Do you believe a gay matchmaking service could work?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 03, 2014 4:22 PM GMT
    I'm not talking about the automated matches that so many sites already have, I'm referring to an objective intermediate like a buyer's broker when you're looking for a new home. The big obstacle as I see it, is getting enough potential matches to participate. I also believe a good matchmaker would have to be skilled in psychology and able to convince the single men to compromise on their criteria or to really get to the bottom what matters to them in a relationship and not in a sexual experience. Unfortunately I don't see how it could work yet I honestly believe a lot of single folks could use a steady supply of counseling to lead them into a relationship. Unfortunately this is a luxury few can afford and so many single men take themselves off the market out of pure frustration.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 03, 2014 4:58 PM GMT
    I think they're basically doing the same thing as OKCupid or some of those sites where they're asking for you likes, dislikes, desires, etc and then cross referencing them with other guys.

    I think you can achieve much the same by finding guys on a site like this and just getting to know them. True, there's no one to give you ideas of how to act/react or what might be perceived as your 'bad habits' online but unless they're really going out with you, they might not see those anyway.

    Million Dollar Matchmaker is an example of what you're referring to and I see things of value there but also some just plain common sense things that guys (gay and stricon_cool.gif should know.
  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    Mar 03, 2014 5:03 PM GMT
    three-suckers-200x200.jpg
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 03, 2014 6:23 PM GMT
    "Million Dollar Matchmaker" Patti Stanger on lesbians to Anderson Cooper: "They're just as bad as gay men - they hit it hard and toss 'em out:"



    Then contradicts herself with Joy Behar saying lesbians were monogamous after a clip of her is shown telling Andy Cohen: "There is no curbing the gay. I try to curb you people and you just...I decided to throw in the towel and tell them do what you want:"



    To Larry King, "I match players with players and stayers with stayers...they want to hit it first then see in the morning if they want to keep them around for breakfast; nobody wants to admit that, that's why there's Grindr:"



    Gotta love reality TV - the best thing about the Millionaire Matchmaker gay segments is that once you see the gay candidates Patti lines up for her millionaire clients you realize "Hey, I've got an excellent shot at landing a millionaire!"

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 03, 2014 7:42 PM GMT
    eagermuscle said"Million Dollar Matchmaker" Patti Stanger on lesbians to Anderson Cooper: "They're just as bad as gay men - they hit it hard and toss 'em out:"



    Then contradicts herself with Joy Behar saying lesbians were monogamous after a clip of her is shown telling Andy Cohen: "There is no curbing the gay. I try to curb you people and you just...I decided to throw in the towel and tell them do what you want:"



    To Larry King, "I match players with players and stayers with stayers...they want to hit it first then see in the morning if they want to keep them around for breakfast; nobody wants to admit that, that's why there's Grindr:"



    Gotta love reality TV - the best thing about the Millionaire Matchmaker gay segments is that once you see the gay candidates Patti lines up for her millionaire clients you realize "Hey, I've got an excellent shot at landing a millionaire!"



    I'm surprised AC never heard of Oxytocin. She's wrong men experience as well but it has a different effect on them than it does on women. It is a bonding drug. But that is another story.

    What she said in the last segment was most on target that a lot of gay men eventually want to become monogamous because they get tired. It just takes them longer.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 03, 2014 7:59 PM GMT
    AMoonHawk saidthree-suckers-200x200.jpg


    Another reason it doesn't work. I'm sure many here have tried match.com. On the one hand, the profiles are more geared toward going out on a date than the sex sites, on the other hand you pay handsomely for their service and when you find yourself handed a lot of profiles that are rarely active you feel like a born again sucker for paying a membership so you go back to adam4adam.

    I know a lot of quality men who have given up on dating completely. It's not hard to be fed up with all the options out there. Obviously only the uber rich could afford a matchmaker/therapist but there ought to be away to bring these men back onto the market.
  • MikeW

    Posts: 6061

    Mar 03, 2014 8:22 PM GMT
    friendormate said...I don't see how it could work yet I honestly believe a lot of single folks could use a steady supply of counseling to lead them into a relationship….


    FWIW, my two LTRs came out of a non-profit that was specifically geared to create ways for LGBTetc people to explore their (often contradictory) feelings about being gay in a supportive, social environment. The fundamentals of the organization were centered around interpersonal interactions in a peer facilitated (not professionally facilitated), drop-in group environment. This non-profit began in the 1970s and is on-going today although its focus, methodology and organization has changed significantly over time.

    Out of *that* organization another one took root that, rather than being a weekly drop-in environment, facilitated 3day weekend retreats several times a year as well as other social, day long or evening, meet-ups throughout the year.

    Once several couples had formed from within both of those organizations, *we* grouped together to create an on-going couples support group that met every three weeks for over 7 years. During that time, the majority of the founding couples stayed together. The only reason I left was due to the death of my first partner.

    During my time being active in the above organizations I felt strongly that there IS A NEED for these kinds of organizations all over the country. When I was in the couples group I even attempted to get the members to collectively document *what we were doing and how we were doing it* with the idea in mind to publish a book that could be used by other gay couples to benefit their relationships and/or develop similar support groups in other cities. Sadly, no one had the time or motivation to help me implement the idea.

    My point being that perhaps thinking about this in a 'for profit' business model is part of the problem. The organizations I'm referring to are non-profit and primarily volunteer staffed. Consequently their services are affordable and, in some instances, by donation.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 03, 2014 9:21 PM GMT
    MikeW said
    friendormate said...I don't see how it could work yet I honestly believe a lot of single folks could use a steady supply of counseling to lead them into a relationship….


    FWIW, my two LTRs came out of a non-profit that was specifically geared to create ways for LGBTetc people to explore their (often contradictory) feelings about being gay in a supportive, social environment. The fundamentals of the organization were centered around interpersonal interactions in a peer facilitated (not professionally facilitated), drop-in group environment. This non-profit began in the 1970s and is on-going today although its focus, methodology and organization has changed significantly over time.

    Out of *that* organization another one took root that, rather than being a weekly drop-in environment, facilitated 3day weekend retreats several times a year as well as other social, day long or evening, meet-ups throughout the year.

    Once several couples had formed from within both of those organizations, *we* grouped together to create an on-going couples support group that met every three weeks for over 7 years. During that time, the majority of the founding couples stayed together. The only reason I left was due to the death of my first partner.

    During my time being active in the above organizations I felt strongly that there IS A NEED for these kinds of organizations all over the country. When I was in the couples group I even attempted to get the members to collectively document *what we were doing and how we were doing it* with the idea in mind to publish a book that could be used by other gay couples to benefit their relationships and/or develop similar support groups in other cities. Sadly, no one had the time or motivation to help me implement the idea.

    My point being that perhaps thinking about this in a 'for profit' business model is part of the problem. The organizations I'm referring to are non-profit and primarily volunteer staffed. Consequently their services are affordable and, in some instances, by donation.


    Ironically as I was writing my last post saying that only the uber rich could afford a personal matchmaker, the idea of a support group was passing through my head. You are on to something when you say it should be non-profit and it shouldn't be strictly geared towards matchmaking. I've heard others here complain about how hard it is for gay men to befriend one another. If you move to a new location later in life it seems all the gay men have their circle of friends and you are only allowed in if you date someone in the circle.

    Tell me though. You mention the successes in this group but for ever couple formed how many men never met anyone?
  • MikeW

    Posts: 6061

    Mar 03, 2014 11:01 PM GMT
    friendormate saidTell me though. You mention the successes in this group but for ever couple formed how many men never met anyone?

    Well "met" can't be the operative word. For example, chances are very high that everyone in one of the three day weekend retreats (averaging around 30 attendees) "met" everyone else.

    So, I'll assume what you're asking is, how many guys ended up dating others within the group and of those how many ended up in relationships?

    First let me say this was all during the late '80s to late '90s. I haven't been active in any of these organizations since, although I know the first Pacific Center and the second, the Discover Community , still exist. So everything I have to say is from old memory.

    I think I should also say that the focus of both groups is more on "community building" than "match making". I have no idea if either of these groups have done an official self-study to determine whether they're successful. Although, obviously, their longevity (if nothing else) suggests they do serve a vital need in the larger gay community. What percentage of "couplings" has arisen out of it is anyone's guess. For me alone there were two (8 years apart) and many dating situations prior to the first and in-between the first and second.

    I feel I need to go into some detail about how all this worked. You can skip this if you're not interested:

    Around 7PM on a Monday evening (gay men's groups night), Pacific Center participants would begin showing up at the 3 story house where the events were held. Guys would be milling around talking to one another and of course some would be more engaged socializing than others. The ages ranged from 18 on up and it was an ethnically diverse group but predominantly white. The number of guys showing up varied but was usually around 60 as I recall. Also during this time the (4 to 6) trained peer facilitators were meeting in private to discuss what 'rap groups' they were going to lead during the evening. (For a year or so I was one of these facilitators.)

    At 7:30 the facilitators would call the assembly to the back porch of the house where community announcements were made. After that, each facilitator would announce his 'rap group' theme for the evening and which room the group would meet in.

    After that the assembly would disperse, everyone choosing which group they wanted to attend. A group might have as few as 6 to as many as 30 participants but they usually averaged around 10 or so.

    The themes of the groups ranged from various challenges or personal issues that most gay guys face -- coming out, being out, safe sex, dealing with drugs, dealing with anger, finding 'mr. right', building communication skills, and many many others -- they really could be anything the facilitator thought would be an interesting theme to discuss. And they weren't all serious, either; some were obviously just meant for fun and, of course, the themes often reflected the diverse personalities of the facilitators themselves.

    The groups would meet for an hour and a half; so, to 9PM. Generally they began with a go-round of 'check-in' where guys would sort of say where they were, what was going on in their lives at that time, and then the group discussion would follow. The function of the facilitator was to open the discussion and then make sure everyone got an opportunity to express his POV on the topic. Sometimes mediations were necessary when people began to argue over opinions.

    After the groups there was usually more milling around at the facility, mingling and so on. Usually *some* of the guys would wander off (either in small groups or in couples) to coffee shops or restaurants in the nearby neighborhood to carry on conversations and getting to know one another.

    So, as you might imagine, these events were great ways for guys to meet other guys and learn about themselves and one another in a supportive environment. There was an overall 'structure' but no specific 'pressure' to do anything in particular other than participate if one felt like sharing. Like many such social organizations there were guys who came every week, who'd never miss it, some had been coming for years. There were always new people showing up who might or might not come back. So, there was no 'demand' that anyone 'join' anything… one could come and go as often or infrequently as one wished. But because there was a more or less permanent 'core group', there was an over-all sense of community, people who *knew* one another. (Whether or not they *liked* one another, that's another matter, lol!)

    So, you see your question is very difficult to answer. I do know that guys met, sometimes they hooked up (of course), sometimes they dated, sometimes relationships formed out of those dates. But obviously not always. I have *no idea* how one would quantify it.

    The couples group that formed originally had 9 couples in it and we weren't the only couples in this mix. We originally cut membership off at 9 because we felt that 18 people was already a sizable group given what we had in mind. Every 3rd week we'd meet at one of the couple's homes on a weekend evening, have a sociable pot-luck dinner, and then spend two to three hours talking about (and sometimes actively working through) our relationship issues.

    Over the course of the first year or so, three of the original couples either broke up or dropped out of the group and were replaced by two other couples. So, six of the nine original couples were in the group for seven years and two other couples participated almost as long. All of us felt that participation in the group was instrumental in keeping our relationships alive. Obviously we got to know one another very very well.

    More over, our larger social circle included Pacific Center and Discovery. So, it wasn't unusual, for example, for some of the couples from the group to also be at one of the retreat weekends. So in a sense we were role models but like I say, the 'couples group' couples weren't the only couples.

    Hope that helps.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 03, 2014 11:05 PM GMT
    It comes down to the subjective taste of the two people dating. You can use a matchmaker, Patti or OkC (which I'm doing OKC), but the matchmaker can't force the other person to fall in love with you. Like anything else in life, you should take a risk and try to fall in love. Personal attraction, looking at the potential guy's overall quality come into play. But yeah I'm not willing to pay a large amount of money to a matchmaker when an outcome can be just like on a dating site. I don't recommend it but thats just me.
  • MikeW

    Posts: 6061

    Mar 03, 2014 11:29 PM GMT
    Broseph said… It can happen anywhere, anytime if you're open to it icon_smile.gif


    Yeah, that's the key…

    I want to add a couple things that may be relevant to what I wrote above…

    One of the things I realized being in this rather large 'mix' of guys is how FEW of them really interested me.

    There were guys I was attracted to (had I met them at a bar I might have hooked up with them) but through interacting with them in this setting I 'got it' that we were incompatible. Conversely, I met many guys that I wasn't interested in sexually at all but their personalities interested me a lot. I made several friends who are still friends to this day. I remember before I settled down with my first partner one time going through my address book and counting over 100 names, addresses and phone numbers -- all of guys I'd met in these contexts. My 40th birthday party had over a 100 guests and most of them were from these circles.

    Even with a large 'dating pool' such as this, I discovered, it wasn't easy for me to find "mr right." I've told the story on this forum before about how, as a Pacific Center facilitator, I once led a group entitled "Why can't I find Mr. Right?" It was well attended by around 30 guys… all of them, apparently, with this question. Since there were so many participants, I opened the group by suggesting that we go around the room and EACH GUY say why he couldn't find "Mr. Right." I limited the time to speak to 2 minutes and had someone with a watch time everyone This took up nearly the whole first hour of the meeting.

    After everyone spoke I asked this question: "Who else finds it ironic that there are 30+ gay men in this room right now all saying they can't find another gay man for a relationship?"



  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 05, 2014 4:04 PM GMT
    MikeW said

    .........
    There were guys I was attracted to (had I met them at a bar I might have hooked up with them) but through interacting with them in this setting I 'got it' that we were incompatible. Conversely, I met many guys that I wasn't interested in sexually at all but their personalities interested me a lot. I made several friends who are still friends to this day. I remember before I settled down with my first partner one time going through my address book and counting over 100 names, addresses and phone numbers -- all of guys I'd met in these contexts. My 40th birthday party had over a 100 guests and most of them were from these circles.
    ........




    You're hitting on something that is sorely missing in most gay men's lives. It is seeing a group of people with whom you have intercourse (in the old sense of the word not the sexual one). People can get this from their work environment, a church, or some other organization but they would be mostly straight. In large cities there are gay athletic groups other types of organizations but what set your groups apart is that no one is dodging around the fact that they are looking for some type of intimacy be it platonic or sexual.

    I have this idea of how I could end up in a relationship at this late point in my life and it is not the way I've thought about it in the past. I see this hypothetical journey passing through friendship rather than starting out as lovers. The friendship would require that we have sexual chemistry but our expectations and goal would be about developing a long-term friendship rather than starting out with delusions of instant romance. I find most people are so much more forgiving with friends than they are with lovers and if their expectation of what they expect of a lover is not quickly met, few people have the patience to try and nurture a friendship. That is why so many people say they want friends with benefits. It's a way of saying they want the sexual chemistry without the expectations of romance. Yet I beginning to thing most of us should begin every potential romance with this proposition and nothing more.

    Your group allowed the participants to see each other as they are and not as they wish their ideal lover to be. By doing so, it allows the value of companionship to have an equal weight to sexual attraction. This delicate balance is fertile ground for sprouting relationships.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 05, 2014 4:11 PM GMT
    eagermuscle said"Million Dollar Matchmaker" Patti Stanger on lesbians to Anderson Cooper: "They're just as bad as gay men - they hit it hard and toss 'em out:"



    Then contradicts herself with Joy Behar saying lesbians were monogamous after a clip of her is shown telling Andy Cohen: "There is no curbing the gay. I try to curb you people and you just...I decided to throw in the towel and tell them do what you want:"



    To Larry King, "I match players with players and stayers with stayers...they want to hit it first then see in the morning if they want to keep them around for breakfast; nobody wants to admit that, that's why there's Grindr:"



    Gotta love reality TV - the best thing about the Millionaire Matchmaker gay segments is that once you see the gay candidates Patti lines up for her millionaire clients you realize "Hey, I've got an excellent shot at landing a millionaire!"



    God I hate that cunt. How anyone could allow someone that obnoxious to give them relationship advice is beyond me.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 05, 2014 4:19 PM GMT
    Do you believe a gay matchmaking service could work?

    Of course it COULD work. Whether it works for YOU, or works for most other guys, is problematical.

    I'll tell what did work for me online, and found me 2 partners (the first tragically and unexpectedly dying):

    It's simply chatting online. I don't like set-ups, or computer algorithms choosing for me or strained introductions. I get to know a guy by merely chatting with him. And those opportunities I can find without needing some special service.

    The same things that attract me to a guy who expresses himself well online, and has things to say I like, is the same guy I'm probably gonna like in person. I've still gotta meet him IRL, and whether we go onto to something more meaningful is unknown. We may just stay friends, and that's good, too.

    But my formula worked for me, and found me my present partner, together now 7 years. Against all odds, because I was already 58, when many guys throw in the towel and give up. Online is a great resource, another tool for matchmaking if you know how to use it.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 05, 2014 5:37 PM GMT
    woodsmen saidGay matchmaking can work for older gay men who are ready to settle down. Here is a link to a NYT article on it. Recommend you read it.

    http://p.nytimes.com/email/re?location=InCMR7g4BCKC2wiZPkcVUv0ZkBf2GM7g&user_id=d5d44b1093bbe09f8e45b3f5692cccdc&email_type=eta&task_id=1394036226759850®i_id=0


    Fascinating! Thanks for the link. I wonder what role the financial investment played. Once you plop down that much money, you can't help but to become more focused. The matchmaker in many ways is just a counselor.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 05, 2014 5:53 PM GMT
    ART_DECO saidDo you believe a gay matchmaking service could work?

    Of course it COULD work. Whether it works for YOU, or works for most other guys, is problematical.

    I'll tell what did work for me online, and found me 2 partners (the first tragically and unexpectedly dying):

    It's simply chatting online. I don't like set-ups, or computer algorithms choosing for me or strained introductions. I get to know a guy by merely chatting with him. And those opportunities I can find without needing some special service.

    The same things that attract me to a guy who expresses himself well online, and has things to say I like, is the same guy I'm probably gonna like in person. I've still gotta meet him IRL, and whether we go onto to something more meaningful is unknown. We may just stay friends, and that's good, too.

    But my formula worked for me, and found me my present partner, together now 7 years. Against all odds, because I was already 58, when many guys throw in the towel and give up. Online is a great resource, another tool for matchmaking if you know how to use it.


    Yes it all comes down to how you use online resources but for many that is easier said than done. I always feel like I'm trying to navigate through a dark room filled with furniture. For people who are attracted to a certain look, or a certain status, or a certain type then I think it is easier to use the online resources. I have always been attracted to a certain essence and I have never quite understood exactly what that is but I can't seem to identify it in the profile or by looking at the picture. It is a feeling I have or don't have when we meet in person. I also feel as if many profiles steer me in the wrong direction.
  • MikeW

    Posts: 6061

    Mar 05, 2014 6:50 PM GMT
    friendormate said...I see this hypothetical journey passing through friendship rather than starting out as lovers. The friendship would require that we have sexual chemistry but our expectations and goal would be about developing a long-term friendship rather than starting out with delusions of instant romance. I find most people are so much more forgiving with friends than they are with lovers and if their expectation of what they expect of a lover is not quickly met, few people have the patience to try and nurture a friendship….

    Everything you're saying makes sense to me. Personally I'm *only* looking to make friends, and even then I'm keeping it mostly online (although I have met some really nice RJers). My reasons are just me, what I've been through and what I'm still going through. I'm not really interested in having a capital R relationship at this point in my lie. Someday, maybe, but I doubt it.

    But finding a loving partner is just strange. One would think it would be relatively easy given the number of men who *say* they're looking for one (my 30 men in the same room example). Right here on RJ there are *many* guys who *say* they are looking for a relationship--and most of them feel frustrated they can't find one.

    Well, what is that all about, really? Leaving all the hook-up stuff out of the equation completely… How is it that a *few* guys (right here on RJ) met, fell in love and partnered while all the others who want that haven't found it?

    Is it just dumb luck, random chance, that two men who are 'just right' (more or less) find one another? Or, alternately, is there something about their attitude that allows it to happen? And conversely, is there something about the attitude everyone else has that is an impediment for them?

    One of the things I appreciated about the organizations I was a part of is that they provided a medium within which we could *explore* questions like this both *as gay men* and for ourselves, as individuals. The focus was on "personal growth" which included developing self-awareness and better communication skills.

    RJ offers a little of this but like you're saying, electronic interactions are a poor substitute for experiencing the "presence" of another man.

    Personally, I think this question of "presence" is *really* what it is all about. What we "fall in love with" in another man is this quality.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 05, 2014 8:33 PM GMT
    MikeW said, "Is it just dumb luck, random chance, that two men who are 'just right' (more or less) find one another? Or, alternately, is there something about their attitude that allows it to happen? And conversely, is there something about the attitude everyone else has that is an impediment for them? "

    I think it's all of the above. Well said, sir!