Rainbow Wonderer: Does This Post Make Me Look Gay?

 

Question everything, right? That’s one of the main messages I try to get across here at Disrupting the Rabblement. It doesn’t so much matter what everyone else is thinking, doing or believing. You need to figure out what thoughts, beliefs and actions work best for you.

One thing I often encourage people to question is their diet. Because if your eating habits have remained pretty constant all throughout your life, how can you be sure there’s not a better way of doing it? For all you know, your vehicle may well be running on inferior fuel. Test out some alternatives and in the end you might feel like you’ve upgraded from a Lada to a Lexus.

Many folks inevitably offer objections to such a suggestion. They just know that a vegetarian (or vegan, or raw food, or paleo, or whatever) diet isn’t for them. And I can’t help but respond…

Maybe, maybe not. But you’ll never know for sure until you try it.

I’ve always known though that there was a flaw with this response. It was open to a discomforting counter argument, one that I’d avoided thinking too much about. But I suspected that eventually someone would call me on it.

Well, eventually arrived earlier this week. I received an email from a reader. The gist of it…

Hey Niall,

I was thinking about how you do life experiments and how you are pretty open minded, and I have an interesting experiment for you:

Can you turn bisexual?

Are you straight simply because you’re not sexually attracted to guys, or is it because society has programmed you to only feel sexual attraction to women?

The easy answer to something like that would be to say, “Sorry, gay sex just ain’t my cup of tea.” But then you could turn my own prior words against me…

Maybe, maybe not. But you’ll never know for sure until you try it.

Damn you, integrity!

I’ve backed myself into a corner here. And so, in the name of leaving no stone unturned in this Question Everything philosophy, let’s go ahead and talk about gay things.

I’ll note first though that my thinking about all of this is still a work in progress. I haven’t come to any definite conclusions, and I’m in no hurry to do so. I’ll throw out what’s running through my mind, including a few contradictions, and I’d love to hear your take on it all in the comments.

Planet Swing

Imagine you were born on Planet Swing, located about a hundred billion light years from Earth in the Androgynous galaxy. On Planet Swing, humans are the dominant species. And those humans are just like you and me.

Except every single one of them is bisexual.

No matter your own gender, on Planet Swing you can choose to have sex with a man or a woman and it’s no big deal. Sex is sex. Orgasm is orgasm. Love is love.

Growing up on such a planet, do you think you’d be opposed to gay sex?

I suspect not. You’d be dating Harrys in between Sallys, just like everyone else.

Robot sex

I’ve been to gay bars before, mostly while in New Orleans. I’ve had guys hit on me. I even woke up that one time with a hairy hand down my pants.

That last one really freaked me out at the time. It just didn’t feel right.

But, I wonder, why didn’t it feel right? Was it because everything I identified with as a heterosexual man was suddenly being violated? What if I didn’t cling so closely to that identity? Maybe I could have had a good time that night if I’d been born on Planet Swing.

Some guys lock themselves in a room and use mechanical sex toys to get their rocks off. I can’t help but think: Isn’t it a little more strange doing it that way, getting your kicks from a robot, than it is from another human being, even if that human being has the same sexual organs as you?

I guess it’s all in the visualization.

Sorry, Brad

I’m comfortable admitting when a guy is good looking, but as yet I haven’t noticed any accompanying sexual urges when a tall, dark and handsome strides into the room.

I was hanging out with a random guy last Saturday in Budapest and he was like an Australian Brad Pitt. I found myself gravitating towards him, but not like I’d gravitate towards a beautiful woman. With Aussie Brad it was more like admiring a work of art. Besides his looks, I could also appreciate that he was a cool guy and had a strong sexual presence.

And yet he still failed to float my sexy boat. Not even a fathom.

The advantages of being bisexual

I have to admit though: I sometimes wish I was bisexual. As Billy Connolly once remarked, women need to feel loved to have sex, while men need to have sex to feel loved.

Something’s gotta give.

But if you’re a guy who’s into guys, then you’re already on the same page with the appropriate half of the population when it comes to sex. Same with girls who are into girls.

Barriers begone, let’s get it on!

Both of you are after the same thing. And you both know how to make each other feel good because you’ve been holed up with a same-sex brain and naughty bits since you hit your teens. I imagine it’s like tying someone else’s shoes.

And that’s just the advantage of being gay. Bisexual is even better because you always have more options. Whether it’s ladies night or a sausage fest at the local hot spot, you can go ahead and get your flirt on.

Nature vs. Nurture

The above begs the question: If you had the power to turn yourself bisexual, to just flip some hidden switch inside of you that would make you attracted to both sexes, would you do it?

Given the advantages, I’m pretty sure I would.

That said, I still find myself with a lot of resistance to trying anything sexual with men.

I’ve often joked that women are the number one reason I’m not gay. And that’s a pretty easy out for me here: Why would I ever want to have sex with a guy when there are women around?

But I wonder if this non-attraction to men is something hardwired within me, or is it just the result of growing up on a planet where same-sex couples are the norm? Is that heterosexual preference ingrained in my DNA, or just in my psyche?

As that reader/emailer suggested, I could probably find out for sure. I could experiment with flirting with guys, push through the initial discomfort of it all, and see if I eventually begin to feel any kind of sexual attraction to musk and stubble.

Maybe I will try an experiment like that some time, but at least for the foreseeable future I plan to keep my sexual focus on the female of the species.

And if I’m being completely honest, I have to admit that I’m leaning more towards the nature side of the argument. Methinks the resistance I feel towards dancing horizontally with another dude is less about fear and more about simply not having the genetic desire to do so.

The best comparable model I’ve come up with for this is introversion/extroversion. There’s a scale, just like there is with heterosexual/homosexual. And usually you’re stuck in the same place on that scale for life.

You might be shy when you’re a teenager but you can still be an extrovert underneath all that social anxiety. Likewise, you might only have heterosexual relationships until well into your twenties, before finally accepting that same sex relationships are more your thing. But your position on that scale would remain the same all along.

Two guys, one girl

One part of all this that really baffles me: I love the idea of having a threesome with two women, but I’m uncomfortable at the thought of having a threesome involving another guy. Even if the other guy would be completely heterosexual, the scenario still doesn’t appeal to me.

Why is that?

Is it a sense of inadequacy? Am I not confident enough in my own sexual prowess? Do I need to be the only guy in the room to perform?

(Jesus, I hope my mother doesn’t read all this. But in case she does, Happy Christmas!)

Your thoughts

I have more questions than answers above. And I’m okay with that. I’ve gotten comfortable with this whole uncertainty dealio, the shades of grey, the fuzzy nature of reality. It’s all good :-)

Now I’m interested in your take. If you have anything to share related to these topics, I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

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44 Comments

  1. I really believe that homosexuality is a choice made by that individual, because if it was natural and something that you were born with, then if the whole world became gay it would be fine, the world would continue and populations and future generations would continue to grow. But the reality is if the whole world did become homosexual, the human race as we know it would eventually end.

    So if you really think about it from a logical standpoint a person to desire an individual of the same sex just doesn’t make sense.

    Even in the animal kingdom nature is such that opposite sexes are attracted to each other.

    Could homosexuality just be a disease or addiction like any other such as alcohol or drugs?

    Just a thought…

    • Homosexuality is not a choice. If it were, straight people would be able to tell you when they decided to be straight, and you’d be able to switch your sexuality without so much as a second thought.

      The people who believe that homosexuality is a choice believe this because they see homosexuality not as something natural or biological, but as a “sin”, and sins are choices that people make. There’s a good way to test this belief, however.

      Let’s say that you personally had the opportunity to discover a biological “cure” for homosexuality. Would you search for the cure, knowing that finding it would render the idea of homosexuality being a choice null and void — or would you give up the search so that your belief that homosexuality is a choice stays intact?

      Now there’s a choice.

    • If homosexuality is a choice, you can just choose to be homosexual and prove it once and for all, couldn’t you? Fall in love with a man, give him a blow-job, genuinely enjoy it, and just cancel out your sexual attraction to women. I mean, it’s a choice, right?

      People don’t choose to be bullied, to be hated, to be verbally and physically abused, or to have their rights being put to a vote.

    • I have to agree that it is not a choice. And to counter George’s argument (with respect, I know it can be hard to tell on the internet sometimes)…perhaps homosexuality is nature’s, or God’s, or whoever you want to assign responsilbitiy’s, way of ensuring population control on a planet that does not have enough resources for an exponentially growing population.

  2. Wow Niall! I really like this post. I’ve had a few of these thoughts myself, questioning my sexuality and entertaining the idea of being gay, but it never goes anywhere. Try as I might, I just don’t get turned on by men. However…

    Getting kind of personal here, have you experimented with anal stimulation? I’ve thought sometime in the future I might see what it’s like to receive anal sex (God, I can’t believe I’m putting this on the internet LOL), but the only way I would be comfortable with it is if there was a girl in the room with us (as I can’t imagine being relaxed and turned on by another dude).

    • Hey Trevor. I laughed out loud at that question :-P

      Trying to answer with a straight face (no pun intended): No, I haven’t ever experimented with that. The thought doesn’t appeal to me much. But hey, if I ever met the right girl, maybe she could talk me into it ;-)

      • lol. one has to wonder how male humans ended up with a ‘g-spot’ in their prostate, when 90+% of the male population can’t entertain the possibility of doing what’s required to experiment and find out for themselves :p

        thankfully there are ways a guy can find out for themselves in their own privacy: Aneros. google them. give it a try. and I can’t wait to see one of these show up on Niall’s next monthly financial report!! lolz

        no affiliation, just a happy customer.

  3. This is a very honest and open post and I’m impressed you put this on here!

    I’ve had very similar curiosities and thoughts both about homosexuality as well as preferences in general. Why don’t I like olives? Can I train myself to like them? I didn’t use to like beer, but now I freaking love it and can’t wait to try more.

    I would argue, through purely anecdotal evidence only, that you can probably teach yourself to be comfortable in a MMF threesome. It’s a matter of testing assumptions about what you’d be comfortable with and looking for the positives and benefits of it. I’m not bisexual by any means, but just because I’m not doesn’t mean I think there’s anything wrong with it or that it might not be fun at some point.

    I really like that you brought up something ‘difficult’ to talk about. Now, I wonder would you be willing to challenge people on their religion or their atheism? (Maybe you already have and I’ve just missed it.)

  4. Awesome post! Just one comment so far and already a fascinating discussion has begun. I love your questions and pondering and also being okay with not having answers. I think we should allow spans of not knowing to let things percolate.

    I’ve often though of what it would be like to have a sexual experience with another woman. I think it’s a tad more socially acceptable for two women to experiment than men but still like Trevor it never really goes anywhere. More than anything there’s just no motivation. And for where I’m at in my life I need to be passionate about the things I explore and experiment with. I just don’t see the point.

    You having a guy flirt adventure and writing about it would be, at the very least, highly entertaining. Just saying. :)

  5. I think, as you, that your sexual preferences are a part of your nature: you like one thing or the other or both (if you are lucky) but you don’t learn what you like.

    Now, having said that and with my sexual preferences pretty clear so far, I did experiment if I could be turned on by a girl… It didn’t but I can’t help by wonder if that was only because it wasn’t the right girl or just because I am not attracted to girls in general. I know for sure I am not lesbian but I couldn’t say I’m not bisexual because for me the sexual attraction goes not only for the physical appearance but with the personality as well.

    The only thing that feels right for me is having a sexual relationship only when I feel a connection with the other person in different levels besides the physical. I have a preference for men but I am not attracted to a lot of guys very often, so if what really turns me on or off is the personality and person’s behavior and if the reason why I am not sexually attracted by all the guys is because I am not attracted by their personality, I consider the option that maybe one day I will meet a woman/women whom I feel the connection with and she is lesbian / bisexual or willing to try…

    I am certainly not lesbian, I might be bisexual (don’t know yet, probably not) but I’m certainly willing to try because for me is all about that affinity or bond, whether it’s a man or a woman.

    • Thanks for sharing that, María. I think there would have to be a deeper connection there for me as well for a same-sex relationship to ever be a possibility. And even then I’m not sure that would be enough.

      The guy would have to be ten times more charming than that Arnold off of Green Acres :-P

  6. Niall! so good to read you…

    I actually wondered that very same thing during my teenager years. I found myself surrounded by male friends, with who I connected very deeply (although not romantically), and not a single female friend.

    While I doubted and due to my always open mind, I gave the “benefit of the doubt”. Didn’t like it a single bit.

    Later I discovered I just lacked the skills to attract female beings, and got working on that. Not very successfully I may add.

    So, I firmly believe in the “Maybe, maybe not. But you’ll never know for sure until you try it.” and feel the same way about integrity… Damn you, integrity!

    And at some point in the last 10 years, I had the opportunity to try threesomes, both flavors MFM and FMF… Of course FMF weren’t ever turned down, but MFM did. Until one night that I felt particularly adventurous and had a few drinks, and was asked by a married couple to do it.

    I must say I felt awkward while on the way to “the event”, but once there, I got used to the idea and the adventurous part of me took over, and decided to enjoy the experience as much as possible.

    I thought it was going to be a “Viktor Frankl” kind of “enjoyment”. But it wasn’t at all, I really enjoyed the experience, it was spectacular, tried things I never thought I would. It was simply was beyond my expectations.

    I also must say everything was girl oriented, we were some sort of tag-team. Can’t say more without sounding too explicit ;)

    So, you of all people should stick to your own standards and try something. Small steps, to see how do you like the sensations.

    Alcohol would help with something so “big”, but I’m sure you don’t need it, right?

    Let us know how those thoughts develop!

  7. I have to admit I share your lack of excitement regarding men, I can find them attractive, I can even say if another guy is “hot”, but I feel no sexual attraction to men. Never have. I admit I’ve been curious once or twice, but never enough to act upon it.

    Concerning the threesome however, I’ve had a threesome involving another man before, and it was actually not what I was expecting. I thought it was going to be tense and I wouldn’t be able to get turned on because of the other guy, but we had spent a lot of time (the three of us) getting to know each other and being fully comfortable with each other, so at the time it wasn’t at all awkward.

    Very interesting post, I appreciate your openness.

  8. Hi Niall,

    I’ve got nothing interesting to say apart from, reading you sounded like it was coming from my mouth. I totally agree 100% with everything you say apart from the threesome!

    Just like you hope your Mother didn’t read your post, I hope my wife doesn’t read this. Of course as I am not young free and single like yourself, my threesome has to be purely a fantasy but being with another guy and woman would not bother me. But if that woman was my wife, it ain’t happening!

    Keep up the great stuff, I love reading it!

    Happy Christmas, Paul

  9. Iran might be the place for you to try out your adventurous/curious side,with all those frustrated under 30 Dudes not getting any action cause of those crazy Mulahs,I’m sure they’ll help you out !! :)

    How about a post on Budapest’s nightlife and your flirting skills progress!!

    Lord knows you’re going to be spending months in countries where you’re more likely to win the lottery than get laid :)

  10. Great topic! My preferences, as you know, are on man’s side, but I had an experience with girls ;)) so, what I can say – I’m not a lesbian, but I… Let’s say, was bisexual. It was nice, interesting …. But, only for a couple of times )))) now for me sex = love. I am in love with a boy, so ))))

  11. Hi Niall,

    great post and yes, I agree, there are more questions than answers.

    One thing I know for sure: if there would be a threesome, for me it has to happen with two guys and me being the only woman – I would be terribly jealous if any other girl was part of it! My husband would favour it the other way round, having two girls with him (insert courage challenge here: talked about secret phantasy with partner).

    Love the part where you quoted that women need to feel loved to have sex – I found that to be very true. I would even increase: women need to feel loved to fully give themselves which is one of the biggest gifts for both men and women, I think.

  12. The whole way through reading this I was expecting you to announce something, like the further you moved east the further gay you were getting. I was also expecting you to announce you were going to offer up yourself for some experimenting.

    I was totally in line.

  13. I haven’t read all your previous posts Niall (apologies for that) but this was one that definitely sparked my interest and I dissected just about every word.

    The big question for me is: would you have written this post 10 years ago or more – when society’s attitude to homosexuality was very different to what it is today?? If the answer is “Yes” (and I suspect it might just be); then I wonder how many bigoted replies would there have been? From what I see, there was just one such “bigoted” reply (I’m not going to say which reply it was, but I think we all know which one it was). I’m pretty sure however that if the date was December 2001 rather than December 2011; most of the very same people who replied to this post would have posted very different replies to this post than what they did (pretending also of course that if it were December 2001 that those who replied were the same age as what they are in December 2011).

    Fair enough, I’m being very vague in the above paragraph; but your description of Planet Swing (i.e. where everyone is bisexual) is really an illustration of our society in micro-chasm; i.e. if society teaches that something (anything, sure anything at all) is right; then automatically it must be right and if society teaches that something is “wrong” (anything, sure anything at all and in this case; homosexuality) is wrong, then automatically it must be wrong. Okay, I’m ranting here; but I would like to know posters’ *honest* opinion to what their reaction would have been to Niall’s post 10 years ago?

    It’s interesting you say; “Women are the number one reason I’m not gay” because I’ve often thought; “Women are the number one reason that I wish I was gay!” Sexual frustration is definitely something which has caused me more problems than I should have let it; after all no-one besides oneself is ever truly going to make one happy…..maybe some day RyanAir will offer flights to Planet Swing….

    Well done on the (as ever) thought provoking post Big N.

    • Thanks for the comment, James. I don’t think I could have written this post even a year ago, but I’ve grown a lot more comfortable voicing my opinion in recent months, and I’m much better at handling whatever negative and/or small-minded criticism comes my way.

      And my reaction to reading a post like this 10 years ago would probably have been to just ignore it. It can be so much easier sometimes not to think about these things, because when we do we have to ask some hard questions of ourselves, question our beliefs, etc. Not for the faint of heart.

      So thanks to you for having the balls to comment honestly and openly about this, both here and on Facebook. You’re a good man, Clancy :-)

  14. What do you mean you don’t live your life to entertain us???? ;p

    I think my brother may be gay, and that his drug and alcohol addictions may have something to do with his inability to accept that.

    I could also be wrong in this speculation, but it highlights something interesting. I grew up in a household that taught us that things like homosexuality, the color of your skin, the clothes you wear or the car you drive don’t matter, that the person you are is what’s important.

    And with that upbringing, I’m comfortable saying that I see guys that are attractive, and I would be open to experimentation. Of course, I’m married, so that probably won’t happen, The point is that it’s something that I’m fine with, and it wasn’t a choice for me, it just is.

    But if I’m right about my brother, that same upbringing didn’t affect him in the same way. He’s not fine with it, even though he may be homosexual…

  15. What an interesting World. Niall you’d like to be bisexual… the truth is that lots of bisexual or gay would like to be straight. You know this kind of sexual desire isn’t the best. The majority don’t like it. Or the majority’s opinion doesn’t count for you or yes?

    • If that’s true — that most bisexual or gay people wish to be straight — then I imagine it’s because of all the prejudice they have to endure.

      And yeah, the opinion of the majority doesn’t mean much to me. There’s what works for others, and there’s what works for you as an individual.

      • Yes, in most cases the opinion of the majority isn’t so important for example about your freelancer job or your journey, but on the contrary I think their opinion is very important about the sexuality (whether you have wife or children, etc. basically about what you wrote in your blog post) because people can be really evil about that.

        So if the opinion of the majority changed and they accepted or tolerated the bisexual or gay lifestyle I think everything would be better. :-)

    • ah, no, Joe B, your sense of scale/statistics here is WAY off.

      the majority – who sooner or later cast aside the judgement of others -DO enjoy being homosexual, and they enjoy it because it’s as natural to them (us) as it is to you being heterosexual.

      the only reason homosexuals might sometimes say they wish they weren’t is because they’re living a life where their entire being is under constant assault from everyone around them and they havent yet found the strength to say “fuck it, I don’t need your approval to be happy being who I am”.

  16. Hi,

    A question for you:

    Do you think trying something with a man would be a good “Random Act of Courage”? I think it would defiantly push you out of your comfort zone.

    Not saying you have to do it, it’s not really an “I’m challenging you” kind of thing. Just some food for thought. It’d be a tough one for most people to get past I think.

  17. Most people fall into some spectrum of ‘in-between’ on the sexuality scale. I consider myself to be a bisexual individual, despite wishing fervently that I was heterosexual. There is an incredible amount of anxiety and social disapproval that comes with being bisexual. You have to tell your partner (guy or girl) and they may leave you because of it. If you’re in a homosexual relationship you have to deal with all the crap that is associated with that. Being bisexual isn’t all fun and games. Bisexual men (like myself) have the highest rate of suicide out of any sexual orientation.