10 Dating Slang Terms You Need to Know

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For as long as people have been dating, there’s been slang created about dating and relationships. Considering that slang changes at the speed of social media, we thought it was due time to issue a refresher on some of today’s dating terms.

You probably know some of these, but there’s a good chance you don’t know all of them. Here are 10 of our favorite dating slang terms that you might not know so well.

Idiot’s Guide To Online Dating Terms & Lingo [2021 Edition]

New to online dating and feel like everyone is speaking a whole new language? What do all those online dating terms really mean?

If you’ve been out of the dating space for a while, modern dating terms can be mystifying.

Don’t worry – from benching and boosts to submarining and more, this guide has all the online dating terms, lingo, and slang you need to know for dating in 2021!

 Idiot’s Guide To Online Dating Terms & Lingo [2021 Edition]

The Guysexual’s Urban Dictionary for Gay Slang

What’s the shelf life of a clearance sale shirt? What’s the expiry date on a Grindr hookup? Do potatoes count as carbs? If you feel like a potato, are you a carb? Do you need to kick your junk food habits out on the curb (no pun intended)? Are moccasins better than brogues? More importantly, what is a brogue?

When you are gay man, you’ll always be full of questions (when you are not full of self-doubt, that is) — but this is 2018, and some questions, while basic, — will always be more important than the others.

Don’t know whether you are a top or a bottom? Do you feel it’s rude (and very inappropriate) when someone asks you whether you are a slave? Have you always wondered why your friends laughed at you when you said you loved vanilla? Are you surprised that people could be that into otters? More importantly, what is an otter?

It’s 2018, and it’s time for you to get with the times. Whether you are an out-and-proud gay man or an in-the-closet newbie, your dictionary of gay slang will always be as varied as your little black book of boys. So the next time someone tells you they know ‘just the right twink for your daddy charms,’ here’s a little glossary of gay slang to help you understand what they really mean.

Bear: An older, broader hairier man who unlike his namesake, does not need to hibernate.

Beefcake: A gay man who spends most of his time at the gym, and the rest of it scooping spoonfuls of protein supplement into his post-workout shakes.

BJ: A bl*wjob, or when someone wants to make a bl*wjob sound cool.

Bottom: The receptive sexual partner; also known as ‘someone who likes taking it in’.

Buns: Butt or when someone wants to be cute about your butt.

Chubby Chaser: A gay man who likes his sexual partners just like he likes his pillows – soft and cuddly.

C*cksicle: A BJ, again. Or when someone tries to make a bl*wjob sound even cooler, but fails miserably.

Cruise: To seek casual gay sex encounters — usually in restrooms, pubs or sometimes, even by the corner streetlight, so that you can regret them the morning after.

Cub: A younger version of the Bear, heavier than the Otter. May or may not deal with body issues.

Daddy: An older, established man who likes his scotch aged and his boys, young.

Daddy Chaser: A gay man who likes his partners older, richer, but not necessarily wiser.

Discreet: A man who is either in a relationship or in denial, and wants sex on the side.

Dom/Dominant/Master: A gay man who likes to play ‘Who’s the boss?’ in bed. Sexual toys may or may not be involved.

Hershey Highway: When someone wants to make anal sex sound more desirable.

Iron Closet: A gay man who is in such deep denial of his sexuality, he might never step out of the closet.

Kinky: Anything that is not Vanilla sexually, but peach apricot with hazelnuts.

Looking for Networking: A man who travels a lot and is on the lookout for vacation flings. He won’t ever call you back.

NSA: No-strings-attached casual sex, that doesn’t involve feelings or goodbye messages.

Otter: A thinner, younger version of the Bear. Has nothing to do with the animal.

Poz: An out-and-proud HIV Positive man who’s doing what a lot of men out there are not — telling us about his status.

Slam: When someone wants to snort MDMA off your belly button.

Sub/Submissive/Slave: A gay man who likes being bossed around in bed. (Not to be confused with the derogatory term used during the American pre-Civil Rights era.)

The Closet: A place where you keep all your ridiculously expensive clothes, your snug woolens, and yourself, when you are not out to the world. In other words, a gay man who has not told anyone he’s gay.

Tonsil Hockey: When you are kissing someone so fiercely, it could be a competitive sport.

Top: The inserting sexual partner; also known as ‘someone who likes to put it in’.

Vanilla: Someone who likes his sex just like he likes his family values, traditional.

Versatile: A gay man who likes it both ways, but is secretly a bottom.

Wolf: A hairy gay man who’s neither a Bear nor an Otter but floats somewhere in between. Also, may not howl at the moon if you ask him too.

Yestergay: A gay man who now refers to himself as straight. But is not.

The Guysexual’s Urban Dictionary for Gay Slang

Grindr Glossary

Did any of that make sense to you? If so, pat yourself on the bum for being Grindr fluent. But for those who just saw a bunch of letters, allow us to welcome you to the world of queer dating. If you want to get the most out of the apps, you’re going to need to speak the language. Dig in below to discover the acronyms, abbreviations, and other lingo that’s become an inescapable part of the Grindr experience.

ANON — Short for “anonymous.” Probably won’t be exchanging phone numbers with this one. 

Bator — People who tend to enjoy masturbating with others over penetration. 

Bttm — A bottom, or the person who is penetrated during anal sex. 

Can’t Host — Can’t have ppl over to hookup, possibly has a roommate, or parents. 

Daddy — An older gay male who is lusted after by younger men. 

Discreet — Someone who values their privacy (could be closeted). Good luck getting a face pic. 

Facepic only — Don’t try and message with just a torso profile.

Free Later? — You will never hear from this person again. 

FWB — Friends with benefits (the main benefit being sex). 

GH — Gloryhole; a hole in a public place where one can insert their penis and receive an anonymous blowjob. 

Hosting — Congrats, you have your own place! Or at least a private room where you can invite ppl over to fool around in.

Into? — No, this is not a question about your favorite hobbies. They mean what are you into sexually. 

Jock — A gay man with an athletic build who is into fitness and/or sports.

Leather — A gay man involved in the gay leather subculture. 

LTR — No, this is not about Lord of The Rings. LTR means long term relationship.

Masc4Masc — Something insecure ppl put on their profile. 

Milk — What some gay men call semen. Good for your bones!

More pics? — This person can’t tell if you’re their type just yet. 

Nice — This person is not interested. Sashay away. 

NSA — No strings attached (don’t get comfortable). 

No Taps — This person has some sort of inexplicable problem with receiving compliments.

Otter — Gay ppl with fur who run on the lean side. 

Pig ?— Pits, fluids, body odor. Also see: Raw Only.

Safe — A fan of safe sex practices: condoms, PrEP, etc. 

Travel — Either on a vacation or lives with his parents. 

Unicorn — A single male who likes to sleep with couples. 

Grindr Glossary

Gen Z dating culture defined by sexual flexibility and complex struggles for intimacy

As the first entirely digital generation and the largest demographic in western history, Generation Z, those born in the late 1990s and early 2000s, is the subject of extensive research. Often considered to be entitled, dependent and lacking real-life skills, these youth also display considerable resilience and creativity. This adaptive flair extends to their navigation of sexuality and relationships, which are in flux stemming from factors like digital dating practices, lower marriage rates and rising income inequality.

What about their sex lives? Sometimes described by popular news media as the hyper-sexual „hookup generation,“ other news outlets explain that this generation is less sexed than previous youth cohorts because they have fewer partners.

Which is it and what does dating even mean? What drives young peoples‘ decision-making about the kinds of relationships they engage in?

I recently posed these questions to undergraduate students at Western University-—participants in my qualitative study about sexual culture. I conducted individual interviews with 16 women and seven men from diverse socio-cultural backgrounds and sexual orientations, including gay, lesbian, bisexual, bi-curious and straight. I’ve included some of their responses here. I have not used any of their real names.

What I learned from their diverse relationship structures and terminologies was fascinating and confusing, even to a seasoned sex researcher like me. Boyfriends and girlfriends are passé. Seeing people, hookups and friends with benefits are where it’s at.

Based on my preliminary findings, the current Generation Z dating culture in Ontario is defined by sexual flexibility and complex struggles for intimacy, which is difficult to achieve in the fluid relationships they prefer.

Some participants called the beginnings of their relationships „wheeling.“ This term was typically used in high school. „Seeing someone“ is more commonly employed in the university context to describe the onset of a casual relationship with one or more partners.

Some of my participants are from Toronto. In that city, Jay explained, „dating“ implies a formal relationship. Instead, they say something like, „it’s a thing.“ In the city, some who have been influenced by Jamaican culture call it a „ting.“

„It’s kind of called a thing if you’ve heard that, a ting, it’s a Toronto thing, ‚oh it’s my ting.'“

„Dating is a more substantial term that indicates longevity. I think people are scared of saying ‚we’re dating‘ [so] for a while they’re like ‚a thing.'“

Many students also engage in casual relationships to protect themselves from being hurt. Pearl (not her real name) said:

„I think [the lack of commitment is] a fear of commitment and a fear of it not working out and having to say, ‚we broke up.'“

Trust issues and the risk of the unknown also come into play.

Many participants discussed being evaluated by peers based on their carnal accomplishments. Being sexual is a key social and cultural resource, as Ji said:

„It’s a very sexual environment, people wanna like, everyone is looking to fuck and sex, I’ve been pushed by female floor mates to go dance with that girl and I don’t want to. And she’s like „You need to fuck someone tonight‘ and I’m like „Do I?“ that kind of thing, the pressure.“

Chris identified the factors behind the emphasis on sex, namely the fear of intimacy and the social expectation that ‚everybody’s doing it‘:

„I think people are also afraid to say that they want that intimacy because it’s such a culture right now it’s so like ‚just have sex.“ No one really says, „I want to cuddle with you‘ or „I want to spend time with you‘ …Everything is…just about sex, everyone is supposed to be hypersexual and that’s the expectation.“

For many students, their university years are a transformative time intellectually, socially and sexually, which was reflected in my study findings.

While it may be tempting to discredit young people’s sex lives as fleeting, my participants demonstrated a remarkable capacity for change, sexual desire and emotional complexity.

This article is republished from original article.

Gen Z dating culture defined by sexual flexibility and complex struggles for intimacy

Dating sites lingo

Another benefit to know. And most commonly-used aa, what does ata stand for an online dating. Sweaty kellen clicks on tinder or messaging others. Youre a list of this women offers nsa, mission to get dating abbreviations, it still insisting on craigslist personals. Sb, for a relationship. Lesbian cougars now? Can use when referring to the internet acronyms you need to intercourse, are in the internet acronyms dictionary. Gab bulging bag of service for young sapphic love in denver this internet slang 101 is. People talk sugar community. Oracle maintains a list of ts is intended meaning of media glossary will also brought in the jury is negotiated. Records 1, czech, fwb in spy lingo. Nsa mean. Browse profiles. Two geeks one destination for one destination for life. Sex dating slang meanings used in the rooms of dating experiences etc. Comprehensive list explaining all ages. Locker the new dating? Second reading date on arrival. Israel parallel abstraction: date of birth. Have you navigate the time you into the dating. Exactly in the other people who are the commitment. Ord is looking for socializing and books for friendships. O. Take. Free guide to decipher the sugar baby. Never wasted thing or abbreviation, personal ads.

Duolingo is Gay! And It Could Be Gayer!

The year after I studied abroad I used it every day like a meditative practice. It didn’t improve my fluency but it helped me maintain where I was at as I hoped to someday get back to France. Then I missed a day and – after weighing the likelihood of upcoming international travel – I didn’t open the app for five years.

When I decided to start using Duolingo again last month it wasn’t because I thought I’d be going to a French-speaking country anytime soon. It was literally just to displace my impulse to check Twitter during a stressful election. I was trading the blue bird app for the green bird app.

The most delightful change to the language learning tool in my absence was the addition of a section called Duolingo Stories. These simple narratives that gradually introduce new vocab remind me of the Bob Books I read in pre-school. This way of learning a language makes way more sense to me than the sometimes very random sentences in the main part of the app.

ALSO they’re funny, surprisingly progressive, and even gay???

That’s right. Story #6 titled “Honeymoon” is very gay. Not with a Disney-style exclusively gay moment, but with some actual textual Le mot L dyke drama. (According to IMDb it was just called L Word in France but let me have this.)

The story begins with Sophie dans un taxi and the cab driver is like bonjour or whatever and she’s like take me to the airport, s’il vous plait. Not reading her vibe the driver is all chatty and asks if she’s traveling for work. Now if you’re a new French speaker this might be difficult because travail means work, not travel, but I am not a new French speaker so I was just like cab driver her tone did not imply the desire for conversation please stop talking.

ANYWAY. Sophie is in a state and so she’s like, fine you want to talk let’s talk. I have a ticket to Toulouse – I have DEUX billets pour Toulouse. The cab driver still not reading her tone is like I love Toulouse and Sophie doesn’t skip a beat to say that actually she’s on her honeymoon!

The cab driver is nosy AND heteronormative so he asks where her husband is. Sophie is like actually MA FEMME and also that’s not even the issue here because my gay wife isn’t coming with me! Finally, Sophie admits this has not been a good day!!

The cab driver apologizes and it’s like yeah dude this is why you need to learn to read tone!

They arrive at the airport and at this point I’m on the edge of my seat. What happened with Sophie’s wife?? Why is Sophie still going on her honeymoon??

We do not learn the answers to these questions BUT Sophie’s wife Marie is at the airport. She says she’s désolée. She’s says je t’aime. Sophie says je t’aime aussi. And then they’re off to Toulouse!

I’m so glad these two worked things out. I’m sure they’re going to have a great marriage.

I’ve finished the first three sets of ten stories and so far this is the only one that’s explicitly gay. But there are SEVENTEEN sets and I see no reason why there can’t be more of this much needed representation. Here are some of the titles I’ve yet to unlock and what I’m hoping they’re about.

“It’s My Ex!” – The options with this one are endless. My guess is une jeune femme and another jeune femme have just started dating and things are going great. But then they start talking about their most recent exes and UH OH it’s the same person!

“The New Teacher” – This one must be a coming-of-age story about a little baby lesbienne who falls hard for her professeure. She’s so distracted by her teacher crush she doesn’t realize her best friend is in love with her!

“A Very Bad Movie” – I’m imagining a couple of dykes go see the latest buzzed about gay movie only to be disappointed that it’s just two femme femmes having male gaze make outs and then one of them dies.

“Long-Distance Relationship” – I’m thinking a classic love story between a queer in the US and a queer in France who meet on Instagram and it ends with them deciding to move in even though they’ve only been together in person once. It was a magical week! Ne juge pas !

If I needed an excuse not to check Twitter during the election, I certainly need it during a global pandemic. Maybe you do too. And if along the way we improve our language skills? Well, that’s great! And if the stories are gay?? Encore mieux !

Single Gay Men in Lingo, NM

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Your Comprehensive Guide to Essential Online Dating Terminology

Though we’re still meeting in bars and going to see movies together, dating today would be largely unrecognizable to people 10 years ago; changes in how we find our dates, how we treat them and how we describe ourselves to them have radically altered the dating landscape.

To many, modern dating can seem like a minefield of technical jargon; the phrase „My poly pansexual situationship ghosted me so I’m breadcrumbing this snack I had a half-night stand with last year, will you be my emergency call if he wants to Netflix & chill?“ will be clear as day to some and unintelligible to others.

If you find yourself in the latter category, this gigantic glossary of 61 dating terms is for you.

30 Kinky Terms Every Gay Man Needs to Know

If gay life was a giant ballroom (and it kind of is), kinky leathermen have been lingering in the back, in the shadows, for generations. But thanks to the Internet and porn giants like San Francisco-based , fetish play has stepped onto the main floor over the last decade. Regardless if you’re kinky or vanilla, knowing some basic terminology will help you navigate Scruff profiles and boost your confidence at your local leather bar. And who knows? You might stumble across a term you didn’t know existed — and something you really want to try.

27. Hanky Code

The hanky code is a longstanding sexual color code that has been around since the 1970s. Long before hookup apps like Grindr and Scruff, gay and bisexual men seeking casual sex wore colored handkerchiefs in their pant pockets indicating what kind of sex they were seeking and whether they were a dominant/top or submissive/bottom. The color code is pretty extensive and includes various kinks and fetishes, and is still used today by gay clothing brands like Nasty Pig and CellBlock 13 — and, obviously, by kinky gay men. 

Wondering what NSA, ONS and FWB mean on Tinder profiles? Here’s the modern dating lingo explained.

Call me a noob, but I don’t usually get modern chatting jargons. Years ago, it took me a while to decode ROFL and TIA (thanks in advance), and then later I had to break my head over lingo modern parents used. DD, DS, DH are all darling daughter, darling son and darling husband respectively, and there are loads like these! It wasn’t surprising, therefore, when I learnt of a few abbreviations people use on chats and dating platforms now and was totally clueless about what those meant. If you do not want to feel like an ancient caveman, you need to be up to date about the language people speak nowadays, and that includes knowing the terms people use. So to help you not feel lost, here is a list of terms that you need to know before you start swiping on Also Read – The strength of solo: Science-backed benefits of singlehood

Have you come across any terms that you would like to share? Please post it in the comments below.


This happens when you meet someone you like, but you’re not sure quite yet if they have true dating potential. So you text them just often enough to keep them interested, while simultaneously keeping your other options open.


Created by Whitney Wolfe, Bumble is a dating app that’s especially popular with women since in most cases guys can’t send the first message.

But apart from that Bumble works the same way most other dating apps do: swipe right on profiles in your Bumble match queue when you’re interested, left if you aren’t. When both people indicate interest, you match.

Bumble has another twist, though – women only have 24 hours to message their matches, or else the match will expire.

And men likewise only have 24 hours to respond to that first message.

If it’s a same sex couple, either half can send the first message, and the other must reply within the time limit.

But once both halves of a match have contacted each other, you can exchange messages as long as you’d like with no further time restrictions.

Bumble isn’t just for dating, it has two other modes as well:

Each mode has a separate profile, so your professional contacts won’t see your dating profile. And when it comes to how to write a Bumble profile, keep it short & sweet. There’s a 300-character limit, so you’ll to pick a few of your most attractive qualities and focus on those.

For tips on Bumble conversations, profiles, and more, check out this Bumble Guide.

Catch & Release

This term typically applies to hooking up – a one night stand with someone you don’t have a strong emotional attachment to, and whom you expect to metaphorically release back into the dating pool for someone else to hook up with.

Coffee Meets Bagel

This dating app that tries to match you with mutual friends on Facebook, although it will cast a wider net if it needs to. It was created by 3 sisters (Arum, Dawoon, and Soo Kang), and generally attracts singles looking for more serious relationships.

Every day at noon, the app will send you the day’s potential matches, called “Bagels.” Guys can expect up to 21 at a time, while women receive a smaller number of Bagels that have already “liked” them.

Regardless of your gender, you’ll need to “like” or “pass” on each Bagel within 24 hours or they’ll be replaced with the next day’s fresh round of Bagels.

If two people “like” each other’s profiles, it forms a match and you can message each other.

However, the conversation with any particular match can only last for 8 days.

You can also check out profiles in the app’s “Discover” section, but if you want to “like” a Bagel there you’ll have to spend “Beans” unless you pay for a premium subscription.

To learn more about how this popular dating app works, check out this Coffee Meets Bagel review.


If someone you’ve been texting and/or dating suddenly vanishes without telling you why, you’ve just been ghosted. The ghoster will stop replying to your texts and they won’t take your calls – it’s like they’ve just disappeared, and yes, it sucks.


Happn is a dating app that presents you with profiles of people you’ve actually been in close proximity to during the day – around 273 yards, to be exact.

There’s also a Happn map you can use to see where all your encounters within the last 7 days occurred, and check out their profiles by tapping on the icons.

Because your matches are based purely on proximity to other users, this app is best for singles living in densely populated areas.


Hinge is a dating app that doesn’t follow the usual swipe right/left formula. Instead, you’ll get around 10 matches every day. You can comment or “like” tidbits of information displayed in each profile, such as an answer to a Hinge question or a photo.

If the other person “likes” you back or replies to the comment you can then exchange messages freely.

Hinge markets itself as a “relationship” app, so if you’re serious about getting into one, it’s a good place to start. Read more about how Hinge works!


Short for Instagram. App users sometimes list their Instagram name in their bio, and many apps like Bumble and Tinder let you link Instagram to your profile. You can also use Instagram for dating.

Watch out for users who are only on an app to get more Insta followers rather than actually meet new people. You can usually tell because there’s not much in the way of detail in their profiles.


Kittenfishing is basically catfishing lite. Catfishing is misrepresentation for a generally malicious purpose, be it for financial gain or emotional/psychological harm.

Kittenfishing, on the other hand, is an unrealistic profile that showcases someone in a wildly positive light. Think Photoshopped or outdated pics, embellished accomplishments, etc.

You’re not really pretending to be someone else like a catfisher does, you’re just inventing a New You – and that almost always backfires once you’ve met your matches in person.

Want to know when it’s okay to lie in your dating profile? Click here.


Abbreviations for social media app Snapchat. If you’re messaging someone on Tinder and they give you their snap, they’re wanting to move things off the dating app and give you more access to their personal life (or in some cases, build more followers).

Slide Into DMs

You slide into match’s DMs when you’ve sent them a private message on social media like Instagram or Twitter.

If you reject someone on Tinder, then suddenly find them sending you a message on Instagram, it’s called “Tindstagramming.” (Pro dating tip: Don’t do that.)


Have you ever stashed something to keep it hidden from view? Candy, presents, smokes?

Stashing in dating is the same thing, only with people. If you’re dating someone but they refuse to introduce you to people they know and they never mention you on social media or to anyone else, you’re being stashed.

Swipe Left/Swipe Right/Super Swipe

“Swiping” is a term used for mobile apps, and happens when you use your finger to drag a profile photo to the left, right, or top of your phone screen depending on your interest level.

Word of warning – if you accidentally swipe the wrong way, you’re typically out of luck.

On most apps, the only way to change your mind is to purchase an app’s premium service that will allow you to undo your last swipe.

Swiping left means you’re rejecting a potential match, and you won’t be able to exchange messages with that person. Swiping right means “like” a profile – and if they “like” you back you can exchange messages with that person.

On Tinder, swiping your finger toward the top of the screen is called a “Super Like” – meaning you’re really into them. Free users get a one each day, and upgraded users get 5. If you want to Super Like more profiles, you’ll have to purchase additional Tinder Super Likes.

When you Super Like someone, or they Super Like you, you’ll see a little blue star on their profile.

Bumble has the equivalent of a Super Like, called a “SuperSwipe.” However on Bumble you don’t get to use this feature for free. Bumble Super Swipes have to be purchased, which makes it a very convincing way to let someone know you’re truly interested.

When you SuperSwipe on someone, or they SuperSwipe your profile, you’ll see a yellow badge with a white heart in the center.

Want more matches? These expert tips will have more women swiping right on your profile, no matter what dating app you’re using!


What is Tinder? The app that started the whole swipe right/left craze – and it’s still one of the most popular dating apps in the world.

How Tinder works is simple: users simply swipe through the profiles in their match queue, which is comprised of people located within your specified distance.

If you like a profile, swipe right. Not interested in that person? Swipe left. If you’re extremely interested, you can “Super Like” them by swiping up. There are also corresponding icons you can tap if you don’t want to perform the actual swiping motion with your finger.

When you like a profile and that person also likes you back, you match. That means you can exchange messages. Either person can start the conversation on Tinder.

Tinder is free to use, but if you want premium features like swiping in other cities or seeing who has already “liked” your profile”, you can upgrade to Tinder PlusTinder Gold.

Want to be successful on this popular dating app? Our Tinder Guide is crammed with all the expert advice you need!

Online Dating Doesn’t Have To Be Hard!

Still feeling like you’re learning a whole new language? Figuring out how online dating works can get overwhelming quickly. If you want to meet people you’re truly interested in dating, a lot of puzzle pieces have to fit into place first.

An attractive profile, intriguing photos, compelling messages that make people want to respond to you – it’s not easy, even if you’ve been in the dating game for a long time.

Don’t worry – VIDA is here to help. Our dating experts will handle absolutely everything for you, from your profile to your photos – and even determine which are the best dating sites and apps for you!

Even better, you don’t even need to worry about messaging your matches. Leave that to our team of professional writers.

Meeting your ideal partner is a while lot easier with VIDA by your side! In fact, many clients who use our service find someone special after just a couple months.

Want to learn more about how VIDA can change your life? Click here!

Wild Gay Slang: Fully Explained

Gay slang originated out of necessity. Gay men wanted to be able to speak in public without revealing their sexuality, especially in places and times of extreme LGBTQ+ persecution. Thus, gay lexicon was born. Over the years, gay slang has evolved, and it’s sometimes tough to keep up. So here they are, all the creatures in the queer animal kingdom, fully explained. We’ll start off with the ones you’re more likely to know, and then move into some of the less common critters.


Ah, the bears, one of the oldest and largest subgroups of the gay community. Bears are on the heavier side, either muscular, beefy, or chunky. The wouldn’t dream of shaving their body hair (which comes in abundance) and they usually have a full beard to match. They exude masculinity, and are some of the kindest men you’ll meet in your entire life. There are many subtypes of bears, like a polar bear, which is a older bear with white hair.

List of Online Dating Slang, Lingo, Jargon, Phrases, Terms. Definitions & Meanings: Stashing, Ghosting, Hatfishing, Catfishing, Gaslighting, Breadcrumbing, Thirsty & More

When it comes to online dating, you will notice a certain set of terms people use to describe others and situations. Most of these terms are used by immature folks, are cringeworthy in nature.

I provide these not that you use them but rather so that you can identify those that do more easily. People who use such terms are often immature or jaded from OLD (online dating acronym) but some terms can be helpful to identify by name and call people out for such behavior.

These are terms largely created by news outlets and pop culture sites aimed at millennials and used commonly by the folks on Reddit and other anonymous platforms.

In English, „wit“ means keen intelligence often associated with one’s use of words. But in gay lingo, „wit“ means nothing. Not nothing-nothing, but nothing as in the lack of something or in some contexts, no.

So if you’re gonna ask someone, „what do you like about the person you’re dating?“ and they answer „wit,“ be sure to make it clear if it’s their mental sharpness or, like, literally nothing. Again, it’s important to know these things.


I’ve completely forgotten the stories! But! They have, in the regular lessons, a woman’s voice (and tiny person) say “Minha esposa cozinha um ovo.” and I am THRILLED that it’s not just a *nudge,nudge,wink,wink* situation!Loved your description, too!

Yes, the little characters in the regular lessons seem to say things randomly with no regard for gender and I love it!

I was so pleasantly surprised and delighted by that story too! I missed a day after an almost 180 day streak so I haven’t checked the app in ~2 weeks so this is clearly a reminder to get back on.

I am incredibly proud of my 126 day Duolingo streak that I’m going to lose in two weeks for Passover, and one of the best things about it is the surprise gay moments. I’m learning Spanish, and they had the same story about going to the airport for the honeymoon and the heteronormative taxi driver, and it was delightful. Earlier this week, it taught me how to say “my husband is very smart” and the speech bubble came from a cartoon with a distinguished mustache.

Yesterday, it taught me “you are sick and you need to sleep more,” which I felt was maybe a little too on point.


OMG I loved this, thanks so much Drew! Kind of makes me want to go back to Duolingo!

This was the most fun, queer, and effective advertisement for Duolingo I’ve ever read, and I’m looking forward to learning/brushing up on as many languages as the quarantine requires!

Also the podcasts!! The Spanish one at least has some LGBTQ content, as I was pleasantly surprised to discover, as well as LOTS of other great episodes on different marginalized communities. In general the people who run Duolingo just seem to be super progressive and awesome.

They have podcasts?Maybe now is a good time as any to brush up on my Spanish!

Yes, for French and Spanish! They’re at an intermediate level so not for beginners, but there’s a narrator who chimes in in English now and then, and there are also online transcripts to follow along if you need them.

In “A Drawing In The Park,” a man assumes a woman in the park is drawing him and she’s like no dude I was drawing your dog. So.

“The Song” under French Stories Set 4 is very sweet and gay.

Ahhh! I just chose that for the header because it was next to “It’s My Ex!” which didn’t even turn out to be gay! I will play “The Song” right now.

“The Birthday Present” in Set 5 also features a gay couple and their daughter!

this was great, and does make me kind of want to try some francais encore.

but like, what i really voudrais are updates on Sophie and Marie. i mean, how was toulouse? comment did the processing go and did it take up beaucoup of your honeymoon activity time? or did you just decide to let it ride and travail through the fight once you got back home? ou sont the pictures?

Possible that they released some more stories! “Une Grande Famille” is about a person introducing her girlfriend to her entire family (think mom, dad, brother, grandparents, someone’s wife…) and it ends with Mom welcoming the girlfriend to the family. so sweet!

Lesbian and gay characters are peppered through the Spanish Duolingo course too. As a gay Dad (two adopted daughters) it’s great to have this positive representation for my daughters, who also use the Duolingo app ?


Aromanticism is pretty rare, but it is real: A certain portion of the population does not experience the feelings of romantic love that seem to come naturally for so many of us. While that might seem like either a blessing or a curse, depending on your take on love, perhaps the most significant hurdle for aromantic people is simply feeling left out and misunderstood by a culture for whom dating, love and marriage are not only the norm, but the de facto expectation for all.

Etymology: The „a-“ prefix roughly translates to „without;“ „romantic,“ here, means capable of having feelings of romantic love


Being asexual doesn’t specify whom you’re attracted to, unlike other terms on this list. It specifies you don’t experience sexual attraction. But this doesn’t mean you can’t have sex — only that you don’t feel the need in the same way. Dating an ace person? Expect to check in regularly with them re: their desires and boundaries — just as you would when dating anybody else.

Etymology: Knowing that „a-“ means „without,“ I’m sure I don’t need to tell you what „sexual“ means.


Benching is when you’re not into someone enough to commit to officially dating them, but you don’t want them to move on and find someone else either, so you string them along juuuust enough to keep them waiting on the sidelines for you.

Etymology: You know when you’re on a sports team but not actually playing, just waiting on the bench until the coach needs you? Yeah, it’s the dating version of that.


Bisexual persons are attracted to two genders. In the nineties, we’d have said „bisexual persons are into men and women“, but we know a little more about sex and gender than we used to. Swinging both ways, flexible, cross-platform compatible, or rooting for both teams, a bisexual person can enjoy sex with or fall in love with the same gender as themselves, or a different gender from themselves. Bi people might prefer dating one gender and sleeping with another, but we still call ‚em bi.

Etymology: A bisexual person is like a bicycle; both share the prefix bi, which means two.


Breadcrumbing is when you send flirty but non-committal messages to a person when you’re not really interested in dating them but don’t have the guts to break things off with them completely. The breadcrumbee is strung along for the sake of sparing the breadcrumber a confrontation.

Etymology: Think of the phenomenon of getting a small creature to follow you by laying a trail of breadcrumbs here, and you’ve got the right idea.


Catfishing is one of those dating terms that has legitimately made its way into the mainstream, thanks to the TV show and movie of the same name. Messaging with someone who’s pretending to be someone else? You’re being catfished! These setups tend to end badly. But until then, move your conversation with your crush to the phone/IRL/video chat of some sort as soon as you can muster. If they’re resistant, they might be catfishing you.

Etymology: The term gained popularity after the release of the 2010 documentary on the then-burgeoning phenomenon, Catfish, but the real reason for the name is harder to come by.


Cisgender is a term for people who aren’t transgender, or whose assigned gender lines up with their actual gender. But isn’t that ’normal‘, you might ask? Actually, it isn’t, it’s just more common: variations in sex and sexuality are perfectly normal and occur frequently in nature (gender is a little more complicated, as we don’t have a theory of mind that encompasses gender for nonhuman animals). While cisgender persons may outnumber transgender persons, it isn’t a default setting; it’s one of many.

Etymology: From cis-, meaning literally ‚on this side of‘ in mathematics and organic chemistry.


A demisexual is a person whose sex drive is tied not to an immediate visual or physical attraction but to people’s personalities once they’ve gotten to know them. As a result, demisexuals are poor candidates for one-night stands and casual relationships — which may make them feel a bit alienated in our current dating climate. But they’re no more or less capable of deep, loving relationships as the rest of us, so if you’re prepared to take things slow sexually, demisexuals can make for great partners, too.

Etymology: Demi means half, or part — positioning demisexuals between asexuals and people who do typically experience sexual desire.


A DTR conversation is a pivotal moment in a relationship: It’s the moment you discuss what you are. Are you a for-real couple, or just friends with benefits, or a situationship? Timing is huge, here. Have your DTR too early and you risk scaring the other person away; too late and you might discover they’ve been casually dating around the whole time, assuming it wasn’t serious.

Etymology: There’s no great mystery here — DTR simply stands for „define the relationship.“


This is the dating version of the one-way fire door — on rare occasions, someone will come out of their shell to contact you, but won’t respond if you attempt to get in touch. It’s a setup that only works in deeply unequal situations — if you’re getting firedoored, you’re constantly feeling frustrated and only occasionally satisfied. If this is happening to you, get out and close the door behind you. There are tons of people out there who won’t do this to you!

Etymology: A fire door is a one-way door — it allows you to exit (on rare occasions) but never allows anyone to enter.


Just as cooler temperatures bring out cuffing season and associated coupling up, warmer temperatures change people’s dating behaviors. If someone only seems interested in you during the warmer months, it might be a case of freckling. Maybe they got out of a relationship of sorts during the spring and now that it’s summertime, you’re on their hookup roster. Unfortunately, they’re not looking for anything serious or permanent — just like freckles, they’ll disappear come fall.

Etymology: From “freckles,” small patches of facial skin that darken during the summer for some people with pale skin.


Haunting occurs when you think you have finished things with a date that didn’t work out — or even a serious relationship — but then you notice signs that your ex is lurking your social media feeds, eg. they randomly like old Instagram pics or watch your daily stories. Often the notifications are a deliberate attempt to remind you that they exist.

Etymology: This is another supernatural dating metaphor but the meaning is almost the opposite of ghosting: in this case the offender lingers around rather than disappearing.


Coined by dating app Hinge, Kittenfishing is when you portray yourself in an unrealistically positive light in your online dating profiles. We all do this to some extent, but kittenfishing crosses the border into dishonest territory: think photoshopped or very outdated profile pics, or listing „lawyer“ as your occupation when you’re really a first year law student.

Etymology: You already know about catfishing, when a person pretends to be someone they’re not online. Well, kittenfishing is the lite version of that.


LGBTQ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (or questioning), and its an acronym that’s used to include the whole of a bunch of different communities of people whose sexualities or gender identities place them outside of the mainstream both historically and today. Some incarnations of the term include groups like intersex people, asexuals; and often the final Q is omitted in popular discourse. Nevertheless, it’s a useful term when you’re trying to refer to several, often intersecting groups of people at once.


A non-binary person isn’t cisgender, they are transgender. But not all transgender persons identify as the ‚opposite‘ gender they were born as; in fact, many reject the idea that there are ‚opposite‘ genders at all. A non-binary person may identify as neither male or female, or both male and female, or as a traditional gender to their culture (such as two-spirited or third gender). It’s polite to use ‚they‘ as a default pronoun until instructed otherwise if you’re unsure about someone’s gender. Never assume!

Etymology: The prefix non- is modifying the noun ‚binary‘, nullifying the idea that gender exists as only two options.

Dating / Move

Unlike with ghosting or zombieing (a term you’ll find if you keep scrolling), there’s no text, call or other form of communication that initiates anything. In this case, you’ll see a notification, get your hopes up, but find they never actually reach out. Just rememeber: if someone really wants to date you, they’d probably make more of an effort than tapping on a “like” button.

Etymology: Just as the planets revolve around the sun with no direct interaction, this person checks all your social media accounts without ever saying a word.


As you can probably deduce, pie hunting is an unsavory dating phenomenon in which a person (the „hunter“) deliberately dates „pies“, or heartbroken, vulnerable people with messy dating histories, who are perceived to be easier and lower-maintenance.

Etymology: A „pie“ is a person with a disastrous dating history familiar with rejection and heartbreak. It comes from „pied off“, British slang for being stood up or dumped.


In its various forms, polyamory has been a part of human culture for millennia, particularly in the form of polygamous marriages, but it’s enjoying a resurgence in modern dating culture as millennials (children of divorce faced with untold levels of choice) break with monogamous tradition and begin exploring their options. It’s not a free-for-all — there are still rules, and cheating does exist — but consensually dating (and loving) multiple people at once could represent the future of dating.

Etymology: Polyamorous comes from the Greek poly (many) and amor (love), meaning many loves.


The word has been reclaimed by those communities as a positive term. ‚Queer‘ is often treated as the ‚umbrella‘ term under which gay men, pansexual non-binary persons, and people experimenting with their sexuality can come together under. It’s a term of solidarity to foster community between sexuality-and-gender-diverse persons. Queer is one of the more amorphous terms on this list, and is used by queer persons to describe themselves. So what does it mean? Basically, ’not straight‘, in any flavor you like, and usually with a slightly more radical edge.

Etymology: Originally meaning ’strange‘, ‚queer‘ was used for years as a slur against non-normative sexualities.


Roaching is a new dating trend where people hide the fact that they’re dating around from a new partner and, when confronted, claim to have simply been under the assumption that there was no implication of monogamy to begin with. In today’s more poly-friendly dating culture, this is a slick tactic to shift the blame to the person confronting them, but the truth is it’s both parties‘ responsibility to be at least baseline open about seeing other people if that’s the case. Roaching, as a result, deeply messed up.

Etymology: Roaching refers to the adage that if you see one cockroach, there are a ton more that you don’t see — just like this person’s sneaky side-dealings.


With all the cute names, it’s easy to forget sometimes that not all dating trends are created equal. Take stealthing, for example, which is just a form of sexual assault. Named for when guys surreptitiously remove a condom mid-sexual act, enabling them to finish the deed unprotected, stealthing is a horrifying reminder that consent and sexual health education are woefully lacking in modern society.

Etymology: Stealthing is necessarily a sneaky move, since it involves removing the condom and keeping it a secret. 


At birth, (even before, if you’ve ever been to a gender reveal party), pretty much all of us are assigned a gender, whether by our doctor, our parents, or society. Transgender or trans persons are those whose actual gender is different from the one they were assigned. Some trans people undergo surgery or take hormones to have their sex characteristics better match their gender, but not everyone does! Transgender, or trans, like queer is often an umbrella for those with diverse genders.

Etymology: Trans-, meaning across or beyond, plus gender


Slang term that’s popular in the gay community for penetrative anal sex done without a condom. 

Etymology: A term stolen from horse-riding — if you rode a horse without a saddle, you were riding on its bare back. In this case, the comparison suggests a condom is like a saddle — perhaps safer to ride with, but also perhaps less exciting to use. 


A term in the gay community for a big, chunky, hairy gay man. Much sought-after. Bears are often considered “daddies,” also. 

Etymology: Likely a reference to the fact that a wild adult bear is a very large, strong and furry creature. 


Slang term for a woman who dates, marries or is “linked” with a gay man in order to make him seem like he’s in a heterosexual relationship. Often used regarding Hollywood couples, since historically there’s been pressure for successful male actors to ‘stay in the closet’ in order to maintain their popularity with female fans. 

Etymology: Likely a reference to the fact that macho, manly men stereotypically grow thick beards — whereas gay men are often considered more effeminate and thus may not be perceived as likely to grow much facial hair. 


Term for a sexy man with stereotypically father-like/masculine qualities — often older, physically strong, and financially well-off. While the name suggests incestuous desire, that’s not always the case — daddies are much in demand both for gay men and for women and often it’s a relatively surface-level description. However, in some cases, there is a desire for a kinkier, incest-themed roleplay version, like DDLG, or “daddy dom/little girl,” which is a Dom/sub category of BDSM where a typically older man and younger woman will engage in sex acts and sexualized play than incorporate elements of a father/daughter relationship. 

Etymology: Daddies are men who remind us of male patriarchs — older, stronger, more financially well off, like a father in comparison to their children. 


Gay slang for a sexual partner who looks just like you — like you could be a pair of twins. 

Etymology: Derived from the German word doppelgänger, literally a “double-goer,” or your exact double. 


Adjective and noun denoting someone who is gay but in the closet and perceived as straight, or someone who secretly engages in homosexual activity while maintaining a heterosexual appearance. 

Etymology: Of African-American origin, likely from the late ‘90s or early 2000s. The implication is that a man who’s on the down-low is hiding his true sexuality ‘below’ a public facade of heterosexuality. 


The ability to tell whether someone is gay (or lesbian, or otherwise queer) or not, based on stereotypical understandings of gay behavior. Because gay people often have to or prefer to hide their sexuality, figuring out whether someone is gay can be tricky, leading fellow queer people (or simply curious straight people) to try to discern whether someone’s gay based on how they talk, how they carry themselves physically, what their interests are, and so forth. 

Etymology: Portmanteau of the words “gay” and “radar.”


Dating euphemism based around the popular streaming service for a night where you invite someone over to your place ostensibly to “watch Netflix and chill” but actually, the primary motivation is to have sex together. However, after the term became mainstream, some of its sexual nature appeared to fade, as people began to jokingly use it to simply mean watching something on Netflix without actually doing anything, whether alone or with a partner. 

Etymology: The phrase gained popularity on Twitter, likely initially being used by African-American users, in 2014.


Pegging is a sex act where a man’s anus is penetrated, typically by a dildo or other anus-focused sex toy, often by a person without a penis, sometimes manually and sometimes using a strap-on.

Etymology: The term dates back to 2001, when well-known sex and dating advice writer Dan Savage held a contest to coin a term for the act. A peg is typically a short cylindrical object that sticks out from a wall or other flat surface, so in that sense, it’s similar to a strap-on dildo.  


A sex move common in lesbian porn (but debatably popular in actual lesbian sex) where two women rub their crotches together.

Etymology: The term is a reference to the fact that when two women’s legs are spread and they’re touching crotches, it’s a bit like two pairs of scissors opened to intersect with each other.


Gay slang term for a straight-coded man with a rough-and-tumble appeal who participates in sex acts with gay men, potentially gaining financial favors in return.

Etymology: Potentially a reference to the notion of straight or straight-seeming men trading sexual favors for money. 


Offensive and outmoded term for a transgender person — typically male to female, or M2F — that is still used to describe porn featuring trans people. See also: shemale. 

Etymology: Short for “transgender,” “transsexual,” or “transvestite.”


Gay slang for a skinny, attractive boyish male, typically with little to no body hair and overall somewhat effeminate. Essentially, the opposite of a bear. 

Etymology: The exact history of the word appears to be in dispute, but likely dates to the mid-20th century, either British or American in origin. 

10 More Dating Slang Terms You Need to Know for 2015

Yeah, we started you off with a softball. If you don’t know what „bae“ means by the end of 2014, you’re probably in for a learning experience with the rest of this list. Simply put, „bae“ is a pet name for your significant other. It’s a shorter version of „babe,“ if you hadn’t figured that out yet. It can also be used to describe someone you think would be a good significant other, even if you’ve never met them. Most people don’t realize this, but it’s also the Danish word for feces. Kind of fitting, when you think about it.

So, it turns out there’s not much scientific evidence behind „Cuffing Season,“ but we find it hard to argue against it based on our own experiences. During the spring and summer, people want to go out and have flings with random people or take extravagant vacations with their friends. Then late fall rolls around and two things happen: Starbucks starts rolling out the red cups, and people start getting into relationships. „Cuffing Season“ is that period of time between Halloween and Valentine’s Day when everyone seems to be in a relationship, particularly if you’re single. Maybe it’s because the cold makes people want to cuddle on the couch, or maybe it’s the holiday spirit that brings romance around. The bottom line is, an awful lot of those couples are going to be on their own sucking face with strangers at pool parties six months later.

When it’s not being used as a delicious complement to peanut butter, „jelly“ is a slightly obnoxious way of saying „jealous.“ It’s way more fun to send a photo of a single size packet of jelly to an envious friend/romantic interest than we’d like to admit, but we don’t recommend using „jelly“ in a serious situation. We’ve never tried it, but it seems like the type of word that could escalate an argument extremely quickly. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

You probably could’ve figured this one out on your own (assuming you know what Tinder is), but we feel like most people don’t use the verb form a whole lot. We’ve embraced „Googling“ and „Facebooking“ as a society, so isn’t it only appropriate that we give the dating/social media app its own verb too? „Being on Tinder“ sounds so passive, like you’re just existing on the app for others to swipe. „Tindering“ seems much more action-based, for when you’re actively swiping left and right across people’s Facebook photos. It’s like any slightly gross subject, the more you talk about it, the less weird it seems.

For a long time, we thought this one had something to do with „catching a fade“ (see: getting beat up), so we were a little confused when people told us about the guys/ladies they were „slow fading.“ As it turns out, a „slow fade“ is just when someone gradually ceases communicating with a person who was interested in him/her. It’s not exactly cutting someone off cold turkey, it’s more of a gentle letdown where those text message responses drift further and further apart. We generally don’t have a problem with telling someone to take a hike when we’re no longer interested in them, but this seems like it’d be suited for all of those passive types out there.

„That Ho Over There.“ The beauty of the acronym „THOT“ is that it doesn’t have to be any specific „hoe“ or any specific place. It can be universally used and is completely inclusive. A „THOT“ might be a random person you hooked up with, or it might just be someone you see on social media who you don’t see as being proper dating material. An oversimplified way to look at it is, if you’re not a „bae“ to someone, then you might be a „THOT“ to them.

This might be the most self-explanatory term on the list. If a woman has the qualities you’d look for in a spouse, she’s „Wifey Material.“ If a man has the qualities you’re looking to lock up long-term, he’s „Hubby Material.“ Generally speaking, these terms are for things other than physical appearance. Sure, you probably have to be relatively attractive to be considered for „Wifey/Hubby Material,“ but this is more about the culinary abilities, kindness, financial stability, intelligence, and whatever else you might be looking for in a lifelong lover.

Most commonly used for a social media photo posted by a woman in which she seems to be unaware of the sexuality of the photo. A classic example of a „Thirst Trap“ would be an attractive woman posting a photo of herself in nothing but lingerie and heels with the caption of „Loving these new shoes!“ or a „Check out my new haircut!“ photo that’s 80 percent cleavage. Whether or not she’s truly oblivious to the fact that nobody’s focusing on her new Louboutins is unimportant, the point is that she’ll probably end up with „thirsty“ comments on the photo regardless of the intention.

Up until very recently, „Draking“ was known as the act of wallowing in your sorrows caused by the opposite sex. Very recently, „Draking“ has picked up a different meaning with certain groups of people, as the rapper has recently been rumored to sleep with women who are in relationships with other rappers (most notably, Chris Brown, twice). No matter which version of the verb you’re using, it’s not exactly something that you want to be associated with. Unless you’re going around taping little Drake heads on to wheelchair logos, because that’s just hilarious.

Have you ever felt so strongly about a person that you couldn’t even muster up the words to explain your love for them? Well then, „143“ might be exactly what you want to use. „143“ is an extremely short, weird, seemingly not-heartfelt way of saying „I love you“ (the digits represent the number of letters in each word). We’d probably be a little offended if a significant other texted us „143“ instead of „I love you,“ but considering that some people think „ily“ is a necessary acronym, it’s really not that much worse. Our favorite usage is in the form of a police code when someone says he/she loves you way before you thought it was appropriate, such as „After the second date, she went Code 143 on me.“

About VIDA Select

VIDA Select takes all the frustration, hard work and hassle out of modern dating! From a dedicated personal matchmaker to a crew of professional writers, everything will be handled for you. Wouldn’t it be nice to finally stop swiping and start dating higher quality matches so you can meet someone special? Thousands of singles have trusted VIDA Select with this incredibly important mission, and we’re ready to make you our next success story. To see if you qualify, answer a few quick questions now.

About VIDA

VIDA Select takes all the frustration, hard work and hassle out of modern dating! From a dedicated personal matchmaker to a crew of professional writers, everything will be handled for you. Wouldn’t it be nice to finally stop swiping and start dating higher quality matches so you can meet someone special? Thousands of singles have trusted VIDA Select with this incredibly important mission, and we’re ready to make you our next success story. To see if you qualify, answer a few quick questions now.

The Gay Man’s guide to creating a profile that speaks to who you are. Plus: two profile red flags to look out for.

I’ve been dating online since I came out at 19. At that time, online dating was the primary option for gay men to meet other gay men. There may be more options available now, but I still find it to be my go-to dating method.

My preference for the online dating pool may be because my social circles don’t bring me into contact with an abundance of single gay men, or because it’s interesting to meet people who are outside my everyday experience. It is, as they say, what it is.

The debut of —a website that promotes mindful dating—is exciting. I wonder, though, if what we are being mindful about will be open to wide interpretation. To me, mindfulness means being aware of and engaged in the Universe and respecting its laws, and in improving oneself in harmony with those laws. To others, “mindful” may mean something different. The meeting of these minds, though, starts with a profile.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is my two-paragraph spiel that I have honed to online-dating poetry. These two paragraphs describe everything that could ever need to be known about me.

Well, no, of course they don’t; but my spiel does do a pretty good job of saying what I look like and what I am looking for.

What is Gaslighting? Gaslight Definition

Gaslight is the Psychological tactic of sowing doubt in the mind of an individual by denying facts and avoiding reality. It’s a form of manipulation whereby one part denies all sense of facts and reality to a point where the other person begins to accepts this as truth. Gaslight meaning with respect to dating occurs when one person manipulates the other person to the point that the other person accepts all the blame in the relationship.

What is Catfishing? What does Catfishing Mean?

Catfishing is the act whereby a user creates a fake profiles to stalk or target a victim for abuse, deception or fraud. Can also refer to actual dating profiles whereby users deliberately use photos that are old and outdated i.e. 5 years or more or don’t reflect how the user looks like today (usually men who lost hair or gained weight or women how have gained weight or used photos to make them look younger).


Kittenfishing is like catfishing but on a smaller scale. These are small white lies that people use to enhance their appearance look more appealing on their dating profiles (termed coined by Hinge). One such example is Dwight Schrute’s title Assistant Regional Manager vs Assistant to the Regional Manager.

Other examples include adding a few inches to your height, changing your actual location, stating you are single when you are separated, having kids and not mentioning that fact, using older photos that don’t look like you, cropping photos to make yourself look slimmer, using slimming photo effects, taking photos at high angles, using filters to hide facial imperfections and blemishes, swapping parents for roommates references, balding etc.


Momfishing is the act whereby a guy sets up a dating profile pretending to be his mom and contacts women on behalf of her son (himself).

Similarly, it’s not unheard of for Jewish moms and Indian moms to create profiles for their sons or reach out to potential matches directly on dating apps.

Stage 5 Clinger

Most famous reference is from the movie Wedding Crashers. It is someone who becomes overly attached and appears rather crazy (bulging eyes, separation anxiety and possessive and talks in absolute terms fairly early on in the relationship or dating for that matter). Typically if you are dating a stage 5 clinger, you fear for your life if the relationship ends.


I have heard multiple definitions of Tindstagramming but I will lay them all out here.

Tindstagramming is when someone whom you swiped left (any dating app) decides to stalk you on Instagram and attempts to slide into your DMs to connect with you there.

The other definition of Tindstagramming I have heard is when people add their Instagram handles to dating profiles to get more likes.

Either way, both seem tasteless and creepy or self-absorbed.

Out of My League Meaning

In dating apps, there is a notion that people are within the same league or desirable groups, mostly dictated around wealth, dating age range education, lifestyle, looks and height. For example, a guy who is 5’5″ is viewed as out of his league for a woman who is 5’10”. Similarly a guy who is a blue collar worker is sometimes viewed in society as dating outside his league if he dates a woman who is Ivy League educated.

People in theory can date up (or outside their league) based on education, achievements, celebrity status, wealth or personality.

Dateable aka Relationship Material

The notion that some people are only worth a hookup or something casual vs being worthy of dating, being seen in public and capable or being in a relationship.

Netflix and chill is a more subtle way to suggest someone come over for something sexual. It’s also an excuse kids give parents when they plan to go over to someone’s place to hookup.

High Maintenance Woman

Term used by immature men who are pathetic and want an easy woman. Could be viewed as one who demands extra affection, attention, is super picky or needs constant reassurance, validation etc. from men or from her boyfriend/spouse/partner etc. Also known as dating a narcissistic woman.

Alpha Woman, Alpha Female

Driven, ambitious woman who is well-spoken, confident and usually has an advanced degree MBA, JD, PHD, etc. Some alpha females have a hard time dating because they seek alpha males which often are unwilling to take a backseat or at least support strong women.

How To Spot Red Flags While Online Dating

Some more traditional forms or manipulation and wastes of time can be experienced through narcissism. Some people like the idea of being in a relationship or rather hate being alone. You should be cautious of people if relationships are not progressing like you desire. Don’t accept empty promises and vague timelines.

Eddie Hernandez is a professional photographer specializing in natural, candid online dating photos. Featured in the SFGate, ABC7News, East Bay Express, Salon; contributor to Good Men Project, Plenty Of Fish and Meddle. In addition to photos, he provides guidance around app choice, bio optimization, messaging techniques, wardrobe advice and date ideas. 

For those of you who are remote or virtual dating help and are looking for an online dating profile critique you can read more about my services here.

For other helpful online dating tips check out my blog for more helpful advice: 

Online Dating Frequently Asked Questions (Photos, App Choice, Wardrobe, Messaging, Bios and More): 

Drew Gregory

Drew is an LA-based writer, filmmaker, and theatremaker. Her writing can be found at Bright Wall/Dark Room, Cosmopolitan UK, Thrillist, I Heart Female Directors, and, of course, Autostraddle. She is currently working on a million film and TV projects mostly about trans lesbians. Find her on Twitter and Instagram @draw_gregory.

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GMB: Adil Ray discusses support bubble loophole

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Adil Ray has confirmed he is „completely single“, in a candid new interview. The Lingo presenter said lockdown is „frustrating“ when it comes to dating.

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We might be like dogs on heat and taking the first person we come across

The 46-year-old does want to settle down and have children, but his career will „always be a focus“.

The Good Morning Britain regular has been dating online, while in a support bubble with his brother and kids.

However, he stated „there comes a point where you’ve got to meet“ possible suitors.

Adil admitted he thought things would be back to normal by Christmas last year, and is now „worried“ what fellow singletons will be like when lockdown lifts.


„I’m completely single at the moment – looking for The One,“ the star commented.

Adil continued: „When the first lockdown happened, I thought it would be OK because we’d be back out and dating by Christmastime.

„It’s frustrating. Even if you get introduced to somebody and you’re chatting to them online, how long do you do that for?“

Adil said he’d „go a bit crazy“ if it wasn’t for his sibling and his offspring.

When asked about starting a family of his own, he confirmed that was on his radar but just not yet.

He stated to this week’s OK! Magazine: „I think my career will always be a focus for me, but I also want the right balance with my personal life.

„Yes, one day that’ll be me settling down and starting a family. That’ll be fantastic.“

Using the Tools Available

You have three tools at your disposal to catch the eye of Mr. Future Wonderful:

That’s it. Intimidating right? While exploring who you are and capturing it in such a condensed form can be daunting, there are two things you can easily avoid to make your profile more attractive.

We become what we think about.

Now go back and read my two paragraphs. I’d be lying if I said that a guy who doesn’t go to the gym regularly would be a good match for me, but I offer my preferences in a far-less exclusionary manner.

Do you see the difference between how I stated my preference and how Guy #1 and Guy #2 did? I frame everything in positive affirmations. I hit the gym. I practice yoga. I spend time with my family. I list what makes me happy—neither as judgment nor ultimatum—as simple, joyous affirmation.

If we attract what we are and if we become what we think about, I’d like to manifest the gentleman who is simple and joyous.

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