Maybe it’s just me (I kinda doubt it, but…) but early on in my, uh, enthusiastic exploration of my newly-found sexuality, there weren’t many times when I’d say no to sex. Today, I understand that the thrill of having sex was just too exciting, exhilarating, and “forbidden” that, at least where I grew up, if you said no to sex, you’d get talked about so badly and teased unmercifully that it wasn’t funny; no one was willing to be labeled a chicken or liked being called a baby, so not only was there the thrill of exploration and experimentation, there was great peer pressure as well. At some point – when I got to thinking about that “kid in a candy store” thing, I wondered if this was something “all” the guys who discovered sex with other guys went through and, if so, this probably lent itself to the stereotypical perception that bisexual men will fuck anything above ambient temperature and human and the follow-on perception that we don’t how to say no to sex.
I guess I can say that when I recovered from my case of “candystoreitis,” I found there were a lot of reasons to say no to some guy trying to have sex with you other than just not feeling like being bothered; it was about that time when I started to understand the kind of shit girls had to put up with and it kinda made me feel badly because, um, I was also one of those guys looking to screw any girl who’d allow it; if nothing else, you get to understand just how bothersome it is for someone to look at you as if you were prey and, in this case, more so when you were also a predator (not in that creepy way, okay?). It’s a two-edged sword because, on the one hand, it’s flattering that someone wants to screw you while on the other, it’s such a pain that all you wanna do is go hide somewhere and pray that you go unnoticed.
So you understand that you don’t have to always say yes and that no one should ever pressure you into having sex and that it’s considered to be in bad taste if someone starts to lean on you like that; at the same time, I felt that just because we get these thoughts in our head doesn’t change the fact that you will be pursued for sex whether you like it or not, think it’s wrong, whatever, so once you really understood this, you learned to say no and when you were a guy being pursued by other guys, you also learned that if you said no, you’d better have the muscle to back it up or have a lot of really older brothers who’d have your back if push came to shove.
In this, it was never the guys who could, in fact, take no for an answer; they’d hit on you, you say no, thanks, and they say, “Okay!” and go on as if they’d never asked you. Nah, it was always the guys who couldn’t take no for an answer, those cretins who for whatever reason always seem to feel that if they asked you for sex, you had to say yes and, yeah, the “or else” was always implied even if it was never actually said. There were the guys who’d crack on you for your dick or your ass (or both) and they just felt… wrong even though they’d often quite polite when they asked you; you knew, without really understanding how you knew, that if you said yes to them, that might not be the smartest thing you’ve done lately. There were the guys who not only felt wrong but somehow managed to look the epitome of wrongness; they just looked sinister, shady, or scary; then there were the guys who were on the “do not ever fuck” list that the grapevine had out – they might not ever ask you to do it with them but if you saw them, even in passing, you knew that if they did, it would be a bad thing for you to say yes to them. Most of the guys on this list were known to have been burned (they had the clap), they weren’t the best of friends with soap and water and deodorant, or they’d suckered too many people into have some pretty shitty sex with them so their credibility and sincerity were called into question… a lot.
It was true that some guys got on the list erroneously; it wasn’t unusual that someone, in a fit of pique, would put the word out on you when, in fact, you (a) didn’t do or say anything to warrant being blacklisted or (b) the person blacklisting you had a reason to grind an axe on you, like, oh, you wouldn’t let them cheat off your test paper (happened a lot during the school years) or even a case of mistaken identity. And, yes, if you’re wondering, I wound up on the blacklist a few times via mistaken identity and, fuck no, I wouldn’t let anyone cheat using my test papers! It shouldn’t surprise anyone that the people who were the most responsible for blacklisting people were girls putting the word out on the guys and, yep, other girls (y’all know how you can be). So it was bad enough that you’d find yourself in a position to say no (even if it was a girl asking you to fuck her) or having to physically enforce your rejection of the other guy’s advances, but you’d also have to clear your good name if you managed to get blacklisted as well.
You’d think that once you got through your teenage years, you wouldn’t have to deal with this shit again… until you found out that you never really do; even as much sex as I was having in my adult years, I spent more time telling guys no than I did telling them yes because, for one, I was learning that just because I could do it didn’t mean I always had to and, for the other, I just knew – by gut instinct or, yep, the blacklist that was still very much in play, that if I said yes, I was going to regret it. I was also learning about the perception about men who have sex with other men: Once it was known that you’re into this, the assumption was that you had to give it up to any guy who asked for it, like, for example, that site I’m always riffing about; there are a lot of men – gay or bi – who assume that if you’ve got a profile, you are automatically going to agree to sex each and every time and, in their rather limited and cockeyed logic, if you’re not, then why are you on the site in the first place? I guess it never occurred to them that some guys are there just to make friends or some other reason that doesn’t involve sex, huh?
Again, it’s not the guys who will respect the fact that you said no to them – it’s the guys who are ready to get in your case if you had the temerity to tell them no and who were ready and willing to voice their displeasure with your decision verbally or physically. When I think about all the times I’ve gotten into a fight because I told some dude no, man, that is some really sad shit and, no, I’m not going to say that I had regrets about defending myself or, in a few cases, that I didn’t have fun kicking their asses; there’s a reason you don’t ever want to fuck with a guy who is a martial artist, knows how to street fight, and prone to having a quick and nasty temper. But what’s equally sad is that you learn that there are men out there willing to risk instigating violence and injury because they want to fuck you (or want you to fuck them) and you’ve told them, nope, sorry – can’t help you with that one.
This one guy I said no to told me that it was his God-given right to demand and expect other men to have sex with him and that since he did have this “right,” I wasn’t supposed to say no to him and that, indeed, there was no reason for me to say no to him… he wound up getting his arm broken for his troubles. Another guy I said no to was apoplectic when I said no to him; he felt that because he had a big dick, I wasn’t supposed to say no; even after he showed it to me (and it was big and fat) and I still said no, he asked, “How the fuck can you turn this down?”
“Because I can,” was all I said. Thankfully, he went away mad and I went in the other direction with a great deal more sympathy for women who had to put up with guys like this. I had this one gay dude get bent out of shape and accused me of turning him down because he was gay when, in fact, I turned him down because he stank to high heaven and when I mentioned this, of course, he denied that he had a problem with body odor and since he didn’t, I had to be homophobic… even though I was nice enough to explain to him that I’d slept with quite a few gay men… but no one who smelled like he did. He had a hissy fit that would have put a woman to shame… but I knew better than to take his effeminate behavior for granted because, as I learned from someone’s mistake in this when I was in high school, a gay man is still a man so if you think he’s gonna fight like a girl (sorry, ladies), you might wind up getting seriously hurt.
Guys, you do have the right to tell another guy that you don’t want to have sex with him and you don’t even have to explain yourself so don’t let anyone tell you anything different; if you think, “I’m a grown-assed man and ain’t nobody gonna say some shit like that to me!” well, you’d be wrong because there are a lot of guys who feel that you giving up your body to them is their right and are willing to get as nasty as they have to be in order to convince you to do their bidding. Don’t buy into the hype that all bisexual men will always have sex with another man; don’t let some other guy try to shame you into having sex with them or otherwise try to intimidate you; and,yeah, you’d also better be ready to defend your rejection of their proposal physically because, as a lot of women know, there are guys who just cannot and will not take no for an answer and are willing to bring some violence your way.
In a polite society, such things aren’t supposed to happen and should never happen when we tell another man that we don’t want to have sex with him; the reality is that it does happen and don’t ever kid yourself into believing that it could never happen to you and just because you chose to exercise your right to tell him that you don’t want to have sex with him…