28 October 2010

PE: Gay Group Dinner Date

A couple months ago I went to dinner with a friend and two others (which my friend new). This was not too long after coming to terms with my own sexuality. I am discrete and if I wasn't holding a boy's hand (which I wasn't at the time) very few would wonder about my sexuality.

For those of you who don't get the pleasure of experiencing what it is like to be gay (the sarcasm probably doesn't come through the screen), let me tell you that being in public where people might guess about you isn't fun, especially when you are just starting to meet and talk to other gay people.

Well not all of these guys were as discrete as I was. A person would have to be completely oblivious not to guess that at least two of us were gay. Well, we were just talking, enjoying conversation and food. I was completely rigid and conscious of everything going on around us. Here are the things I saw (and the others noticed also).

The couple sitting behind us simply got up and moved to a table at the other end of the restaurant. People at other tables would stare. The waiters and waitresses gathered at one point at the end of the row of tables and whispered to each other, looked at us, and laughed, for a good 2 minutes. To top it all off, our waiter was gay. It wasn't long before he realized we were too, so he acted just like his normal self (instead of the facade that he initially wore, which I'm sure was a survival technique when income depends on tips). It was just one big gay dinner party and everyone knew it. I was SO uncomfortable and hurt. Especially by the couple who couldn't stand the idea of eating next to a table of gay guys and moved.

I thought, "no wonder so many gay guys end up meeting in dark parking lots, empty houses, and otherwise remote places. Society won't let them enjoy a night out on the town like any heterosexual can without subjecting them to criticism, teasing, and rejection."

Since then, I have come to a place where I am completely comfortable with who I am and hold the hand of my significant other in public if I feel like holding his hand. I flirt with him on a date just like heterosexuals flirt on their dates. And though people stare and point and laugh and make rude remarks, and sometimes I wonder about my safety, if I want to enjoy our date and hold hands, thats what I do. I'm not obnoxious about it. I try to keep it as discrete as possible. It isn't like I hold our hands in the air and point to them with my other hand while shouting "Look! We are holding hands! And we are both boys!"And though in some cultures there is nothing wrong with two men holding hands, that small, discrete act creates havoc in the public places of my country. I refuse to hide and meet up only in dark, deserted places. I am not ashamed, and Christ's judgement is the only kind I care about.


Anonymous said...

You honestly think Christ doesn't condemn homosexual acts? When basically everything you've been taught suggests otherwise? I am jealous of you, I want to think I can be as apart of the fellowship of the Unashamed as you are, but it doesn't feel like it would be real without a surety that Christ doesn't think I am living in sin. I hope that makes sense. I feel terrible even when people say, "that's so gay," or when people get uncomfortable when a gay actor comes on tv. It's sad, and it hurts.

Gay Mormon said...

@Mike- I can only say what I feel for myself. The way I feel when I am with, my boyfriend for example, has nothing to do with lust or anything dirty. It is real, sincere love. The same kind a heterosexual Mormon boy would feel for a girl. The Book of Mormon, the D & C, the Pearl of Great Price, and all the gospels are silent on the matter. The only condemnation people like to site is that of the Levitical code which also states that the punishment for a woman who sleeps with a man before marriage is death by stoning, among other horrid things that we do not do today.

Now, I'm sure God doesn't approve of sexual acts before marriage, but seeing as how gay individuals are not given that right by society, it puts us in a sticky situation. I dream for the day when gay members can look forward to marriage and date the same way straight members do.

Anonymous said...

Wow, it's almost 5am I need to go to bed! I know what you mean, I want to have the ooey gooey corny love that Bella and Edward have, that Romeo and Juliet died for, that all the chick flicks in existence show. I want to be held by someone, and feel safe, love and be loved. I want that touch to be real, and natural, I want there to be the magic, the hopeless romance, and feel like I never wanted to ever be without them.

I have to say that the lust has only been a problem ever since I got into pornography, and that it's a byproduct of so much anguish, and no outlet that I go to extremes. If that makes sense? I want that satisfied occasionally, and I don't think it's healthy, I can feel the difference in the two.

It is a sticky situation, I too, dream for more light all the time. Thank you for being you, and for wanting to help me. It means a great deal to me, and you are blessed because of it.

Anonymous said...

The need for physical contact is a real driver. I think you're right about why men sometimes have furtive contact in hidden places. It's not just a lust driven need for sex. It's the only option for some men who have no personal or emotional relationship with another. If they can't have the real thing a brief encounter with a virtual stranger becomes their substitute.

The problems with this behavior are many. But as long as gays have to live in the shadows it will continue to be the outlet many men turn to.

My city (Rochester, NY) has all the gay bars, bathhouses, and gay clubs any city has but I'm not interested in any of it. I have a good friend who is and I worry about the so-called freedom he claims to enjoy.

I envy your courage and honesty. When I go out with a male friend gay or straight I worry that people are speculating about our sexuality. Actually most people probably aren't thinking about us all. I think there's some real paranoia going on. At Church I feared some people wondered if I might be gay because I wasn't married and seldom dated.

How messed up is that?

Gay Mormon said...

@Anonymous- I think you are right, and I think the reason physical contact is such an important thing is because it is linked to emotions. And we all want emotional connections with other people. We talk about touch being so important for babies, but I'm not sure that the importance of that ever goes away.

It took awhile before I could stop being paranoid. In the end it only stopped when I decided that there was nothing wrong with me. Being gay was nothing to be ashamed of. So who cares if some stranger is speculating on me being gay, because I am! And who cares?

I mean, do straight people go around worried that people might think they are straight? No. Why? Because it doesn't matter! It isn't a reflection of who they are or what kind of life they live. It is irrelevant to whether he/she will make a good employee, student, friend, etc. That is the same mentality I have about being gay. And if people want to judge me based on their speculation that I might be gay, well- their judgments mean nothing to me, and in the end, they will be judged.

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