The recently (now ex) engaged 25 year old woman, resident of Hoboken, NJ, tested positive for COVID-19 late Friday night. With this confirmed case the state of New Jersey has now reached a total of 3,590 cases of COVID-19 and counting. Although a large majority of New Jersey residents are complying with the restrictions imposed due to the pandemic, outliers who ignore the warnings from officials will continue to further the spread of the virus.
After her positive diagnosis the woman (who will remain unnamed, as all COVID-19 patients) was questioned by health officials as to her whereabouts in the past 14 days.
According to her account, in the past 14 days she had only left her house on four occasions. To purchase groceries at a nearby ShopRite, and on two other occasions to meet with people she had met on dating apps. One was through Tinder. The other was through Hinge.
Although the dates were with two different males at two different locations, both dates occurred within 48 hours of one another. Making it easier for officials to narrow down the window of incubation.
The one woman explained to health officials that both dates were with men she had met over dating sites and aside from their cell phone numbers and addresses (she had visited both men at their homes on both dates) she did not have much information on them. Health officials in New Jersey are currently working to track down and confirm the identity of both of these men so they can be tested and cared for/quarantined if needed.
Many residents of Hoboken and New Jersey as a whole have heavily criticized this behavior. Young adults have continued to meet up with strangers they meet on dating apps for casual intimate relationships on a regular basis. Bumble, Tinder, and Hinge have all reported an extremely large uptick in activity.
At first many assumed this was due to quarantine boredom and individuals feeling the need for connection over virtual conversations. This was partially true, but in New York City and parts of New Jersey it is becoming abundantly clear that these relationships are not ending on the screen.
Eric Langhorne, Assistant Director of Health of Rutgers University explains, “The amount of casual dating that happens currently among the age group of 20-26 is astronomical. Many of these relationships lasting as short as one night. But they are still very intimate. There is nothing wrong with this normally, but right now, if people can carry this virus for over a week without knowing, it is clear how this could be a dangerous thing.”
So kids, stick with the Zoom dates for now.