I’m having a slight issue with my straight group of friends. I know it’s 2015, but they still say things like “no homo” or “pause” when they make a comment that sounds gay to them. They know I’m gay, and accept me as such, but they still use these terms. Although I wasn’t bothered by this initially, I’m starting to get a little offended now. Do you think I should address my issue with my friends? Or should I just swallow my feelings, and be grateful I have straight friends that accept me for me? Thanks for the help.
Dear Cavs Fan85,
Thanks for writing. First things first, let me advise you to choose a better team to support than the Cavs. LOL! I only kid (well kind of). Anyways, your question. Shockingly, phrases like “no homo” or “pause” have never really bothered me as a gay man. In fact, back in the day, I actually said those terms when I was with my straight male friends. Like your friends, we said it when one of us made a homoerotic comment. However as I got older, I stopped saying it. And I didn’t stop saying it because I found it offensive per-say, I just found it to be immature and dated. If you’re not gay, and the people you’re talking to know you’re not gay, then why say terms like “pause.” Or even if you are gay, if the people you are talking to know you aren’t making any gay sexual reference, then again why say “no homo.” It’s as juvenile as a grown man laughing when he hears the word “butt” or “fart.”
Now if your friends offend you by saying “no homo” or whatever, speak up and tell them. So what if they said they accepted you as a gay man. It’s your job to make sure they RESPECT you as a gay man too. If they are your real friends, I doubt they want to say anything to you that purposefully offends you anyway.
Going forward here are my suggestions.
- Again, if bothered by your friends’ comments, speak your mind. Simply tell them you find their expressions disrespectful. Tell them saying “no homo” is like a skinny guy saying “I’m hungry, no fat.” Or a white guy tanning saying “I got dark, no Black.” Explained like that, I think they will understand.
- Your friends aren’t doing you a favor by accepting your sexuality. They are just being true friends that love you. So don’t be afraid to call them out on stuff because you feel grateful for their acceptance or something.
- If your friends become offended by you addressing this issue, give them a side eye and internally question if they are your true friends.
- Make sure you have fairly tough skin. No matter what progress has been made, homosexuality is still considered an alternative lifestyle. Unfortunately, that means you will undoubtedly encounter people that don’t approve of you and say things worse than “no homo.” I just want you to be able to absorb the insult and rise above it. You aren’t going to be able to swing on every idiot. LOL!
As always, nothing but love,