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How to navigate dating in a pandemic


Finding your special someone is not always easy especially now during the coronavirus pandemic.

News Channel 3’s Caitlin Thropay spoke to a local dating expert on ways to navigate dating in a pandemic.

"One of my favorite quotes is, 'You don't have to see the whole staircase to take the first step,' that's a quote from Martin Luther King and that's something I always say because it can be intimidating for someone to put themselves back out there," Jeff Finegold told News Channel 3.

It can be especially difficult trying to find love during a pandemic. 

When you can't go out to meet someone, your primary options are online dating, apps or hiring a dating specialist like Jeff Finegold to help you meet your match.

"Don't put your life on pause," he said. "Ultimately, dating can be a numbers game and it's all about timing and you don't want to miss your opportunity to meet your special somebody," Finegold added. He works at a dating company calle, "It's Just Lunch" in Palm Desert. He said he has seen a surge in people wanting to find love since the start of the pandemic. 

"They don't want to be by themselves," he said. "They want someone to enjoy life with and to be able to go through this with," he added.

So how does dating in a pandemic work?

"We've had some clients get really creative in ways to get around this," he said. "You can do something simple like a social distance walk or social distance hike," he said.

Brooke Federico with Riverside County Public Health gave us a statement regarding dating in a pandemic.

"It's a basic human need to feel connected with others. Virtually connecting with family, friends and loved ones over the phone, online or by mail are safe ways to stay connected during this difficult time," she said.

Federico also wants to remind people, if you do choose to go out and meet someone new, maintain six feet of distance and wear a face covering.

Even though it doesn't sound very romantic, Finegold said it actually serves as a great ice breaker and it takes the pressure off of meeting someone in person for the first time.

"Right away you're going to have that innate sense of being able to laugh a little bit and break the ice and say, 'Well you know this is different, but I'm really excited to meet you and get to know you,'" he explained.

even if it's virtual, being able to talk and laugh together builds a relationship.

"Ultimately, you want to get to know someone on a more intimate level and that produces incredible positive results for your mental health," he said.

Once the connection gets deeper, he suggests finding unique date ideas like virtual cooking together or watching a movie and pressing pause to discuss it. He said finding unique dates to do shows that you care and are committed to the relationship.

"There are paint studios like the one in Palm Desert and Palm Springs that are offering to deliver you the canvas and paint and actually walk you through the video class and then you can share with each other your results," he said.

There really is no time like the present to connect virtually and perhaps, even in a pandemic, you can still find love.

For more information on the dating services Finegold offers through It's Just Lunch visit:

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Caitlin Thropay


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