I must have busted my gaydar, because every time I try hitting on a guy I think might be gay, it turns out he’s straight! How the hell am I supposed to tell?
Anna: There’s been this phenomenon over the past ten years or so where the styles of gay and straight men are getting more and more similar. Sometimes there are obvious gays, and sometimes straight men look gay, which seems to be the demographic of men that you’re attracted to. Gaydars are great, but you either have one or you don’t. Since yours is on the fritz, this is my suggestion: Hit on everyone a just a little, and don’t concern yourself with everyone who says no. Only enjoy the company of the one who says yes. It’s a rough life, I know, but you have to keep moving forward, because odds are that one of the guys you hit on will be gay. In other words, it’s easier to fix your attitude than your gaydar.
Chris: Anna is right, it’s never really easy to discern someone’s sexuality—the “gaydar” is more of a guessing game than a fool-proof indicator. However, the problem may not lie in your ability to determine whether someone is gay or straight. We all have wanted someone bad enough to convince ourselves that they might like us, no matter what sex or orientation they are. Whether this is true for you or not, that fact that you are striking out over and over again means you need to change things up a bit. Before you flirt with that next hottie, maybe try having one of your straight girlfriends attempt it first. Or if you are really determined, you could just ask him outright. I know it sounds crazy, but you never know what might work.
I’m a straight girl, but I made out with a random girl in a frat, and I really enjoyed it. Does that make me bisexual?
Chris: First of all, congratulations on what appears to be your first same-sex hook up. There is no better time to experiment than in college, especially at wild, anything-goes frat parties. Still, one hook up is not a big deal. Nobody here is going to judge you. Drunken hook ups (or even sober, caught-up-in-the-moment hook ups) happen. I know a lot of gay guys that have tried hooking up with a girl to see if they like it, and I know plenty of straight girls who have made out with girls. Hell, people of all orientations experiment. I know most guys probably wouldn’t admit that they drunkenly kissed another guy, but I can tell you that it does happen. Kissing somebody—anybody, really—doesn’t make you much of anything (except, hopefully, a really good kisser).
Anna: Sweet pea, you can be whatever you want to be. Personally, I feel that if you made out with a random girl while in a slightly altered state of mind your label should be hetero-flexible. What is hetero-flexible, you ask? The hetero-flexible lifestyle entails riding the hetero highway most of the way (only dating or sexing members of the opposite sex, etc.) but occasionally making a foray onto the homo freeway for only the briefest of flings. This could be you, but don’t limit yourself to just one outsider’s opinion. If you liked it, you certainly could be bisexual, but you have to ask yourself: Would you have liked making out with her in a different environment? Essentially, nothing makes you bisexual; you make yourself bisexual. Just remember, as Chris said, there is absolutely nothing wrong with experimenting.