Do you believe in "straight privilege?" If so, how much does it impact you really?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 24, 2015 11:14 PM GMT
    One of my buddies brought this up and he said it severely impacted him on a daily basis. I don't deny that some sort of "privilege" exists with any majority/minority population. But I guess I don't feel the impact to the extent of others maybe. I've always thought of myself as more of a conqueror.
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    Jan 24, 2015 11:42 PM GMT
    It probably very much depends on what is it that you want to achieve.

    I can imagine that specific profiles of people receive preference in given situations due to their sexual orientation or even gender.

    A guy I knew once insisted that he felt he was given an au pair job because he was a str8 male. The wife did not want to challenge the fidelity of her husbandicon_lol.gif

    I also believe that being str8 or at least being perceived as such helps if you are building a career in a homophobic environment. Globally, there is no shortage of such environments.

    Straight privilege can be encountered with housing issues, too. A few landlords are hung on the notion that being gay is all about wild parties, and disturbing the neighboring residents. Hence, the housing preference (even though this may be illegal) goes to the str8 as opposed to the gay guy.

    By and large, the str8 privilege is being relegated to the realm of urban legends in the vast parts of the world these days. Quite a few employers are actually giving preference the gay guys since they see family as a possible source of worker's absence. A few landlords have also understood that some gay men happen to be affluent, since they are not spending on children, and are more likely to pay the rent on time than some of the str8 guys.

    Many str8 business leaders have understood that discrimination based on sexual orientation is harmful to their business interests beyond the negative publicity it may create.

    The playing field is being levelled.


  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11422

    Jan 25, 2015 5:24 AM GMT
    Another term is the gay glass ceiling, and it is very very real. Life is unfair, you just have to suck it up and fight harder.
  • Noeton

    Posts: 209

    Jan 25, 2015 6:03 AM GMT
    I guess that straight privilege is a reality, but more so in certain locations and workplaces than others. Looking at the pretty unfortunate status of gay rights across the world as a whole, it seems to me we are a relatively lucky few who are rightfully accepted as equals at work and in our communities.
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    Jan 26, 2015 8:18 AM GMT
    Interesting topic. It seems reasonable to assume: your ability to sense straight privilege should relate inversely to the extent to which you're perceived as straight. I wouldn't consider myself disrespected or dis-privileged, so long as no one 'knew' or perceived my minority orientation.
    But it's not quite that simple; if I'm continually exerting energy to be perceived as straight--whether conscious or otherwise--I already lack the privilege of just being myself (or finding my 'true self').
    It helps me to empathize with others, the more I recognize the framework of cultural expectations determining whom I imagine myself to be.
  • NeuralShock

    Posts: 411

    Jan 26, 2015 5:26 PM GMT
    I feel that is certainly is a thing, generally being unable to hold your lover's hand in public or kiss in public (nothing too crazy, just a kiss goodbye is what I mean) is severely frowned upon.

    Yes, even here in Canada where I live.

    In terms of job prospects I honestly don't tell people I am gay, not that I "hide" it but I don't tell them about it- none of their business. I do actually have a pretty real fear of telling it impacting how others treat me in work situations.
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    Jan 27, 2015 9:54 PM GMT
    It is uncomfortable knowing and understanding love on a deeper level than the majority of the world. I think of how reserved I am in public and sometimes I think it is just how I am (and to some extent it is) but I also know that from a young age i was indoctrinated to intensely reject certain aspects about myself from the public. As much as I accept myself, I still don't desire to do PDA with guys at all knowing how society still stigmatizes modern expressions of affection. Overall my freedom has always felt compromised even though i live in a country that is much more accepting than others. That being said, many people in gay culture think that just because laws don't inhibit freedom of your sexuality, that social laws somehow don't, when social laws can be more powerful than legal ones.

    It is difficult, and I have lost out on a tremendous amount of life experiences because of how much I allowed things to affect me, but you can't really blame people for being uncomfortable with it. Even being different it's hard to understand yourself, it must be really difficult for "normal" people to understand us. It's just something our generation has to teach the world until it becomes less sensitive and more understood.

    So I agree there of course is privilege for what is normal and acceptable and it hurts people and is unfair, but I try to remind myself that there is also less to achieve and accomplish for those who fall under such privilege.