The Dating Slang Terms You Really Need To Know

The Dating Slang Terms You Really Need To Know

April 24, 2020

Modern dating can be a tricky enough game and even more so if you’ve been off the radar for a while. Combined with the new terminology that sprouts up on an almost weekly basis, it’s enough to make you feel like it’s left you behind. Here, we have listed some of the more popular dating slang terms that you need to know.


To ‘bench’ someone means that you like them enough to flirt and message but not enough to commit to a relationship. You are putting them on the bench until something better comes along.

Booty Call

A ‘booty call’ is generally a late night call or message, with the sole intention of having casual sex with someone.


If you are breadcrumbing someone, you are sending flirty messages but with no interest in physically dating. You are throwing enough ‘breadcrumbs’ to keep them interested but nothing will likely come of it.


Have you been ‘catfished’? This means that you have been duped by someone on social media with a fake profile and fake picture and they will have tricked you into believing they are someone else. This is quite often done to extort money or gain personal or financial details.

Cuffing Season

Cuffing season is said to last between the winter months of October and March. It’s alleged that people have less desire to be alone in these months and so look for a partner, even someone they wouldn’t normally go for, just to cosy up to.


Are you ‘cushioning’ prospective dates? Are you keeping them as a backup should something go wrong with your current love interest?


Have you noticed a romantic interest commenting or liking old photos or statuses on your social media? Congrats, you are being ‘deepliked’!

DM Slide

This is probably slightly more well known. ‘Sliding into someone’s DMs’ is when a person sends a direct message, via social media platforms, to flirt. It takes any contact out of the public eye and into private one-to-one territory.


Define The Relationship (DTR) is when you and your love interest have the ‘chat’ to discuss if you are officially dating. This will include whether exclusively or an open relationship etc. (whatever both sides are happy with) and moving towards being official partners.


Friends With Benefits is pretty much just that. A friend you hook up with for sexual encounters but without the commitment of a relationship.


Supposing someone you were chatting to, or more, cuts you off completely and won’t answer any messages, texts or calls, then you have been ‘ghosted’.


You may begin to notice after a breakup that your ex is ‘liking’ the odd post or has seen a story you posted. You are being ‘haunted’. This behaviour is a subtle way of saying “I’m still here, don’t forget me”.


This will be your first real and physical date- In Real Life!

Love Bombing

Love bombing doesn’t always turn out as nicely as it begins. Your boyfriend or girlfriend has bombarded you with gifts, tokens of love, poems, and you feel like the luckiest person on earth. Until they’ve got you where they want you and it all becomes a game of control and can be manipulative and abusive.


Sending secret text messages and flirting with someone other than your partner, but stopping short of actual infidelity is also known as microcheating.

Netflix and Chill

This was the original stay-at-home date for couples who didn’t want to go out. Apparently most couples didn’t get to see the end of the film, if you know what we mean!! It is now a euphemism for staying home and hooking up.

Open Relationship

Being in an open relationship won’t work for everyone, but it works for some. The idea is that the couple in the committed relationship are allowed to sleep with other people yet don’t consider it cheating because they are completely upfront and honest with each other.


Microsoft had a tool called Clippy that was well known for popping up when not asked and offering suggestions that weren’t needed. In the dating sense, it’s a random “How are you?” after months of not hearing from that person and certainly not needing them!


This is all about dressing in your finest for your Instagram pictures or even IRL (if you got that, you’re learning well!) It’s all about showing off like a peacock.

Pie hunting

Whenever you are ‘pie hunting’ then you are essentially looking for possibly heartbroken and vulnerable people to hit on. These people are perceived to be weaker and easier to manipulate and control.


You have been dating your partner, exclusively as you thought, and then find out they have been dating others too. They try to blame it on the fact that exclusivity was never discussed between you and try to blame it on that. This is ‘roaching’. It is deceitful in that dating others was never talked about either. The idea comes from when you see one cockroach (your partner) you don’t see all the others (their other dates).


This is just another way of saying ‘it’s complicated’. It’s probably a casual relationship, with a level of care and respect, but it stops short of commitment.

Slow Fade

Are finding that the answers to your texts and messages are taking longer and calls are being ignored? It sounds like you are being ‘slow faded’. Your other half is trying to let you down easy and probably doesn’t relish the thought of a confrontation, so is hoping that you’ll get the hint and things will slowly end. Similar to ghosting but not as harsh.


Assuming you have been together for a while but you still haven’t met his friends and family and you still can’t see their social media profiles, you are probably being ‘stashed’ and kept from view. This isn’t a relationship, it can be the same as being benched or in a situationship.


This is very much like being paperclipped. Someone who had ghosted you suddenly pops up with “Hey, how are things?” like nothing ever happened.


On the occasion that you are swerving someone, you are trying to dodge that person because you have no romantic interest in them whatsoever.

Thirst Traps

You come across a picture of a woman clad in only lingerie, with the caption “I love my new lipstick!”. You’ve just seen a thirst trap. They tend to be intentionally seductive pictures that trap social media scrollers, like spiders and webs. Each comment on the picture is an ego boost for the attention seeking ‘spider’!


Being zombied is also very much the same as being submarined. If you have been ghosted in the past, the ‘ghost’ suddenly pops into your life after 7 months of no contact. As if they have come back from the dead.


With the rise of video chat, zumping is a way of being dumped over such a platform, ie Zoom. It can also include being ‘released’ via Skype (Skumped), FaceTime (FaceTumped) and WhatsApp video call too. You can see the pattern……. Still, better than an email or text, yes?


Let’s leave the last one on a positive note! If you receive the numbers 143 in a message, this is a way of saying “I love you”. The numbers 143 represent the number of letters in each word. If your other half is shy or unsure, it’s probably a cute way to test your reaction, now that you know!