I Mean, You Don't Look Gay!
“You don’t look gay. I would never have known by looking at you, that you’re gay.”
Those words bother me to my core.
And believe me when I say this, but I hear that all the time. It’s a micro-aggression that sticks to the roof of my mouth with a bad after taste of heteronormativity.
Is there an assigned look of gayness? Is there one single trademark of gayness that sets us apart from other humans?
Is there a tattooed insignia under our hair that states the sign of gayness?
The answer to that is no.
It never really struck me how harmful those ideologies were until I woke up to the realization of the toxicness of heteronormativity that I once espoused as a gay man.
Until I realized the pain of the incivility of being seen as a stereotype or less than human.
Of course being the good little safe-space-seeking, walk-on-public-eggshells gay (not anymore), I was too scared to speak up about how damaging these affronts can be on our emotional health.
However, that’s all changed.
Why do straight, bi AND gay people perpetuate this phenomenon?
As LGBTQ people, we can also fall into the traps of heterosexism. When we claim that we are “straight looking” or insert “straight acting” on our dating profiles, we are actually reinforcing the ideology that gayness is wrong and abnormal. That heterosexuality should always be the default.
We’re denouncing the very part of ourselves, that in which, is natural and whole.
Keep in mind that our current administration, president and Vice-president are doing everything in their power to rebuke the rights we’ve fought so hard to obtain.
I encourage you, as allies and as LGBTQ family, to dismantle and reject these notions.
To speak up and say, no.