Now that I have started this blog, I often think of different topics during that day that I consider writing down to eventually turn into a post later on. I find it hard to know whether I should just push on writing about things that happen in my every day life or take some time to tell a bit about my past and my story. I also wonder about the level of maturity I should show on this blog. Yesterday, while visiting my grandparents in their retirement home, I had this evil thought about how “I hope that the next door neighbors haven’t died so that their unlocked Wi-Fi is still available.” I actually started writing a blog about that, but then stopped myself thinking how immature and wrong that is to mention that out loud. However, I decided tonight that I might as well write whatever the heck I want instead of always trying to be serious or having fully thought through what I am going to post. I guess if people get bored reading this, then they get bored. I think I will get more of a kick out of sharing the stupid things that go on in my day then aways trying to spit out semi-intelligent content (as I wrote that, my spell check told me that I misspelled intelligent… I guess I am not fooling anyone).
I find that there is so much in life that we restrict or filter due to social norms or practices. For instance, I find it incredibly amusing whenever people fulfill a social stereotype. It doesn’t matter if you are white, black, latino, skinny, fat, or Korean, there are just certain things that characterize that stereotype so much that people have got to be aware of what they are doing. People may call it racist to point it out, but the reality is that stereotypes exist because they are mostly true. Someday I would like to write a book about “You might be a stereotype if…” and go through the obvious stereotypes that all of us are aware of, but no one is willing to comment on out loud. I guess this all started because tonight at dinner, my blonde cousin started talking about her chihuahua named “Cali” (after California) and then went on to describe the 30 or more outfits that she enjoys dressing her dog in.
Even for myself, there are certain stereotypes that I really do not like being associated with, particularly the gay stereotype. Honestly, if I hadn’t opened up to some of my friends, there would be no way at all that they would have known about my struggle with homosexuality. I guess in some ways the fact that I have never had a girlfriend might be a questioning factor, but other than that, I am a pretty normal guy. I love to play sports, the outdoors, and I dress rather plainly. It is frustrating that most straight guys picture men struggling with homosexuality to be completely effeminate and uncoordinated, talking with a lisp and having zero control over their wrists flopping all over the place. While there are definitely men like this, and I believe straight guys still need to learn to love them regardless, do gay guys have to try so hard to show that they are gay?
Even for myself, it is hard how when I open up to people about my struggle, they try to start putting me into that box of the gay stereotype. There are several things in my life that when viewed through the filter of my being gay, seem to make more sense. For instance, I love art and design, I enjoy watching Project Runway and critiquing the outfits, I like all types of music including Broadway musicals, and I do have a much more sensitive soul to emotions and feelings then most guys do. I don’t think any of these things are wrong or prove that I am gay deep down and just need to let it all out. In fact, my brother is strangely obsessed with Lady Gaga and Katy Perry and yet people just laugh about it rather than questioning his sexuality (he is definitely straight, married with two kids). However, if it were me, it would simply be attributed to my homosexuality.
As I am trying to open and more and more with the people around me, I sometimes wonder if I need to remove these “stereotypically gay” things just to prove that I am not pursuing that lifestyle. There really shouldn’t be a need for me to do so, but due to most straight guy’s insecurities regarding gay men, I feel as though I need to try to make it as easy as possible for the friends that know about my struggle. I never know what they think about me and so I wrestle with my own insecurities as a result. It is unfortunate that the guys who hold the key to a lot of my healing and growth are the very people I am trying to protect and not scare off. I am still praying for the day when the men of the church actually man up and start leading by example, rather then creating an environment where people who struggle with SSA feel completely unwelcome or unsafe.