Like the guest writer, I also have a very strong, mostly unconscious, dislike, and disgust for any male homosexual behavior. It’s very common among straight men. I doubt if there is anything we like less than that.
A recent study found that straight men were more disgusted by gay pornography than by literal trays full of live maggots! Gay sex is worse than maggots! That’s pretty bad. One can argue where this revulsion comes from, whether it is genetic or cultural. It’s certainly cultural and whether it it inborn is up for dispute. At any rate, it exists. Gay men usually refuse to believe that this revulsion even exists at all. We also very much do not like people thinking we are gay, especially if they think that way because they think we act gay.
There’s probably no worse insult to a straight man than saying he acts like a homosexual, and straight women hate it just as much as straight men, if not more. That said, straight men are terribly ignorant about male homosexuality to the point of utter absurdity. They are always accusing other straight men of being gay. In fact, I think more straight men are gay-bashed that gay men.
Despite our disgust for male homosexuality, a lot of us hate homophobes even worse. I used to be mistaken for being gay a lot when I was younger and it’s still said from time to time, though now it’s not as much of an insult because it is “I’m a straight man who acts gay” which is not nearly as insulting to me as saying that I am gay! At least they acknowledge that I am straight!
This shows that it is not so much the accusation that we act like homosexuals that bother us but that that observation leads to the accusation that we are gay. So what we really do not like to be accused of is being gay, not so much acting gay. If all people ever said to be was that I was a straight guy who acted gay, I would not be so angry.
This is especially true because you do not have to be effeminate to be accused of acting gay. I don’t think I’m an effeminate man, and I’ve never seen myself that way. I really dislike that behavior and I think it’s contemptible. So saying I act that way is a particular insult.
I’m just a soft guy. On the other hand, most soft men I’ve known got called gay constantly. They were also often very handsome in a female or pretty sense – they were pretty boys. That seems to add to the gay accusation, though I’m not sure if looks alone is enough to get you accused of that though that’s happened a few times in our lives.
It is interesting, once again, that the insult that we are gay is what really bothers us, not so much that we act gay. That implies that this is the true insult – that one’s heterosexuality is not acknowledged. However, this much isn’t really the whole of it either because many people, especially women, thought I was bisexual because any women who can’t figure out a man likes women is too stupid to live. But this was almost as insulting. Just recognizing that I liked women was not enough, and in some ways it was almost worse because it was half of an apology, which is almost worse than no apology.
So looking at this anew, I think what makes us mad is not the suggestion that we don’t like women because that’s not often heard. It’s more the very suggestion that we have sex with men. That right there is the supreme insult – that we would dare to do these things at least on a regular basis.
However, there were quite a few times when even women accused me of being gay in the sense of not wanting to being attracted to women at all. This was particularly insulting.
So the insult is threefold.
- That we are effeminate. Not so much that we “act gay” because no one knows what that means. But saying we act like a stereotypical homosexual man is very harmful and hurts us a lot. It’s a horrendous insult.
- That we are not attracted to women and therefore have no interest in having sex with them. This almost worse than saying we are effeminate. There is something horrendously insulting to a straight man about someone saying that to him. We want our heterosexual component or our attraction to women acknowledged. You are taking a huge aspect of our lives and saying it doesn’t exist and then hating us on that basis.
- That we have sex with men. Of course this is insulting but what is more insulting is other straight men acting uncomfortable around us because they think we screw guys. The idea that this guy won’t talk to me because he thinks I want to fuck him is unbelievably insulting. Furthermore, it’s completely untrue. It’s like being falsely accused of a crime. There is also a huge sense of disappointment there. In the neighborhood I live in, those are fighting words. You say that to a man around here and you are likely to get hit. You will first be asked to take it back and then if you don’t, you are probably going to get hit, at least once, in the face. And you will deserve it. 90% of the men around here will say you deserved it and no one will call the cops. It’s even worse than that. You can be killed for saying that to a man around here. I have wondered why these are fighting words around here and the conclusion I arrived at is that those are fighting words not because you say he acts gay or because you say he has no interest in women but because you are implying he has sex with men. It is for that reason that you might get hit or even killed. That’s the ultimate insult right there.
All three of these are extremely insulting and it’s hard to say that one is worse than the other. I’ve had people who thought I was gay change their minds and say I was bisexual and like me 10X more on that basis, and it didn’t feel 1% better. It almost made me even more mad.
I guess what it boils down to is people really do not want to be misjudged on the essential basis of what they are.
I’m not sure if I care if someone thinks I had sex with guys a few times experimentally. Not that I would ever say such a thing. Such behavior is epidemic among straight men. I’ve known 5-10 men who told me they had sex with men a few times experimentally but then they decided they didn’t like it and never did it again. And the number of women who say this about sex with women is epidemic too. I keep running into women my age who told me they had sex with a woman once or twice (usually once), apparently experimentally.
A number of times they concluded that they didn’t really like it and they were basically straight, so it was a sort of testing the waters sort of thing. Interestingly, all of the men who admitted this to me were outrageous playboys. I think every one of them had a 3-figure laycount. This implies that this sort of behavior is simply a byproduct of an extremely high sex drive. These men are “sex maniacs.” A former female commenter on this site said that a lot of such men were bisexual or had had sex with men before. A very high sex drive may include a tendency towards experimentation.
Many people used to think I was gay, but it was never everyone. Especially most people who grew up with me somehow knew it could not possibly be true. It was always the new people thinking that.
As such, I’ve been on the receiving end of a lot of homophobia. I must tell you that homophobia feels pretty terrible. There is something awful about it, and it is some sort of hate on one level or another. And you get it from women as much as from men. I’m not sure if it is worse to be accused of being gay if you are straight because you are being misunderstood on an essential level than it is if you are actually, gay and they are telling the truth about you.
But there is something awful about being misunderstood on a basic level like that.
When you meet a new person, you assume that they figure out certain things about you – your age, your dress style, your level of politeness, perhaps your intelligence or education, perhaps your moral level, whether you are white or blue collar, your level of masculinity or femininity, your ethnicity or race, obviously your sex or gender (same thing), your level of attractiveness, whether you are a pleasant or unpleasant person, your cultural level, your subculture (often based on hairstyle or clothing), your income, your hygiene and general level of cleanliness, your income (often based on your clothing), your relationship status (as in if you are married or if you have a SO), and last but not least, your sexual orientation!
So when I meet a new person, especially a man, I assume that he thinks I am a straight man. If he doesn’t think that, it’s a rude shock, and it seems like there’s no way I can talk to him. By the way, men make this assumption about other men all the time – we always try to guess the sexual orientation of every man we meet. Usually it just defaults to “this guy is (more or less but please don’t tell me the details) straight,” but in a few cases, it doesn’t.
The only distinction is something like “Basically Straight and I don’t want to hear anymore details about that please” versus “Gay and that means gay with a capital G.” We don’t try to negotiate the ins and outs of all the men who fall along the bisexual continuum or have sex with men at least sometimes but are not gay. It’s a black and white thing. Any man who tries to break it down past that very basic assumption is paranoid about male homosexuality – but the percentage of straight men who are absurdly paranoid about male homosexuality is extremely high.
There is even a certain way of conversing – I call it “straight man to straight man.” It’s a real style and almost all straight men will mimic this towards you. One thing about it is there an utter and absolute absence of any sense of sexual attraction about these interactions. Further, there is no mention of male homosexuality in any way. Or even sex if the friendship is new. Talking about sex too soon is seen as gay.
I remember my mother and her relatives though my cousin’s new husband was gay due to his behavior. But I never thought he acted gay. I told my Mom there was no way he was gay because when I talked to him for 15 minutes, there was a straight guy to straight guy vibe about it, a holistic one that cannot be put into words. Based on that, I told her there is no way he was gay.
The thing is that most gay men, even deeply closeted ones, cannot do this “straight guy to straight guy” vibe thing. They might be able to do it for a few minutes, but if you are one on one with them, their homosexuality almost always reveals itself. They just can’t keep it out of their presentation.
This is also interesting because it implies that in any significant interaction between men, men are not able to keep from revealing their sexual orientation. Our sexuality is such a huge part of us that it seeps into every interaction we have – even a basic conversation about the weather.
This is a strong argument against the Sex-Hating Left as seen in #metoo bullshit, which seems to want to ban any expression of sexuality, at least by men, overt or convert, from all public space (apparently sexual expression by women is fine and dandy).
We just can’t do that, or at least we men can’t. Our sex drive is so strong that it’s seeping out of all our pores all the time. Asking us to shut down such an overwhelming drive is not only ridiculous but unhuman and even downright anti-human. That’s why feminism is not only deeply man-hating but it is also at its core anti-human by seeking to suppress the very essential human aspects of males. The feminists are literally asking us to stop being ourselves. Not only is such a folly impossible but there is something terribly cruel about such a demand.
Also, gay men can’t help but reveal their homosexuality to you in any extended conversation. They usually act like they are attracted to you. Also, it is very hard to get close to these men.
One part of this straight man to straight man vibe is an extreme casualness and very much a lack of intimacy. Say we are hanging out for an evening. This right there raises a strong question of homosexuality – you are alone together, no one else around, other people will often see this behavior as homosexual, there is a possibility of some vague homosexual feelings leaking out, etc. Hence there is a strong need to defend against not these feelings but more their very potential. This what I could call the “gay tension” in these encounters. It’s not a resistance against something that is there but more against something that might be there. It’s a huge wall against a very possibility.
There is a distance or a lack of intimacy there expressed by an extreme “I don’t care” attitude and a lot of joking. Perhaps seriousness seems gay on some level. We also don’t even look at each other all that much. You aren’t supposed to. If you do, it’s seen as gay. You don’t talk about deep things. That might be seen as gay. You are supposed to talk about women at some point or another. If you don’t, it is suspicious. It also relieves a lot of the gay tension. This is sort of a test to make sure the other guy is not gay, but it’s also just a way of being straight.
I often feel that a lot of straight male intimacy or closeness is constructed around a lot of barriers against homosexuality. That’s why we do a lot of the things we do above – why we don’t look at each other all that much, why we joke and act frivolous, why we avoid deep discussions, especially about feelings. Perhaps this is all a defense against having any homosexual expression. We don’t feel this way anyway, but we still need to defend against the possibility that we might. Once again, it’s hard to explain.
We do feel very close to each to other. I have even been “in love” with some of my straight male friends before, but I would never do anything sexual with them. If you want to call me gay for making that statement, go right ahead. I’m not worried.
It was more of the platonic love one feels between oneself and a parent, sibling, or relative, something like that.
I once thought, “You know, if I was gay, I would fuck this guy.”
Once again, if you feel that makes me gay, go right ahead. I’m not worried. That’s how much I loved him. But since I wasn’t gay, I wouldn’t dare even touch him. I often feel that the platonic love between two straight male friends is one of the deepest relationships a straight man can feel. I often wonder if we feel deeper love towards our straight male friends than towards our girlfriends or wives. It’s hard to explain how deeply we feel for each other. Yet this love has an utter prohibition on any physical sexual expression similar to your love for your father or brother does.