Footlights and I have had a long running friendship that ran onto reefs of bisexuality and we had much struggle sorting through issues. I asked him if he would let me ask him a few questions to highlight some of the issues we ran into over the course of years. His longsuffering of such requests is the sole reason we still maintain our friendship. Both of us are married men, both of us are rather artistic, what I refer to on this blog as queer.
ALTERPOLYMATIC: So, what set of circumstances would cause you to come out to your wife?
FOOTLIGHTS: I don’t think there are any circumstances that I would come out.
A: That’s kind of what I thought you were going to say. So let me ask you this: If people refer to what homosexual men do in bed as gay, then the things that people do in society that are perceived as homosexual could be referred to as queer. With those definitions in mind, what would you say that the overlap in a venn diagram of gay and queer would be?
F: I’d say they overlap a lot.
A: Really? Okay, that seems to imply a lot.
F: I can see what you’re saying.
A: Have you ever addressed the subject with your wife?
F: Well, in the last presidential election, there was a referendum in California about gay marriage or something like that. We talked about it, because she asked me what I thought about it. I said what if I met you first? Then what would my life be like? I don’t exactly remember where I was at that point with you.
A: You talked to her about me?!
F: Well, yeah, I said I wondered what it would have been like if we had met first.
A: Had you talked to her about bisexuality/homosexuality before hand?
F: No, not really. I knew where she stood on the subject. It was a really painful conversation for both of us. It was difficult. She was really angry about you.
A: What did she say? I mean what does she think about the queer elements of your personality?
F: Look, you have to understand, she likes that I’m artistic. We have a common bond in the theatre, that’s where we met, and developed our relationship. She really likes it that I am not a meathead.
A: How would she answer the question about the queer/gay venn diagram?
F: She would say the same thing that I said about it.
A: It doesn’t make… It doesn’t make any sense that she wouldn’t accept that this is part of your personality. It seems like a contradiction, mutually exclusive ideas to me.
F: Yeah, you keep saying that.
A little bit of conversation only tangentially elapses as we order food, and then receive it.
A: So, let me ask you this, do you think gay sex is ethically wrong?
F: Yes. [Thinks for a second] Absolutely.
A: Then you were born wrong?
F: It’s a choice for me. This is something that you and I clearly disagree on.
A: Well, let me go back to the queer/gay Venn diagram. Do you honestly believe that your taste was a choice for you? Clearly you have an inclination to like queer things.
F: I think taste is a choice that results from circumstances that happen in your life. So yes, I think my taste in things is a choice.
A: [I go on to explain why I can’t understand why he would think that taste is a choice. I provide several smashing examples, and then realize I’m not trying to persuade, rather just to know what his perspective is.]
A: Okay, okay, let me get back to real questions. Identifying as bisexual has had a profound positive impact on my life, and my perception of self-worth has improved—
F: So you identify as bisexual now?
A: Yes, I do.
F: Okay, go on.
A: Well, What I want to know is, do you think you would feel some sense of positive emotion if you defined your sexual identity.
F: I honestly don’t know. My life would be completely different than what it is now.
A: Do you mean because you’d have to leave your wife for a man?
F: No, I mean that she would divorce me if I chose to identify with that. I mean whatever desires and temptations I may have, I am not that when I’m home with her. I am just married to her. That would have to change if I actively identified with anything else right now.
A: I understand.
We went on to talk about how accepting his church is about deviant desires, and other matters about the church and LGBT issues. His perspective was very interesting.