Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Mixer: Gay, Straight, Bi

I'd like to start by saying this was a hard survey write and analyze. I'm not sure I did it justice, and I apologize for this. I believe that gender and orientation divide the leather community in negative way. We don't need to wander down the path of political correctness to diversify. If anything I prefer the leather community's willingness to kick social norms in the ass. Preferring same gender or orientation play spaces doesn't make you an asshole, but there is no reason we can't make a greater effort to be more tolerant in social settings.

It's no surprise that gay men are frequently unwilling to engage in sexual acts around people of different orientations and genders, but the reverse is true for social interaction. 75% of gay men have attended mixed orientation/gender social events and an additional 5% would be willing to. These numbers don't change remarkably when broken down by age and sex role. The 25% who are not willing to attend mixed social events can't be explained by friendship homogeny alone. 

Switches and gay males in their 50's were the only groups who deviated significantly from other participants regarding mixed social event attendance. Gay male switches were 14% less likely than Doms and subs to attend mixed social events. Gay male participants in their 50's were 23% less likely to attend mixed social events. Gay males in their 50's have 16% fewer gay friends than other gay males and gay male switches have the same number of gay friends. The lack of correlation between friendship homogeny and willingness to attend mixed social events in these groups suggest another variable. 

Sexual attraction alone can't be the deciding factor. Although the survey didn't adequately explore the topic, all bisexuals, women, and trans participants were willing to attend mixed orientation social events. These three groups were also more accepting open play spaces.

My conclusion is that there is something about the gay male portion of the leather community that differs from other groups. Clearly there is more to explore. Please feel free to send any questions I should have asked my way. A future survey could look at gay men more specifically.

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