I struggled with getting an automatic car, I haven't had one in years. I tried to like the paddles but they are more of a gimmick for me. I'll mess with them once in a while, mostly for down shifting like the others have been saying. Automatics have gotten much better over the years though. My wife's car has the sport shift option, where you flick the shift lever up or down, I have to say the Paddle shifters are a better way to go than that.
2010 Legacy 3.6R (Mine) 2013 Outback Premium (Wifes)
2001 Outback (Son), 2001 Forester S (Daughter)
1999 Miata (my summer ride)