Am I gay? This question will have your head spinning for days. You can churn it around in your brain for hours and still walk away confused. So why is it so hard to answer that question? Can't you just take a test that can just tabulate a score and tell you, ’Are you gay?’ Why does the answer have to be so ambiguous and seemingly always just out of reach?
Human sexuality is more complex than we like to believe. It's not as simple as just genitals mashing together until fluids are exchanged. There are a lot of factors that come into play when it comes to defining your own sexuality and the majority of those factors have to do with changing. Society and its common values are changing and evolving with our growing understanding of the human condition.
Sexuality itself is hard to pin down. It exists on a spectrum: gay being on one end, and straight on the other. Yet there's all this space in the middle. People do tend to identify with either end, but their attractions and behaviors would say otherwise.
Though Freud put out some interesting claims about sexuality and psychology, one of them was that we are all born bisexual. It is at some point throughout our development that we begin to identify one way or the other. It's possible that identity isn't irreversible or permanent.
As youth, it can be hard to distinguish between the feelings we have for friends and the feelings we have for crushes. Sometimes we assume what we're told we're supposed to feel is what we feel for different genders. Yet as we grow, we might discover that we had it backwards all this time.
Combining this with an ever evolving sexuality that grows as you do, figuring out if you're gay can be a lifelong task. It's enough to make you not care to label yourself and allow yourself to move along with the new currents.
There are those who choose not to label themselves, or who choose to leave the options open to themselves. Sometimes you have heterosexual men who just sometimes have sex with other men. Sexuality doesn't govern your experience. You get to dictate your sexuality.
If you have a curiosity about something, it doesn't matter what the end result is if you think you might enjoy the experiment. There is a stigma around experimenting, that if you do it and you like it you're automatically totally gay, and if you don't do it again you were just looking for attention. There isn't a basis for it.
Society is moving in a direction where sexuality is less confined to boxes and labels. People are becoming more comfortable experimenting or appreciating each other. And why not? Holding yourself back from experiences you desire isn't going to help you grow. Feeling and experiencing will be the only way.
Why not just take a look around? Give yourself a little gay test and check out websites like Manplay.com to see if anybody sparks an interest. Maybe you'll figure out your type, or just find someone who might help you figure out what you're looking for. Don't be afraid to embrace it.
The complexity of gender can add to the confusion of sexuality. No longer are we confined to the gender binary of just men and women as we breakout into new rules of attraction and identity. We are starting to see bodies and gender in a new way and it's changing our ideas on sexuality as well.
As we start to see gender along a spectrum as well, the concept of sexual orientation starts to blur. As we start to realize that sometimes it isn't bodies we are attracted to, but energies. We find ourselves drawn to specific energies, sometimes masculine and sometimes feminine. Sometimes we find these energies more in women or men, but sometimes it's for people in the middle. Sometimes we become more drawn to queer people who have those energies because they've learned to live outside the norms.
Because of this ambiguity between gender and bodies, it can be hard to pinpoint where you really fall in the sexuality spectrum. What adds to the ambiguity is that we're no longer seeing certain traits as inherently masculine and feminine. We're starting to see more body types appear in media. We're not stuck with the one image of the broad muscular ideal man. Now we're starting to see bear types, slender twink types, and all of these add to those gender nuances.
Because of this, it becomes more than being attracted to certain genitals. Now we're seeing that there's all these different body types and ways they're presented that can make even the most straight-identifying man turn his head.
Maybe as you start to look around at online dating websites, you'll begin to realize what it is you're looking for. It's good to keep your options open. Plus, some of these websites allow you to search by type so if you find that energy you're looking for you'll be able to narrow down your search.
This is becoming a more a liberating time in which not only gender and sexuality are broken down, but the structures of relationships are being broken down and re-emerging into something new. Each generation seems to becoming more and more progressive with their relationships. Monogamy is beginning to be wiped from communities, and within those non-monogamous relationships, heterosexuality seems to be getting phased out as well.
Polyamory is starting to take off with great speed. Young people everywhere are starting to re-examine what it is they want from their relationships and are starting to decide that it isn't fair to ask one person to provide for all their needs. Now they create consensual and ethical non-monogamy. They create an environment that supports the development of romance between multiple partners.
Because partners are no longer expecting all their needs to be met from the same person, they have become more excepting of the possibility of their partner experimenting and expanding their horizons. In fact, it seems like the queer community seems to be the fastest to adopt the concept of polyamory.
One reason for this could be that it is within the gay community that people are more likely to follow their flowing sexuality and desire more than one kind of partner. Sometimes it could be that they need someone who can offer them only the sexual aspects while getting their emotional needs met elsewhere. Sometimes it can be because they want different dynamics. It is within these queer communities that power dynamics within partners can be far from traditional.
The idea that there needs to be a dominant man type and a submissive woman type is antiquated and doesn't fit these new concepts and values within the coming generations. We're starting to see more equality in partnerships. One partner offers something the other lacks. It's no longer about needing to either be taken care of or do the nurturing.
With this new understanding of relationships, men are more willing to seek affection and validation from other men. The bonds it creates start to become more intimate. It's usually during these times that usually heterosexual men start to cultivate relationships with their male friends.
With expectations changing, we enter a strange environment where we can find partners in the most unlikely of places. And sometimes those partners are the ones who introduce us to these new parts of ourselves we want to discover.
It's sometimes within one of these polyamory relationships when a partner will encourage you to explore some secret desire you've been keeping to yourself. Many men actually experiment with another man because of the encouragement or the interest from their female partners.
Really this question if you are gay really becomes too difficult to answer because you are changing. It is never too late or too early for someone to grow and change and become a completely different person. It's very common for people to change their identity multiple times within their lifetime.
You may not realize that there has been small culminating moments in your life leading up to these changes. Maybe it's from learning about fluid sexualities or ambiguous genders. Or maybe you just met someone who jived with you so well that you couldn't stop thinking about them. Or maybe it's just you just started listening to that voice in your head that maybe there was more to you there.
These small changes create you, and you recreate yourself many times in your life. As we begin to move past these limiting ideas about bodies and gender, questions like 'Am I gay?' becomes irrelevant. Now it becomes, 'Am I gay today?'
Don't feel the need to limit yourself to labels, but don't be afraid to start getting out there and getting to know that part of yourself. The worst thing you can do when you're learning about yourself, is to block off opportunities to live the life that you're craving. Even if things don't work out, at least you'll be able to walk away without having to wonder for the rest of your life.
So stop asking yourself 'Am I gay?' and start getting out there.