Sex And The Social Media
I guess from the title you can tell where I got it from. But I must admit that I’m not an avid watcher or fan of Sex and the City. I don’t know if it’s customary for every gay man in existence to be able to quote every word or to even be able to embody a certain character. Maybe I’m being difficult with my subversion to labels but I’m trying to understand so I’ll go with it. And I was only half joking this idea on twitter but was surprised by the response of those that wanted me to write this, no matter how embarrassing for me it seems. So here it goes.
I took the past few days to familiarize myself with this cult classic that is so popular in the gay community. First off, I do know I’m no Carrie Bradshaw (obviously). I don’t live in the city that never sleeps. Fashion has never been something that I painstakenly examine and critique and I am probably the antithesis of glamour or style.
But like Carrie I am a romantic, hopeless or otherwise. I idealize love so much that sometimes I fail to recognize when real, authentic love is actually right in front of me. Missing signals and at the same time creating fire when there is none,all the while trying to find humor in the journey. But my question now becomes, can you find love and romance anywhere, and by anywhere I mean social media, like twitter, or even Grindr. Can love really strike anywhere?
well I’m a romantic so yes I believe you can find love anywhere, but how does it happen? Do the same steps take place that happen in real life? As gay men, we’re very visual when it comes to attraction and for some it all stops right there. That’s how we’re represented in the media and if I’m honest at times some of us do play into that. So a profile pick often serves as a definitive statement. But it’s love that we’re talking about here so looks are great but only relative.
You’d have to consider other things like what you have in common with each other. What kind of values does he hold himself and others accountable for (like leaving the cap off the toothpaste..and I am SO serious about that one). What is he passionate about and what does he want out of life. These are the same things we ask ourselves in real world scenarios too. We have to see if there’s a viable future if we begin to share our lives together. It sounds like this is harder to know when doing it through social media because more than likely dfistance is keeping you two apart. But I still believe possible but probably takes longer.
So the point basically is to examine whether love can truly be found via social media for the gay man. Maybe not even taking it to that level of love. Maybe just a genuine affection for one another despite not having the luxury 9f meeting each other yet. A real, sustaining, and amorous connection with someone whether it be distance or convenience is the question. Because we all know how easy it is to find a hookup as it doesn’t require much of anything but a location to meet up.
There’s a plethora of tips and advice of the does and don’ts all of pursuing love via the net. It’s believed that this is how a significant number of us gay men meet significant others. There’s even coaches that specifically work with gay men to help guide you through providing helpful information. However, Gaylife.com seems to have the most rational and well thoughtout info for anyone even considering this as a possibility:
Get To Know Him First- this means more than a first and last name. Make sure his information makes sense to you. I’ll add that getting another opinion from friends and loved ones is a good idea as well.
Protect Your Identity and Personal Information- DO NOT GIVE OUT INFO LIKE ADDRESS OR SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER. Identity theft is real guys. Always protect it.
Leave a Trail- this is for when you actually have gotten to know him so tell someone if it ever advances to the point that you two met up
Get A Photo- again make sure he is who he says he is.
Listen For Details-make sure the info he gives is consistent and don’t ever be afraid to ask questions. If he is hesitant to explain inconsistencies, he may have something to hide.
Meet In A Public Place- no dark allies or poorly lit clubs. Make sure you know the area.
Map An Exit- you can never be too cautious.
Know His Sexual History- this is important no matter how the two of you meet. Again, always protect yourself before doing anything. And don’t be afraid to ask questions. Safety first.
I feel like there’s so much more to this topic than when I first began to write it. That there’s intricacies and nuances that I have barely scratched the surface on. I can list the tips and advice or even testimonials of those that have experienced this but it’s all subjective. I often vacillate with the notion but some feel it’s plausible.
But I do know one thing for sure that has come with great success and great failure in the arena of love. My own truth of finding love is that the most authentic thing one can do in the pursuit of romance or love is to be open to it. That no matter the venue or circumstance or position in life, always being open to the opportunity of love is what’s important. Worry about the where and how later.