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10/07/2016 – Tricks of the Trade: Do’s, Dont’s and Sexual Stigma in the LGBT Community.”

sexualstigma

 

As fall approaches and we all look forward to (See Also; Dread) the indulgence of Halloween candy and Thanksgiving goodness. Join us this Friday for Gay Districts facilitated discussion and get stuffed with something else….knowledge!
This Friday, October 7th, we will be discussing the do’s and taboo’s associated with sex in the LGBT community. How many dates should you wait before giving it up? What doth a good kisser make? Can a gay couple truly have a monogamous relationship and why does the straight world seem to think we can’t?

Not only will we be discussing the physical aspect of life and love in the LGBT community but we will also be broaching the issue of adult entertainment. Does the growth of social media, i.e. Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, which create a social celebrity out of your milk man have anything to do with the growing popularity of amateur and home made adult entertainment? In what ways do the adult entertainment industry tap into pop culture to stay afloat in what some see as a slowly dwindling field? Can the connections we make through “Gay Social Apps”, such as Growlr, Grindr, Scruff and Jack’d become more than a one night stand or a “Super Smash Buddy”?  Are you relationship minded but you can’t seem to find the right match…though you don‘t mind kissing a pond full of frogs before you get to your Prince? Speaking of…What is with this “Finding Prince Charming” on Logo? The suitor having a sex worker past has spread like WILDFIRE…does this tarnish the shows brand? 

Join us as we jump into the deep end in hopes of wading through the troubled waters of Sex, Love, and Life for the Gay man in the District!

Gay District (GD) meets at The DC Center; 8:30pm.  It is located inside the Reeves building, which is a government facility.  We encourage attendees to bring their photo ID. If you do not have or are unable to present photo ID, please contact GD facilitator Justin (JDavis1982@Gmail.Com) or The DC Center’s Executive Director David Mariner.  Attendees will need to enter the Reeves building via the “Exit” doors on 14th Street, facing the McDonald’s.

Come out for the discussion; Stay for the company

September 14, 2016

The down-low lingo

images

 

Join us this Friday 9/16/2016 at 8:30pm in The DC Center for this week’s discussion topic: “The down-low lingo”

The times are a’changing and more people are coming out as LGBTQI, and way earlier in life, than ever before in the US.  The option for openness hasn’t always been the case here; historically being out was a veritable death sentence and this is still true in certain parts of the world today.   Given the need for discretion, how do we / have we communicated to each other “on the down low”?

  Is the “three taps in the stall” code that outed former Senator Larry Craig (R. Idaho) still a way to get the message across?  (If you don’t know what this is check out this article, also listed below.)  What about the old color and pocket signals from the hanky code?  (Fashion accessories as codes, detailed in this article .)   These and other nonverbal methods have generally been used for cruising, which apparently is not dead according to this 2016 article.        

But we have modern tech now to help us avoid awkward stall taping, shady park meet ups, and color clashing handkerchiefs.  Even anti-gays like casual encounter seekers at the 2016 Republican National Convention can use Craigslist (article here) instead of these other methods.  We’re good now, right?  Well, if we take the 2014 app flaw that outed gays in Iran and worldwide (article here), the Daily Beast’s recent scandal of a reporter actively using Grindr to out closeted Olympians (article found here and below), new software developed by Kyoto tech researchers pinpointing folks within feet regardless of app or location setting (article here), and even a murderer in Pakistan luring men to their deaths from a Facebook group (article here) the jury is undecided on if tech beats taps.  How does current technology complicate or convenience things when compared to other methods used in previous generations?  Of course, one could always take those handkerchiefs and your phone for a nice walk in the park to be very thorough.

Let’s dish about this and more on Friday September 16th at The DC Center!

Gay District meets at The DC Center, located inside the Reeves building at 2000 14th Street NW Washington, DC 20009. Attendees will need to enter the Reeves building via the “Exit” doors on 14th Street, facing McDonald’s. We encourage attendees to bring their photo ID to gain access inside the building. If you do not have or are unable to present a photo ID, please contact the DC Center at (202) 682-2245.


Related articles: 

  • What Is Larry Craig Doing Now? The Scandal And Its Aftereffects Were Hard To Shake. http://www.bustle.com/articles/73548-what-is-larry-craig-doing-now-the-scandal-and-its-aftereffects-were-hard-to-shake
  • The Hanky Codes.  http://www.thetwilightguard.org/tg_hanky.html
  • Cruising Isn’t Dead—If You Know Where to Look.  https://broadly.vice.com/en_us/article/cruising-isnt-deadif-you-know-where-to-look
  • Republican Convention 2016 Attendees Are Searching for Hot Gay Sex on Craigslist.  https://mic.com/articles/149150/republican-convention-2016-attendees-are-searching-for-hot-gay-sex-on-craigslist#.YK4MfHR8M
  • Grindr smartphone app outs exact location of gays across Iran.   http://americablog.com/2014/08/grindr-smartphone-app-outs-exact-location-gays-across-iran.html
  • This Daily Beast Grindr Stunt Is Sleazy, Dangerous, and Wildly Unethical.  http://www.slate.com/blogs/future_tense/2016/08/11/the_daily_beast_s_olympics_grindr_stunt_is_dangerous_and_unethical.html
  • Gay Dating Apps Promise Privacy, But Leak Your Exact Location.  https://www.wired.com/2016/05/grindr-promises-privacy-still-leaks-exact-location/
  • Exclusive: The Deadly Dangers of Gay Dating Apps in Pakistan.   http://www.out.com/news-opinion/2016/6/08/exclusive-deadly-dangers-gay-dating-apps-pakistan

Cradle Robbing and Gold Digging: Age Differences in Relationships

Cradle Robbing and Gold Digging: Age Differences in Relationships

age gap

 

Have you come across that meme that says:

“Madonna is 55 and her boyfriend is 22, Tina Turner is 75 and her boyfriend is 40, J-Lo is 43 and her boyfriend is 26, Mariah Carrie is 44, her husband, 32. Still Single??? Don’t worry, your boyfriend hasn’t even been born yet.”

 

It kind of gets one to thinking about the “age”-old questions of age gaps in relationships. For heterosexuals there’s a long and well-noted history of May-December romances with an older man and a sprightlier woman, though the cultural connotation always seems to be negative. Take the movie First Wives Club, where the three heroines are thrown together after each one’s husband leaves them for a younger woman. The movie plays off the cultural premise that the middle-aged women aren’t as valuable as the youthfully attractive women their husbands take after. Don’t worry, the first wives get their redemption in the end, but you get the idea; older men, usually fiscally successful ones, will ditch women their own age to ‘rob the cradle’ to have a pretty young thing on their arm.

 

But what about the ‘gold diggers’? We could all name a couple of real-life anecdotes such as former Playboy Bunny Anna Nicole Smith who, at 26, married Texas billionaire Howard Marshall in his 89th year. Can we assume she was gold digging? Well maybe yes, maybe no, but after he died Marshall didn’t leave Smith any money. Zero. Even after a decade of litigation, and Smith’s death, all the attempts to gain that gold didn’t pan out. It remains to be seen if Crystal Harris, third wife of infamous Playboy mogul Hugh Hefner, will fare better than Smith: Harris and Hefner have an age gap of 60 years between them.

 

The flip side of relationships with age gaps (in heterosexuals) is an older woman with a studly young man. The movie Sunset Boulevard is one of the earliest cultural examples of this pairing, with an older well-established woman with a younger man who benefited from her financial affections. It didn’t end too well for either person in that couple, and maybe that ending reflected a societal disapproval of ‘cougar’ relationships. But that was then, and Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher (16 year age gap) are a strong modern-day example that seems to show more societal acceptance. There was even a tv show called Cougar Town that began based around older women ‘hunting’ younger men.

 

What about gay couples? Are age gaps common among us? Do same-sex couples have larger age gaps than straight couples? To answer that we need some data.

 

The analysis website FiveThirtyEight, formerly part of the New York Times and now owned by ESPN, published a brief but insightful response to a reader who asked about age differences for both gay and straight couples. In her reply the author pulled on data from the 2014 Current Population Survey which is administered by the US Census Bureau and Bureau of Labor Statistics. Since this survey doesn’t post stats on gay couples (supposedly raw data is available but by request only) the author delved into some stats that Facebook ran based on user ages and relationship status. Those numbers showed that same-sex couples definitely had higher rates of age-discordant couples than straight couples, and within age gap pairings same-sex couples tended to have larger gaps between partners than their hetero peers (gay male couples with a partner in their mid-30’s to mid-40’s had the highest age gaps of all three groups). These findings on established relationships seem to be mirrored in stats that asked about potential relationships reported on by gay-specific outlet Autostraddle (the world’s most popular gay/bi women’s website). According to their review of a 2013 aging survey “LGBT respondents are more likely to be attracted to people older than them by more than 10 years compared to straight respondents” and “LGBT respondents think they attract people younger than them by more than 10 years more so than straight respondents do.”  Autostraddle also did research of their own which found that 77% of respondent’s 18-to-29-year-olds were open to being romantically and/or sexually involved with women 10+ years older than them, and 97% were interested in women 5-10 years older. Respondents 30 years or older 61% were open to women 10+ years younger, 91% in women 5+ years younger, 87% in women 10+ years older and 98% in women 5+ years older.

 

Another great Autostraddle article tallied up some real-life examples in 11 Lesbian Couples Who Don’t Mind The (Age) Gap . Known figures such as Rachel Maddow, Elen DeGeneres, Good Morning America host Robin Roberts, and American Horror Story actress Sarah Paulson all have relationships with sizeable (10+ year) age gaps.  For gay/bi men we have examples such as designer Tom Ford at the younger end of a 13 year difference with Richard Buckley, Olympian Tom Daley and Dustin Lance Black have a 20 years difference, and fashionista Calvin Klein, 72, with former boytoy Nick Gruber, 24, weigh-in at a 48 year age gap (source).

 

Do gay couples catch the same negativity for these relationships that straight couples do? Does defaulting outside the heteronormative space give us more liberty? What about the money? If we took the money away, are we inclined to view age gaps as more acceptable?  Are YOU only after a silver daddy or a sweet young thing? Join us at 8:30pm for Gay District this Friday January 15th 2016 at the DC LGBT Center to dish and discuss.

 

Gay District meets at The DC Center, located inside the Reeves building at 2000 14th Street NW Washington, DC 20009.  Attendees will need to enter the Reeves building via the “Exit” doors on 14th Street, facing McDonald’s. We encourage attendees to bring their photo ID to gain access inside the building. If you do not have or are unable to present a photo ID, please contact the DC Center at (202) 682-2245.

 

Other resources on this week’s topic include:

What’s the perfect age gap for an ideal relationship?

Can a Significant Age Gap Ruin Your Relationship?

Six things you’ll only know if you’re in an age-gap relationship.

10/03/2014 – “Tricks of the Trade: Do’s, Don’ts and Sexual Stigma in the LGBT Community”

Taboos

 
As fall approaches and we all look forward to( See Also; Dread) the indulgence of Halloween candy and Thanksgiving goodness join us this Friday for Gay Districts facilitated discussion and get stuffed with something else….knowledge!
This Friday we will be discussing the do’s and taboo’s associated with sex in the LGBT community. How many dates should you wait before giving it up? What doth a good kisser make? Can a gay couple truly have a monogamous relationship and why does the straight world seem to think we can’t?

Not only will we be discussing the physical aspect of life and love in the LGBT community but we will also be broaching the issue of adult entertainment. Does the growth of social media, i.e. Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, which create a social celebrity out of your milk man have anything to do with the growing popularity of amateur and home made adult entertainment? In what ways do the adult entertainment industry tap into pop culture to stay afloat in what some see as a slowly dwindling field? Can the connections we make through “Gay Social Apps”, such as Growlr, Grindr, Scruff and Jack’d become more than a one night stand or a “Super Smash Buddy”? 

Are you relationship minded but you can’t seem to find the right match…though you don’t mind kissing a pond full of frogs before you get to your Prince?Join us as we jump into the deep end in hopes of wading through the troubled waters of Sex, Love, and Life for the Gay man in the District!Gay District (GD) meets at The DC Center; 8:30pm.  It is located inside the Reeves building, which is a government facility.  We encourage attendees to bring their photo ID. If you do not have or are unable to present photo ID, please contact GD facilitator Justin (JDavis1982@Gmail.Com) or The DC Center’s Executive Director David Mariner.  Attendees will need to enter the Reeves building via the “Exit” doors on 14th Street, facing the McDonald’s.

Come out for the discussion; Stay for the company!

 

06/20/2014 – “Have Your (Beef)Cake and Eat It Too!!” Monogamy and the Gay Relationship

Mens

...Or, “If Two’s Company; Are Three’s Allowed?”

With right-wing conservative family first organization’s shouting from the roof tops that LGBT couples are ruining the sanctity of marriage and (some) in the same breathe classifying Gays as promiscuous… Things can get pretty confusing… What’s a boy to do?!

This Fridays we will discuss the many faces of LGBT relationships and how they may or may not work for you.. Do you believe that your heart is solely for your partner and your body is open for anonymous affection? Have you and your partner come to an understanding of keeping the bedroom open, or do you feel monogamy is the way to be?  How can a relationship progress when your ideas of monogamy differ? What keeps two people in an open relationship together instead of drifting apart? Can you consider your relationship monogamous if you have guest appearances in the bedroom? Do you feel that its biologically unnatural for men to be monogamous or do you just want to settle down in 2.5 kids bliss? 

Join us this Friday and share your insight, opinion and experiences to try and answer some of these questions! After group we will gather round the table for food and continue our conversations. After dinner we will see what trouble we can get ourselves into!  

Remember, Gay District meets at The DC Center, located inside the Reeves DC government building. Attendees will need to enter the Reeves building via the “Exit” doors on 14th Street, facing McDonald’s. We encourage attendees to bring their photo ID to gain access inside the building. If you do not have or are unable to present a photo ID, please contact me ahead of time by email or The DC Center’s Executive Director David Mariner.

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