Being queer on straight teams


  • Feb 09, 2012 2:28 AM GMT
    Just started with training for hockey and I'm having a blast, but the social aspect is killing me. For the first time in over a decade of being out and proud, I find myself wishing I was straight.

    How many of you are out in straight leagues? What about training camps, tournaments, or things like that?


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    Feb 09, 2012 3:59 AM GMT
    I play on a mens league team and know where your coming from. Im not out to anyone so I cant speak to the recloseting thing, but I feel there is a certain level of comraderie that you'll never be a part of. Complaining about wives/ gf's and having a beer in the locker room is as equal a part of the mens league ritual as is the game itself.

    Wasnt clear by your post, are you out to your team?

  • Feb 09, 2012 5:06 AM GMT
    No, I barely know anyone. I keep eye contact and conversation minimal. It's just drills and skills right now so it's not as friendly. I didn't anticipate "coming out" anxiety ever coming back into my life again.

    My plan was to eventually join a gay league, but after playing in a few shinnies with a mix of skill levels, I'm realizing that I really should start with a beginner league - even if it's straight. I'd get more puck time, gameplay, and practice.
  • iceman82

    Posts: 76

    Feb 09, 2012 5:20 AM GMT
    Well, there is no gay league here, but the gay club has 3 teams which play at various levels, including the beginner level.
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    Feb 09, 2012 5:25 AM GMT
    Becoming part of a new team at work or joining any new group sports or otherwise....constantly re-coming out. Something that never ends.
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    Feb 09, 2012 5:26 AM GMT
    maybe you feel out of the group because you are being so anti social being quite and not making eye contact. make the effort to go out and be social, maybe right now they just think you are the weird quiet guy.
    and as far as talking about girls with them I find myself talking about a boyfriend with the same problems as my straight friends have with girlfriends. so if you dont feel comfortable with telling them youre gay its pretty easy to agree or disagree with them on relationship problems. Instead of "yeah my bf does that all the time" how about "yeah i get that all the time too" and so on.
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    Feb 09, 2012 5:27 AM GMT
    oh yeah but right now youre just playing hockey....you know you can also talk about that, its not about gay or straight its just a great sport.
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    Feb 09, 2012 5:29 AM GMT
    When it comes to the question "are you out to your team?", the answer for me is no. However, apparently my gayness is showing, even though I'm a bi guy. Nobody really cares though- I just don't party with them. They're not the crowd I want to party with, and even if I did, I don't have time. icon_razz.gif

    Just take it as it is- you are who you are. By the by- Steak and Potatoes- are you a pro by any chance? I feel like being nosy for some reason.
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    Feb 09, 2012 5:32 AM GMT
    I think the issue with hockey is the locker room stuff. I don't play hockey (yet) but I have a good friend who does and he is gay. Some people on his team know and some don't, but he said it's much less of an issue with teams these days than it used to be.

  • Feb 09, 2012 6:21 AM GMT
    Cakelion saidmaybe you feel out of the group because you are being so anti social being quite and not making eye contact. make the effort to go out and be social, maybe right now they just think you are the weird quiet guy.


    Yup.

    Also the weird guy who got all shakey when he went to get his skates sharpened.

    For the record, this does not happen in any other aspect of my life. Work, home, clubbing, etc - no problems. I have a feeling this will just take time to get used to, and that most of it is in my head.

    Bullwinklemoos saidBy the by- Steak and Potatoes- are you a pro by any chance? I feel like being nosy for some reason.


    This is my first foray into team sports since grade school.
  • adamhawks

    Posts: 54

    Feb 09, 2012 11:37 PM GMT
    I myself only play pick up games and I dont find that I have an issue. Half the time we are talking about whats going on in other sport leagues or what was on Spike the night prior. Just because I like guys doesnt mean Im less of one to them.
  • araphael

    Posts: 1148

    Feb 09, 2012 11:58 PM GMT
    It can be tough. I've played sports all of my life and I don't think I've ever been just "out" with my straight teammates. I've never really thought about why, and on every team I've always played on, I picked up bisexual vibes from some of the guys. Probably a desire to just be a part of the team and in sync with my teammates.
  • DanOmatic

    Posts: 1155

    Feb 09, 2012 11:58 PM GMT
    I'm the only homo on my triathlon team. They all know I'm gay and I can banter with my teammates about it, and they've been supportive when I've had dating woes. I know it's a bit different than being, say, on a hockey or baseball team, but I spend about 6-10 hours a week with these guys, so it's pretty substantial. I'm glad they're part of my posse.
  • SouthAthlete

    Posts: 51

    Feb 10, 2012 12:11 AM GMT
    I've been out for about 2 months now. My swim team was very supportive and all said they'd always have my back. They fuck around with me but they know what's too far and whats not. My soccer team knows as well. Mostly the older though. The youngest members don't know just because their like my little brothers and idk there's no need for me to flaunt it. Its hard at first but if they are really your teammate and friend they'll be cool
  • hebrewman

    Posts: 1367

    Feb 10, 2012 12:18 AM GMT
    if you are interested in the sport, and they know it, and you do well with the skills (or at least attempt to be good at the skills) contribute to the team then they will know you are just a good team mate regardless, and not there to troll around. just because they have penis and you have a penis does not mean you want your team mates penis. i faced a similar situation with aussie rules football, but, when it came time, then it was really not an issue at all. believe it or not, some actually asked for relationship advice and they were a great group of men to pal around with. i find though, in general, aussies are a pretty open lot.
    just enjoy the sport and have fun.
  • asixpactogo

    Posts: 45

    Feb 26, 2012 3:21 PM GMT
    A buddy and I joined a str8 hockey league in October. We joined to play hockey not to pick up other players. The issue of sexuality has never come up and I dont think It would matter to the team that two of their teammates were gay. What does matter is if we can play our positions. I think we both skate our asses off for the team.
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    Feb 26, 2012 3:28 PM GMT
    If you're one of the better players on the team nobody gives a damn about your sexuality.
  • laxdude25

    Posts: 604

    Feb 26, 2012 3:39 PM GMT
    I have played active sports (soccer, squash, lacrosse, sailing, skiing) all my life. I was exclusively hetero through college, and got hit on by some guys but it was no big deal. Since graduation, I have played on both straight and gay soccer league teams. In both situations, the sexuality of the players was just not a big deal. Now this is NY and soccer, but I have heard pretty similar reports from the local rugby and hockey teams. Good luck!
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    Feb 26, 2012 4:01 PM GMT
    Not out to my str8 team.

    Nor is my gay team out to the str8 league we're playing in.
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    Feb 26, 2012 4:14 PM GMT
    I am trying to find a gay local climbing group :
  • rafiki87

    Posts: 331

    Mar 02, 2012 3:00 PM GMT
    I'm looking at this from a coach's perspective, and not from an athlete's perspective.

    To me, if it is affecting your performance, then it is an issue that should be addressed - be it in the form of sensitivity education or revisiting team rules revolving respect/non-judgement.

    I'm not entirely sure about how strong the coaching staff (if there is one) that you're working with, so I can't say what would be an appropriate means to address your concerns.

    What's worked for me was gauging how comfortable you are in your own skin and how much is too much info to share to this bunch of people. On teams I've played (post-coming out) I've made it a non-issue, and sometimes joked about it.

  • Mar 09, 2012 2:15 AM GMT
    Realized the problem isn't them - it's me.

    After much reading and trying to figure out why I was shaking and having a hard time with eye contact, I realized that it's anxiety. The moment I walk into a social environment that involves sports, fight or flight kicks in.

    It's all in my head.

    I had a miserable time with athletics as a kid and I avoided sports like the plague since I was a teen. What I didn't know until now is that there's two ways of dealing with anxiety. One way is avoidance, but the problem returns upon exposure of the trigger.

    As for the other way of dealing with it, I signed up for more classes... four days a week now, along with gym. I still find things a little awkward, but the shakes are gone. Forcing myself to smile, say hi, and get my mind off it. I feel like Stuart Smalley but those stupid mind exercises work.

    I didn't realize that when I spent $600 on the equipment that this would be an exercise in self psychology, lol.
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    Mar 09, 2012 2:25 AM GMT
    I play Australian rules football. I'm the smallest guy on the team but also the fastest. Yeah I'm gay but I guarantee you they would hate it if I quit the teamicon_smile.gif
  • BlackBeltGuy

    Posts: 2609

    Mar 09, 2012 2:30 AM GMT
    in a dojo it does not matter.
    FACT.
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    Mar 09, 2012 2:35 AM GMT
    I played H20-polo in h.s. and college (and ran track in h.s. before polo). I wasn't out. There were only a couple of gay guys on my polo team in college, other than myself. We kept our little secret quiet. It would not have been cool, and maybe not tolerated back then (late 70's). Even now, I think it is something you wouldn't talk about much...........unless I'm wrong, and guys are more enlightened now. Wouldn't that be cool?