the only way to commit.
Both surveys reveal that more people are inclined towards living-in, seeing it as a milestone. According to the Lionsgate Play survey, 1 out of 2 Indians feel that live-in is important to understand their partner better. The Bumble survey respondents reiterated this, and more, with over half (53%) of respondents calling it an ‘end goal.’
Gen Z and millennials have seen marriages not working because of infidelity and monotony, and feel it’s crucial to test the waters with a live-in relationship before taking a legal step, says Kavyal Sedanni, the relationship expert and therapist, consulted by the OTT platform. “While this may be a great way to get to know the person you’re living with, it also comes with a risk because one foot of yours is always outside the door,” she adds.
‘Pyaar dosti hai’
The idea that Shah Rukh Khan smoothly sold to millions of youth—love is friendship—is still going strong. Most men (87%) and women (92%) surveyed by the streaming platform believe that friendship is the secret ingredient for enduring love. Moreover, the ‘friends with benefits’ concept has expanded to mini-metros with 38% of folks choosing it as compared to metro residents.
The Bumble survey showed that 34% of women respondents prioritised emotional intimacy and intelligence, whereas only 21% prioritised physical intimacy when committing to a serious, long-term relationship.
Easier to break up
People are becoming more practical in approaching love. The era of pining for ‘the one’ is almost laughable now. Although loneliness is a fear, as Lionsgate Play survey shows that 3 out of 5 Indians (60%) worry that heartbreak can lead to not finding love again, people don't want stay in a relationship if it's not working. The survey reveals that 72% of 33-to 38 year-olds and 67% of 27-to 32 year-olds feel it’s easier to break up than fix the relationship while 48% feel it’s better to move on with a new one.
Sedanni says relationships are considered important lessons. “On average, they say that each person goes through at least three relationships which means they will ultimately face two breakups. Everyone has to go through heartbreaks, betrayals and more but we have to learn to face them and not run away from them”.
While these surveys might make it easier to see some emotions as a collective experience, it's also important to recognise that they often see gender as binary and lack intersectional perspectives which limits the reach.