It would be nice to be gay, I think. Not that I make light of the social challenges the gay population still faces, but I just see the benefits of being gay when I’m mad at my husband who is decidedly and unabashedly and annoyingly male.
“I could be gay,” I said to a friend of mine who is gay. She’s out of the closet gay, after having left her husband of 15 years, and now lives with her partner. She only smiled when I said this.
“What makes you think you could be gay?” She eyed me with amusement. Quickly, I rattled off a list: I like women. They’re considerate, thoughtful, sensitive and caring. They remember your birthday, don’t groan when you want to see a romantic movie, and carry on conversations about the more important things in life. Besides, I said, I love Celine Dion, Ellen DeGeneres and Broadway musicals. She arched an eyebrow.
“Why can’t I be gay?” I challenged her to come up with a good reason for keeping me heterosexual.
“Honey, you lack the most important qualification for gayhood: *sexual* attraction to a woman’s body.”
I thought a moment. Not true. I adore the female body. It is beautiful. The gentle mounds, the silky skin. I love looking at women’s *breasts*.
“But does it excite you to imagine making love to a woman?” she pressed, leaning forward to hear my reply. In the privacy of my mind, I conjured up a steamy bedroom scene featuring my *naked* self with another *naked* woman. She has sleek, lean abs glistening with baby oil just like in a tanning commercial. And because it is my fantasy, I do too. Her lips press against mine. So soft and unlike the rough kisses of my husband. My husband? How did he horn his way into my gay fantasy? He’d better not be watching. That would be his fantasy, no doubt.
“Wait, I’m trying to imagine.” My thoughts return to that kiss. Where was I? Oh, yes. Soft. Nice. Our hands travel over each other, slipping easily, smoothly over scented oil, to those more private places. Suddenly, a queasy feeling rippled through my gut. My eyes flew open.
“Well?” my friend repeated. I squished my eyes shut and willed myself into further action, unspeakably lustful acts if you’re a man – or a lesbian. Alas, to no avail. I emerged from this fantasy feeling as disappointed as a gay man leafing through a *Playboy* magazine. My body and mind would not comply.
“Nice try,” she laughed.
But I didn’t want to admit defeat. “I don’t necessarily get excited imaging making love to a male body either. Perhaps, I am asexual. Like a snail.”
Her wry look didn’t need to remind me that I have reproduced, *sexually*, three times. With a male. In traditional fashion. And engaged in countless practice sessions, too.
“Being gay is what you are. It’s not a matter of choice,” she said.
“What about Anne Heche?” I referred to the actress who left a man to be Ellen DeGeneres’ girlfriend and then decided she preferred *penises*. On second thought, maybe Anne Heche is a snail, too.
“She’s probably bisexual.” Before I could respond, she added, “And no, you’re not bisexual either. Why are you suddenly questioning your *sexuality*?”
“I’m just mad at my husband, I guess.”
“Then, sleep on the couch. But don’t think about becoming gay or bisexual because that isn’t the answer.”
Maybe it is and maybe it isn’t the answer to my marital frustrations but I am decidedly, unabashedly and annoyingly married so becoming gay or bisexual is out of the question anyway. But it might be nice to be a snail, I think.