Homoerotic fantasies of the opposite sex: Busting myths and stereotypes by years of asking awkward questions.
First of all, less straight men do it than you might think (well, either that, or they don’t like to admit it). I’ve been asking them since I was fourteen, and I’ve gotten more “Nah, I’m not so much into that,” and “Yeah, it’s pretty hot I guess”, than “Hell yeah! It’s been my life-long dream that two women are so attracted to each other that they can’t help but be more than friends in the gym changing room.” Someone once suggested to me that it’s not the queerness that straight men find erotic about two women, but more the idea that they’ve been driven mad with pent up lust for men who unfortunately happen to be out for lunch. So they turn to the nearest pile of quivering flesh, each other. They’re not actually queer, because that would be threatening to the straight male ego, or so the theory goes.
Second of all, what I just described is completely different to how women do it. I was first introduced to the concept of man love by the internet, or slashfiction, to be more precise, which is the exploration of homosexual relationships between characters of an already established text by its fans. It has its own internet community/subculture. Anyway, the interesting thing about slashfiction is that the majority of it is man on man, and written by women.
This came as a surprise to me. Women were as guilty as men when it came to objectifying certain homosexual acts? Why, then, was it way less acknowledged? It could be blamed on the patriarchy’s disinterest in the female sex drive, I guess. Maybe it’s just that women are too embarrassed to talk about it, except in anonymous forums on the internet, but there are a lot of them around. At any drunken party, ask a group of women, and at least one of them will tell you that they like it when two guys get together.
It’s pretty damn common. Well, maybe common is too strong a word, but it is at least not unheard of. Usually the woman will say “Wow, I’ve never told anyone that before.” Or “Gasp! I thought I was the only one! I felt so alone…” I find them all the time, but only because I ask.
I’m not entirely sure why two guys going at it is attractive, but back when I was young, naïve, and straight, two guys kissing just seemed to be so…hopelessly romantic. Like, “Awww, that’s sooo cute! They love each other! Their love is so pure and innocent that the lustful thought of taking things further has never occurred to either of them.” and they must really love each other to defy convention so. Actually, it could also be hot just because it’s subversive. Men aren’t supposed to be all over each other (especially if they’re straight/in public), and it takes a helluva pair of guys to be able to openly show their physical affection. Maybe that’s why it’s so squee-inducingly adorable when two socially/emotionally reserved guys realise their true feelings and give in to hot, wet, warm fuzzy goodness. At this point I could talk about the homoerotic action that the emo subculture is famous for, but I’m not going to for word limit reasons. Instead, here’s a picture to help you get the gist.
The strange thing about fantasies of guy love by women is that it isn’t just limited to women who like men. There are lesbians who also fantasise of such a thing. How do I know? Because lesbians also write male/male slashfiction. Crazy, huh?
Perhaps the human sexuality is more relaxed than we like to believe. However, oddly enough, I haven’t anything to report on gay men for two women. Except for the vague suggestion that it’s only hot again because it’s subversive, or if they both happen to be good-looking tomboys.
So. There’s another dig at heteronormativity for you; straight people can have gay thoughts without affecting their sexuality. I’m pretty sure that the reverse is true as well, but that’s a column for another day.