What Would I Be Like If I Were Straight?

Sometimes I think about what I would be like if I liked vagina. How much of me would stay the same and how much would be different? Is there even such a thing as a gay characteristic or quality?

If I were a straight dude, maybe I wouldn’t find Showgirls to be so damn funny. Maybe the campiness would be lost on me and I would just think it’s a really awful movie instead of being a piece of art. Maybe I wouldn’t think it was so cheesy when Nomi pronounced Versace incorrectly. That’s only funny to gay dudes and girls, right?

If I were a straight dude, maybe I wouldn’t feel so self-conscious about the pasta I’m eating. Maybe I would let myself go completely. Seth Rogen and Jim Belushi can do it so why can’t I? I could still get a hot girl with a beer belly.

If I were a straight dude, maybe I would think John Waters was a freak instead of an artistic genius. Maybe drag queens would weird me out. Maybe going to a place like San Francisco would give me anxiety. I wonder if I would be the kind of straight dude with tons of gay friends or if I would be someone who kept himself at a distance.

If I were a straight dude, maybe I wouldn’t get so pumped when Britney Spears goes, “It’s Britney, bitch!” at the beginning of “Gimme More”. Maybe it would just sound like unnecessary noise. Maybe Jack Johnson would speak to me instead of a 29-year-old trainwreck.

If I were a straight dude, maybe I wouldn’t be so funny. Maybe my sarcasm and snarkiness would be subdued and I would tell really shitty jokes. Maybe this would be because I wouldn’t have had to be funny to stand out and survive.

If I were a straight dude, maybe I wouldn’t know so much useless shit about pop culture. Maybe I wouldn’t know the entire filmography of Christina Ricci. Maybe I wouldn’t give a shit about Mary Cherry from Popular, Madonna, or The Olsen Twins. Maybe I’d care more about someone bland like Megan Fox because she’s so hot and that’s it. Hot. Satisfied.

If I were a straight dude, maybe I’d have less sex. Maybe I’d have to work harder because girls are complicated and expect more things from someone before they can put their thing in the other thing. Gay men are usually more direct. We don’t fuck around. Actually, that seems to be a large misconception. Gay men are neurotic as shit and come with their own unique set of baggage. Sorry. Gay, straight: We’re all too crazy to fuck!

If I were a straight dude, maybe I would be a terrible dresser. Maybe I would be content with just wearing ill-fitting jeans and a polo shirt. Maybe I wouldn’t get excited over a really cute Rodarte sweater that has the California Republic emblazoned across it because oh my god, I love California and Rodarte! Maybe that wouldn’t even cross my damn straight mind.

If I were a straight dude, maybe I would be happier because I could hold the person I love’s hand anywhere I want. I could get married. I could’ve had what a lot of people wanted me to have. Hmm. I don’t know about that one.

Maybe this is all stereotypical and offensive. Maybe this is me being both heterophobic and homophobic. Nonetheless, it’s interesting to think about how much of a role your sexual preference plays in forming your identity. Do I like campy films because I’m gay or because I’m Ryan O’Connell? Where does one end and the other begin? Just another thought for Thought Catalog. TC mark

image – The Hangover

Ryan O'Connell

I'm a brat.

Trace the scars life has left you. It will remind you that at one point, you fought for something. You believed.

“You are the only person who gets to decide if you are happy or not—do not put your happiness into the hands of other people. Do not make it contingent on their acceptance of you or their feelings for you. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if someone dislikes you or if someone doesn’t want to be with you. All that matters is that you are happy with the person you are becoming. All that matters is that you like yourself, that you are proud of what you are putting out into the world. You are in charge of your joy, of your worth. You get to be your own validation. Please don’t ever forget that.” — Bianca Sparacino

Excerpted from The Strength In Our Scars by Bianca Sparacino.

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More From Thought Catalog

  • http://brianmcelmurry.blogspot.com/ Brian McElmurry

    John Waters is a genuis

  • chinchillakwak

    you are a pretty awesome opossum

  • ricky schitltiiz

    ya kinda stereotypical but ok that you admitted it in the end yes..

  • Mike

    so straight men are fat, unfunny, unintelligent, completely disinterested in pop culture, can't dress and don't appreciate sarcasm. how could you leave out some even more unflattering comment about liking sports?

    • hourfour

      thought catalog is like so progessive

  • dcmjs

    I agree with Ryan's last paragraph, this is stereotypical and offensive. You are saying straight men are simple, ignorant, sloppy, unhygienic, and uncultured.What if a straight guy wrote the same type of stuff about what it would be like if he were gay? I doubt you would post it. Or maybe you would, and then post an apology shortly afterward… That's was TC does, isn't it?

  • http://twitter.com/srslydrew Andrew F.

    As a straight guy, ouch. Really disappointed, Ryan.

  • http://twitter.com/rislynsey christopher lynsey


    This is so offensive. I'm never reading Thought Catalog again because of it.

    • T6

      good riddance. Seeeeeyaaa.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mikecosta Michael Costa

    Mary Cherry was THE SHIT.

  • pwells

    if i were straight, acne still would have nullified any sexual expression in high school. i probably would have done a lot less drugs, and i doubt i'd read anything on thought catalog.

  • Kayla

    Seriously? You're not over the whole apology thing yet?
    You guys don't get it, it's a thought and everyone has them. If you claim you've never made a joke or at least thought about how gay gay guys are or other stereo types directed at straight men you're in denial and you've got too much pride.

    Thoughts don't care about being politically correct or whether they are offensive or stereotypical, they just happen. Thought Catalog is a collection of thoughts is it not? They don't censor them which is evident by the Slut Walk article and subsequent apology, (which- yes- is another thought/opinion. If it were truly Thought Catalog saving face Chelsea's article would no longer be up).
    So stop bitching, you're not a woman are you? Ha.

  • http://profiles.google.com/lpommers Luke Pommersheim

    If you were straight, you would still do all the things you do now (minus the gay sex). Only difference is you would have written the Dear Gay Dude question you posted yesterday!

  • Marthabuca

    Oh come on people, don't get offended, yes, it is stereotypical but not offensive. Don't you every think of how would it be if you were born a woman isntead of a man. I have thought about it (the other way around though) and probably was also judgamental and stereotypical about it. Chill would ya? This made me a little sad though.

    • ricky schitltiiz

      i don't think it's so much the article itself that is offensive, but rather the fact that we can see the double-standard: if this article was the other way around (if i was gay i would like interior decorating), it would cause a 300+ comment shitstorm from left wing pinko keyboard activists.

  • Charlie Coleman

    not one of your best Ryan O'Connell

  • Tim

    I'm a straight guy and I still get hyped when Britney says “it's Britney, bitch”.


  • Popsickle

    If anyone has had it hard, it's straight white males. I'm so offended.

  • http://profiles.google.com/zeroliberation zero blank

    The 'what if' question that really scares me is 'what if I'd been born in Anytown, mid-USA instead of London (btw I was born in the 50s), what if I'd been forced to salute a flag every school day, swear an oath of allegiance, learnt to drive at sixteen as a matter of course, attended church and so on and et cetera? Would the me that emerged still have my values and mores?
    This scenario used to feature as a regular nightmare….

  • JJ

    Ew, straight Ryan sounds horrific.

  • engorged

    to the disjointed commenters: double-standards (gay/straight) are level when you read them written down; but irl there is a generally heteronormative atmosphere dominating minute corpuscles of gay activity so burdened by that standard you can only nightmare about. and if you cant acknowledge that as you read this article then you are living in a words-are-everything fantasy world of disengaged judgment, asserting equality while riding a wave of entitlement.

  • eddyindigo

    If I were straight, I would probably be in a mostly stable relationship, going to school, working, and trying to figure out if this is really all there is in life.

    Pretty much like my life now, except I would have to invent excuses for not going to the family reunion.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1628148658 Brenna Haddan

    I'm straight and I this is one of my favorite Ryan O'Connell thoughts because it made me think. I guess it's cause I'm a girl?

  • http://twitter.com/yanyun92 Lim Yan Yun

    you left out the most essential fact about straight men. their hatred for PMS.

    • http://www.facebook.com/gregpphoto Greg Petliski

      We hate PMS because we know its a made up thing.

      • http://twitter.com/yanyun92 Lim Yan Yun

        dont argue with science.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Carlos-Ortiz/1279921705 Carlos Ortiz

    “If I were a straight dude, maybe I’d have less sex. Maybe I’d have to work harder because girls are complicated and expect more things from someone before they can put their thing in the other thing. Gay men are usually more direct. We don’t fuck around. Actually, that seems to be a large misconception. Gay men are neurotic as shit and come with their own unique set of baggage. Sorry. Gay, straight: We’re all too crazy to fuck!”

    That's dissapointing, I used to think being gay would be easier on me because I don't know

  • http://twitter.com/maybeL8er Drew DeMartinis

    Almost every day I think about this and almost every day I wish that it weren't true, that I would be the same exact person. But we all know it isn't true. For if I were to have this same personality, this same extravagance, this same everything I would never get with a girl. I WOULD be like the Dear Gay Dude guy from the other day. I would be cautious at every turn, that the girl I find attractive would not find me so because they think I am something I am not.

    And it is with that last thought that I thank–whomever, that I am who I am. I don't worry about how I act because no one cares. No one cares because I am true to myself. Not only do they not care, but they appreciate me more for it. Not to say that you, Mr. O'Connell, do not love who you are (you're gay, we all love ourselves) but I definitely do. Not almost every day, but every day.

  • Looknseas

    Maybe you would stereotype less.

  • Reallydudeeeee

    If you were straight you probably wouldn't be a part of Thought Catalog.

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