What’s in a look? A glance? A peep? Perhaps more than meets the eye…
Regardless of whether you believe in nature versus nurture (or a bit of both), psychologists have determined that each individual falls on a scale between 1 to 10 in terms of their sexuality, 1 being completely heterosexual and 10 being completely attracted to the same sex. Most of us, they claim, fall somewhere in between.
Take me for example, while I tell people I’m gay, I do, once in a blue moon, find a woman attractive. Thus far, I have only been attracted to 6 girls in my entire life, 5 of which I got bored of after a week. So I think it’s safe to say that I’m at least a 7 on the scale of 10. Why then, is it that I tell people I’m gay?
To put simply, out of convenience. Otherwise every time I get into a mildly deep conversation with another party I would have to explain each and every time my situation and who wants that hassle? Besides, this way I’m not setting up any women and giving them false hope. After all, the chances of me being attracted to her at this point are what, 6 out of 500,000?
In turn, why wouldn’t it make sense that “straight” men follow a similar pattern? While it is true that some men might be completely 1’s on the 10 scale, studies state that most men fall further down the scale. So why is that there aren’t that many bisexual men? Well as any man active in the gay community will tell you, there are…a lot, actually.
Gay men will also tell you how they know…about something that’s so simple yet goes so unnoticed (especially by women) – the look: a glance straight into your eyes, cram packed with lust and desire, and if used effectively, will send a shiver down any man’s spine.
Working in a male-dominated environment, I’ve experienced this look from supposedly “straight” men time and time again, from married middle aged men, to young college guys shopping with their girlfriends, to still high school jockeys. This happens so often that I’ve become used to its effects and often ignore it, knowing from experience that once you give a reaction to the look the other party quickly backs away, reminding himself that he has a wife, girlfriend, or his guy friends are nearby.
So why is it that these men are not honest about their feelings towards other guys? Probably the same reason that I’m not so forward with mine. It’s just easier to call yourself gay or straight and choose (and stick to) one path as opposed to wonder aimlessly between the very different worlds of gay and straight men.
As human beings we always seek to belong to a group, a clan, somewhere we can feel familiar and safe. Traveling uncharted waters is frightening and it’s just easier to fool ourselves by putting on the black and white goggles. We’re either Straight or Gay, Democrat or Republican, Good or Bad, etc.
Besides, with the world being so unwelcoming of homosexuality, it’s to their benefit to pretend to all be 1’s on the scale of sexuality, for anything past that offers them nothing but conflict, prejudice, and heartbreak.