Monday, 23 November 2009

Why Weight?

I like to think that I follow my own rules and conventions. Unlike most of my friends, both gay and straight, I dont strive to conform to fit in any boxes set by society. I find it hard enough being comfortable in my own skin, without the added pressure of living up to everyone else's expectations as well. Lately however, I have been feeling an enormous pressure to lose weight. In the gay community (at least where I live), there has been an 'Attack Of The Clones' where everyone seems to look 15 years old with a barely there waistline and a perma tan.

Don't get me wrong, I am by no means overweight. I have a 34" waist, I am 6ft5" tall and I weigh a little under 15st. I play rugby and I am at the gym at least 3 times a week. I have a pretty healthy lifestyle and in general I dont look too shabby. I have an individual style and I make the most of what I have, but the more I go out and see these 'clones', the more I feel like the odd one out, and if truth be told, it is starting to feel uncomfortable.

It is an age old tale that within the gay community you have a limited shelf life. So many people feel like they are over it or past it by the time they hit 25, and the ones who don't seem to be doing everything in their power to look like 18 year olds again. When I have spoken to friends about this, they have told me that it is a minority, but after a little digging it seems that male anorexia is predominantly made up of gay men, and it is also on the rise. Is it really worth risking your health to fit in and look the part?

The fault, I believe, lies within the gay community itself. While they sit and argue that they should not be put in boxes by the community at large, they are all too quick to label and catagorise themselves. Is it ok to just be gay anymore? Do we have to be a twink, a scally a bear or a queen? And if we do, where do I fit in? I am too old and not skinny enough to be a twink. Not camp enough to be a queen. Too well behaved and dressed to be a scally, and not big and hairy enough to be a bear. Is there a place for me if I refuse to put myself in a box?

The problem is, whether we like it or not, we all conform in the end. We don't have to like it, but it happens anyway. I started this post thinking about how I needed to lose weight, not for health reasons, but so that I could feel more like I was part of the crowd, and the more I write, the more I realise that if I become more like everyone else, I become less like myself. The world strives on diversity. I have never been short of attention from men, and by looking like everyone else, what will I have that is different to interest anyone anymore?

Is suppose in the end it all comes down to being comfortable with yourself. If you strive to look a certain way to make yourself feel better then you should go for it as long as it doesnt affect your health. But if you are trying to look a certain way just to fit in, maybe you need to sit back and think about whether or not it will make you happy. At the end of the day, we all want people to like us for who we are, not how we look. My mum always told me you need to love yourself before anyone else can love you, and I think shes right. Maybe I will give the gym a miss today.


  1. Oh I well know what you mean! It is even harder for me as I am in my thirties now. Sucks really, I hate being old, and the older I get I find that my tastes are not changing. That makes it even worse. So yes I well know what you are saying.


  2. But being in your thirties doesnt make you old. Age is a number, you are only as old as you feel. If you feel on the outskirts, then only you can get yourself back in, if 'in' is even where you want to be

  3. You know what, your post scarred me. I'm 19 so I guess I'm in the prime of my 'Gay Shelf Life' I guess if I was forced to categorize myself I have the lithe body and look of a twink. And thats the scary part, subconsciously I alter my habits to better accommodate this perception of me, whether it be dieting to maintain body shape, or acting younger then my maturity is to gain that oh so important appeal factor. And its not just me, its my friends as well, we all do it. And if where already succumbing to this at our young ages what are we going to be like when we reach the end of our gay shelf life.

  4. I suppose it all comes down to whether you feel you want to do it, or you need to do it, in order to fit in. I'm glad the post made you see things from a different perspective. With that in mind, maybe you will find yourself acting differently now aswell, as you become more aware of who you are.

  5. I get what you're saying. You're right. People want to feel wanted and accepted by others and so imitate the style and behaviour of those they want acceptance from. But in doing that, you hide the parts of yourself that are unique and usually the most interesting and wonderful personality traits of any person.

    I, personally, pretty much removed myself from the 'gay community' I was a part of, because people pretend too much. People seems insincere and shallow. I now have a smaller group of honest and real friends that all make me feel accepted and wonderful. We're all very different and that's the best part! Diversity is the spice of Life!


  6. I'm not really part of the gay community so i wouldn't know. Love handles are hot though.

  7. i dont feel like i am trying to fit into a particular image created within the gay commity but i do tend to suffer from self hate, anxiety created by the gay community which has made me bounce from overweight to underweight and back again. i dont necc want to fit in a circle of people but i just want to be appealing at its core. my personality is alright but my body gives bad vibes about my emotional state. i suppose a lot of gays go through those cycles. i havnt had interest from a man in about a year now. sux eh. friends repeat non stop "dont worry, hes out there" like if it were a pre-recorded dictophone, and im sick of it. fuck you gay community, i blame you for my emotional state.