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My experience with Slowly

What is Slowly?

Slowly is an app where you can find new penpals from all around the world! The app has brought back the experience with letters and emulates the process of sending and receiving them. The digital platform provides millions of users with deep and slow connections with people from different backgrounds, cultures and countries — one letter at a time!

If you yearn for meaningful connections this is the right place for you! The slow process of writing letters, sending them and receiving an answer may seem old fashioned. I mean, why would we like to talk to someone who takes days to reply? It doesn't make sense! We are the generation who is able to connect with people just by a single click. Technology has given us many tools and when we want something we want it fast. How many times have we not felt desperate when the internet isn't going fast enough? Do you get where I'm going? Even if Slowly has integrated that letter experience to a digital platform it still takes time and patience to build a friendship there. It's all about the connection!

The app registers your interests so it can automatically pair you with someone who is interested in the same things as you. If you don't like that method there's also an option to look at other people's profiles and choose someone that you're drawn to! Just like a real letter, delivery time depends on geo-locations and distance between pen friends, but I can assure you that once you find the perfect match the letters will be worth the wait!


How did I hear of Slowly?

I first heard of Slowly at the beginning of quarantine. An ad of the app appeared and I immediately knew that I had to download it! I opened the AppStore and inserted the name on the search bar. Unfortunately, my phone was running out of space so I wasn't able to download it at first.

A month later I saw someone on Twitter describing their experience and how Slowly changed their life, so I took it as a sign and I tried downloading it again! I liberated some space by deleting apps I didn't use anymore and it finally worked.

You can customize your own avatar!

Creating my profile was a little difficult. How could I describe myself in order for people to understand me? I struggled with that for a bit until I finally had my description. I selected an avatar and picked my interests so I could find pen pals that liked the same things. And then I was all set and ready to send my first letter! I decided to use the automatic pairing that the app offered and I sent a letter to someone in China!

The first days of using Slowly I felt extremely excited. I couldn't spend more than an hour without logging in to see if I had any letters coming. One day it finally happened: someone from the United States was sending me a letter!

One of my main concerns was my undeniable shyness. I tend to struggle with communicating my own ideas and thoughts because I'm afraid that someone could say negative things about me. But when I started to write letters I felt so free! All the shyness melted away and allowed me to be my true self.

I started making some friends and creating connections. I was so pleasantly surprised with the level of communication I was able to develop with total strangers. Soon, I started to feel understood — I felt I was part of something special, and I still feel like that to this date.


Friends and connections I've made

Developing a friendship takes patience, effort and commitment from both parts. Slowly isn't the exception. After some time using the app I noticed not everyone replied to my letters; and some of the people I thought I had made connections with eventually stopped replying too. Some even deleted their accounts so I was left without answers. I understood their situation and tried to move on from there. Slowly isn't suitable for everyone as it is a process that takes time and a lot of patience.

While losing communication with some of my pen pals, I also started to develop stronger bonds with a couple of them. When I see a letter arriving from any of them a smile immediately illuminates my whole expression. In the next paragraphs I'll briefly describe my experience with these two amazing friends.


The first strong connection I made was with Avrit, from India. The letter I sent to him was through the automatic pairing system and I couldn't be more grateful with Slowly for choosing him as one of my pen pals.

Avrit is someone really sweet with whom I instantly clicked. Our interests and ages are a little different, but we still manage to understand each other and to write amazing letters. We both are writers in progress and we like sharing our poems with each other, but we also talk about other topics. With him, I feel supported and understood. I know he cares about me the way I care about him. How awesome is it to develop a connection like that with someone you've never met before?

He recently took a break from the app this January as he'll be busy preparing for an important exam he needs to clear. I gave him my email in case he needed to talk to me and I'm very pleased to see that even if we stopped writing letters for a while we still managed to talk and have small conversations each day!


Ana was the one who reached out to me as she saw my profile and wanted to be my friend because we share many common interests. She is from Brazil and is currently trying to learn Spanish, so even if our letters are mostly in English I try to help her with the other language.

Our letters started stating small facts and experiences we lived and with each new response our writing became deeper and more meaningful. We discuss concepts like our identity, our traditions and our dreams, as well as sharing our fears and motivations. The letters we write have become so long (more than 20,000 words each) that it takes us months to reply to each other!

The time we have to wait may seem really long. However, it is satisfying to see the effort she puts in her letters as it makes me feel understood and I know she feels that way too.


Both of my friendships in this app have become indispensable for me. Now I don't know how I would manage to live without talking to these special people. Isn't it amazing that in the midst of a vast world we manage to create strong bonds with people we wouldn't be able to communicate otherwise? It almost seems magical as if we're destined to cross paths with certain people.

It's almost been a year since I downloaded the app and since then I've come to know more amazing people. Nerea, Jose Antonio, Zeppi, Arlett, Israel and Carla, this is also for you.

If you don't have Slowly yet, what are you waiting for? What are you still doing here? Stop reading and go download the app right now! Start creating your own connections! Your next friendship is just a letter away...

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