“Hedge your bets”: Technology’s role in young gay men’s relationship challenges




McKie, Raymond M.
Millhausen, Robin R.
Lachowsky, Nathan J.

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Journal of Homosexuality


Technology is playing an increasingly pervasive role among young gay men in the process of meeting potential romantic or sexual partners. We investigated challenges posed by technology related to young gay men’s relationships. Focus groups (n = 9) of young gay men aged 18–24 (n = 43) were transcribed verbatim, and thematic analysis was used to identify two major themes regarding challenges to relationship development and maintenance. Subthemes include unrealistic expectations of relationships, inauthentic self-presentation online, sexual primacy over romance, increased opportunities for infidelity, and jealousy. The implications of this study for sexual education and sexual health promotion are discussed.



dating, internet, mobile applications, young men who have sex with men (YMSM), sexuality


McKie, R. M., Milhausen, R. R., & Lachowsky, N. J. (2016). “Hedge your bets”: Technology’s role in young gay men’s relationship challenges. Journal of Homosexuality, 64(1), 75–94. https://doi.org/10.1080/00918369.2016.1172883