2 min

Gay for play

There are gays and lesbians who fall head over high heels for straight folks, often serially. We tend to look on them with scorn, or at least pity. We often see them as reverse fag hags, pining after unattainable (and therefore safe) heteros.

In gay porn, straight men are all the rage. In these pages a few years ago, Dale Smith argued that gay-for-pay porn was part of a sad, self-loathing paradigm. Why can’t we bring ourselves to fantasize about gay men?

Rather than drowning in a sea of self-pity and self-loathing, I’d like to propose some alternatives, because our fascination with straight folks, in both real life and porno, isn’t a psychosis. It’s warm, rational, sexy, and for some gays, it’s very fulfilling.

For every dyke who pines after her best friend, there’s a guy who likes macking on straight-identified married guys through Craigslist. (Incidentally, when did we stop calling straight-identified married guys “closet cases”?)

A friend of mine who picks up married bi guys on says he likes it because they tend to be both generous and grateful. In other words, in addition to getting his rocks off, he gets an emotional reward from these fellas that he doesn’t get with us gay-for-lifers. That, and it’s a no-fuss sexual hookup, with neither man groping around for more.

When I was in university, I picked up a guy who’d never been with another dude. He wasn’t gay- or bi-identified, but he was still working things out in his head. I fell in love, and we dated for almost a year. One of the rewards of that relationship was sexual exploration — teaching and learning from each other without expectation of expertise. We were on a mission of discovery, and it was exciting.

When it comes to gay-for-pay porn, there are still more possibilities. In chatting with a friend who’s an academic in the US, one of the things that came up was the pleasure of violation. Perhaps we like frat porn because we like the idea that, even though he consented, he’s not really enjoying it. Pan to the anguished face of the “straight” bottom.

So, what am I getting at here? Gays love to make it with straight people. Rather than try to find psychological fault with it, let’s get horny, get off, and, when it comes to what we find sexy, let’s not feel guilty.