Advice Needed For Gay, Fat And Asian

“What am I to do with this big, smooth, yellow-skinned body?”

Picture from Reddit (not the writer of the letter)

Hi, I’m an average-looking, twenty-something gay guy who hopes to get into a long-term relationship. However, it’s difficult for me to get dates because of my body size. You see, I’m 5'9 and weigh over 200lbs. When guys online — Grindr and etc. — see a full-body picture of me, they either ghost me or openly tell me that I’m “not their type.” In the past I would probe further. Is it because I’m Asian? Is it because of my size? But now I just can’t be bothered anymore. Well, I know the guys who were straight forward with me didn’t mean harm; they’re just being honest with their expectations. Nonetheless, it hurt. And even now when I think back, it still hurts a little.

Do I like what I see in the mirror? Well, yes and no. You see, I had tried to lose weight. When I was in my early twenties, I was actually 40–50lbs lighter. Over the years, I just got bigger and bigger, and before I knew it, it’d become so hard for me to find dates, even random hook-ups. So two years ago I told myself that I should try to slim down, to go back to how I was. I started on a strict diet and a serious workout regime. I would hit the treadmill for at least an hour every day, before moving on to the weights and the machines. I stopped eating unhealthy stuff like fast food and tried to keep my meals plain.

Sadly, I didn’t come to enjoy the process. I didn’t become a gym rat or an enthusiastic health freak. I just ain’t the sporty and athletic sort. And who likes constantly count calories anyway? Nonetheless I managed to drop over 30lbs in a couple of months. Of course there was this sense of achievement. However, I realised that I wasn’t happy at all. I constantly felt like I wasn’t doing enough and had to do more. I hated facing the fact that I must go through more pain and self-torture and self-restrain to become this “better” version of myself. Then an epiphany hit me:

Why the hell am I doing this? And who am I doing this for? Why do I have to live by the superficial standards of the community? Why should I strive to be like everybody else? Do I really want to be a slim twink? Or a muscle jock? Would I be truly happy when I’m finally seen as datable or fuckable by other men?

I had become so overly critical of myself and my body and it only made my self-esteem issues worse. Thank goodness I didn’t develop anorexia or bulimia during those horrible months, though I must confess, there were moments when I was tempted to go for more drastic measures. I knew that I had to stop doing what I was doing. So I pulled myself out of the misery and began on another journey instead, one focused on self-acceptance and self-love. My weight started to climb again but I didn’t care.

Now I’m still learning to love and accept myself. It’s a huge struggle because the dating scene can be so brutal and cut-throat. It’s difficult to accept yourself when you face rejection on a daily basis. I envy drag queen Latrice Royale who has found true love and is currently engaged. Because of her story I start to have more faith in the idea that big bodies too are capable of finding the love that we deserve. Though at the same time I also recognise that a whole lot of it depends on one’s luck.

I also don’t fit into any category/type, I realise, not even the bears because I do not possess a hairy body. So what am I to do with this big, smooth, yellow-skinned body? I’m not into feederism. I don’t want to be someone else’s fetish. I don’t want to be in a relationship where my body is the main subject of interest.

After all these ramblings, my question for you is actually rather simple:

How do I find myself a boyfriend, given my situation and everything I’ve been through? Please advise.

Gay, Fat and Asian

Thanks for sharing your story. I think many gay men can relate to it, whether they’re dealing with or have in the past dealt with weight issues or not.

I agree that the gay men dating scene can get rather brutal sometimes, especially for those who do not fall into the “white, young and masc” realm. The rise of online dating only makes things worse. The virtual aspect makes people more superficial, judging first on appearance before anything else, while anonymity lets people get away with being mean or unkind to another.

Facing rejection is never easy, but I want you to know that you ain’t “missing out.” Those who rejected you probably ain’t worth the hassle and effort anyway. Well, who doesn’t want a hot, handsome boyfriend who looks like he just walked off from a porn set, right? But looks only go so far. What you should be looking for is a guy who cares more about your person and character. If a guy can’t see past how you look, then it’s his loss, not yours. Don’t let someone else’s superficiality change the way you see yourself.

If you can’t entice people with your looks, then attract them with your confidence. Confident people give off this positive energy that catches others’ attention. When you’re confident and sure of yourself, your charisma shines through and pulls people to you. I’m glad that you brought up Latrice Royale because she’s a great example. She’s proud of her size, she’s proud of her race, she’s proud of her femininity. She isn’t hiding all these things that make her who she is, even when there are people who would see them as “turn-offs.” So be like Latrice. Be unapologetically yourself. Of course, you can’t become confident overnight. You have to work on it slowly, over time.

I’m glad that you’re trying to relearn the art of loving and accepting yourself. I do believe that we have to build a good relationship with our inner self first before we can build a good relationship with someone else. Like RuPaul said, “If you can’t love yourself, how the hell you gonna love somebody else?”

And one last advice: If you think that online dating is doing more harm than good, then perhaps you should leave it out of your life for a while. Take a break from it. Have a change of scene. Try going out and meeting people in real life instead. Remember: Be intentional, be patient, and don’t get desperate when things don’t go well at first.

Good luck!

Keay Nigel

The letter has been edited for clarity. The author was given permission to publish the story.