In our recent podcast, Cypher Ave discussed navigating dating mobile apps. Part of the intent wasn’t just to dialogue about our own experiences but to also examine short comings and possible areas of improvement men can use to make their involvement when using apps more successful. Admittedly, I’ve been out of the dating game for close to 8 years but listening to the podcast did bring up past memories. Even though they were touched upon in the podcast, I feel it should be reinforced that there are two phrases gay/bi/sgl men should stop using immediately when attempting to connect with other men.
There Is No Such Thing As FRIENDS FIRST
Be fucking honest; if you’re single looking to mingle and you’re online or using a mobile app are you really looking for friends? Either you’re looking to date, in hopes of something developing into a possible relationship or you’re looking to hookup. This also falls into that whole realm of foolishness “looking for friends; must be attractive.” No, you’re really looking for someone to date that you will find attractive. Men; you have to start being upfront and honest with yourselves, the audience that you’re presenting yourselves to and those you’re looking to attract. This is not elementary school where you pass a note stating “do you like me…check yes or no.”
Why does it seem like many men are afraid to use the word DATE? Dating doesn’t automatically mean boyfriend. To the gay/bi/sgl community this word comes with a certain weight that many men are afraid to carry or even try to lift. To say “I’m looking to date” or “I’m interesting in dating you”, means you have to man up, make a decision and take ownership.
I feel that many men who use phrases like “friend first” or “I’m just trying to meet cool people” are being purposely ambiguous to make it easier if they want to move on if not interested. Dating should be viewed as the beginning of getting to know someone for something more. If the man is not for you, that’s fine, that’s a part of the process. If it’s not a match, move on.
“Friends First” of “Looking for Friends” needs to be deleted from online profiles and replaced with “Looking to Date”. Not “hang out”, not “just kick it” but date. You’re a grown ass man, own it and be upfront with your intentions.
Side notes – If you’re in a relationship and you’re on a dating/hookup app looking for friends, you’re lying to yourself. Also, I think it should be understood that one can date someone exclusively or date multiple individuals. If you not in a committed relationship and you’re upfront and honest…do you.
What’s Up / Sup Should Not Be Used as a Greeting
As a masculine leaning man, “what’s up / sup man” are almost instinctive when I communicate with other men. However when it comes to greeting someone online, this can be perceived as a little immature. Also it can come off as if you’re not really interested but just passing the time, which could translate into wasting someone else’s time. Add some words to this general bro greeting and be ready to follow up with additional comments to keep the conversation going.
Examples;“What’s up? I see in your profile you like binge watching tv shows. I also like binge watching shows sometimes on the weekends. In the past I have binge watched Breaking Bad, The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones.”
You could follow up with; “What are your top three favorite shows from the last five years?”
Another example is; “Hey man how’s it going? I see you have on a (insert random sports team) shirt; how do you think they’ll do this season?”
I understand some apps don’t require you to initially create a profile where you can describe yourself or hobbies; so be ready to provide that information willingly when reaching out to other guys if they seem interested. Keep in mind, you’re the one who is reaching out to the other guy to chat so it’s up to you to initially guide and control the conversation.
So Gents, stop speaking as if you’re greeting a guy in the gym in passing and starting speaking and introducing yourself to the man you’re attempting to get to know.