The question I hear the most is “how can I make friendships with other gay people?” Unfortunately, the so-called ‘dating’ and ‘people-meeting’ websites and apps are filled with people who are interested in nothing but sex. Here are some better suggestions that may help you to make friends with other gay people.
1. Join a club that interests you (book club, restaurant clubs, walking groups)
Gay people are normal people (just like you) so they will also attend normal activities that you may be interested in. If you are interested in reading, join a book club; if you are a golfer, join a golf club; etc. Sure, there will be many straight people in the mix, but who cares? There will also be a couple of gay people along the way. The advantage is that you will have something in common – your common interest.
2. Go to cooking classes
You are sure to find some friendly people at cooking class. If you see someone else who might be gay, be friendly and introduce yourself to them. Perhaps you could suggest partnering up for the classes. And if you don’t meet anyone, at least you will learn to cook, which always comes in handy!
3. Go to a Gay Pride march
You will obviously see many other gay people here. If you go alone, try to join up with another group of guys. Be forward and introduce yourself to everyone in the group, and ask if you may join them on the march. Afterwards, suggest going for drinks or coffee. If there are any guys who you hit it off with, try to exchange contact details before you leave.
4. Find volunteer work
This is a very rewarding way to meet new people. Find a cause that interests you, such as animals, education, or working at a Pride Shelter (e.g. Cape Town Pride Shelter Trust). Help out as often as you want to, but it would probably be best to go at least once every 2 weeks.
5. Take Yoga or Pilates classes
This is a great way to stay in shape, relax your mind, and meet new people!
6. Accept invitations
If your friends or acquaintances invite you out, try to join, even if you don’t completely feel up to it. In all likelihood, somewhere along the line, your friend or their friends will bring new people into the group of friends. You will then have the opportunity to expand your friendship circles.
7. Use a dating app like Tinder or Grindr (with caution!)
These apps can be successful in finding friends, but use them with caution. There are many people who only use these apps for sex. However, if you are very clear on your profile that you are only looking for friends, and you only interact with others looking for friends, you may be successful. Make sure your profile picture is of your face, and only chat to others that show their face. These people are more likely to be genuine.
Developing friendships takes time. Don’t despair if it doesn’t come right immediately. Just keep on trying! Leave a comment to let me know your experiences. Do you have any other ideas?