Openly gay dopers: how do you deal with this?

There’s an openly gay man in my office. He was on a break talking with a cow-orker about his upcoming anniversary with his boyfriend.

The conversation went something like this:

Guy: My seventh anniversary with “Joe” is coming up.

Cow-orker: I don’t know why you tie yourself up with just one person. You have so much to offer.

Guy: You think so?

Cow: Sure. There’s plenty of young women who would love to be with a guy like you.

Guy (in a loud, humorous whisper): But, I don’t like girls. I like boys.

Cow: Aw, come on, I know you’re crazy, but not THAT crazy!

Guy: (rendered speechless)

How many openly gay dopers (or any openly gay people, really) deal with this? How often? Do you ever go ballistic?

People not believing us when we come out?

I don’t think that’s ever happened to me.

I’d probably just look startled for a second, and go, “No, I actually am gay. Really.”

I wouldn’t call myself openly gay but I’m not closeted either. I suppose I’m *ajarly * gay (hee!). I’ve never had anyone disbelieve me after I’ve told them my sexuality, but I have heard lots of “There are guys who would love to be with you.” I just wanted to point out how much I like saying “I don’t like boys; I like girls” instead of calling myself gay or lesbian. It’s a minor distinction, but it’s so much easier to express myself in terms of what I like instead of labeling myself.

I know this isn’t what you’re looking for. I just noticed it in the OP and thought I’d point it out :slight_smile:

If these were normal cow-orkers, there wouldn’t be a problem. These are extra-special cow-orkers. The ones who believe homosexuality is a phase. Or some sort of long running joke.

The ones who think (and I use the term loosely) this are older deep South types.

Some members of my family don’t believe I’m bisexual and have told me so to my face but then, your family often thinks they know you better than you know yourself anyway, so I’ve gotten used to idea of their condesencion and don’t let it bother me.

Never had it happen with anyone else though.

lol. This is a time I hate being masculine. Conversation:

Me: “… I’m gay…”
Yokel: “No way!”
Me: “Yes, I am.”
Yokel: “What??? There’s no way!”
usually: Roommate: “Yes, he is.”
Me: No, he’s not.

I can understand why they don’t believe you when you change your story so often.

The last line is the punchline:

Yokel: (to Me) You’re not possibly gay! :eek:

Roommate: :rolleyes: (referring to Me) Yes, he is!

Me: (referring to Yokel) No, he isn’t. :smiley:

Deliberate misinterpretation, makes for a nicely subtle funny.

I’ve never gotten a response like the OP’s, but then people are pretty used to it around here. It is kind of weird, though, that the first response of every single person that I’ve mentioned it to, without fail, is “are you serious?”

I’ve gotten the “are you sure you’re gay?” a few times. But never in the “because women would love you” sense, but the “because you’re such a slob” sense. And I’ve had a couple people comment, “Well, you don’t act gay.” I have to respond, “Err, actually I do, whenever I get the chance. I just usually don’t invite you to watch.” So far, that’s managed to put a stop to it pretty quickly. (Usually with a wince and a “don’t get an image! don’t get an image!” gesture).

Weird. I think he did the right thing by not bothering to continue the conversation, personally. If someone is in denial to that extent that they won’t take the gay person’s word for it, well, I don’t see what good it does to keep arguing with them.

Again, nothing constructive, just a comment: I once worked with a stunningly beautiful woman - a petite version of Angelina Jolie - who had all the men in the office drooling. When she came out at work, she had to deal with comments about how she mustn’t have met the right man yet, and offers to “turn” her. As she put it, “With men like that around, the question isn’t ‘Why am I gay?’, it’s ‘why aren’t all of you?’”.

Or, in other conversation about a lesbian co-worker:

“So I thought I’d set her up with my brother…”
“But she’s gay.”
“Really? But she’s so pretty!”

Yeah, 'parently that happens sometimes…

I am not gay, openly or otherwise, but I think it’s worth turning this one around and looking at it from the hetero viewpoint; if someone somehow misunderstood me, thought I was gay and mentioned it, I’d probably laugh it off and tell them they were wrong, but if they continued to assert it, in the face of my statement to the contrary, I’d begin to get snarky.

Not because of any homophobia or anything, but because another person is asserting that they know me better than I know myself. I don’t think there’s any reason why anyone should tolerate that - how you react will depend a lot upon the situation and I’m aware that cultural inertia and pressure makes the hypothetical situation I’ve described above less than a perfect mirror image of the OP.

I wonder if the cow orker in the OP just blurted out something stupid out of some kind of embarrassment or awkwardness, or maybe it was even a joke that simply fell very very flat - in this case, pressing the point that you’re not actually crazy might do nothing more than escalate the embarrassment and awkwardness to absurd levels and spark a truly unpleasant incident.
Meh - there’s no reason why you have to put up with it, but there isn’t a one-size-fits-all best response.

Nah. She’s an old bitch. She meant what she said. Cooth, she ain’t.

Frasier: But Tom’s not gay!

Niles: He seems to be under that impression.

In that case, I don’t see any reason why she couldn’t be told just to go forth and multiply, as it were.

Nobody has ever not believed me. I can’t imagine why anybody would want to argue with me about it.

I don’t even get the “Why aren’t you married?” stuff from relatives anymore. About 15 years ago at a family reunion, I said, really outloud to an aunt who had asked me that, “Why are you asking? Are you proposing? That’s disgusting!”
Sometimes, I, too, have no couth. :smiley:

This happens all the time, with everything you tell your family. No matter what, they still think you’re the same as they remember when you’re 15. And they don’t let you get beyond.

It would be fun to turn it around on them:

“So, how long were you gay before you switched back?”

<Mournfully> At least your family treats you like you’re 15. I think my family firmly believes I’m still 7. I haven’t been 7 for several decades.

I get that “you can’t be gay” stuff because I don’t fit the stereotype; it’s never bothered me.