- Are new year’s resolutions a waste of time? - 31 December, 2015
- The Shallow Reason Why I Watch Strictly Come Dancing - 8 November, 2013
- Segregation Never, Integration Now - 12 October, 2013
“You’re so fat that the only way you are going to lose weight is if you become bulimic”.
That was actually said to me once. As someone who was bulimic as a teenager, it was an even more hurtful thing to have said to me. Luckily I had recovered by that time and wasn’t at risk of relapsing, but if my mental state had been poorer then perhaps I would have done. My weight has long been an issue and I have frequently had it brought up by bitchy gays who are simply bullies, but it is my issue and not for anybody else to comment on. I am hardly so big that I need a crane to remove me from my house, and as I sit here eating my boyfriend’s ‘Heart Attack Cake’ (very chocolatey, very yummy) I have decided that I am sick and tired of this infighting and discrimination within the gay community. It needs to stop.
Larger guys have long faced bullying from slimmer gay people who think that the fatties are disgusting. Maybe some of us are and need to address that, but who is anyone to come out and say it, and to be so offensive? I have had some shocking things said to me in the past and heard even worse things said to other big people. I have also had somebody not be interested in me for being too fat, but when I lost two stone they were suddenly interested. My response to that person started with “fuck” and ended with “off”.
Another example of discrimination within the gay community is the whole butch versus camp thing. Personally I am not attracted to camp guys and much prefer men who are like me; not particularly camp and just ‘average’. But when it comes to who I choose to associate with, I couldn’t care less. Whether someone is camp or not doesn’t factor at all, so it disappoints me to log on to Grindr or one of those other apps and see things such as “beef, not mince” written on people’s profiles.
I am all for people having a preference, but there are ways of getting that across that don’t make you look like an idiot. I know that some people think that camp guys give the rest of us a bad name, but I have to disagree with that. What about people’s right to be whoever and do whatever they want to? That trumps everything else. I know some very camp heterosexual men, so safe to say campness does not always equal gay.
Getting further up on my soapbox, I must share an experience I had in a gay bar once. No, not that kind of experience, you filthy minded folk. I was at a well-known gay bar in Birmingham and they had karaoke on. As I love to sing and can hold a tune (I once performed at Jools Holland’s bar don’t you know), I decided to request a song. When I got up on stage the drag queen hostess put on a butch voice and said “alright mate”. She then said she had to ask the crowd something before I sang. She then told everyone that she thought I was straight and asked the crowd if they thought I was straight too. Most people cheered in agreement. The drag queen then asked the crowd if they thought I was gay and a few people cheered. Then she asked if they thought I was bisexual and the whole crowd began to boo. Some of it was panto booing, but there was an undercurrent of bi-phobia in the room. Some of those boos were genuine. It horrified me. I then revealed that I am gay (if I must put a label on myself), the crowd cheered and I sang some Kings of Leon. But inside I was seething.
I had witnessed an example of the bi-phobia that exists within the gay community. Bisexuals are often seen as confused slags who should simply make up their mind about who or what they want. Oh if only it was so simple. The fact is that bisexuality does exist. Another fact is that if you go out with a bisexual person they probably won’t cheat or end up deciding they want to be with a woman instead. I sometimes wonder if some gay folk see bisexuals as some other kind of species rather than the human beings they actually are.
Perhaps that’s a revelation for some people, but it’s true. They are humans in the same way that I am. They have feelings in the same way that I do. And they are probably fed up of bitching, prejudice and discrimination from some gay people in the same way that I am. What we should be doing is sticking together, not only as part of an LGBT community, but also just as people.
Now, where’s the rest of that chocolate cake?