Seven Deadly Sins of Gay Dating Apps

CW: discussions of sexual behaviour

Art by Amy Sitthilath

Disclaimer: this does not detail the experiences of all Queer* people, but rather a commentary of the experiences of the authors.


Lust: hung top looking for sub bottom


Picture this: you’re 17, just come to terms with the fact that maybe you’re not so straight. You’ve heard so much about this great place for gay and bisexual men to meet up and get to know each other. The magical online realm of Grindr. You sign up, upload a cute pic of yourself to get the boys, and get excited. 5 minutes in, you get a message. OMG!? Is this the love of my life? You open the message: dick pic. Oh, well I kinda like dick I guess? Another message: dick pic. Another message: dick pic. Dick pic after dick pic. Your messages are flooded with many, so many dick pics. Is this modern dating for queer men? Sending dick pics till the end of time? 

Then you have a blank profile send you a message: “hung top here, looking for sub bottom. You looking?” First off, what is a hung top and a sub bottom? A t-shirt that’s been hung up in a cupboard and the bottom half of a sub sandwich? And looking? Looking for what? Looking for love of course but I get the feeling they’re not talking about that. Another message appears: “53 year old daddy looking for younger.” *insert dick pic here*. This is all so overwhelming, you delete the app after 3 hours and go cry over how you may never find the love of your life.


Gluttony: please stop dating each other  


I always forget I live in an echo chamber – that not all friendship groups are queer and chaotic. With inter-dating, constant flirting and mutual matching. On a least ten occasions I have received simultaneous screenshots from two gay friends with eachother’s dating profiles. 

“Do you think we’d make a good couple?” 

“You think he would be down to fuck, like casual, I know I could but…” 

“You know *insert gay friend here* right? We just matched!” 



Don’t get me wrong I’m all for some good old hoeing – but please can more gays come to Canberra? The pool is too small and I’m stuck in hookup deja vu. My life’s complicated enough. 


Greed: spicy unicorn wanted for fun loving couple  


She’s beautiful, intriguing, social, academic and fashionable – there’s only one problem – she has a boyfriend – and she wants you to join. They all have one thing in common, unicorn emojis 🦄. And let’s be clear these couples are not looking for a polyamorous relationship, they are on the apps specifically for a sexual third, a girl, a unicorn. The obsession of thirds, women setting up dating apps to effectively con queer women into matching with them (and their boyfriends) is beyond frustrating. No I don’t want to sleep with your boyfriend, because surprisingly bisexual people are not walking sex machines who will sleep with anyone and anything. I don’t want to be fetishised into your relationship – there are surely apps for that. Nor do I want to accidentally match with a cute girl, only to be sent messages about her boyfriend’s sexual capabilities. 


And it’s always the women who make the profiles, which is confusing in itself as what lesbian woman would want to sleep with you and your BOYfriend? As a bisexual woman (who avoids dating men), having sex with your boyfriend really defeats the purpose of swearing off men. 


So leave us queers alone and go find your fetish somewhere else. And give us back the unicorn emoji – it’s cute, and gay. 


Sloth: The Ghost of Insta DMs past



A Tinder notification appears on your phone. 

“You have a new match!” 

Oh, here we go. Another match with some random queer person at your university, never to be talked to. 


“So and so has sent you a message*

Okay this is crazy. You’re actually messaging, and the conversation is… good? This feels wrong, something has to be up. You decide to move the conversation to Instagram… are they the one? Have I finally met the person I’m going to date?


You continue the conversation, send each other photos, tell each other “you’re so cute” while drunk on a night out. Things are going well.


Then, it stops. You barely talk anymore. Send two-word responses to questions. Don’t even swipe up on each other’s stories anymore. Then you start blanking each other on the street and on campus. Now you have to redownload Tinder and start the cycle again. This is so exhausting. The ghost has struck again. 


Wrath: “We’ve run out of potential matches in your area”


“We’ve run out of potential matches in your area. Go global and see people around the world.”


Fuck. Off. I only swiped like 5 times, how have I run out of matches already?? Why are there literally no gays in Canberra? 


I guess I’ll have to go back to Grindr…


Envy: To be or to be with?  


The age-old question of same-sex dating – do I want to be with them? Or do I want to be them? Is there a reason I’m attracted to people who are just different fonts of me? Am I secretly harbouring a deeper desire to become them, to embody their life, to be a better version of me (which through my screen they somehow appear to be)? 


Honestly I have no idea – maybe it’s just that we’re attracted to people with similar interests to us, similar life goals and values – and in a queer relationship, your identity becomes mixed with theirs. So how do you even attempt to navigate the treachery of being simultaneously attracted to and identifying with your partner? 


If anyone figures this out please DM me – seriously.


Confused gay 


Pride: Our bodies are our selling point


Twink. Otter. Bear. Wolf. Daddy. For those who do not know, these are terms used to characterise us… based on how much hair/muscles you have. We are literally divided into “tribes” entirely based on how we look. But more than that, those who are white twinks (skinny, petite, hairless) get most of the attention. We also have to post basically naked pictures on any app to get any attention at all. Sooooo in summary, the community looks at your body and then, only then will we get to know each other if we like how the other looks. So great. So healthy. How do we fix this? Actually dunno. Oops sorry.




Originally published in Woroni Vol. 72 Issue 5 ‘Cum As You Are’

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