Hello all!

 How are you? I’m going to assume you’re well. What about me you say? Well, I’m doing pretty well myself thank you very much (SO kind of you to ask).

Merry Christmas Eve-Eve! (that’s a thing right?). If you’re anything like me then you might already be getting a bit tired of the festivities, luckily today we’re going to be looking into something resoundingly non-christmassy (technical term).

May I present…

The complex world of LGBT+ dating

From my personal experience, LGBT dating isn’t that much different from the ‘normal’ approach to heterosexual dating – however, what’s interesting about LGBT dating on the internet is that there are far more ways to go about it.

Let me explain. These days, the larger mainstream dating apps (such as Tinder) have an inbuilt accommodation for LGBT+ dating. Apps like tinder let you choose to see either women, men or both regardless of your gender. However, this hasn’t always been the way and doesn’t account for more marginalized members of the LGBT+ community, such as transgender individuals.

Therefore, developers have created more niche dating apps that cater towards the LGBT+ community, some of the most well-known being “Grindr” (An app designed predominately for gay men) or “Her” (Designed for Lesbian women).

However, due to a large amount of diversity within the LGBT+ community, it’s impossible to create an app that accommodates everyone – this has led to the creation of many smaller, niche dating apps for very specific demographics of people, with varying mutual interests.

Grindr – a troublesome topic

An image which has been long associated with the gay community is one of excessive promiscuity. Sites such as ‘Grindr’ have gained a reputation to cater towards this side of the gay community, geared towards facilitating casual encounters amongst its users – with more traditional dating sites such as Tinder fulfilling the role of the more traditional, dating approach to interaction.

Personally, I strongly prefer Tinder. Grindr is somewhat of a controversial subject within the gay community. It’s by far one of the most infamous and frequently used social media platforms in the LGBT+ community, however, critics claim it puts forward a negative representation of gay culture through its association with sexual promiscuity and ‘seediness’.

I believe however that apps like Grindr perform an important task in the preservation of gay culture. Since the start of the gay rights movement, one of the core values of ‘gay lib’ (gay liberation) has been to serve a ‘fuck you’ to the ideals and morals set out by the heterosexual community – at the time as a form of protest.

LGBT+ rights aside, I think the existence of apps like Grindr serve as important landmarks for the LGBT+ community to remember where they came from in a world where the community is gaining ever-increasing levels of acceptance. Although I personally don’t use Grindr – at least not for its intended purpose – that is simply due to what I look for out of my relationships, not out of any judgement for those who chose to use this platform.

photo from pexels.com, no attribution required

The Mushy Stuff

 One of the most frequent questions I receive from my friends is “How do two guys dating compare to a guy and a girl dating?”. I’m often amused by the extent to which many of my heterosexual friends take interest in elements of gay dating culture, and answering one question often leads to an onslaught of others.

I’m happy to answer most of them, such as: “So… who pays the bill on a date?” (a slightly out-of-date concept but okay), “So…do you want kids?” (another fun one to answer) – but I draw the line at “So… which one of you puts it..” NOPE. That information is HIGHLY private, thank u, next.

Slightly invasive questioning aside, it was during one of these types of conversations with a newer group of friends recently that I began to think what really DOES make gay relationships different to straight ones? If you take a side the still unequal social reception of same-sex couples, how does the actual dating experience differ?

I mulled the question over for quite a while, and I honestly couldn’t seem to find any answers. It seems to me at least, that the most important part of a relationship is trust, affection and mutual understanding – irrespective of the genders involved.

WELL, that was a cute one, don’t you think? As I’m sure you’re all aware this is a huuuge topic which I haven’t even scratched the surface of, but I hope this little sample of the LGBT+ culture gives at least some insight – or at least provides some entertainment.

Thanks for reading once again! See y’all next time!

Alex