Stereotypical culture expectations being an issue

Talk about anything and everything.

Stereotypical culture expectations being an issue

Unread postby UK_Lad_0320 » 16 February 2022, 17:59

Hi everyone,
I’m new here (M,27), and I have a topic I need some help with.
My fiancé (M) has had a pretty horrible past with toxic relationships and “gay expectations” and it’s having an impact on our relationship.
He’s got this bee in his bonnet about having to conform to some cultural expectations and how much he hates it. Examples he has given are: having a perfect body, having the desire to sleep with everyone, that most of the gay community will try it on with anyone they get the opportunity to get with… etc.
I have repeatedly assured him that he isn’t expected or obligated to conform to these stereotypes he has in his mind. And that these statements simply cannot be applied to all/most people. (No disrespect to anyone who does live this lifestyle. Live and let live and all that..)
However, the main issue is that I have reached a point in my life where I want to get physically fit and healthy. I want to improve my appearance and have a figure I’m proud of. The trouble is, he thinks I’m doing it to fit into the “community” (his phrase not mine) and to impress other guys; which is not true in the slightest. I just want to feel better about myself, be more fit and healthy and feel more confident.
What I’m asking is, how do help him understand that I’m not getting into shape for anyone but myself?
Thanks!
UK_Lad_0320
 
Posts: 3
+1s received: 1
Joined: 16 February 2022, 17:35

Re: Stereotypical culture expectations being an issue

Unread postby rogonandi » 16 February 2022, 18:33

Just tell him flat out that your opinion has not changed in the matter, and you getting into shape is a personal health goal. If he starts his spiel about stereotypes, just say ‘nope!’ to him and continue working toward your goal.
Image
User avatar
rogonandi
 
Posts: 2426
+1s received: 1582
Joined: 12 May 2016, 10:02
Location: Ontario
Country: Canada (ca)

Re: Stereotypical culture expectations being an issue

Unread postby UK_Lad_0320 » 17 February 2022, 12:32

rogonandi wrote:Just tell him flat out that your opinion has not changed in the matter, and you getting into shape is a personal health goal. If he starts his spiel about stereotypes, just say ‘nope!’ to him and continue working toward your goal.


I guess you have a point.. I mean I will just continue to do my thing… I would just really like him to stop applying these inaccurate concepts to our lives
UK_Lad_0320
 
Posts: 3
+1s received: 1
Joined: 16 February 2022, 17:35

Re: Stereotypical culture expectations being an issue

Unread postby PopTart » 17 February 2022, 15:59

It's not that uncommon for gay men to feel like there is a subculture, to which they have to conform, in order to validate their sexuality. Its a false perception, often fuelled by misrepresentation in media and the most glitzy aspects of being gay, being the ones that get the most attention.

Your attitudes towards that subculture are healthy, whereas, your partner seems to be struggling with reconciling perception and the reality of gay subculture.

In a sense, your bf has bought into the same false perception, even as he rages against it. Because most people come to realise, that there is more and less to being gay, than being gym fit, promiscuous and vain/shallow.

Helping him to understand that there is no rule book by which gay men must live and that a gay man who wants to look good and feel good, doesn't mean he is a man who wants to fuck everything with a pulse.

The real world is more nuanced than that and the perception he has, while understandable, is misguided.

He should trust you for who you are and take you at your word.

Is it possible he has self esteem issues? Does he fear, that if you get fit and he doesn't, you might not like him as much?

Try to find out if there is something more going on, while helping him understand that being gay, isn't all about one thing.
ImageImage
User avatar
PopTart
 
Posts: 4065
+1s received: 3028
Joined: 12 December 2017, 11:15
Country: United Kingdom (gb)

Re: Stereotypical culture expectations being an issue

Unread postby UK_Lad_0320 » 17 February 2022, 16:26

PopTart wrote:It's not that uncommon for gay men to feel like there is a subculture, to which they have to conform, in order to validate their sexuality. Its a false perception, often fuelled by misrepresentation in media and the most glitzy aspects of being gay, being the ones that get the most attention.

Your attitudes towards that subculture are healthy, whereas, your partner seems to be struggling with reconciling perception and the reality of gay subculture.

In a sense, your bf has bought into the same false perception, even as he rages against it. Because most people come to realise, that there is more and less to being gay, than being gym fit, promiscuous and vain/shallow.

Helping him to understand that there is no rule book by which gay men must live and that a gay man who wants to look good and feel good, doesn't mean he is a man who wants to fuck everything with a pulse.

The real world is more nuanced than that and the perception he has, while understandable, is misguided.

He should trust you for who you are and take you at your word.

Is it possible he has self esteem issues? Does he fear, that if you get fit and he doesn't, you might not like him as much?

Try to find out if there is something more going on, while helping him understand that being gay, isn't all about one thing.


Thank you for this. You have said it brilliantly. He does have self esteem issues, and I try and help this by telling him everyday how incredible he is and how special he is to me. Some days a simple compliment is enough to reinstate his self esteem, other days it’s almost like no matter what I say or do, he’s not having any of it. I do love him and I won’t ever give up on him. I just want to reassure him that there are no set rules to being gay, and social expectations and media portrayal are not concepts to live by.
UK_Lad_0320
 
Posts: 3
+1s received: 1
Joined: 16 February 2022, 17:35

Re: Stereotypical culture expectations being an issue

Unread postby PopTart » 17 February 2022, 17:08

It's a sad and difficult reality, that self esteem, while being bolstered externally, it ultimately comes from within.

You might tell him how great he is but if he doesn't really believe it of himself, it will only ever offer a temporary reprieve from his own insecurities.

It might be worth suggesting some talk therapy, possibly even as a couple, so you can support him. Or perhaps some manner of self esteem workshop you can attend together.

Perhaps, co-opt him into going to the gym himself. It might help demystify the whole thing a little and make him more understanding of what exactly you are going for, while having the dual effect of improving his self esteem at the same time, by getting into better shape and those valuable valuable workout endorphins.
ImageImage
User avatar
PopTart
 
Posts: 4065
+1s received: 3028
Joined: 12 December 2017, 11:15
Country: United Kingdom (gb)


Recently active
Users browsing this forum: CommonCrawl [Bot], Dawnfallen00 and 82 guests