Meeting other gay men on Grindr can turn into something more than just random “fun”.
By: Zachary Zane
I could see myself liking him. He was a smarty-pants (studying at Harvard Law), handsome as all hell (his smile made me melt), and the sex was pretty phenomenal (we had slept with each other three times).
While we hadn’t had a number of conversations, and the ones we had were limited to post-coitus, he seemed like a down-to-earth guy. He was genuine, and as we all know, it’s tough to find a truly genuine guy out there.
The only thing: He didn’t see me as suitable boyfriend. I knew this for two reasons.
1. He rarely texted me. When he did text me back, his sentences were short and didn’t allow for further conversation.
2. He didn’t even have me saved in his phone after three times meeting up AKA having sex. (I learned this when he pulled out his phone after sex to show me something, and I saw my name wasn’t saved.
In my phone, not only was he saved with a name, but I even uploaded a picture of him.)
He clearly saw me as hookup and nothing more. This could’ve been my fault. My Grindr profile said I just got out of a serious relationship and wasn’t looking for anything serious. This was true, but also, it’s freakin’ Grindr.
I just wanted to weed out the misinformed guys who were trying to ask me out on a date. If I’m on Grindr, I’m looking to bone.
If I’m on Tinder, I want a real date. A big pet-peeve of mine is endless chit chat on Grindr followed by an offer to meet up for coffee. I’m sorry, but I don’t care how many brothers or sisters you have.
Still, sometimes you meet guys in unexpected places. This was one of those times. While I didn’t go into it expecting something real to come out, I’m not one to pass up an opportunity for love when it comes my way.
I was left in the ultimate quandary. How do I make this guy see me as something more than a piece of ass? I don’t want to come off too aggressively, and I don’t want to ruin what we have, but I also think that both of us would be more fulfilled if we took this relationship up a notch.
Besides, I knew I couldn’t handle being in another confusing-gray-middle ground relationship. While I’m fine with consistent casual partners, I still need to know that’s what we are.
The only way to know is to discuss how we feel about each other, and what we’re looking for in a partner at that time.
I tried to think of the best way to approach it. I wanted to be honest and direct, without being abrasive and off-putting. I kept writing and deleting the text repeatedly.
One seemed too long. The other one made it seem like I was obsessed with him. Another one sounded like a booty call, which was the opposite of what I wanted to do.
I finally settled on, “Hey! I know you’re busy with school, but if you’re free this Friday night, I’d love to do something.”
It was short, to the point, and gave him an easy out. If he wasn’t interested, he could just say he was too busy with school and needs to buckle down this weekend.
Much to my surprise he said he’d like to do something Friday. I replied by telling him there’s a show I’d like to see, and we could do drinks first. He agreed.
The date was good, but somewhat awkward. I realized it’s weird to have an “official” date after you’ve already boned on three separate occasions. It felt artificial — forced.
But after the date, instead of going back and having sex, we just made out, and I made sure to keep it there. I know it seems somewhat counterintuitive, but I was trying to convey that I like him for more than sex.
I like his company. I like chatting with him. I was trying to ask nonverbally, “What do you say to having a relationship that’s more than about sex?” (No surprise, this was the night he added my name to his phone.
Well… this was after I playfully yelled at him about it…)
A week later I asked him to hang out again, and he said yes. This time, we had dinner, more fabulous conversation, and afterward I dropped him off back at his place.
Again, no sex. The next time we watched a movie at my place, and since I felt our relationship was no longer based on sex, we had sex.
It was kind of like having sex for the first time with him, except we already knew each other’s bodies, and knew what positions worked best, so the sex was spectacular.
The next date I told him I really liked him, and he said he liked me. That’s when we officially started dating, and we dated pretty happily for about 8 months, until he finished up law school and moved away.
We’re still in touch though, and I plan to actually visit him in Paris in a couple of months.
A few months into dating, he revealed something to me. That text that I thought was great, wasn’t actually as good as I thought. He still thought it was a booty call.
He told me, honestly, he wasn’t sure he would’ve said yes, if he knew it was a “date-date.” But after I sounded so excited to see a show and grab drinks with him, he felt it was too late to cancel.
So I’m lucky our relationship turned into something real. Like I thought it was, it was a real risk asking him out on an official date. I’m just fortunate that after my myriad of texts I deleted, I settled on the confusing one I did.
In hindsight, what I did wasn’t so revolutionary, but I’ve seen so many men, myself included, who have been in these booty-call-esq, are-we-actually-dating relationships when they want something more.
They’re just not sure how to go about it or fear losing what they have. Or they fear rejection. But the truth is, you have to be willing to lose the booty call, if you’re going to try to create a more serious relationship. You have to be direct and vulnerable.
You have to know that in asking him, he may say no, and may also not want to hook up casually anymore. That risk is without a doubt intimidating, especially when you’re crushing hard.
But at the end of the day, you’ll be so much happier than pining after the guy you’re sleeping with.
Besides, who knows? He may be into you too. Or you may just send a confusing text that leads to a fulfilling relationship.