There are days like today where I just sit back and reflect on some of the differences that I see between the straight and gay cultures. I haven’t completely found my way within the gay culture yet and trust me when I say I am more comfortable here, however the straight culture is a hell of a lot easier to manage. Let me give you a few examples:
Yes we are in the 21st century and no one should be held to any stereotypes. However the one thing I found in the straight culture is until you figure out what works for your relationship you can fall into this “safe zone” of stereotypical roles that you know will likely work and be accepted by both parties in the mean time. In the gay culture these just don’t exist and thus I find myself in this constant tug of war on where
One of the unwritten rules within the straight culture deals with how you communicate with someone that is in a relationship. For instance it is generally considered unacceptable to tell someone else how attractive you think they are and that you have a desire to sleep with them. In the gay culture communicating in this way is almost considered normal. Not that it makes it acceptable but rather lines are often blurred between relationship as significantly more gay couples are in some sort of an open relationship compared to straight couples. The challenge becomes that the outsider to your relationship has no understanding of your contractual agreement with your partner and thus stepping up or over that line happens often. For me this challenges me constantly and I have a hard time determining if I am mad, sad, frustrated, confused or just unconfident. Often probably a mixture I suppose.
When you are in a relationship with the opposite sex you do not even have to think about if you can hold hands or kiss but when you are in a same-sex relationship you are constantly monitoring your surroundings to determine if it is going to be considered acceptable or in some cases even safe to show any affection. I could not believe it when I found myself at time acting as though my boyfriend was just a friend as I was unsure if I should be concerned about my surroundings.
For me continuing to notice these differences and finding within myself what I am comfortable with and how to navigate them continues to be a challenge. It truly is easier to be in a “straight” relationship.