Being single has almost been a badge of honor in gay culture. But as more of us assimilate, it’s serving to alienate some of us from the very success of our own movement.
Along with all the things that make gay people special, being legally single was something we all shared. The answer to the age-old holidays question “Why aren’t you married?” was “I’m gay.” Sorry, single fellas. You’ll have to complicate the real answer from here on out, and gay gadabout Michael Musto feels your pain.
The few times I’ve been in a relationship that could have verged on life partnering, I’ve made sure to mess things up so that my fear of intimacy takes over and I end up comfortably solo again.
But that shtick was only OK back when everyone was legally single, even if they had a partner. It was only acceptable before so many people I know started officially hitching up as I applauded, hit the cannoli wagon, and went home alone with a souvenir keepsake and a frozen smile.
Being an unmarried gay today is like finding yourself on a sale rack of beautiful, discarded toys where everyone pairs off and gets sold except you. And as much as I thought I wouldn’t care, the extra oppression that results from being a queen without a prince is starting to cause an ache in my one-man soul.
As more places embrace marriage equality for gay couples, more of those couples are jumping on the wedding bandwagon. When gay marriage is all the rage, is there explicit or implied shaming of those who can’t or won’t find a man?
Musto thinks so, even if it's self-inflicted in the midst of bittersweet victory. Not that he’s bemoaning the advancement of equality. Musto may not be in love with the love that dares not stay single, but he isn’t immune to some of its charms
At least gay marriage has been great for team spirit. It’s helped remove a lot of the outsider edge surrounding gayness, joyously fostering the equality we’ve long fought for. Alas, it hasn’t quite worked that way for me—in fact, it’s driven me even further out of the gay mainstream.
So many LGBT people have gotten married—or want to—that I’m now even less of a typical gay than I was. “Typical” is not something I ever longed to be—I only go to the gym for parties—but it’s a bit painful to feel so glaringly out of step with your own community’s most pressing drives.
“You didn’t fit in with straights and now you don’t belong with your own kind either. You’re as unmarriageable as a Disney star fresh out of rehab.”
This twist in the ongoing conversation comes just in time for that sweet Kentucky legal love and the latest poll showing gains for gay acceptance. As of Wednesday, a sweeping Washington Post poll shows support for legal marriage equality in the U.S. at an all-time high 59 percent. And more than half of Americans think it’s guaranteed by the Constitution.
Call the U-Haul place, boys! We're alter-bound! Well, maybe you’d just settle for one good date.