Dating App Guidelines From a LGBTQ Therapist

With the mixture of wintry weather, the new year’s resolutions and Valentine’s Day coming up, love is surely in the air, or maybe lust. You can have fun, be safe and enjoy your dating experiences. We all know apps are all the craze when it comes to meeting new people for dates or dare I say it, a one-night stand. (Don’t worry, I’m not judging you, I’m a counselor) From Grindr to Jack’d to Tinder to Scruff to POF and many more, you have many different virtual places to meet people. As a Licensed Professional Counselor who specializes in providing counseling services for gay men and the LGBTQ community, I’ve heard it all. Here are a couple tips on making sure your virtual interactions and meetings go well and that you are putting your best foot forward in dating. 

Intimate Partner Violence

This week there was a story in the media discussing a young man who was allegedly shot by his partner and passed away. Having overcome many obstacles in life, this young man was obtaining his Doctorate from Columbia University and had already been in the media for some of the incredible work he had done. Still, we don’t know all the facts about the case and that is not the point for this submission.

This submission is to talk about something that is happening all too frequently: intimate partner violence. Intimate partner violence is defined as domestic violence that is done by a current or former partner or spouse. In general, about 1 in 4 women have been reported to have some level of intimate partner violence and about 1 in 7 men report this happening to them. Unfortunately, because same sex relationships don’t report it as often there isn’t substantial data that concerns this feat.

No Longer Waiting

Usually ultra-optimistic, this has really fucked with me today. I mean, it is an easy fix and won’t take much of my time, but it seems as if I am already on a downward spiral. I never really paid any attention to it, but whatever it is won’t let me go- He won’t let me go. It seems as if, for every moment I deny him, another situation arises and forces me to acknowledge his presence. Today, he refuses to be silenced. Now, a little nail isn’t anything I would normally be bothered by, but today it seems to be an enormous mountain to climb.

Holiday Lessons

As we approach the holidays, there are many LGBTQIA+ people who will be sitting alone. It is an unfortunate aspect of the ongoing liberation of Queer people that they can be pushed out of spaces like home in which they have grown comfortable. Could you imagine the trauma that must arise yearly for a person who can’t go back to the first place that they felt had a sense of normalcy? How this must impact their mental health. 

My Next Boyfriend Will Be Young

I have been very fortunate to have pretty consistent relationships for most of my adult life. For a lot of people, this is either problematic or a point of envy. For me, I just walk into spaces, connect with people and wrap them up in a bow and love them like my new pet. 

What about your friends?

Photo obained from Facebook.

Gemmel Moore. Allow me to speak his name once more. Gemmel Moore. Now before I say anything more. First, I'd like to express my sincere condolences to him and his family. Second, fuck you okay? Here's why. On July 27th the man whose name I speak up died of something that is far too common in the gay black community: Drug overdoses.  When I first heard the news of this man's passing, I like many started to mourn his life.

Usher is just the next Black Male Scapegoat

Photo obtained from http://www.lindaikejisblog.com.

See, the problem I’m having with those that are shaming Usher is much deeper than the fact that it seemed like I knew how to spell his name out loud long before I had friends. I’ve been riding with Usher since U-S-H-E-R R-A-Y-M-O-N-D; this is a guy who built his career off sex and honest conversations around sex before my mom had given the privilege to me of having the birds and the bees conversation. But it’s much deeper than that.

Is it my Black-ness or my Trans-ness?

Transgender women have been in existence for decades and Black transgender women the same. The number of deaths this year (7) at the cause of being senseless (or very much awake) resonates an alarming awareness because all these victims are women of color. The racial counterparts of Caucasian ethnicity face self-inflicted harm and in most cases according to the National Transgender Discrimination Survey (NTDS), suicide (5% vs 76%).

ThirsTRapper to Pink Elephant

Thirst trapping has always had me on the fence. For me, it was either a cry for attention or an unapologetic public art form of self-love without the cum shot. Either way, it is always fun to watch. Sexuality is so fluid that it is hard to put one in a box of what expressing that looks like because my confines aren't necessarily the next person's box they live in. Hell, who wants to live in a box anyway?

I Think I am Afraid to Love

I had it all in my previous relationship: a man I thought I loved (and thought he loved me), a loving home, a shared car & a our own family with multiple puppies. We treated each other like kings from dinner dates, brunch with his friends, parties, volunteering at different LGBTQ events, & love notes to remind each other how much we love each other. We did everything together when he wasn't working & there would be times we'd do things at his place of work because he worked for our community. 

Dear Black, Gay Men,

I am deeply apologetic about not honoring your brokenness. It has been awhile since I have really set with all that comes with being black and gay. I have accepted your love as a requirement versus a privilege. I have looked at you just as much of a fetish as a white man looking for a big, black cock; not being able to articulate my admiration from your sense of showing up without minimalizing it as a sexual attraction.