you single? According to the most recent U.S. Government Census, an estimated
40 percent of our population is. If you’re gay or lesbian, the
dating pool is sufficiently diminished simply because there are more
heterosexuals in the population than LGBT folk.
Not too worry — I stand whole-heartedly behind the old adage, “there’s
somebody out there for everyone.” Sometimes it just takes a little
effort to find the right one for you.
Let’s assume you are gay or lesbian, single and looking for something
more than spinsterhood, anonymous encounters or the occasional boring date.
If that’s the case, here are a few tips that should ease your trip
on the road to romance and happiness.
1. Size yourself up.
Let’s be honest with ourselves — would you date you? Take a
good look at yourself in
‘The greatest thing you’ll ever learn,
is just to love and be loved in return.’
— from Nat King Cole’s, ‘Nature Boy.’
the mirror. It’s true, you never get a second
chance to make a first impression. Are you the best that you can be? Guys
don’t have to be Brad Pitt and girls don’t have to be Portia
DiRossi — but it does help in your search for romance to present
as palatable a marketing presentation as possible. Not just in your appearance,
but in your overall life. What have you accomplished? What are your interests?
What are your creative outlets? All these things are the stuff that make
others interested in you and open the door to potentially finding a person
to share your life with. If you’re truly happy and comfortable with
yourself, others will be, too.
2. Be realistic.
Don’t forget who you are. Chances are — if you’re a 45-year-old
man you’ll have a lot less luck if you’re chasing after 22-year-olds.
If you’re a chub that only likes chasers, or a femme dyke that only
likes other lipstick lesbians your pool is even further diminished. Open
yourself up to other possibilities. Two men who are both in their 40s will
share a lot more in common than a seasoned world traveler and someone who’s
never stepped foot out of their own hometown.
3. What are you looking for?
Just what kind of individual are you looking for? If you’re open
to the possibility of a relationship with any type of individual, then
the world’s your oyster. Most of us, however, have at least a few
parameters when it comes to what we’re looking for. Try to envision
the kind of person you’d like to be with (don’t get carried
away here — remember — be realistic). Think about what kind
of qualities you’d like he or she to have — then you’ll
have some frame of reference when you encounter potential new romance.
4. Where to look.
In larger cities like New York, San Francisco, Atlanta or Los Angeles,
the gay and lesbian dating scene is thriving. In the Carolinas it’s
not always as easy to find another individual to connect with — again — simply
because there is not as large of an LGBT community. In all of the larger
Carolina cities and towns there are a number of gay and lesbian watering
holes (a fine place to start but proceed with caution) and there are numerous
social groups (check out websites like www.outcharlotte.com, www.scglpm.org,
www.outtriangle.com and www.affa-sc.org for social group listings). But
those outlets aren’t for everyone. For example — a beautiful
femme lesbian I know in Charlotte has had trouble finding romantic interests
here because she only wants to date other femme lesbians. Charlotte’s
lesbian community is relatively sizable — and decidedly butch. A
handsome, young gay Asian man I know in Columbia says he feels he doesn’t
fit in because he doesn’t know any other gay Asians in the area and
most of the individuals he meets of another race don’t seem to be
interested in dating him. So what to do? If you feel like you’re
limited by who you are or what your specific tastes are, then consider
relocating somewhere that meets your requirements. You’ll want to
check out the job market and housing affordability first, of course, but
Seattle is packed with gay Asians and New York City is overflowing with
5. Other options to consider.
I’m a huge fan of the internet and there are gay and lesbian dating
sites for just about every taste and region you can think of. It’s
true — many of the sites are frequented by individuals looking for
quick sex hookups — but the bigger sites, like Gay.com or Yahoo offer
designated areas for individuals looking specifically for potential relationships.
Plunk out a few extra bucks to put up a singles ad with a photo (always
include your face or people will automatically assume you’re hopelessly
homely or using somebody else’s body pic) and a bio of yourself with
what you’re looking for. You’ll be surprised at what kind of
response you’ll have - but be sure to use proper wording. Stay away
from phrases like “no fats, fems or old trolls,” (that just
makes you seem insensitive to everyone regardless of their characteristics)
and use friendlier phrases like “young and fit seeking similar types.”
Remember — don’t despair — there really is someone out
there for everyone!