The Modern Online Dating Glossary

Modern-dating can be complicated at the best of times, but when new terms seem to be introduced on an almost weekly basis, dating can become nothing short of mind-boggling. So to make life just a little bit easier for you we’ve prepared a dating glossary that will ensure your dating knowledge never falls short – at WhichDate we’re nice like that!



What is Benching?

So mean it’s unreal. Benching is dating your second choice until your first choice becomes available. Prepare to be ditched.

What to do if you're being benched…..?

So mean it’s unreal. Benching is dating your second choice until your first choice becomes available. Prepare to be ditched.


What is sidebarring?

Probably the most common complaint among daters. Ever had someone on their phone whilst they should be on a date....with all attention on you? That is sidebarring! 


What is Breadcrumbing?

So mean it’s unreal. Benching is dating your second choice until your first choice becomes available. Prepare to be ditched.

How to Deal with Breadcrumbing?

So mean it’s unreal. Benching is dating your second choice until your first choice becomes available. Prepare to be ditched.


What is Switching?

Ever been in a casual relationship only to find that the other person was still using dating apps? It usually effects one person more than the other and can lead to some awkward conversations.


What is Pausing?

This is a form of ghosting, but its short term and usually rears its head before a national holiday . Think going quiet on someone a couple of weeks before Christmas or worse, Valentines Days.


What is Stalling?

Pretty simple one, you've had a great date but now you don't know how or more importantly WHEN to make contact. You don't want to seem too keen, but you want to let them know you had fun. 

Catch and Release 

What is Catch and Release?

This is the practice of hooking up (catching) and then never speaking to them again (releasing).

Cuffing Season

What is Cuffing Season?

In the summer most of us like to party but in this Winter months (particularly over the Christmas and New Year period) we all seem to suddenly want a boyfriend or girlfriend. Cuffing season is essentially Winter.

When is Cuffing Season?

Its starts in November and will last until the weather picks up


What is Cushioning?

This is all about softening the blow, but not necessarily in a nice way. Cushioning usually takes place when a relationship isn’t going so well and behind your partner’s back you start to develop a back-up. Someone you may hook up with immediately after your relationship ends.


What is printing? 

This could be the worst thing to happen before a date or EVER. 
You decide to do some online stalking of your match when all of a sudden your finger makes a wrong turn and hits 'like' - you have left your digital fingerprint all over their profile and worst of all, they know about it! - HT to Ben @ Guardian for this monstrous phrase


What does DTR stand for? 

This stands for ‘define the relationship.’ Refers to that very awkward but often rewarding conversation when you finally ask ‘so what are we?’ to the person you are dating.


What does FBO stand for?  

This stands for Facebook Official which to many is the ultimate confirmation that you are now in fact a proper couple. Congrats on reaching this level.


What is a Fuckboy?

The most hated of modern day men. Fuck boys (or ‘fboys’) are basically selfish users who will get everything they possibly can out of you without ever giving anything back. No commitment, no effort, no nothing. When will you hear from them? When they want something of course.


What is Ghosting?

Never a nice situation! When a relationship ends without any explanation whatsoever and all attempts to contact you now ex proves futile, you have been ghosted.

How to respond to Ghosting…..


What does Shipped mean?

When a relationship is ‘shipped’ it means you have officially received the seal of approval of all of your loved ones. A slightly more mature version of FBO.


What is Haunting?

When someone who has already completely and utterly ghosted you but then reappears out of nowhere and acts all interested again. More often than not a complete time-waster who will do it again and again if allowed to.

Slow Fade

What is Slow Fade in dating?

When you’ve started a budding relationship of some sort and then realise you’re not interested, some people will gradually disappear from your life rather than just being upfront about it. Two texts one day, one the next, zero the next, you get the idea.

How to handle the slow fade….


The Ick

What does The Ick mean? 

Made famous by those lovely guys and gals on ITV’s Love Island. Have you ever liked someone but then after a few days they start to absolutely repulse you?

The Lemming

What is a Lemming in dating?

A lemming of course is someone who follows the crowd.  From a dating perspective? Picture this, your best friend is in a relationship but ends it and so you end your relationship too because you don’t want to be the only one in a relationship. A tad pathetic.

Thirst Trap

What is a thirst trap? 

This is when you may be craving a little bit of attention and so post a deliberately provocative picture on social media knowing full well that someone, somewhere will most likely feed your ego just the right amount.

Thirst trap examples 



What does thirty mean? 

This is when someone may be just a little over-keen. If you’ve made it pretty clear you’re not interested in someone but they still persist, they are most definitely what you would call ‘thirsty.’


What does Tuning mean? 

A bit like breadcrumbing but way more thought out. A tuner is someone who shows plenty of interest in you but never wants to take things to the next level. A tuner gives enough to keep you interested without ever really committing. Can be a little bit methodical, a tad sneaky and utterly frustrating.


What does  Zombieing mean? 

When someone from your past rises up ‘from the dead’ to try and come back into your life. This is another term/similar to haunting.


What does Submarining mean? 

Its essentially the same as Zombieing, whereby someone disappears for no apparent reason (like they have escaped on a submarine) and then all of a sudden reappear. The main difference here is that the culprit will not acknowledge their wrong doing at all, no apology or explanation. You should avoid anyone who resembles a ‘Submariner’ 


What is Stashing? 

Stashing is when someone you are seeing doesn’t acknowledge your existence on social media or IRL (in real life). They haven’t introduced you to their family or friends and you have no idea where you stand in their life. 

Cat Fishing / Kittenfishing

What is Cat Fishing / Kittenfishing? 

Catfishing, to keep it simple is when someone pretends to be someone or something they are not online.
Kittenfishing is basically a version of this, but focuses on their younger, prettier self. So pictures and profile info would be more accurate 5 years ago than today and could cause an awkward first meeting.

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