Dating and Relationship Advice

Just when you thought you had finally caught up on all the new dating lingo—ghosting, submarining, the list goes on—there's another one you need to be aware of. And this time it has to do with the pandemic. If you’ve been dumped recently, this term may explain why.

The most recent coronavirus dating trend is called “Fauci-ing,” named after Anthony Fauci, the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Coined by the dating app Plenty of Fish, “Fauci-ing” is when you refuse to date someone or cut off the relationship because the other person isn't taking Covid precautions seriously enough. In other words, you might “Fauci” someone who doesn’t wear a mask or get the vaccine.

People "Fauci" others to reduce their risk of getting the virus and to keep themselves and their loved ones safe. This trend is fairly common: one in 25 people knows someone who’s declined a date for this reason.


If you want to join this trend and check if your date is acting safely, just ask! Being straightforward from the start is best. Express your concern and values concerning pandemic safety, then ask what measures they’re taking. For example, are they socially distancing? Did they get the vaccine? If not, do they wear a mask?

And thankfully, you may not have to worry as much now that the vaccine has become widely available.

While Covid precautions are serious, Dr. Fauci’s reaction to this silly dating trend was much more lighthearted. When Axios managing editor Margaret Talev explained the term to him, he laughed. “I’m going to 'Fauci' you,” he joked.


Believe it or not, “Fauci-ing” is one of many 2021 Covid dating trends listed by Plenty of Fish. Another example you need to watch out for if you intend to “Fauci” someone is called “maskerading.” This describes when someone pretends they care about wearing a mask and other coronavirus precautions to impress their date. And apparently, one in five Gen Zers does this.

Other examples include “apocalypsing,” or treating your relationship like it’s your last, and “zoomlander-ing,” when your Zoom date checks themselves out in the camera instead of paying attention to you. And don't forget about “breadcrumbing," the pre-Covid dating phenomenon that may be happening more during the pandemic.

While “Fauci-ing” is one of many pandemic dating terms, it has to be the most hilarious and iconic to date. Whether you decide to Fauci someone is up to you, just make sure you’re doing your job to reduce Covid rates!