Dating Sites for HIV-Positive Men
Often disclosing on a website is an easy way to take the fear of rejection out of meeting new potential dates. Thankfully there are now many HIV-specific dating sites, including HIVDatingOnline.com, HIVPoz.net, PozMatch, and PositiveSingles.com, which has over 70,000 members, all of whom are positive for either HIV or another condition they specify (for instance, HPV or herpes).
Volttage.com is a site and app specific to HIV-positive gay men, and it was started by designer and model Jack Mackenroth, who rose to fame as the first openly HIV-positive contestant on Project Runway (and appeared on the cover of HIV Plus earlier this year). Unlike some other gay matchmaking portals, Volttage does not ask its members, over 11,000 and growing, to disclose their status; the assumption is that everyone is either positive or positive-friendly. Since the minimum age requirement is 21, users do have the option to reveal height, weight, and “other” measurements through photographs. In addition, a feature called Volttage Buzz provides users with news related to HIV activism, health, politics, and more. There will eventually be a mobile version, Mackenroth says.
Some other dating sites, such as HIVNet.com, began as community sites in the '90s and grew into dating sites as more members joined; that kind of start offers a sort of friendly, self-policing (no spam!) environment.
Remember, too, plenty of sites specific to other parts of your identity make disclosing your status easy. Gay.com (which is owned by the same parent company as Gay.net) is one of the largest gay men's dating sites, and it allows users to share that they are HIV-positive or search for others who are. On Gay.com, it's not uncommon to see profiles that begin with "I am HIV-positive" along with the poster's other interests (and though it's far less common, you'll occassionally see the same thing on other themed sites like the pet-lovers personals site LoveMeLoveMyPets.com, or JDate.com, which is for Jewish singles).