I recently received this comment over on Instagram:
And I'd like to use this comment as a teachable moment.
For context, I said some heterosexual men engage in homosexual sex acts and express overt disgust at these acts to reinforce their heterosexuality. I'll speak more about this but let’s address this commenter’s points.
They asked for examples of people who are repulsed by something engaging sexually in that very thing. Consider the responses to this question in the r/AskMen subreddit:
Then there’s “hogging," where men prey on overweight or unattractive women to satisfy their competitive and/or sexual urges (Prohaska & Gailey, 2006). Men “hog" to achieve status among their peer groups by participating in or winning a competition, engaging in sexual behaviour, and proclaiming their emotional distance from their female victims (Prohaska & Gailey, 2010).
Relatedly, much sexual harassment is contemptuous, aiming to put people down and push them out (Cortina & Areguin, 2021), while sexual assault is perpetrated by both heterosexual and homosexual men against men of either sexual orientation (Mitchell et al., 1999).
Some people are disgusted by their fetishes yet continue to act on them:
While its generally true that feelings of sexual arousal and disgust are inversely related (Oaten et al., 2019; Fleischman et al., 2015), this isn’t always the case as social psychologist Dr. Justin Lehmiller points out:
Some people do in fact sexually engage in things they find repulsive, probably because the brain networks activated by visual sexual stimuli and disgust stimuli substantially overlap (Borg et al., 2014, Karama et al., 2011).
What about instances of heterosexual men being sexual with each other?
In her 2007 book, Dude, You're a Fag, sociologist C.J. Pascoe describes how some straight adolescent males play-act as “fags” (pretending to hump or kiss one another), then retreat to express collective disgust and dis-identification with the men who'd really do such things.
As sociologist Eric Anderson explains in his 2005 book, In The Game, there are also hazing initiations involving same-sex sexual activities for the purpose of feminizing/homosexualizing recruits to establish and reaffirm their position at the bottom of the heteromasculine hierarchy.
Quoting extensive research on the bonding activities within male-only groups, professor Elizabeth Allan argues in the 2004 book, The Hazing Reader, that hazing rituals function as socially sanctioned outlets for same-sex intimacy, exploiting consent and power dynamics.
In her 2015 book, Not Gay, professor Jane Ward elaborates on this:
Ward's use of the word 'fag' refers to a previous story of fraternity brothers who pretend to fuck each other whilst also laughing and calling each other 'fags'.
There are other times heterosexual men are sexual with each other.
For example, in the 2015 Sex in Prison report, one heterosexual man said he had consensual sex with gay or bisexual prisoners "out of necessity" and "having my sexual needs met, in a particular time and place, where I couldn't get [heterosexual] sex."
Also, a survey about circle jerks/ group masturbation reported in a 1996 Men's Health Confidential magazine drew hundreds of responses from men, 95% self-described as heterosexual. Of respondents, 27% reported male group sexual activities in youth.
Investigative reporter Bernard Lefkowitz tries to explain this in his 1997 book, Our Guys:
Again, we see that men use homoerotic activity as a form of mockery (Fávero et al., 2015).
Saying that these men are secretly just gay/bisexual completely erases the nuance of their experience and sexuality.
There is much more to this but when you resort to comparing homosexuality to incest and bestiality while also telling me to shut up, you'll be swiftly blocked. These comments aren't welcome on my social media pages.