Name this stereotype: A well-groomed, well-dressed man who can cook, appreciates fine things (from a great wine to a high thread count), takes great care of himself physically (abs, anyone?!) and isn’t afraid to show his “sensitive” side… He may enjoy the occasional chick flick, steer clear of sports (watching or playing) and possibly even know a few show tunes…
Who is he? A gay man or a metro-sexual? And how can you tell?
This is the conundrum faced by many single women (and even gay men!) in the modern age. Sadly, because homosexuality is still largely shunned (not everyone lives in California, New York, London or Paris!), it even becomes a problem for women who are married – faced with husbands who are still afraid to confront their sexuality, trying instead to force themselves to conform to “acceptable” norms. What a horrible situation – for everyone involved!
While the truth of the matter is there is no way to know if your mate – potential or existing – is gay without straight up asking them (and even then, you may not get the truth – and they may not even know it themselves yet), there are some behaviors you can observe to help you figure it out. And here’s a hint: they have nothing to do with his taste in music or how well he takes care of himself.
Don’t believe the hype
For starters, “effeminate” behavior is NOT a measure of sexual orientation. So, ditch the idea that just because his voice has a lilt or he gets the occasional manicure, he’s gay (“or British” as the joke goes). It’s just not true. Same goes for hobbies. After all, ladies, if someone assumed you were gay just because you enjoyed sports, or preferred jeans and t. shirts to dresses and heels, you’d think they were sexist, right? Gender stereotypes are just that, and while they may be based in some basic general truths (from an age long gone), that’s exactly what they are – generalities. There are always exceptions to the rules.
Look between the sheets
On the other hand, if your partner exhibits a seeming disinterest in sex – from an early stage where they say they’re “just not into kissing” to a later one (where they never initiates getting it on), there is reason to wonder what’s up. However, don’t jump the gun! Stress affects the male libido almost as much as the female sex drive. Bring up the subject and see what they say. Always do so with the assumption that they’re straight – but if you’re really ready to face the truth no matter what it is (and you have more than just a stunted sex life to go on as a clue), you may want to let them know that whether they’re straight, gay or bi, it doesn’t necessarily mean an immediate end to your relationship. Doing this will allow them to feel safe enough to confide what’s really going on – after all, whether it’s homosexuality or something else, a diminished sex drive is probably a sore point for anyone.
Notice who they check out
While most women aren’t thrilled about it, men tend to notice attractive women – and if they’re attracted to men, they notice them as well. Some experts note that one method of determining sexual interest or orientation is to pay attention to who they check out – and where. If beautiful women continually go unnoticed, but good looking guys catch his eye, it might be sending a signal that he’s interested in more than a platonic way.
Pay attention online and away from home
It’s no surprise that a lot of guys check out Internet porn – so do a lot of girls! But an obsession with an online life – particularly one that’s kept secret, behind closed doors, may indicate something is secret in your guy’s life. Take note, this could also be a heterosexual affair, but the behavior is worth watching – and addressing. Same goes for extended absences – in this case, particularly in the company of other men, and especially those you suspect may also be gay.
Other telltale signs something is amiss
Believe it or not, your gut will often tell you what you need to know. Likewise, if everyone you know has the same inclinations – it’s often saying something. That said, don’t go thinking your metro guy is gay just because a few people question his speech pattern or fashion sense!
In addition, excessive homophobia can be an indicator of homosexual curiosity. It’s a defense mechanism – and as a relatively transparent one (indicating if nothing else, someone is uncomfortable with the idea of being gay or being around gay people), it offers you a perfect opportunity to bring up the question at hand. Just remember, accusations will not produce answers. The only way to get to the truth about your significant other’s sexuality is to address it openly and acceptingly.
And the best way to do that is to make no decisions until you get to it. This way, your intention – to get to the bottom of things so everyone can be happier – isn’t clouded by assumptions.
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