: :praying that this doesn’t turn into a debate, as I am only looking for opinions::

Okay, so last week, I found out from a co-worker that another co-worker (I’ll call her “Ellen”) is a lesbian. Furthermore, “Ellen” is dating a former co-worker, “Anne.” Now, I don’t know these people all that well, but have had several conversations with each of them. Apparently they’ve been dating for two years. I had no idea. So, the co-worker that told me this info absolutely cannot believe that I couldn’t tell that they were a) gay, and b) dating each other. I don’t see why I should have known. Neither of these women “acts” like a man (I don’t think that would necessarily matter anyway). They never play huggy-kissy at company parties (which would be inappropriate no matter what their orientation). So, how the hell would I know?
Without starting a massive debate, does anyone really thing that “gaydar” exists?

I’m completely clueless in this department, although to be fair, I don’t even have a clue that straight people are dating.

I can, however, smell Doritos through a 12 inch thick concrete wall.

A hush fell over the courtroom, killing six.

Look no further than the Great Debates Forum, where all your questions may be answered!

Ask the Gay Guy

The Gay Guy says

I have no clue. I’m not the most observant person. I’m still shocked that Rob Halford is gay.

Bolding mine.


I heard somewhere that gay guys tend to “lock eyes” with other men, and picking up on that is a form of “gaydar”. No empirical evidence though; just something I’ve heard.

I found that a lot of lesbians like big watches and big-looking running shoes. Personal observation.

“I must leave this planet, if only for an hour.” – Antoine de St. Exupéry

Are you a turtle?

Speaking as a gay man, No.

I am usually straight forward for those who ask, and people give off subtle signals that they are attracted to another. This is all biological and easy to detect if you are alert. If I like a man (well…I am taken forever so if I LIKED a man) I would simply make easy passes at him and see if he responded. If I knew he wasn’t going to blow up, I would ask him ‘are you …gay’ and if I didn’t know him well I would get to know him better.

But we don’t just automatically know.

One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious Carl Jung

There is this from News of the Weird:

Is that what you mean? :wink:

Cecil said it. I believe it. That settles it.

Hell, I need one of those pagers! :wink:

I can sometimes tell if somebody is gay, but it’s mostly just noticing some stereotyped behaviors, and I’d have to say the gay men who exhibit those are a small minority; probably no more than 1/3. That’s a wild-ass guess, subject to refutation by anybody who’s got any evidence. Hell, I don’t often notice when I’m being cruised. Guys pretty much have to slap me upside the head before I clue in.

A cubicle is just a padded cell without a door.

Honey, don’t feel bad…

[ul][li]You might be a little dim anyway, so don’t sweat it. :smiley: No, seriously, how are you at picking up when someone is hitting on you? Surprisingly, that has a lot to do with gaydar or any kind of radar - how observant you are to those around you.[/li][li]The world, including you, assumes straight until proven otherwise. Without an overt statement, I’ve worked with people for years who never had a clue until I casually mention a boyfriend in their presence (and even then it doesn’t always sink in the first time). I hate to say it, and hope no one takes offense, but the vast majority of straight people (actually, people in general) see what they want to see until you thwack them over the head.[/li][li]Your co-workers probably didn’t want to be out, so they went to some lengths to keep it from people - you’re probably not the only one that was fooled. If they were out at work, they were so subtle about it (as it’s not really a relevant workplace issue among co-workers you’re not friends with anyway) that you just missed it.[/li][li]Gay men and lesbians, when they want to, can blend in quite nicely, which is why we are sometimes referred to as “the invisible minority” (particularly lesbians, because it is still fairly socially acceptable for women to be “close friends” without arousing suspicion, even so far as holding hands). My straight friends think I “act straight,” and my gay friends think I “act gay,” but I figure I just act me. But if I’m in an Irish bar, I don’t exactly burst into showtunes, but if the bartender keeps looking over at me and keeping my drink topped off without me asking, I’ll find a way to clue him in.[/ul][/li]
Which leads me to gaydar. As someone so aptly posted from my “Ask the Gay Guy” thread (I really ought to get my handle changed now, hmmm…), mine sucks. However, I spend an awful lot of time in the gay community, and I’m getting better at picking up when someone’s hitting on me, so it’s getting better. When I’m not surrounded by gay men, though, my gaydar pretty much sucks. (Then again, I’ve had straight guys want me to seduce them, so I don’t know what to think anymore!)

And as to the gaydar/pager item, it’s a fact - saw it in USA Today online. The idea is that if you have one, and you see someone you think might be gay, and they have one, you press your button, and anyone who has one within like 40 feet or something, theirs goes off. They you look around to see who just set off your pager, make eye contact, and there you go. A nifty little novelty device! I can’t wait to get one. :slight_smile:

If you do have any gay questions, please - jump over to Great Debates and check me out! {hee hee}


Ask the Gay Guy!

There is a lot more to people than just what sexual preference a person has. duh.

It happened a long time ago [20 years], I used to ask gay fella most gay related questions. Then one day he said to me, ‘There is more to me than being gay.’ After that we never talked about it & we just talked about being human beings & the human experiece. Which is pretty much how I do it today.

I would think that gay people who attempt to get straight people to ask or talk about just what being gay is all about, lack the experience of seeing individualism & humanism which binds us together, instead of looking at sexual preference, which seperates us.

More like, str8 people don’t understand what it means to be gay and people tend to fear that which they don’t understand. So by encouraging them to ask questions we help them understand, thus reducing their fear and increasing their likelihood of being supportive.

I don’t pretend to be an expert, but my best friend in the world is a lesbian. We have been friends for 12 years now and as like any friends we have had our good times and bad. That being said, I rarely miss when it comes to knowing wether a woman is a lesbian, but as for being able to tell wether a man is gay? Unless they hit on me I really can’t tell. I don’t know what it is about the women, no specific behaviours,traits or personalities that I know of, just an instinct. I spent alot of time in the company of my friend and many other lesbians, but not gay men. That is the only reason I can suggest as to why I can tell most of the time.

Jeannie, don’t feel like you are obtuse! :slight_smile:

While in college, I shared an apartment with a girl who was, and still is, a dear friend of mine. I didn’t realize she was gay until one night when we were tipsy after hosting a party. She suddenly kissed me in a most passionate and loving manner. :slight_smile:

I realize that most people reading this are ready to vote for me as “Miss Density, 2000”; however, prior to that sudden display of passion, I simply didn’t pick up on anything that indicated she was gay. She hadn’t as yet “come out” to anyone at school, and I really think that, up until that point, she had succeeded in concealing her true nature.

The story had a good ending, though. I was successful in communicating to her the fact that even though I wasn’t gay and didn’t want that type of relationship, I still loved her and wanted her for my friend and roommate. That did a lot for her self-esteem and really gave her the confidence she needed to start really loving her true self.

“The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance – it is the illusion of knowledge.”
–Daniel J Boorstin

No shit. Now what does this have to do with the topic being discussed?

From an actual catalog: “Disco balls create an enchanting, dazzling effect of light shafts, adding movement and glamour to any occasion”
the Abrams’ bris was certainly memorable
O p a l C a t

I have a decent sense of gaydar, which I attribute to hanging around with a lesbian couple I know. From them, I’ve learned to notice subtle behavior, manners of speech, and other little clues that help me figure out when someone’s gay. I’m not infallible, but I ain’t bad.

The reason you didn’t pick up on your co-workers’ orientation is probably that they’re both ‘femmes’. Lesbians tend to identify themselves as either butch, femme, or somewhere in between. Butch lesbians tend to act man-ish, while femmes tend to be more girly. And it’s not always the case that a butch seeks a femme and vice-versa; there are plenty of femmes who seek out other femmes and butches who seek out other butches.

A femme couple is very, very hard to pick up on gaydar. You have to know at least one of them pretty well to pick up any cues at all.

This post brought to you by the US Department of Overprotective Paternalism.

'I didn’t realize she was gay until one night
when we were tipsy after hosting a party. She suddenly kissed me in
a most passionate and loving manner."

Sounds like you might have enjoyed it.

If some strange drunk guy did that & it wasn’t at a Beasty Boys concert, would you have described that as a ‘most passionate and loving manner?’ Hmm?

Umm, handy? The girl was her roommate and “a dear friend” (exact quote of Jasmine’s words), so how would that equate with a “strange drunk guy”? Unless you are using “strange” to mean “odd” rather than “unknown” and implying Jasmine’s dear friends are odd.

I have a question. Do all you straight people out there have some sort of “straight-dar” that tips you off that that attractive member of the opposite sex you’ve been ogling is straight? Chances are, you don’t need it. Now, I may be a lesbian, but I am a totally socially inept one. I usually don’t know when anyone else swings that way until I am informed. Perhaps there are little subconscious signals that are given out, but I never pick up on them. The only exceptions have been a few isolated incidents when I walk into a room, see an attractive woman, or maybe she sees me, and our eyes just lock. In other words, not too much different from mutual attraction between straight people. As far as I can tell, that’s all gaydar is, looking around at people you are attracted to, until you find one who reciprocates.

Heck is where you go when you don’t believe in Gosh.