True confessions

Gay guys share their experiences hooking up with straight men (Hint: It’s not all it’s cracked up to be)

A fascinating new exposé published by British GQ delves into the topic of straight guys who hookup with gay men on the DL and the impact it has on those men.

Of course, heterosexual men hooking up with other men is nothing new. There has been enough research done to confirm that many “straight” guys aren’t nearly as “straight” as people might think.

A study published in the journal Sexualities last month interviewed 100 straight-identifying men who say that, yeah, they sometimes hookup with other dudes, but they still identify as straight.

Then there was that paper by Tony Silva from University of Oregon published last December that explored the phenomenon of “dude sex.”

And, of course, Jane Ward’s explosive book on straight guys giving each other “bro-jobs” that had the Internet (and Amazon’s bestseller list) totally captivated back in August 2015.

So, yeah, straight guys hooking up with other guys is nothing new.

But GQ‘s article has a slightly different take on the subject. Rather than talking with the straight guys, they spoke with the gay guys who have found themselves ensnared in these complex, complicated, and often loveless relationships.

Let’s take a look at what the guys said, shall we?

A man named James described his experience dating a straight-identifying man as “crushing”:

It’s crushing during the relationship and after. Being with someone who doesn’t want to accept even the possibility they are bisexual certainly is difficult on a relationship, especially if they’re still happy at the time to pursue one. When we spent time together, generally indoors, everything was happy. Outside, there’d be moments: going to LGBT spaces and not feeling comfortable at contact; him being hit on by a group of girls when we were on the tube, and not him acknowledging me; not even introducing you to their friends.

James says that eventually the pressure his boyfriend placed on himself to appear “straight” go to be too much, “so he retreated to his heteronormative lifestyle.”

Another man named Robin had a similar experience. He describes his college relationship with a straight-identifying man:

I used to visit him with beers and a curry, and listen to him, we’d cuddle, and usually have sex. Before long, I was hanging out there three nights a week. … The first year was almost strictly a bedroom thing. The whole time, though, he wasn’t comfortable holding hands or kissing outside. … He absolutely had 100 per cent control over things; the code of conduct imposed on us was coming from him, not me. He always said he wasn’t gay, but he didn’t believe in bisexuality, either, and he said it so many times over the years.

And then there’s Simon, who first became involved with a straight-identifying man when he was 17:

It was purely sexual for him, mainly receiving oral, but because he was the first person who’d ever shown an interest in me, I fell in love. It was a tough time. He would always tell me he wasn’t like me, and couldn’t be, because he ‘had his whole future ahead of him’. The idea that my future was irrelevant and that admitting he was with me would ruin his made me feel worthless and I ended up battling depression for years. Gay men aren’t toys to be practiced on.

So what’s the takeaway from all this?

Well, they say a wise man learns from the mistakes of others. So it’s probably best not to get emotionally involved with an emotionally unavailable straight-identifying man.

Having a little laid-back, NSA fun with him, however, is a different story.

Related: More and more straight guys are giving up “bro jobs” and engaging in “dude sex”

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23 Comments

  • Mo Bro

    Newsflash:
    Men who have sexual relations with other men are not straight, regardless of how they “identify”.
    Enough with this ridiculous fantasy.

    • jheryn

      Agreed, but it isn’t fantasy to these “so called straight men.”

      Their pathological denial helps them cope with their internalized homophobia.

    • JerseyMike

      THANK YOU!!! NO man that sleeps with another man (paid or not) is not str8!! I can understand a 1 time experiment.. Anything beyond that, HE IS NOT STR8..

    • t

      Gay, straight, bi, … Whatever! I am currently in casual relationships with 2 guys that have GFs and not once have they felt the need to tell me they are gay, straight or bi. They are comfortable enough with who they are that they don’t label themselves while in my presence. While it’s true that I don’t know them outside of the realm of having sex with them, they trust me enough and are comfortable enough with me that they don’t let their egos take over when they are with me. Granted that most men that would identify as straight while having sex with men just aren’t this comfortable with themselves so I guess I got lucky but my point is that as a society we place too much importance on labeling each other and that only hinders us from being what we truly want to be. Aside from that, I much prefer casual sex with men who have female partners because the gay men I’ve tried to build something serious with were way too competitive, jealous, dramatic, blah, blah, blah. It has always been more like a “game” to them rather than actually being with someone they wanted to call a life partner. Sure when the time is right I’ll settle down with someone but for now I much prefer just having casual sex with men who aren’t asking for anything more than that and not much more than maybe grabbing a beer and chatting. I’ve never been able to have a FWB that is someone who labels themselves as gay or bi.

  • Mandrake

    Jheryn, I totally agree with you. These “straight” men see their gay sex experiences only as a single compartment with a drawer they close so they can continue on with their heterosexual lives. They see themselves only satisfying certain sexual urges they can’t get from a woman, but deny any homosexual orientation. This is so they can cope while having a wife and children or dating women.

  • radiooutmike

    This really perplexes me. I mean they’re almost all the way there.

    I was going to say, especially in this day and age, but the clock seems to be rolling back at that.

  • Jack Meoff

    The worst part is that these so called straight guys think they are being so open minded and progressive because they are open to having sex with men ‘even though they are really straight’ (scoffs) but they don’t see the damage they are doing by treating it like a dirty secret.

    We can’t really put all the blame on them though because we all know that there is that element of the gay community who chase these kinds of guys like they are the holly grail or some kind of trophy. Until we stop enabling them we can’t expect things to change.

    • Donston

      Unfortunately, that’s the way it goes for many of these straight-identifying men who have sex with guys and it’s also the case with an unfortunate amount of men who identify as bi, fluid, queer, etc. It seems they develop superiority complexes because men and women want them and they have the ability (or at least they think they have the ability) to sexually satisfy them both. When it reality their behavior is usually driven by ego and fetish. Gay identifying continue to indulge this type of behavior (being used) because of inferiority complexes.

    • Donston

      I don’t want to come off too judgmental. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with admitting to being a straight man that can enjoy gay sex or a gay man that can enjoy straight sex. But so much of having sex outside of your sexual attractions is driven by ego and perversion not “open-minded” or “progressiveness”. When people start realizing that we’ll be at a better place.

  • Billy Budd

    During the early 2000s I had sex with many many straight identifying men. They were cute but the sex was horrible. Some of them just wanted to top me or to be topped by me. No kiss, no hugs, no intimacy. My best sex experiences were with a very femme boyfriend that I had. He was fabulous and I will never forget him.

  • Alan down in Florida

    “So it’s probably best not to get emotionally involved with an emotionally unavailable straight-identifying man.” This does not go nearly far enough. The correct answer is to not get emotionally involved with ANY emotionally unavailable man regardless of how he identifies. Trust me, this is my lot in life. All four major relationships in my past and present have been with emotionally unavailable men. Three of them identified as gay and the current one identifies as straight yet somehow we’re coming up on 8 years for our relationship. Maybe because we’re middle-aged and not Grindr ready that it has lasted. Or maybe because we both entered into the relationship knowing he loves his wife and will never leave her. That said getting so little of his emotional life is getting old and I’m thinking of calling it quits. Involvement with unavailable men is always painful, gay or straight-identifying.

    • Donston

      Dude, you should have been out of that “relationship”. What a waste a time. I get annoyed with people who think it’s cool to have sex with married folk (even if they claim they’re in an “open relationship”). But whatever. Whatever a man’s sexual identity is whenever he makes it clear that he does not want to emotionally connect and is simply using you for sex, opportunity/money, because he “like different people’s energy”, etc it’s very unlikely the dynamic will ever change.

  • natekerchel

    If you choose to get involved with a man who claims to be ‘straight’ then you should not be surprised when they treat you badly. At best they are slimy hypocrites – at worst deliberate abusers. You might say ‘ I can’t help who I fall in love with’ – yes you can. Don’t get involved in the first place. I once met a man who said to me – ‘we can have sex but I will not kiss you – I am straight’ – my reply was ‘goodbye’. Not difficult to do – there was no emotional involvement and my sense of self-worth was fully functioning.

    • enlightenone

      You are a winner! Self-worth has its benefits, right?

  • Ksb1978

    interesting how so many hetero women like this Ward are experts about queer men’s lives and thoughts, writing books. Read a few gay romance novels and now you’re a queer male scholar!

    • natekerchel

      A bit unfair Ksb – just because she is a straight woman does not mean her views, and claims, are not valid. She is not anti-gay. She is one of those people who hold up mirrors to certain behaviours in sections of society. We may not like what is reflected, but you can’t blame the mirror for showing the reality. She is, by extension, the mirror. There is a lot of evidence to support what she says about straight-gay boundaries and behaviour. For some gay men straight men are irresistible – even though they know the likely outcome. It’s a similar type of behaviour to that of the girls being attracted to the ‘bad boys’ instead of the ‘safe good boys’. In both cases there is the element of thought that the bad boy/hetero boy can somehow be ‘changed’. Not going to happen of course.

  • Donston

    People really need to start educating themselves on sexuality and the psychology behind why people have sex and relationships with the people they do. Yes, some men who have no real sexual attraction to other men will hook up with dudes on occasion, may even have relationships with them. Some because of gender dis-morphia. Some because of domination, sadomasochistic sexual fetishes. Some because they have a convoluted ego and sense of self. And yes, a great deal of men saying that they’re straight but routinely having sex with men are not straight. Some bi identifying men have genuine sexual attraction to men and women. Some don’t. It’s not all one or another. These are case by case scenarios.

    It seems a lot of people need to understand the nature of sexuality and sexual language, particularly people who write for this site. Some people don’t seem to get the differences between sexual orientation, sexual preferences and experimentation. Some don’t get how big of a role fetish, ego and sociology play in many people’s sex lives. Some people still think sexual orientation is fluid when research continues to show that it’s not, even for women. Sexual preferences, fetishes, romantic instincts, and sense of gender can be fluid and that can have a big impact on who people decide to have sex and relationships with and what they decide to identity as. But orientation remains stagnant.

    A lot of people need to educate themselves on some things before trying to inform others. And maybe more education will lead to more gay men developing a sense of self-worth and less of a hetero obsession.

    • enlightenone

      You hit the nail on the head, no pun intended!!!!

    • Donston

      It seems a lot of people aren’t interested in understanding the nature of sexual psychology and how gender sexual attraction isn’t the be-all behind who many people decide to date and have sex with. Social circumstance, hormones, narcissism, developing certain perversions or fetishes, internalized homophobia, egomania, gender dismorphia, drug use etc- all these different things affect people’s outlook on themselves and their sexuality.

      This is why obsession with “labels” needs to dissipate, because at this point they’re mostly being used to hide who people are rather than reveal. Being honest about your sexual attractions, preferences, fetishes, experiences and romantic instincts are far more important now than finding a title and sticking with it. That’s how we truly understand each other and how we keep ourselves from getting caught-up in hurtful situations. Coming up with fifty more labels and putting everyone who’s ever had sex with multiple genders in the category isn’t the answer. But it seems a lot of people aren’t interested in understanding. More people are interested in protecting their sense of identity or hiding behind identities so people won’t know their behavior or what drives their behavior or are interested in only indulging their fantasies.

      On to the more narrow topic. I never slept around with anyone who was tied down. However, before getting married I had a few hook-ups with guys that identified as straight. Only one time was it fun. And the guy it was fun with probably wasn’t straight. I guess you have to have a hetero obsession to get a kick out of it.

  • salumbre

    To be fair, I have had both some of the best and some of the worst sex of my life with straight-identifying men, so I guess it’s like anything else.

    It is only fun as a NSA thing, though. Otherwise you are in for a lot of suffering. I have had a few relationships with guys like this — often lasting years — and they have never ended well.

  • BigG

    Hey if you love sleeping with low self-esteem , cowardly selfish men go for it. Because that’s what you’re doing.

  • enlightenone

    “t” you would be “labeled” a hoe (whore) if you were female! Do you buy your own beer?

  • Sluggo2007

    Straight men love sex with other men. They just won’t admit it because it’s not “macho.” I have had many “straight” men over the years. I love the whole game and there’s no commitment.

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