Can a person have gay sex and still identify as straight? According to a new article by the Guyliner at GQ, the answer is: Totally!
“It rather depends on what you think being gay means,” the Guyliner writes. “For most people, ask what ‘gay’ means to them and, if we’re talking about guys, they’ll say a man who has sex with other men.”
This, the Guyliner says, is “a huge part” of being homosexual, but it’s not the only part. There’s a whole culture around being gay that doesn’t necessarily include getting naked with members of the same-sex. Reading Queerty, for instance. Or wearing designer underwear. Referring to one another as “girl,” categorizing one’s self as an animal, overusing the phrase “yaaaas.” The list goes on and on.
“So if we remove the label of ‘gay’ from sex acts we traditionally assume are only the domain of gay men, does this mean you can take part in them and still be straight?” the Guyliner wonders.
To get to the bottom of things, the Guyliner asked three straight men who have all engaged NSA liaisons with other men in the past their thoughts on the matter. Here’s what they had to say…
James, age 28
Me and my mate would fool around but mainly he would do it to me. I wasn’t as interested in his cock as he was in mine, but I think we both got something out of it. I didn’t have a girlfriend yet and my mate was just discovering his sexuality and wanted to try. I always made it clear we weren’t in a relationship and that nobody should know. But I didn’t feel guilty and I think he was cool with it.
I’ve never been with a man since and I’m happily married now. I doubt I’d do it again as that would mean being unfaithful, but I consider myself straight. It’s fine to experiment; it’s a big part of finding out who you are.
Mark, age 28
I was in the couples room at Torture Garden [a fetish club in London] and a stranger gave me a blowjob. I was there with my girlfriend at the time and we’d both got pretty wild. I just didn’t really feel the desire to f*** him. I suppose it’s possible I might go further one day but I think it’s very unlikely. I almost never think men are attractive.
Why do I continue to identify as straight? I suppose it’s because I couldn’t imagine myself having a relationship with a man. In the same way I have gay friends who’ve f***ed women, but would never identify as bi, or worry they’re straight.
I think that ‘being gay’ or ‘being straight’ is about much more than some sexual contact.
Zac, age 25
I’d never really thought about being bi or gay. I’d only ever been with girls and had never really been sexually attracted to any guys.
When I was 20 a load of our sixth form year got together for a party. George was a guy from my year I’d known fairly well but never been close to. We were both fairly drunk and I remember just feeling happy to see him for the first time in ages and for some reason, knowing he was gay, I kissed him rather than hugging him. We chatted for a bit and then we both carried on with the night – not really thinking much about it.
Later on, we were both alone on the landing and he kissed me again. This time, for some reason, I didn’t really stop him and before long we were fully making out – we snuck into one of the bedrooms and one thing led to another.
I did enjoy myself. I suppose I’m quite a sexually liberal person and didn’t really think of it as being ‘gay’, it was just was fun and at the time I was enjoying it. We had sex, both oral and anal. I topped. I don’t think I’d have been comfortable with it the other way around.
So what can be made of all this?
“You as an individual get to decide how you label your sexuality, if at all,” the Guyliner concludes. “As long as nobody’s feelings are getting screwed over, you’re free to have sex with men or women at will and still call yourself straight. But it’s worth acknowledging that you’re merely a tourist.”
The Guyliner continues: “Having sex with a man doesn’t mean you’re gay, definitely not. You get to be who you want to be. But don’t forget the sacrifices your gay brothers make on a daily basis so you can have that freedom to choose. You get to go back to your privileged status in the world – we can only be us.”
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