Ask Reddit knows it’s still not easy being LGBTQ+ in 2020.
1. People asking how you have sex. I’ve had neighbors, a former boss, and family members ask me immediately after I told them I have a serious girlfriend. It’s like, you wouldn’t ask a straight person that.
Like, “Hey, so, I’m gay. I’ve been dating my girlfriend for four years. Sorry I’ve been telling you otherwise.”
Them: “So like…lol…how do you have sex? Who gives and who receives? Do you use toys? Lol I heard lesbians use a lot of toys. Cause you don’t have anything down there, you know? Do you just lay next to each other? How does it happen, lol!”
And I’m like, “Uhhhh…” As if it weren’t awkward enough to tell your ass I’m gay already?!
2. The mini internal debate you have every time you tell a story about your SO. Do I say friend or girlfriend? Have I come out to this person yet? Is there someone in the vicinity who I don’t want knowing I’m gay? If I do say girlfriend, will the person think I’m getting political/over-sharing even though they wouldn’t think that if I said boyfriend instead of girlfriend? Coming out is not a one-and-done deal. You have to make that snap judgment a thousand times and every time it’s scary.
3. Is she flirting with me or is she straight and just friendly? Am I flirting with her? If I am, does she know? Will she make the first move? If she expects me to make the first move, will I disappoint her if I don’t? Or would making a move freak her out and she’d never talk to me again because she’s actually straight?
4. People asking if I know X person, because they’re also gay. No, we don’t all know each other. The annoying part is that since I live in town of 300k sometimes I do know the person they’re talking about or I know someone with the same name, but as it turns out there’s more than one gay guy named Alex or whatever.
5. Knowing that there are some people who really hate gays even though everyone today pretends they are totally cool with them, and there’s always a chance decisions will be made at work that result in you not getting the promotion or straight-up getting fired.
6. Everything is just so, well straight. A silly example: look at the greeting cards section next time you’re at CVS or Target (ha! Walmart) and look for the man to man cards. There’s like one, if I’m lucky. It’s like this for anything.
7. People legitimately question the validity of your relationship, and whether it’s just a phase – especially if you’re bisexual and have a history of being in a relationship with someone of the opposite gender. This questioning can come from both ends of the spectrum though. Which is ironic.
8. I consider myself bisexual.
One thing I learned from the gay men I dated is that being gay means that you are going to be really lonely a lot of the time.
If you are straight you can date almost half of the population of any area you live in. When you are gay, your dating pool is much, much smaller. If you live in a small town, you will likely know every single gay or bi man in that town and they are your only choice.
9. People being overly loving of my sexuality, sometimes it feels really forced. I appreciate the support, but I feel like it’s trendy to support gay people.
10. Having some sort of conception of the future.
Since gay marriage is a relatively recent thing (and it came suddenly and unexpectedly) you never grew up assuming that you would ever get married, have kids, or build a home. The question of “what do I want to do with my life” really was never addressed in your younger years because you assumed there was no future for you. If you managed not to die from AIDS or by your own hands then you were not going to have a real love life, real friendships, a family that supports you, etc. all of that was dependent upon you making the world believe that you were straight, a facade that you might be able to keep up with for a while, but not forever. Eventually, the mask would slip, people would find out, and your life would slowly unravel from there. Unlike other kids who were excited to live their dream as a doctor, a cop, a vet, or whatever else, the whole idea of the future was something to avoid for me, because I was always so certain that if I would even be alive to experience it, it would be lonely and pointless.
But thankfully none of that happened. I’m still here corporeally but that’s about it. It’s just that since there was never any thought put into my long term future now I’m bearing the consequences of it as an adult.
11. We don’t want to sleep with every guy we see; not everyone is attractive. There are also some even who are turned off when they find out a guy is straight. Yet there’s that assumption from straight men.
12. When people in my family say things like, “We always knew,” or something else to that effect. It breaks my heart every time, and I want to go fucking postal just thinking about all the terrible, awful, and downright shameful shit they said about gay people when I was such a young, innocent child on a journey to find myself just like anybody else. I did so much shit I absolutely hated just to appease everyone else when I could have been pursuing my own unique interests. Feels like I lost my right to a fair childhood. Forgiveness is hard, but I do it to not cause any more controversy than I need to.
13. People wondering why I don’t ‘act’ gay. Straight people are usually confused because they have this idea of homosexuality that’s very open, flamboyant, and ‘in-your-face’. It’s even worse from other gay people, because they assume you’re ‘straight-acting’. They assume you’re trying to hide your sexuality because you’re ashamed, because you don’t love yourself, because you’re repressed, etc. Sometimes, the worst reactions I get are from the LGBT community. I have no idea why.
14. “So, who’s the guy and who’s the girl?” ….yeah really hate that one.
15. For some reason, when people find out I’m a lesbian, they feel the need to say ‘but you don’t look gay’ as though my appearance has any impact on my sexual orientation. It’s a small thing to some but to me it makes me feel invalidated just because I don’t fit a stupid stereotype.
It’s even worse when other gay people say it to me. I don’t look gay? Well, you don’t look ignorant but I guess we’re both wrong.
16. Going to the restaurant together for a romantic dinner can be quite awkward. Even worse, of course, is booking a hotel room with a double bed…
17. Planning my wedding was a pain.
“Are you going to wear a dress? Are you going to have bridesmaids or groomsmen? Where do we sit? Are you allowed to do it in a church?”
YES. Our wedding party consisted of myself, my husband, the minister, and my baby SIL as the flower girl. My husband and I walked each other down the aisle. The minister read a Walt Whitman poem. We exchanged rings and vows and had a nice buffet set out for us. No dancing, no silly games, just marriage and fake Italian food. It was great.
18. Straight people can assume there’s a potential for anyone of the opposite gender to be attracted to them, they can meet just about anywhere. Gay people usually have to go out of their way to meet other gay people. We also seem to be far more willing to travel long distances to be with our partners, to the extent of cross states, countries, and even continents, not really sure why this is, and I’m in this situation myself.
19. Gay women have a different dilemma: 90% of our porn isn’t actually for us (spoilers, it’s for straight men) and we can fucking tell. Seriously, I wonder if these women ever even discovered masturbation because you could swear they’ve never touched a vagina in their entire lives.
20. We have to constantly police our language. A common homophobic thing I hear is, “Why do you all flaunt your sexuality,” but I think a lot of straight people don’t realize how frequently they tell me they’re straight without realizing it. Whether it’s “My husband/wife” or “Oh that person is hot.”
21. That being gay isn’t a choice. That I didn’t wake up choosing who I was attracted to and how infuriating it is that, that part of me is called a “lifestyle” or “sexual preference” and let me let you in on a secret: “I probably would not have chosen being gay if this was a choice.” Not saying I’m not comfortable with who I am, but it can be challenging and painful. Who would choose family rejection, being subjugated to bias and hemophobia on a daily basis? Who?
22. Before y’all knew I was gay, you talked a lot of smack about “the gays.” You don’t remember because it was just another ramble, like what you had for dinner. But I remember. I will always remember. I will forgive you, but I will always remember how you talked about me.
23. It can really get depressing when every song, movie, and TV show is centered around a man and a woman or heterosexual dating shows. You get sick of never being represented but straight people don’t really get it.
Also, straight people definitely take for granted the fact it’s acceptable to show PDA but gay people get told to put that shit away.
24. The first thing that comes to mind is a few years back I was talking to my dad, and he mentioned when he met my mother, she was having serious family issues with her own father. They didn’t get along, at all, and my dad helped solve the issue because the way he was raised… family was the most important thing, and he “couldn’t date a woman who didn’t get along with her family.”
I had to tell him if that’s an expectation he has for my future spouse, he better get over it before I meet her. Cause when you’re gay, there’s a very real chance your SO will not have a family to bring you into.
It hadn’t occurred to him before then that my future wife might not get along with her family, and that our family will have to become hers instead. It’s something I accepted a long time ago, but my dad really struggled with the idea for a long time.
25. I’m older and *STILL* don’t know how to date. Coming out later is like being a teenager at whatever age you are, but you have to act like an adult who’s already had the heartbreaks that happen as a teenager.
26. Straight people always want to know what your type is. It always feels like a test to see if you find them attractive.
27. I’m gay and out of the closet. I still remember this talk with a straight girl acquaintance of mine: we were talking about the future, family and stuff. I mentioned the problem of not being able to legally marry or adopt. “Yes, is terrible you can’t have a family… by the way I get two guys getting a boy, but two guys getting a girl? Sounds fishy, I would be worried for her well-being!” Ladies and gentlemen: our ally!
28. I still question my sexuality and how I define myself within the LGBT+ community. I’ve been thinking about it for 10+ years and still am unsure sometimes. I think and discuss it with my friends who are also LGBT+ a lot, some of them feel similar, some of them don’t.
29. So this might just be relative to where I live but the dating pool is pretty small, it’s not uncommon that to have dated the same people as your partner here.
30. You don’t “come out” just the one time. You’re always coming out almost every day forever as you live your authentic life, especially when you meet new people who ask about you and your SO.