love is a battlefield

Why are so many gay men single? People on social media have plenty of ideas

A male gay couple –– one with dark hair, a blue denim shirt, and a dark beard, and the other with dark blonde hair and a gray sweatshirt –– sit on a gray couch looking at a phone screen while in an embrace. They sit in a light house out of focus with a modern interior.

A wise woman once said, “Love is a battlefield.” And boy, was she right.

It’s no secret that 2023 has been the year of celebrity splits, with its latest victim being Lukas Gage and Chris Appleton, who just filed for divorce after 6 months of marriage due to “irreconcilable differences.” 💔

Their relationship puts them in company with LGBTQ+ stars like Ricky Martin and Jwan Yosef, Russell Tovey and Steve Brockman, and Billy Porter and Adam Smith, who also called it quits this year.

It begs the question: why are the gays struggling to stay in relationships?

And over the weekend, one brave Gay Twitter X user took to social media to get some answers.

“Why are the majority of us gays single? Serious question,” @turntlibra wrote.

No surprise, he got some serious answers.

One of the biggest culprits, according to social media gays, is monogamy –– or lackthereof.

Indeed, a 2022 study from the National Center for Institutional Diversity found that 77% of gay and bisexual men, as well as 56% of bisexual women and lesbians have tried out a non-monogamous relationship at some point in their lives.

However, it’s not quite that simple.

Other users speculated that internalized homophobia, religious trauma, and a lack of successfully wed LGBTQ+ couples to look at in reference play a role.

After all, same-sex marriage wasn’t even legalized until 2015. Many queer people today remember a society where their relationships were affected by society’s fear of HIV/AIDS, the Defense of Marriage Act, and a lack of legal protections.

Furthermore, factors like location and proximity to LGBTQ+ communities also play a role.

There are plenty of fish in the sea in metropolitan hot spots like New York City or West Hollywood… but the selection in more conservative towns may feel like you’re scraping an algae-covered pond bottom. (No pun intended!)

Still, even more complex and nuanced issues could be at play.

The LGBTQ+ community is still confronting its problems with fatphobia, femmephobia, and racism. In fact, it wasn’t until the Black Lives Matter protests of 2020 that Grindr decided to remove its “ethnicity” filters.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, gay men might be dragging their feet before tying the knot a bit more than queer women.

Results from 2019 data revealed that 53.4% of married same-sex couples were female, while 46.6% were male.

That being said, LGBTQ+ people are continuing to rewrite the rules of what happiness, partnership, and fulfillment look like in a world defined by heteronormativity.

With the absence of a biological clock, the ability to determine what longterm commitment looks like to us, and a more nuanced view of sex versus romance, being LGBTQ+ and single doesn’t necessarily have the same connotation as it does for the straights.

And with the added stress of legislation attacking our rights, user @TyTheRobot said it perfectly when he wrote, “We’re all just doing our best.” If we can log off that little orange-devil app for 10 minutes, at least.

Now here’s to finding a good man!

Check out more responses from LGBTQ+ users on social media below.

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