The Gay Best Friend You Never Had

I’ve recently read a number of blogs that bemoan sexism in the gay community. This is an important conversation to have, as long as we’re also discussing trends of well-intended homophobia among straight women. A few months after I completed my stint on Big Brother, a woman with whom I went to primary school contacted me. She explained that she’s a fan of the show and felt like I was the best gay friend she never had in high school.  Here’s my problem with her logic: She and I barely uttered two sentences to one another when we were students. She certainly wasn’t clamoring to be my “best friend” when our peers were kicking me in the shins and screaming anti-gay epithets. But now that gay’s fashionable, now that I’ve been on a show she likes, NOW I’m a prime candidate to be the “best gay friend she never had in high school.” I am irked by the way many heterosexual women talk to and about gay men. I am not your pet, nor am I YOUR gay, nor your “gay husband,” nor your “gay BFF.” I, like you, am a nuanced, complicated person who does not like being used as a fashion accessory. Let’s make a deal. I won’t fetishize you if you don’t fetishize me.

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