People Divulge The Hardest Parts About Being Gay

People Divulge The Hardest Parts About Being Gay
Mercedes Mehling /Unsplash

Life as a member of the LGBTQ+ community is easy...said nobody ever.

History has shown that society has never been accepting of marginalized people, particularly in the gay community.

The coming out experience often includes people responding to the revelation with questions like "why would anyone would choose to live a life of constant ridicule?"

While being gay is–once and for all–not a choice, cynics got one part right with the notion that gay people are subject to harassment and bullying for being different.


Curious to hear of the struggles that come with being othered, Redditor shiraah asked:

"Gay people of reddit, whats the hardest part about being gay?"

Listen to their voices. They need to be heard.

We Are Strangers In A Strange Land

"It makes you feel like a foreigner in your own land. Society is set up for heteronormatity and being gay means that you never fully fit in."

"Sure western society has accepted us a bit more in the last decade, but we still aren't really, 'normal.'"

"Straight people will casually drop things about their boyfriend, or fiance in public without a second thought. But I have to read the room before talking about that."

"Most doctors act weird at first when you talk to them about sexual health. They all seem to assume I have undiagnosed HIV or something."

"Gay men seem to develop at a different rate, so in many ways, our only true, 'peers' are other gay men. But since we are only 3% of the population, it can be really hard to find a circle."

"On top of that, 30ish percent of the US population still hates us. You never know when you are in the presence of an unsafe person."

"Interacting with children is actually terrifying because at any point in time, the parents can accuse you of grooming. This is especially true with teenagers. I really wish the older gay community could mentor teenage gay boys. But there is simply no safe way to discuss sexuality with them. We have to just blanket exclude everyone under 18 for the safety of the community."

"I see boys on Reddit all the time, freaking out at the realization that they are gay. But I can't console them. Its not safe. I actually have several events scheduled in my calendar that say, 'x reddiitor is now 18, follow up and make sure he understands sexual health.'"

– thedrakeequator

I Just Want To Hold Their Hand

"always being on edge/on guard when ur out with ur partner in public. not sure if you can hold their hand or kiss them or show any kind of affection. it’s sucks, i just wanna hold their hand walking thru the park but it’s a 50/50 chance if it’s gonna be fine or if someone’s gonna do something to us"

– fvcking-hell

These Redditors shared their experiences involving friends who were supposed "allies."

The Late-To-The-Party-Ally

"I grew up in a smaller town. I’m bi, so a little of this, a little of that. I had some gay porn between my mattress and box spring. Some 'friends' and my ex gf found it while I was at work. That sh*t spread like f'king wildfire. My ex gf and her new bf had a blast outing me to anybody who would listen. This was all about 15 years ago and it haunts me to this day. When I texted her and begged her to stop, she responded with 'HAHAHAHAHAHA!' and we never spoke again."

"Now that it’s 'cool' and 'progressive' to support LGBTQ+ rights, she’s 'aN aLl' and 'sUpPoRtS lOvE' 2,000 miles away from our hometown.

"F'k you, Candace."

– A_Soft_Fart

"When I was in high school, still in the closet, I had a super close male friend. Never any romantic feelings there, we were both just awkward kids who got each other. One day he was over at my house and we were play wrestling, and I remember thinking 'if I come out, we are never going to be able to do this again.'”

"A few months later, I came out to a girl in our friend group. I specifically asked for her advice and emotional support coming out to him, because I knew he had conservative parents and it was going to be a difficult conversation. You know where this is going. She told him I had a crush on him, then started telling anybody who would listen. He never talked to me again, fell in with a weird crowd, and now he’s a MAGA republican."

"I came home from school that day and had to immediately come out to my Catholic parents, worried that they would hear it from someone else. That whole experience was terrible, I won’t bore you with the details."

"Then a few months ago I see this girl post about the importance of being an ally. I have never in my life wanted so badly to throw a massive social media tantrum."

– chicksonfox

The hard part is over after coming out. But then, new challenges arise.

​Loneliness

"It’s lonely. Especially if you’re not an extrovert or ‘mainstream’ gay person."

– Triairius

Isolation From Within

"This and hating the whole hookups culture hurt the most. I read too many things about gay guys always hooking up and only looking for hookups, so I just kinda end up excluding myself from the gay community. Then being in heavily religious states causes me to feel excluded in the straight communities I’ve been in because either they talk about gays being 'sinful' or talk about girls and I just stand there and nod."

– ArtyomV2

Guessing Game

"Trying to gauge if someone is gay or not before asking them out."

– PadThai517

Fearing A Negative Response

"I've never asked out a guy because I have this fear that a straight guy will take offense and punch me. I know it's unlikely, but it sticks in the back of my mind."

"Edit- just want to say that I greatly appreciate the positive comments, I'm overwhelmed and hope I'm lucky enough to hit on some of you straight guys someday :)"

– SwiftCase

As a gay, cisgender male, I'm always coming out to people I meet for the first time, either through a mutual friend or at a family function.

I don't mind opening up to people about my self-identity.

However, it can be tedious, constantly feeling the need to explain who I am to certain individuals who grew up in a hetereonormative environment as a preface to getting acquainted.

Rather than demanding gay people conform to the concept of a "normal" society, the change should be coming from society to normalize acceptance and compassion toward LGBTQ+-identifying people.

There have been significant strides for progress, but the fact that we're still having a conversation about the hardships of being gay reveals we still have a ways to go.

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