Fat gay men dating

In my twenties, after I started partying, I became motivated to change my body and my life. I was living in my new, “non-fat” body, and I was exploding with excitement.I was still using drugs, but now I was hooking up with a variety of different guys. My desire to maintain my new body was motivated by my (internalized) homophobia—I didn’t want to be that person I hated, that person at the bottom of the hierarchy.I was used to getting teased and being left out, but that doesn’t necessarily get easier as you get older.

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As gay men, we tend to measure ourselves, those we desire and those who desire us against certain ideals of attractiveness.

The young, lean, muscular, smooth, white, cisgender (non-trans) male body is overrepresented in media and accepted as the most attractive.

This ideal body is not just a physical type—it is also a manifestation of the abstract “masculinity.” Think: Abercrombie model, action movie superhero, pop star, athlete. This idealized masculine body is not only unachievable for many of us—it is also anchored in .

This means that the “ideal man” is represented in an image that replicates the standard construct of the straight man: athletic and muscular, but more importantly, not “feminine.” Typically, in gay culture, effeminate behaviour is a characteristic that ranks at the bottom of the attractiveness hierarchy.

Simply talking about my body issues over the years has helped—with friends mostly, but also now with colleagues.

The more I speak about the topic, the better I feel.

Some experience racism, some feel too old or too fat or “not masculine enough.” Some have felt—and some still feel—invisible in social spaces.

Some have experienced anorexia, surgeries or hormone treatments, all in order to achieve what they perceive to be the desired body or image of a man.

I am fortunate to be able to bring my experience and learning into the work I do.

I have recently created a project, funded by the Movember Foundation, called m.bodiment, which fosters dialogue about gay, bisexual, trans and queer (GBTQ) men’s body image.

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