Is Grindr addictive? Or is it just me that’s addicted?

Grindr. The mostly all male – I swear I’ve seen some women on there – app that seems like every gay guy has. Every gay that’s single, in an open relationship or cheating on his partner that is. Yes, generalisation, but that’s what it feels like.

I’m not limiting this to Grindr, I’m sure this relates to most other gay apps, but Grindr is the app I use the most soo it seems appropriate. I also have Hornet and Jack’d. But Jack’d hardly ever works properly and continuously crashes. Hornet is good, and the conversations seem somewhat nicer, but maybe I’m just attracted to dickheads – this isn’t the first time I’ve thought this. While I don’t class all guys on these apps as dickheads, you definitely seem to have “dickhead conversations” mostly on Grindr. And don’t get me started on Tinder – if anyone actually had a conversation on Tinder then I’d have something to say about it.

I haven’t used Scruff, Growlr or any of those other apps that are mostly used overseas such as BoyAhoy, GuySpy or VGL so I can’t comment on those.

Anyways, back to Grindr. Is it addictive?

I continuously find myself waking up a few minutes early each morning to quickly launch Grindr, it’s like my body-clock schedules this time in – maybe there’ll be someone new in my area that I haven’t seen before. Nope. Maybe someone has sent me a message since I shut it down last night because I couldn’t keep both eyes open anymore. Doubt it. Maybe, just maybe, my future husband is lurking behind a profile that doesn’t have a face pic. Lets be real people – there’s no husbands found on Grindr!!


Ok, maybe I’m wrong with that last comment – no need to abuse me in the comments section – I’m sure guys have met partners on Grindr before as well as made some great friends, as I have, but it’s probably not the best place to look for a partner. I’ve been searching for 3 years on Grindr and feel shit-outa-luck! Probably due to my own issues..and it’s probably not the forum to go into those!

I’d admit to spending at least six hours per day on Grindr, obviously not continuous, and I use it at home, at work, on the tram, sometimes while I’m out with friends and while driving – yep, I said driving! – as I drive through about 10 suburbs to get to work. It’s become a problem. I need to switch off. Maybe I need to delete it (or just pay and get Grindr Xtra and receive messages when the app isn’t launched). On average I probably get about 5 new messages per day from new guys. Not to mention continuing with chats already started in my message list. Ohh and I refuse to count the messages I get from guys starting a conversation by asking me to “top them” or them just sending their “hole pics”. Those messages I just ignore or delete.

Which brings me to another point – are the things we say on Grindr appropriate for the outside world and do we talk like we do on Grindr off Grindr? If we don’t, then what allows us to have this different type of language and it just being accepted? I’m guessing it’s because we’re men and this is how we think. Or soo we’re told.

Now…back to my addiction – am I actually addicted? Is it just me looking for validation? And am I alone in this or are some of you in the same boat? I can spend hours and hours having the exact same conversations over and over and over again and see all the same familiar faces. I see guys I’ve been out on dates with constantly online but they never say anything, guys I’ve had drinks with, guys I see at my local shopping centre but nothing is ever said and sometimes, just sometimes, I’ll see friends online and we discuss and laugh about recent hookups and conversations we’ve each had.

This-morning I asked a few guys on Grindr about their usage, I’ve detailed two below;

Andrew. 28. Asian. Good looking. Lives in Greenvale near Melbourne airport and finds himself on Grindr about three hours per day at both home and at work (naughty, right?). He’s looking for; “usually chats which hopefully leads to dates and ultimately something meaningful but having said that…the occasional fun” but admits he doesn’t usually get much, “unfortunately not so much. I have’t really met anyone on Grindr. I get more out from Jack’d”. His words, not mine. He goes on to admit that “maybe he’s just not attractive to the guys on Grindr” and that “Grindr is a hookup app, so majority of the guys who use Grindr are looking for fun only” but continues to use it because “wishful thinking I would meet my future partner on the app hahaha”. Again, his words. In final he states about his overall experience; “Hmm not a good experience, I wouldn’t say bad either. I did however experience some racial abuse”.

The racial abuse part I found to be quite common. I didn’t go further into this with him, apart from telling him how shit I thought it was, but when living in Sydney I found it quite common for guys to be…what some might class as…”racist” on their profiles. Or do we just put it down to our “preferences”? After all, we all have our preferences.. I prefer a tall, olive-skinned, handsome, kind, affectionate, confident, funny, honest, adventurous, reliable¬†and social bottom guy. Haha goodluck Shane – maybe this is why I’m constantly single! I know, I know, I come across bitter, but I’m really not.

Cristobal. 30. Caucasian. Chilean – Beautiful! Lives in Brunswick and spends about four hours, non-continuous, per day on Grindr and mainly in the mornings and evenings and uses it for “Sex, friends, some parties or event recommendations”. When asked what he thinks about the guys that use Grindr he states “Every country is different, in the US guys are more direct and use the application mainly for sex, here (Australia) people want to have a beer and see if there is chemistry than having sex. In Madrid, Spain people look to have sex with friends as an advantage”. He continues to say that his experience on Grindr is “neutral”, neither good nor bad.

Cristobal made a good point in saying that Grindr is different depending on your location. I know when I’ve been travelling in different countries things have been a lot more active – take that however you want – but as an example, and I will go into this in more detail in a future post, I arrived in Bangkok one night, got to my hotel and logged into the wifi in the lobby and by the time I had got up to my hotel room I had 170+ messages looking for sex in the space of about 10 minutes. When I first noticed all the messaged I was shocked. My eyes boggling out of my head. I quickly shut the app down and threw it on the bed and wouldn’t go near my phone for at least an hour. Then bloody Jack’d went crazy. I had to uninstall it while overseas.

I’m never this popular.

My questions are; What do we all find reasonable for the amount of hours we spend on a gay app, such as Grindr, per day? Am I unreasonable in thinking that I could find something more than just casual sex on these apps? And please don’t get me wrong – I’ve definitely had casual sex from all the apps I have installed on my phone, on more than a few occasions, probably with some of you reading this blog and it’s nothing I’m proud of, I just adore sex and can’t give it up – but is it unreasonable in thinking there’s more to these apps than a quick fuck?

And last, but not least, am I addicted and alone in this struggle?


UPDATE (4th Nov 2015)

This blog became a feature on the SameSame website and can be viewed here.

3 thoughts on “Is Grindr addictive? Or is it just me that’s addicted?

  1. Hey Shane… I’m a latecomer to your blog and just reading your posts now.

    I’d say those apps are no less addictive in 2017 than they were before. I’ve really tried to haul back my use of them. I check it once when I arrive in a new area and then let it go and check back later. The point about it being used differently in different places is really true. When I was in Spain it was most effective for the ‘now’ whereas so many cities in Australia have a longer, lingering approach to more often than not getting nowhere.

    Brisbane…. you virtually need a Royal Commission inquiry sometimes!


  2. Hi Shane. You are not alone. When I moved to The Netherlands in 2011, I downloaded Grindr because I wanted to meet alot of guys in a short time as possible. I am from a Dutch island in the Caribbean. So, moving to a land that it is so open-minded was a dream. Between 2011 and 2013, I have dated nearly 200 men. Some even became friends. In those time, I realize that the men who wanted me either had a fetish or wanted to try out a black guy because after we did the deed, I never heard from them again. (FYI: I am black, 26 years old, tall, long curly hair and nearly athletic build with a huge member myself) They automatically blocked or deleted me. It didn’t bother me much until my ex-boyfriend was always getting more attention because he is caucasian with perfect tight abs and a huge member. We were quite compatible with only one problem. We were both sluts and it felt like a competition between us to see who can get the most dates. After a while, emotions started to run to high and we decided to monogamous but that only lasted a few months because my sexdrive went way down and we werent having sex anymore so he cheated on me. I got rid of my Grindr in 2014 because I was only getting dickheads and I wanted to no longer have temptations while I was with my boyfriend. After I found out that my ex cheated on me and we broke up, I have spent the entire year of 2015 hating men and only dated 3 in total without using Grindr or any other gay apps with no feeling of satisfaction. I actually kicked my Grindr addiction. It was not easy, but I did. Now, I do not have any desire to use Grindr or any oter gay hookup apps. In december, I met my current boyfriend at a party. We actually knew each other for four years already. I always saw him at gay parties in the area and we sometime engaged in small conversation but I always thought he was out of my league. But that night, we really connected with each other, thanks to alcohol. Haha! And now we are still going strong. So, I learned that it is better to meet people outside the gay app world because you get more out of it than out of a screen. And also having drinks do help break the ice. Hahaha!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hey Shane,

    I guess my simple answer to your question is yes, it is addictive. I spend more time than I would like to admit to either on Grindr, Scruff or Tinder. Usually just the first two.

    Like you, I look at it first thing in the morning and last thing at night, on the bus to and from work, during breaks at work and if I’m bored.

    I’d probably guess I spend about 5 hours a day mostly before and after work on them. Just admitting that makes me reflect and feel a little ashamed of myself and has me considering a daily cut off time.

    Why am I spending so much seemingly wasted time in the pursuit of happiness with someone else? Is it simply boredom? Or bored of being my own company? I guess I remind myself it’s a numbers game and I’m going to have to roll the dice until my number comes up. Have those repetitive or dead end conversations, go on many first dates with no further connection. Nothing ventured, nothing gained attitude. So I persist.

    I definitely don’t think it is unreasonable to hope you will find more than just casual hook ups on Grindr or the other apps. I can definitely say I’ve met some genuinely great guys on there, had decent conversations and dates without sleeping with them and even made a couple of friends in the process.

    You are definitely not alone in this struggle.

    Liked by 1 person

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