Sometimes, well-meaning but ignorant straight people like to question why queer people even have a culture. After all, the only difference between gay people and straight people is who we have sex with and/or are attracted to, right? Aren't gay people and straight people exactly the same?
The answer to both of those questions is no. Queer people have a culture because we have shared experiences, most of them tied to the homophobia and heterosexism that straight people perpetuate — shared experiences like the one famously queer Twitter user @itzzkait recently pointed out.
Gay person: I’m gay— Kait ? (@itzzkait) November 30, 2017
Straight person: I don’t care as long as you don’t hit on me lol
Gay person: don’t worry you’re not really my type
Straight person: what the fuck did you just say
The exchange above resonates with so many gay, bisexual, and queer people because it's one most of us have had to have with at least one straight friend. It happened to me the summer after my freshman year of college, when I told my best friend from home that I'm a lesbian and her first question (after giving me a hug, of course) was whether I'd ever had a crush on her. She didn't "what the fuck" me, but she did seem pretty disappointed when I said no.
A quick scroll through the comments of Kait's tweet makes it pretty clear that I'm not alone. It seems that many of our straight friends are simultaneously terrified that we'll have feelings for them and offended that we don't find them attractive.
It's something that hits the bisexual community especially hard, not only because bi people are attracted to multiple genders but because stigma claims that they're also "promiscuous."
So, please, we're begging you, don't be THAT person when your friend tells you they're queer. Just like you, we are not sexually attracted to every person who glances our way.
Refinery29 has reached out to Kait and will update this story when we receive a response.
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