Dating sites and mobile apps are often where you’ll get in contact with other guys, whether it’s to hook up, meet new people, or to keep in touch with your friends or acquaintances.

For various reasons, people don’t always share everything about themselves on these sites. Don’t be shy to ask questions if there are things that are important for you to know.

The fact that you’ve made contact with someone, exchanged a few messages, decided he’s your type, and confirmed that he’s into the same things as you does not guarantee that you’ll be safe from HIV and other STBBIs. Using one or more prevention methods such as condoms and lube or taking your partner’s viral load into consideration is still the best way to prevent infection.

Depending on the number of guys you hook up with and which practices you engage in, you’ll need to figure out how many times a year you should get tested as part of your regular health routine. To do this, check out the Take the Test section found in the right-hand column of this page.

People who hook up online often use acronyms or special terms to communicate certain preferences. For example, here are a few of the terms that are often used to say they’re into using drugs during sex:

  • PNP: party and play, in other words, having sex on drugs
  • Long session: another way to indicate an interest in having sex on drugs
  • Slam: taking crystal meth by injection
  • 420: smoking pot
  • Chemsex, chempiss, chemload: “chem” refers to sexual activity on drugs

Other terms that are commonly used:

  • bareback, BB, raw, au naturel: having sex without condoms
  • TGM: trans man
  • TGF: trans woman