Finding Love In The Age Of Grindr And Scruff

If you’re a gay, bisexual or queer man struggling to find love, please know that you are not alone!

It’s an undeniable fact that apps catered to our community tend to be hyper focused on sex and hooking up. Apps like Grindr and Scruff make casual encounters feel like the main event, especially when many profiles tend to be sexually charged and conveniently listed according to their proximity to us.

Hooking up is easy, but why can’t getting a proper date be equally as easy?

Today we’re going to dive into some tips on how to use popular dating apps like Grindr and Scruff to find a real love connection. Before we begin, I do want to highlight that this won’t be an easy fix or an overnight success strategy. Finding a true connection in any context takes time and patience, but if we can weed out “interference,” gain a realistic perspective, and avoid toxic or harmful situations, the journey will be much smoother.

The first and most important rule is:

Focus on What You’re Looking for and Fully Honor It

Before casting out your net into the virtual sea of men, it’s important to focus on what you’re looking for and honor it 100%. If you’re feeling a bit lost, try making a list of what you would like to find while using these gay dating apps. Some good questions to ask yourself are:

  • Do I want to go on dates and not allow it to go anywhere (sexually) until a strong connection is established?
  • Am I interested in a monogamous relationship?
  • Am I also open to meeting platonic friends?
  • What age range would I be comfortable dating?
  • Does my potential partner’s political or social views matter to me?
  • Are drugs, drinking, smoking, or any other lifestyle choices off the table?
  • Does HIV status matter to me?
  • Is my potential partner’s sexual role important to me?
  • And most importantly… What is my type?

Asking yourself these questions is a great first step, but another important question to ask yourself is: “If I don’t know exactly what I want, how will I find it?”

A final thing to commit to is making sure you’re completely transparent about what you’re looking for, both on your profile and on your dates.

Let Go of Your False Beliefs

Those of us who have been using gay dating apps for quite some time have likely had our share of unpleasant experiences. You might have come across guys who bring nothing but negativity to the table. Some example of this could be: men who are using these apps to cheat on their partner, closeted men in relationships with women, men in open relationships looking for their “unicorn” or people who send harssing or insulting messages. You might have also dealt with the all too common phenomena of ghosting.

Despite your past experiences, you cannot allow yourself to believe that everyone is dishonest, toxic, or only looking for sex. The most self sabotaging thing you can do is allow yourself to believe that 100% of the men online are problematic. Although it’s natural to have extra precautions as a result of not wanting to repeat negative events from your past, do your best to bring your walls down, if only far down enough to see the other person for who they really are. If you find yourself chatting with someone who seems to be on the same page as you, give them a chance. If you hold on to the belief of: “You are probably the same as everyone else, but prove me wrong” ask yourself, “Would I feel comfortable if someone held me to that same standard?”

Don’t Try to Change Anyone

  • If you’ve met someone and they’ve expressed that sex is all they’re looking for, do not fall into the belief that you can change their mind.
  • If you’ve been dating someone who right from the start has been flaky, engaged in hot/cold behavior or seems to not know what they want, do not convince yourself that you can help them get their act together.
  • Or let’s assume you’ve met someone who is in the process of breaking up with their partner. If you find that after several months he still can’t go through with the break up and you continue to get dragged along, take a good hard look at the situation and question how fair this is to you.

In situations like these, we may need to ask ourselves some very important questions, such as:

  • Why am I so focused on changing this person?
  • Do I, on a deeper level, believe that by achieving this goal, I will feel accomplished and that accomplishment will serve as validation that I’m worthy enough to be loved by this person?
  • Do I find it thrilling to take on this challenge and if so, how will I feel once the challenge is resolved?

Let Your Profile Show Off Who You are

If you feel your profile is drowning in a sea of empty bios or bios with nothing more than “looking for now” “Masc4Masc” or “hosting,” take the opportunity to stand out.

Do not be afraid to be different and show off your personality, sense of humor, and uniqueness. Write a brief bio mentioning what type of encounters you’re looking for, what hobbies/interests you have, but most importantly let your true voice and personality shine through. Grindr now has a feature where you can link your top 5 favorite songs from your Spotify account and on both apps, you can link your social media accounts as well. Use all of these features to give people a sneak peek into the real you. There are plenty of empty profiles and headless torsos floating around on these apps, so why not stand out?

As men, we can be very visual creatures, but that doesn't mean we should only upload mirror selfies showing off our best assets. A bit of variety in your selection of pictures can show off different aspects of your personality and give others greater insight on what kind of person you are. For the best results, let’s take a look at some useful tips:

  • Shirtless pics are perfectly fine, but let’s make sure the rest of your pics show off a bit more of your wardrobe.
  • Upload at least one picture of yourself from the waist up. Extra points if someone else took the picture for you.
  • Smile in your pictures. A genuine smile can send out the message that you are approachable and fun.
  • Keep selfies to a minimum.
  • Avoid posting pictures with snapchat filters (especially the dog filter with its tongue hanging out)
  • Keep face tune to a minimum or don’t use it at all. Natural is where it’s at so why not embrace your imperfections? After all, FacetTune can’t save us once we’re meeting someone face to face.
  • Upload at least one picture where you’re engaging in something you’re passionate about. This could be a picture of your most recent vacation or even pictures of you hiking, camping, painting, singing, playing video games or anything else you enjoy doing.

It’s important to remember that these tips are simply a general guide to navigating the world of gay dating apps. We can’t deny that sometimes we might have a more unique and specific obstacle blocking us from finding a true connection, and for situations like these, we’re here to help!

Let’s dive into your current situation and explore ways to solve your current obstacles and find true love. Feel free to book a session with me or any of our wonderful coaches and we can help you achieve your goals while working towards being the best version of yourself!