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|Amber Brooks • 12/28/17|
The Short Version: Dating can be tough, but truthers and those who share inconvenient understandings of the world may have it harder than most. As someone who didn’t see things through the lens of the mainstream narrative, Jarrod Fidden realized open-minded singles needed a way to find each other, so he started Awake Dating. The site is a social platform where deep thinkers and those who hold similar views on reality can come together and feel embraced. At Awake Dating, there’s no judgment — just acceptance and an opportunity to connect with others over common points of view.
In today’s information- and technology-focused climate, an increasing number of people are forming opinions on the way the world might really work. Awake Dating Founder Jarrod Fidden is one of those individuals. Jarrod defines those who are “awake” as being “early adopters of inconvenient truths.”
However, for Jarrod, being awake is not to be confused with being “woke.” Woke pertains to those who see the systematic social injustices in the world, such as racism and sexism, and accept the mainstream narrative on why they exist. Being awake is more akin to being a conspiracy theorist, a widely weaponized term often used against those who don’t accept prevailing truths. People who are awake (or “truthers”) look deeper into why the world is the way it is.
Truthers are often met with skepticism and negativity by the general public. This makes navigating the social landscape difficult, especially when looking to meet a soul mate.
That’s why Jarrod and his wife founded the dating and social site. Awake Dating is a place where like-minded truthers can meet others to express their views in a judgment-free zone and find love.
When you don’t see the world through a mainstream narrative, you can feel alienated from your friends and family. People wrongly assume you’re paranoid and consider you a conspiracy theorist with all the negative connotations that go along with the label.
At least that is how Jarrod and his wife felt. However, they knew they had each other to discuss their beliefs, and they knew that made them unique.
“My wife and I were lucky to ‘wake up’ together a few years ago,” he said. “To find an awake partner to share your interests with is a true blessing.”
Awake Dating was born as a platform for discussion, networking, and meeting others who share their interests and view of reality. Jarrod likes to call himself and others who think like him truthers.
In an effort to bring levity to the outdated belief that truthers are UFO-obsessed and off their rockers, Jarrod and his wife are bringing a softer, more positive side to the perceptions of being awake. Awake Dating has several particularly cute YouTube ads that show couples in tinfoil hats holding hands. In the background, a jingle plays, rattling off many well-known inconvenient truths. It’s a fun spin that reflects the vibe at Awake Dating.
As Jarrod told us, the site provides a community that won’t sit in judgment of new or unpopular ideas and theories.
“It’s a safe space free of knee-jerk reactions, and populated by interesting individuals of open minds and critical thinking,” he said.
Awake Dating is a place for people to meet others who share interests that might stray from what society deems as the norm. And, as more and more people are “waking up” to alternative social realities, Awake Dating’s membership is steadily growing.
Instead of focusing on your love of sunset walks on the beach, Awake Dating wants to know what you think. Members create their profiles with the same very basic information, such as location and gender, as most online dating platforms. But what makes Awake Dating different is you choose all the inconvenient truths to which you subscribe. You can even customize your profile and wall with video intros, wallpaper, photos, and links.
“You can add your own interest to our database if you’re into something really out of left field,” Jarrod said. “You can also choose interests other people have added.”
Not only is it a great way to identify yourself, but you may also get others talking about your worldview. You can search for other members by distance, gender or aware/truther interests, or a combination of the three.
There are several ways to interact with the online community, regardless of whether you are looking for friendship or love. You can wink, send gifts, message, chat, and video chat with other members.
You also have the option to build a 3D avatar for the Awake 3D City, which features aware-themed discussion rooms where you can meet and talk to other members who share your interests. Jarrod and his team are creating other additional features that will be coming soon as well.
With over 10,000 members and growing, the movement for truth isn’t getting smaller. While the stronghold of members is in the US, truthers the world over — from London to India and beyond — are joining to connect over their shared theories.
“We were really strong in the 35 to 65 age range,” Jarrod said. “Recently we’ve had a huge uptake by millennials. There’s a lot of young people who are awake. With technology and just being of an inquisitive nature, lots of people are waking up faster.”
Jarrod’s site also boasts a slightly higher ratio of men to women; about 70% of members are male, while 30% are female. And Jarrod told us the idea that so-called conspiracy theorists are all unemployed and living in their mothers’ basements is a myth.
“We have a lot of independent business owners and people involved in the natural health industries,” he said
Awake Dating members are informed, educated, and lifelong learners in pursuit of truth, Jarrod noted. The site offers a venue where people can go to find kindred spirits with whom to share ideas and theories.
Awake Dating manages to do what many other dating and social sites can’t —it removes the all too real struggle we have when forming adult relationships. With dating, online dating especially, there is always pressure to craft a personality for yourself that may not be 100% authentic to attract others. Awake Dating encourages members to be themselves from day one.
“The veil is down on our site,” Jarrod said. ”Online communication is often shrouded in a lot of fear. You have people trying to portray the best version of themselves. The difference with us is the warts-and-all approach. This is who I am; this is what I believe. People drop the pretense to try to make up some fictional version of themselves and are just real.”
On most sites, you would say, “I’m a Leo, 38, and have a keen interest in Words with Friends,” as you silently wonder when to disclose you are an Illuminati connoisseur. On Awake Dating, you can wear your truth loud and proud because truthers value honesty.
“People will appreciate you for your openness, the fact that you’re a thinker, and you’re considering something deeper than the mainstream press will tell you,” Jarrod said.
Jarrod said he is proud of what he has been able to accomplish with Awake Dating and looks forward to what’s coming soon — which mostly involves continuing to give back to the world by connecting people with similar perspectives.
“It’s seriously good karma. I am trying to build up the karma bank here,” he said. “There is nothing better you can do than to help facilitate love. And we are talking real connection and love here. We are actual people looking for a real connection on our site.”