Saturday, June 21, 2008

What do you think of Heterosexuals in Gay Bars?

This is a question I have been wondering about for a while. To be more clear, I do not mean friends of gays enjoying a night out with them, and I don't mean groups of homophobes looking to cause trouble.

I guess I am interested in what people think about those heterosexuals that come just to have a good time... but I'm mainly thinking about the ones who come because it seems like some great adventure. The giggly ones, who come because it is 'so cool' to go to a gay bar and the ones who go for a special event like a hen night.

I don't feel I can give any real opinion on this subject considering I'm yet to experience the night life since accepting I am a lesbian. But it is a subject that I am really interested in after a Hen Night I was part of last year.

The Matron of Honor organised for us to meet at the Xchange Hotel in South Yarra. I did have a fun time, the Drag show was brilliant - and it was nice being in a place where there was no chance of being hit on. However, there were many times while we were there that I just felt like cringing. I'm not sure how much of it was my own low self esteem and how much of it was legitimate, but I felt really embarrassed at the other girls actions at times. They were all very nice girls, but they got a bit over the top at times. They grabbed men to be in photos with us, and stuck in one giggly clump standing out like a sore thumb.

I know hen night's can be a bit like this anyway, but it really did embarrass me. It annoyed me at the same time though. I was right in the middle of being confused as to whether I was a lesbian or if I was just curious, but I had accepted enough to be really annoyed at these girls treated someone else's sexual preference as a fun adventure. At that time - and even now to a point, it's not a fun adventure for others to view. But I do know that for some of those that I come out to, it will be a bit exciting for them. Sort of 'ooh, I have a lesbian friend, that's so cool'. It kind of cheapens the journey I've been on to a sideshow of sorts.

Sorry, just realised I went off on a bit of tangent. As you can see I'm still all conflicted as to my opinions on subjects like this one. 

I really would love to get opinions from people who have been out for a while and can maybe give me a view beyond the confusing thoughts I'm having...


ComingOut101 said...

Well, I don't know. Maybe the folks that see it as an adventure have some questions themselves that you are simply unaware of. Who knows. I go to diners in America and call my trips Bubba safaris. The only thing I've learned for sure from these adventures is that apparently it's not enough just to have fluoride in the water. :)


butterfly said...

Didn't think of it that way. I guess sometimes you can just get so sensitive about something you perceive that it gets harder to look at it from another angle.

Thanks Sue for letting me know 'another angle'.

Erin said...

I just came across your blog and this older post - love your blog, btw, and will be following along. I agree with your original post and don't think you were being overly sensitive. It *is* offensive to be considered a sideshow in someone else's life. It's also offensive for someone who doesn't have to experience the homophobia and heterosexism of being an LGBTQ person to come along and "try it out for a night." That's the very definition of cultural appropriation. Now, if non-LGBTQ folks are curious about LGBTQ communities and cultures, there are ways they can educate themselves without being disrespectful. But there are some situations and spaces where minority groups need space away from the majority groups, and gay bars tend to be one of those spaces.

Also, calling trips to diners in the US "Bubba safaris" is pretty offensive.