Gay Hook-Up Sites
This is only part one of what I’m sure will be many gay hook-up site commentaries to come.
I feel some contrasting feelings of both shame and freedom when it comes to these places. But mostly shame. Websites like Manhunt are like that kid you were friends with sophomore year whose slutty mom would buy him alcohol for house parties when she left for the weekend. Such an enabler. But still, I have a profile - two, actually. One with my face, saying I’m looking for a sweet guy who’s relationship-oriented, and the other with a picture of my dick saying I’m looking for hot guys for fun. Same thing for adam4adam.
And then there’s Grindr… leave it to the gays to create an incredibly popular worldwide application that seeks the most amount of pleasure with the least amount of effort.. it’s like, how much do I want to lower my standards to travel the least amount of distance to get a blowjob? And yet I have a profile.
I know there are hundreds of thousands of gay (and bi and “straight”) men on these websites and apps, but it is still so taboo. I’ll make an exception for grindr - now that it’s turned into a sort of running joke that every gay man with an iPhone has a grindr account, it’s sort of “less sexual” than its alternatives, so you can kind of joke around with friends about it. I’ve seen dozens of friends and people I’ve gone to school with on grindr - those who I don’t feel comfortable sending a ‘fancy seeing you here ;-)’ message to, I take a screenshot of and store in my computer - just in case or something (don’t ask).
But then when it comes to manhunt and a4a, forget about it. That’s where the words slut and whore come out, the moment you mention them. Even when you’re talking to people you’ve MET on manhunt, if it’s not like an overtly YEAH LET’S FUCK sort of affair, you just don’t want to bring it up. People don’t like the idea that these sites make you seem desperate, or like you can’t find love out in the open without looking for it, like our heterosexual counterparts. And that’s not even to say that it’s a gay thing, because I can name at least forty places in New York City I could go to and see a room full of gay men. It just has that desperate slut stigma attached to it.
Is that a good thing? I don’t know.. I want to say yes, but wouldn’t that be hypocritical? I feel like it’s nice to have some forum available where you can just explore sex and sexuality - but at the same time, is the best place for that the internet, where random men who you don’t know are the ones you’re doing this with? You don’t know their names 99% of the time, nevermind their sexual/disease history, their sanity, their age, or what they reaaaally look like in person. It seems like straight people tend to explore sex and have more sex partners that they know; people they go to school with, or friends of friends they meet at parties. Maybe it’s just me personally, but most of my sex partners (certainly not all, but over 50%) I’ve either met on these hookup websites or are strangers I’m meeting at bars or clubs. I’m legitimately curious what other people think of this; I don’t believe that I’m the only one in this experience, but maybe I also don’t have the correct general view on who straight people have sex with.
Being an overweight man (I’m gonna go with ‘cub’), I’m also a part of a couple other sites that cater to guys of alternative sizes and their admirers - places like grommr, biggercity, and bearwww. The problem with grommr is that most people on there are ‘feeders’ - that is, people who get off on feeding other men and watching them get progressively fatter and fatter. I don’t do this. I have a 2,100 calorie-per-day limit and work out four times a week so that I can delete my profiles on these websites and never look back. But that’s a story for another day. That being said, most people I encounter on that site don’t want to meet up because I’m not into jerking off while being forcefed pizza. Then we go to bearwww, and everyone is a hairy man at least in his forties, which is also not my scene. Biggercity is pretty much a mixture of the two, but throw in a lot of bitchy 18 year old new gais who just want to look at pictures, and you’ll get a better idea of that website.
So although these are places where I can be slightly more open about myself, my body, my sexuality, etc., it’s still harder because none of them really cater to me personally. And further, these are NOT websites that I would be okay discussing - EVER. And again with the hypocrisy, if you’re a member of grommr and somebody mentions a website like manhunt, everyone will groan and talk about how slutty those guys are - knowing full-well that they and most of the people around them are also probably active members there.
But really, these are just places that are socially taboo everywhere - in gay circles, mixed with the straights, and even among people ON these sites. They carry no real sense of community and are littered with varieties of people who have conflicting goals. At least when you’re on OKCupid, it’s safe to say people won’t be assuming you’re a whore or think that you’re desperate to get laid; you’re looking for someone to date, be it casually or more seriously. Maybe that’s the sort of website I should be checking out instead of adam4adam…