Cleo's Dating Blog

Not All Love is Straight

Posted on: May 12, 2010

I am one of those people that lives for moments of enlightenment. I love when an unlikely character, such as a random guy at a bar or a shy friend or a toothless waitress, brings up a point-of-view contrary to mine or an idea that I have never thought of….. it’s like crack for my intellect (disclaimer: I do not support the use of crack in any form, despite living in LA. See Exhibit A).

Exhibit A:

As a self-proclaimed flame-dame (the sweeter, classier version of the popular term fag-hag), I had originally thought that my dating journey and the lessons learned along the way could apply to all people that prefer hot dogs over tacos. Oh contraire! My loyal group of rainbow lovers brought up the point that although some similar concepts apply, the crazy world of men dating men is actually a lot different and, by some interpretations, much more  complex then straight dating. Well, I took to the streets of gay town to discover for myself.

Before I go on, I understand that my current sample size is small compared to the vast population, yet this is the first post of many and I do plan on conducting more research in the near future.

I chose La Cita in downtown LA as the first location to conduct Part I of my research study. Apparently Monday night is “Mustache Mondays.”

I chose to ask random gay men three questions. The questions are not made to be analyzed, but interpreted in each respondent’s own way. The first question is based off my previous post about eye contact and how a female can use different types of eye contact to provoke desired actions from a male specimen. This works because, in straight dating, there are obvious gender roles: Female dresses to impress and puts herself in an approachable situation and uses enticing eye contact to attract attention. The male is then expected to approach the female with something clever to say and possibly a courtship offering in the form of a drink or dinner date. As a female, I have never thought of asking to buy a guy dinner or a cocktail, its just not socially correct (and to my advantage). However, how do we define courtship roles in male on male dating? Or is there even a point in assigning roles at all? In answering these questions, I first set out to determine whether or not the eye contact tricks I mentioned previously are interpreted differently in gay dating.

The results of my survey show that most gay men believe that other gay men are predominantly looking to just hook up. This means let’s skip dinner, skip texting,  skip “where did you go to high school?” and “what do you like to do for fun?” and head straight to the bedroom for [insert graphic sexual term here]. It is universally known that all men think about sex almost on a constant basis- gay or straight. Final answer. However in a guy-girl relationship, the man is typically the aggressor, the one who pushes physical boundaries. The gal is the one to wear the “don’t touch me there” sign until a couple dates have passed. Adding two aggressors into the dating equation is bound to make finding a meaningful relationship more challenging since the physical part moves so quickly. Since I just assumed that gay men are looking for a relationship, this brings us to our next survey question.

According to these results, most gay men claim to not be looking for anything and just want to have fun with their friends. Aw how sweet. However, the problem I have with multiple choice questions is that the results make me curious as to the reasoning behind the answers. Do most gay men not expect that they could find a lasting relationship? Are they afraid to admit that they just want to hook up or that they just want some male attention? If the results of the first question are true, then 1. more gay men must be looking to just hook up then they actually would admit or 2. gay men are misinterpreting the intentions of other gay men.

With my third question I wanted to get to the heart of why gay dating, especially among my close friends, seems so difficult.

I wish I could take credit for the last choice in this question, but this was actually a point raised by one of the respondents. He claims that gay relationships try too hard to fit into the roles and rules/expectations that straight couples create and follow. For example, the anonymous respondent brought up the idea of marriage. American society values the “sanctity of marriage” and divorce is never seen as honorable and is rather taboo. Therefore many straight couples remain in a committed relationship despite being unhappy in order to be socially accepted. The idea was raised that since gay couples are fighting societal norms on a daily basis, they also chose to go against societal marriage values as well. While a straight couple would stay in a relationship and “make it work”, a gay couple accepts that you may not be just one person your whole life and would prefer to be with different people and happy then with one person and unhappy. (I get the feeling that this post is going to be very controversial). Soooo, are gay relationships not meat to last forever? Are any? Another respondent commented that, “It is all about being honest and not following other people’s rules.” I will vote for that.

Another respondent claimed that “a gay relationship can only last for a long period of time if it is an open-relationship.” Opinions?

One of the last groups I questioned had this to say, “Straight people never have to ask themselves who they are in the same way the homosexuals do.” These respondents felt that because gay men have to make a conscious decision at some point in their life to live an alternative lifestyle that is not universally accepted by society, they are then more willing to be authentic in a relationship and do not conform to “relationship roles” or place high importance on following traditional dating rules.

What did we learn from this post? I learned that there is a lot to learn! Dating (gay or straight) is complicated. Secondly, we could all be surprised how much we can learn from each other if we listen with an open mind and a heart of compassion. What did I learn specifically from my research? Well, I’m too tired from writing this post so I hope you will tell me!

Luv,

Queen Cleo

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