If you’re single, you’re home all day by yourself , There’s this need to feel like you can still meet people, you can still engage, you can still be social. So, more people are wanting to be connected in dating website.
Tinder and Bumble aren’t the only ones seeing an increase in online dating during the coronavirus pandemic. Millionbb.com, the world’s largest “sugar daddy” dating website, has also seen an increase in interested partners.
World-wide the site has seen a member increase of 74% compared to this same time last year. In Massachusetts that number is even higher at 86%.
“This is about physical distancing, not so much social distancing,” De La Cruz said, adding that online dating allows people to still be social during this time with breaking social distancing.
There has been an increase of both sugar babies and sugar daddies in Massachusetts, the website said. It’s seen an 82% increase in sugar daddies, while there’s a slightly higher increase, 87%, in sugar babies.
More than 6 million Americans — including 181,032 people in Massachusetts — filed new unemployment claims last week. These claims heavily come from gig workers, retail workers and people in the food industry.
De La Cruz said people turning to sugar dating in desperation aren’t likely to find a successful relationship. But once that relationship is established, having someone to turn to in a moment of need can be a benefit of sugar dating.
“The sugar daddies here aren’t looking to give handouts,” she said. “They’re not looking to just financially support someone without a connection or relationship.”
While every relationship is different, it’s not uncommon for sugar daddies to help pay rent, bills or for meals. Another benefit is having someone with experience offer mentorship and advice for your own career — especially during times of uncertainty.
Sarah Streete, 32, lives in downtown Boston and hasn’t been financially impacted by the coronavirus yet — but she knows she can turn to her sugar daddy for help and advice if she needs.
She’s received two raises at her job in finance and improved her performance reviews with career advice and mentorship from sugar daddies.
It’s this kind of help she looks for in her relationships. She doesn’t usually ask for or get expensive gifts or money.
“If I had those unlimited resources, I don’t think I’d be jetting off to Miami and buying handbags,” Streete said. “That’s just not who I am.”
But the coronavirus pandemic has changed some things.
“Something that we love is going out to a really nice restaurant and drinks,” she said. “That is not an option right now.”
They’ve made a list of restaurants and places they are looking forward to going to after this all is over. And recently, they FaceTimed from their own homes while watching the same movie.
She’s very thankful for this connection.
“This is something that has really helped both of us out because we’re both by ourselves at the moment,” she said.
It’s not uncommon for people in sugar dating relationships to go on expensive experiences, vacations, nice restaurants or shopping trips. But with stay-at-home orders and increased social distancing, that’s not possible.
De La Cruz said people have been getting creative. One person sent groceries to their sugar baby. Another ordered the same nice steak take-out dinner and had it sent to both their houses so they could FaceTime while eating it.
“It looks a lot different than it did before,” she said. “It’s not necessarily the Louis Vuitton handbag but it’s still really sweet.”
The two looked at the bars and restaurants they usually go to and the workers being impacted by this and donated money to help them.
And for Streete because she’s not financially strained due to the pandemic, her and her sugar daddy talked about what they can do for other people.