“God Hates Fags”; that’s because the mere acknowledgement of homosexual relationships as anything but sinful can cause young people to turn gay; in fact I’m starting to feel as gay about writing this as you are about reading it. That’s because being gay is catching, and gay people want you to be gay too.

I am joking of course, but this is the sort of narrow-minded rhetoric that too often passes for fact; the truth is, no-one can make you gay if you aren’t, and no-one can make you straight if you’re gay either.

…almost half of gay actors felt they couldn’t come out to agents.

According to a recent survey carried out by Equity, almost half of gay actors felt they couldn’t come out to agents. But, while denying your sexuality in public is something you do have a choice about, your sexuality is not – whatever the people with the big placards and small minds might tell you.   

So, what is it that scares someone who has chosen possibly the gay-friendliest career path in the world (outside of being a Conservative MP) enough to disguise who they really are? And, come to think of it, what is it about the LGBT community that scares so many straight people?

It might be, but, then, what kind message does that send out?

Could it be that “God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve”? It might be, but, then, what kind message does that send out? It’s acceptable for your offspring to shag each other, but doing it with someone of the same sex, who is not related, isn’t? 

Maybe it’s because, although many of us question our sexuality at some point in our lives, lots of us still choose to pretend it has never even crossed our minds?

There is a lot of pressure on people to speak up if they are gay…

It’s actually very common to fantasise about people of the same sex, whether it’s someone famous or just someone in your office or college class, but that doesn’t necessarily make you gay. And, if straight people aren’t generally open about such things, why should they expect anyone else to be?

There is a lot of pressure on people to speak up if they are gay but, like it or not, some professions make it more difficult to do so: so, if actors find it difficult, why should we be surprised that not one of the UK’s 5,000 professional footballers wants to either?

Everyone is individual, and they all have their own thoughts and feelings…

Maybe we need to take a step back and recognise the amount of pressure on people to pick a side or fit into one category or another in the first place? Everyone is individual, and they all have their own thoughts and feelings, so why should they be forced to label themselves if they don’t want to?   

At the same time, if you think you might be gay, lesbian or bisexual, then ignoring these feelings, and not allowing yourself what you really want out of life is no way to make yourself happy either.

…that’s no reason to give in to convention and live an unfulfilling life either…

Your sexuality is part of who you are, just like your personality, and it can change over time. Lots of people don’t discover their gay, lesbian or other sexual side until they are well past their teenage years, but that’s no reason to give in to convention and live an unfulfilling life either (even if it means leaving your current one and starting again).  

Having doubts about your sexuality can feel isolating and frightening, as can coming out to your friends or family; if it is something that is affecting you, you might find it helps to talk to someone who has been through similar experiences. If you would like to get some more information and support, you can call the Gay & Lesbian Switchboard on 020 7837 7324.

 

About The Author

I am a final year Journalism & Media student at Birkbeck. I write on a wide range of subjects, but my main areas of interest are sex and relationships, and sexual/mental health. I also work part-time in sexual health, and answer questions from young people on the website of Bliss Magazine.

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