My Depression Makes Me Treat People Like Shit

I’ve been on a social media break for the last two or so weeks. This was brought on by recent heartbreak and solidified by the recent death of my dog.

But during this period, I realised something I think I’ve always known: I treat people who care about me like shit when I go through these episodes. Then I end up feeling like a dick and suicidal. I feel like they’d be better off with one less asshole (pun not intended) in the world.

Take Doris. She and I have been friends since primary school. I’m turning 28 in a few days. She wants to bake a cake for me. What do I do? I treat her like a nuisance. Or my other friend Refilwe. I can see she’s trying so hard to be supportive and understanding. What do I do? I put a barrier between or relationship.

It’s like this with everyone. I guess subconsciously, I’m trying to prepare them for life without me. Or I’m just really a dick.

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Gay Culture is Hookup Culture

On Wednesday morning, I put an ad on the classified website AdsAfrica. In my ad, I was pretty clear about what I wanted: dick. The ad was meant to sound simple but ended up being a rambly, sort of needy mess:

The ad attracted several men who then inundated me with pics of their schlongs and dongs, all solicited, of course.

All of this had me thinking: is hookup culture synonymous with gay culture?

Gay culture is a lot of things. It’s relying on friends when family rejects you. It’s drinking with reckless abandon at a club on Monday night because all other aspects of your life are shit. Gay culture is learning to fight, not only for yourself but for the LGBTQ+ community. Gay culture is a lot of different things to a lot of different people. So it isn’t crazy to think that gay culture could also be hookup culture.

Historically, Queerness and Queer culture has been vilified. So how would you meet a potential lover, shag or friend when doing so could’ve gotten you arrested or killed? You would hookup, secretly. Whether you placed a cryptic classified in a newspaper or went cruising (don’t do this, kids) or frequented a bathhouse, hookup culture has been an integral part of the Queer movement. I do not doubt that many have met their significant others or friends via hooking up.

I’ve hooked up with so many men via apps and websites that cater to queer folk. One such hookup was with a gorgeous tall man from South America. Him and I met on MambaOnline’s MeetMarket one December afternoon. We proceeded to chat, he sent me a dick pic, but it never felt sleazy. Him and I had sex a couple of time but went on to become good friends. With benefits, naturally. So I guess in that way, gay culture became hookup culture for me. I’ve also had amazing, affirming sex with men I’ve met on these sites. So it isn’t all bad.

The idea for this post came to me earlier this week when I signed up on a site called OnlyLads. I then went on to download the app (everything has an app these days, hey?!). I then bumped into a guy I had had sex with at a club on the app. I laughed so hard because my friend had mentioned him earlier that night in conversation. The bloke was in my friend’s inbox, talking about wanting a relationship. I also laughed because every single time I’ve ever been on a dating app or site, I always come across his profiles. This Adonis who had banged me in a club needed help getting laid? There’s hope for us ugly ducklings then.

Society is becoming more accepting of Queer folk and Queer culture. Our stories are being told by mainstream media. Queer roles are finally being played by Queer folk (not as much as we’d like though) and people are doing the work needed to ensure better protections for Queer folk. What does this mean for queer hookup culture? Will Grindr survive inclusion? We’ll see.