Top 10 Best Sites
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The Short Version: Navigating the modern LGBT dating scene can be tough. But, for those in recovery or committed to sober living, finding a romantic match can be all the more challenging. SoberGayDating.com takes the stigma out of discussing addiction and recovery and creates a safe environment for LGBT daters seeking to meet others for support, friendship, and love. The site is one of the only platforms on the web built specifically to help gay adults in AA, NA, or any 12-step program find a match. And, with easy-to-create profiles and robust search functionalities, it’s simple to meet and bond with other singles who’ve shared similar life experiences and are drug- and alcohol-free.
Dating can be hard. Sober dating can be harder. Today, so many first, second, and third dates happen over drinks, and there’s a reason for this. Alcohol is a well-known social lubricant that works on the brain to inhibit feelings of anxiety.
As a result, it’s easy to see why the modern dating culture has married alcohol intake with the process of getting to know someone new. However, for those committed to a sober lifestyle or currently in recovery, the prevalence of alcohol on the dating circuit can pose a big problem.
It can be tough to start a date with a conversation about sobriety and the reasons you choose not to drink. Fortunately, for sober daters in the LGBT community, there’s a solution. SoberGayDating.com is a dating site where gay adults can turn to meet others who are also in AA, NA, or other 12-step programs for support, friendship, and love.
“I built the site because there was a huge need for it in the gay community,” said Robin DeLuca, SoberGayDating’s Founder. “We have so many members who have signed up and are ready to meet people just like them.”
She said once word got out in the LGBT community about the prospect of connecting with others who are also drug- and alcohol-free, membership rates began to take off. SoberGayDating is one of the only LGBT dating websites catering exclusively to sober LGBT singles.
After the success of her site, SoberSinglesDate.com, Robin saw a hole in the online LGBT love market and decided to start SoberGayDating.com. The platform offers more than the average dating site or app. It’s a place where people can build support systems and friendships with those who’ve arrived at similar stations in life.
You don’t have to worry about disclosing your addiction because members already have an idea of what you may have gone through and how you might be overcoming obstacles every day.
SoberGayDating facilitates a process where people can create bonds based on shared beliefs and experiences. The site removes the need to fret over the awkward conversations about recovery and sobriety that sometimes must take place when drug- and alcohol-free singles meet new people.
SoberGayDating is a safe, confidential place to talk to potential friends and romantic interests without worrying about rejection once they find out you’re in recovery. Instead, the recovery process is part of the normal discussions on the site, so it’s not necessary to wonder when it’s the right time to bring it up.
Building a profile on SoberGayDating is simple and can be done in 20 minutes or less. All you have to do is provide your basic information, create a username, and get started.
Your profile will require information such as appearance, what you’re looking for, religious affiliation, languages, primary recovery group, and interests. You’ll also be asked to describe yourself, provide information about your background, and give a run-down of why you’re there.
The site’s search capabilities allow multiple avenues to pinpoint the type of person you’re looking to meet. You can search for singles near your location based on gender, age, and photos. Advanced searches allow additional options, including ethnicity, recovery group, marital status, drinking and smoking status, education, and body type.
Once you’ve found someone who catches your eye, you can save him or her as a favorite and show your interest by sending a message or even a virtual kiss. The site allows users to check out other members’ profiles, pictures, and videos to decide who might be a match. And, from your profile page, you can see all the members you’re talking to as well as those who have favorited you but might be too shy to say hello.
As an online dating expert, Robin shares her wealth of experience with singles on the various sites she runs. While she recognizes she’s not a therapist, she was on ground-zero when online dating began and has a few tips for how to meet people in the digital world.
Her first piece of advice is not to rely too much on texting. She said spending day after day communicating without meeting in person or talking on the phone could be a mistake.
“It’s important to see if you are telephonically compatible,” she said. “So much gets lost in translation with texting. People misconstrue things and people want to hear the intonations of voice. Get on the phone call as soon as possible.”
Robin said, with that call, you’ll get an idea if this person can keep up with you and if you have some natural chemistry. If all goes well, it’s time to take the next step.
A first meeting, Robin said, should be quick and easy — sort of like a drive-by.
“I suggest not to do dinner or lunch,” she said. “The first meeting should be a cup of coffee. You usually know as soon as you see each other if this is somebody you’ll be interested in.”
But that doesn’t mean it’s all about looks. Rather, Robin said it’s about chemistry. If you lock yourself into a long meeting and it’s not working, you have to fumble through the awkward “find an excuse to leave” dilemma or just grin and bear it. By opting for a short first meeting, if it’s going well, you can always extend it into lunch or dinner.
Singles who want more of Robin’s advice can purchase her ebook “The Original Cyber-Dating Guru’s Guide to Online Dating.” The text is chock-full of advice and best practices singles can use to help maneuver their way through today’s dating landscape.
Robin told us she’s regularly contacted by members who tell her how SoberGayDating.com has positively impacted their lives. So many have found meaningful friendships and loving relationships on the site, which makes Robin proud of the path she’s chosen in life.
“It’s a wonderful thing,” she said. “To be able to help people find common ground and connect is a great feeling.”
She added that she believes SoberGayDating is successful because it gives singles a chance to bond with others who directly understand them.
“People know when they come to SoberGayDating that it’s a safe place,” she said. “The site is like a family, really.”