My Trip Out

Gay married man coming out story

Learning about gay relationships

Been reading some books on gay relationships, it ain’t pretty, in fact it’s down right scary. Before you fairies get all excited, I’m speaking from 15 years in a marriage. So despite everything you’ve seen on Lifestyle TV, you really don’t know straight relationships. I’ll readily admit I don’t know anything about gay relationships, I’m trying though, so give me a chance.

In a stereotype straight relationship, there are several distinct stages. Courtship, early married days, making a family, raising a family, re-discovering your partner and the gold days. There are also a number of well understood roles. For example, I never assumed I’d be the cook, my wife never assumed she’d be the big bread winner, I mow the grass, she decorates the house, we just knew it, no questions needed to be asked. Me? I was living a “Leave it to Beaver” lifestyle. Yes, there is diversity with straight couples, but riding around suburbia America, you’ll see more like me than those terribly different.

I attribute most of this to kids. We have some couple friends who didn’t have children. Frankly, they’re a bit strange. They must look at themselves each night and ask, “Now what?” They don’t have clear stages of their relationship. We often wondered how they stay together. Kids grow up and force changes in a marriage.

Values tend to be different. One book, by a gay author, has this cool graph that basically says for a guy to sleep with another guy the barrier is pretty low. But for that same guy to have a committed relationship, their expectations zoom off the charts for the same guy. I’ve witnessed this firsthand, great guy, mid 30’s, attractive, stable job, decent salary but yet I see him out screwing around, with no interest in settling down. Doesn’t that get old after a while? He certainly will and then what.

There are clearly gay couples who’ve been together for 10’s of years. In fact, I actually have 2 gay couple friends who both been together a very long time. They readily admit that finding long term partners is a struggle for most gay guys (assuming they want one).

I’ve been going out with late 20’s/early 30’s guys who have no interest in a long term relationship. The mid 30’s guys trying to hold on to their youth. God help me if I meet someone in their 40’s. Reading excerpts of the study “Single Gay Men: Cultural Model … {goes on for 2 more sentences}” by psychologist Andrew Hostetler. In his 2001 report, he notes that 60% of the gay population considers themselves single. He further”believes” that those who are single by choice, are the happiest among the noncoupled cohort and the best adjusted. So maybe being single is the best thing.

My point is not to be disparate to the gay community. In fact, I have a lot of respect for what these guys have gone thru. It ain’t easy. Just if you’re coming from the straight world, your values about relationships are likely to get upset.

2 Comments

  1. i am finding as i move into this weird wacky world that every thing i learned as far as relationships is so different from now…..so i keep trudging along each day but enjoying the ride into the beautiful rainbow sunset

  2. I’ve been gay for as long as I can remember, and out since college. I have two wonderful parents that are still happily married after 35 years, and they raised me with very traditional “straight” values as it relates to relationships. I’m happy to report that I’m in the seventh year of a fantastic relationship, that has evolved as most straight relationships do — lack of enough sex and all 🙂
    My point is… you can find what you seek in the gay world, as long as you can sort through the sea of folks interested in hook-ups, and find like-minded people.

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