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Bani J on Dating these days

Dating These Days, launched by Bumble, aims at helping single Indians navigate conversations & challenges around dating post the pandemic

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Dating These Days, aims at helping single Indians navigate conversations and challenges around dating post the pandemic in 2021. Sayani Gupta and Bani J, Kaneez Surka, Ayush Mehra, Yashaswini and Anwesh Sahoo are seen sharing unfiltered and meaningful conversations around dating truths in India.

From honest and open conversations around how the pandemic has changed our approach to sex and intimacy, how to deal with our exes, to pop culture and Bollywood’s influence on romance and relationships in India is presented by the women-first social networking app. This author caught up with Bani J to get the vibe.

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What are the biggest red signs for you in a relationship?
Bani J:
For me, red flags are the very basic stuff that becomes pretty obvious, but we pretend that it’s not that big a deal in the beginning because you’re so infatuated with the other person.

How can the Millennials tell if their relationship is worth salvaging or if they should just let it go and move on?
Bani J:
This is something that you can’t generalise about because everyone’s priorities in life and preferences in life are very different. So, what could be important to me might not be important to somebody else, but I think that there are some parameters that everyone should keep in mind which help you understand if your relationship is healthy or not.

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The first thing is if you both want to make an actual effort and it’s not just one-sided. Secondly, if every time you are able to talk about something that the other person is upset about, in a nice, civilised manner and without getting triggered, upset or fighting or shouting and getting abusive or shutting the other person down, then I think it’s worth salvaging.

However, I think it’s a fine line because a lot of people I have seen get stuck in a relationship or a situation because it’s just familiar to them and they feel like this is better – like a known devil is better than an unknown one. So, they feel that ‘we’ve invested so much so let’s just stay in this situation’ which I think is not okay. People shouldn’t do that to themselves, they deserve better. So that would be another thing to watch out for.

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Is it okay to keep in touch with your ex? What are your thoughts on the matter?
Bani J:
It totally depends on what your relationship is like with your ex. You need to be very clear about your intentions- are you trying to be in touch with them in the hopes of starting things up again or are you genuinely coming from a space where you guys are in a �have had enough space’ and you just want to be friends and have had a mutually agreeable break-up. It also depends on whether you have known each other forever and now you just want to maintain your friendship.

I do think it’s possible to be in touch with your exes. I am not in touch with all of my exes, but I am definitely in touch with one or two of them because we are both extremely grown people, have our own relationships going on and can support each other as really good friends. I think you just have to find the space. There’s no one rule that fits all.

According to you, what are some of the harmful concepts about relationships we need to get rid of?
Bani J:
I think one of the main ones is that love conquers all because it’s a very tricky space for people who are in toxic relationships. Another one is that love is all you need. I do think that love is all you need as a general rule in your life but when it comes to your relationships, I believe in having healthy boundaries and having very good communication in place. I may sound like I am repeating myself, but these are the cornerstones of having a good friendship or a relationship in your life.

If you believe that you can change somebody if you love them enough, that’s wrong. Sometimes, people just have toxic patterns that they can’t break out of. It’s not your fault and it’s not your job to help them break them, it is their own job, it is their work to do in their life journey so don’t take it upon yourself to fight that battle for them because you can’t. It’s like helping somebody who doesn’t want help, you can’t do it.

What are the takeaways you would mention from this collaboration with Bumble’s Dating these days?
Bani J:
We talked about popular culture and how it affects relationships. It’s easier to get carried and caught up away in a movie or show or character and the way they are on screen. So, don’t believe everything that you see especially when it’s on a screen, in an article or on the gram even. I would definitely put it down to more first-hand experiences that you are having or people in your life are having. Don’t ever be disappointed if your own version of your love story isn’t mimicking what you have seen on a screen because it isn’t supposed to.

–By N Lothungbeni Humtsoe

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