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It was only in that homosexuality was decriminalized and in that it was removed from the list of mental illnesses in the third edition of the Chinese Classification of Mental Disorders CCMD-III. China Country Report released in , social and cultural attitudes toward homosexuality have begun to shift in China, moving from the less tolerant attitudes linked to traditional Confucian and patriarchal values to greater openness and tolerance.

Changing attitudes toward homosexuality, as well as China's maturing LGBT community, have also had an unintended effect: Luke is a popular video blogger on Blued, a dating app for gay men in China. Courtesy of Luke.

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Sparks fly when opposites attract "I like modern guys with a good sense of style, who aren't afraid to wear makeup, who don't just work every day but actually go out and do things," says Nick, who's currently in an open relationship with his Chinese boyfriend. Lucky for Nick, he can afford to be choosy; as an expat, he's a hot item on gay dating sites and apps.

Nick estimates that he receives dozens of messages every day on Blued, a Chinese dating app for gay men along the lines of Grindr or Jack'd.

Among them are requests to chat, invitations for dates and snapshots of their private parts. He also does video blogging on Blued, where he sometimes garners up to 1, viewers. Broadcasts on the app often feature people talking, singing or dancing; Nick even likes to show off his professional cooking skills on camera every once in awhile.

As with so many foreigners in China, Nick says a common icebreaker among Chinese guys is asking him to teach them English or Russian. Unfortunately, that isn't the only dating stereotype that carries over into the world of gay romance.

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In his experience, Nick says it's also common for Western men to be targeted as potential sugar daddies, recalling one first date in which the guy queried Nick about his income, and then asked that Nick buy him a new phone. Nick said while some expats feel used when Chinese dates approach them for their language skills, "exotic" looks or presumed wealth, Nick himself is holding fast to his predilection for Asian guys. But he says it's less a fetish as it is a personal preference.

No matter whether you are white, yellow or black. It's just about what you like.

Some like muscles; some like tall people. With a stable job, a solid group of friends and a comfortable home complete with a cat, he's committed to living in China long term. He doesn't even mind that he can't get married.

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Thanks to growing mainstream acceptance of China's LGBT community, including an increase in services like dating apps aimed at this demographic, it's become easier for gay expats to live and date in China. The perks and pitfalls of dating as a foreigner Luke, a year-old Brit living in Nantong, Jiangsu Province, was enjoying a stroll through the park with his new friend, a cute young Chinese doctor, when their conversation came to a screeching halt.

Maybe you could be my boyfriend. Luke, who works in education, has traveled and lived all across China since coming here in , most recently settling in Nantong.

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In that time, he's found that being young and foreign not only attracts the attention of locals, but adds to his popularity in the gay dating scene, which can sometimes lead to cultural misunderstandings, or, as in this case, an excess of enthusiasm. Sometimes, instances of Chinese guys coming on too strong, he says, stem from a misapprehension of Western culture.

The doctor, for example, having heard that Westerners were more "direct," assumed this meant that he should "directly" ask Luke if he wanted to be his boyfriend. Shanghai Gay Personals.

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