Why are heterosexuals so attracted to gay areas and gay bars?

UPDATED: Hola. ¿Qué tal? I’ve written quite a bit about this topic before, but a local resident left a comment on one of my articles and I decided to make his comment a post. He wrote:

“You’ve asked why are heterosexuals so attracted to gay areas and gay bars?

There are two reasons for that:

1. As you say, they’re cheating on someone and they think a gay area is a safe place to go to cheat. Less likely to be spotted in a gay area by a spouse or girlfriend/boyfriend suspecting the person of cheating. Less likely to be caught there.

2. They’re gay and still in the closet and want to discreetly (there’s that word again as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” continues) check out the eye candy in the gay area and fantasize over it, not that there’s not eye candy in heterosexual bars that they could drool over.

I live in Upper Market [Ed. in San Francisco] and observe the same things you’ve seen many times in the Castro. I try to keep these two things in mind because as you say it makes no sense to me that heterosexuals desire to come here because as a gay man I don’t go wandering into heterosexual bars and have had no desire to live in or go to a heterosexual area of the city. That’s why I chose to live in the Castro/Upper Market when I moved to San Francisco. The Castro is not known for great restaurants. Most of them are just meh so it’s not the restaurants that attract heterosexuals. There are hetero bars all over the city where heteros can meet, so it makes no sense to go to a gay bar to meet if you’re heterosexual unless it’s a situation of cheating on someone or being gay and still in the closet and maybe trying to wean oneself out of the closet by going to a gay bar. In the guy’s case, he’s hoping she doesn’t find out he’s gay. Some women are pretty dense when it comes to figuring out that her guy is really gay or she doesn’t want to know. Some even have a baby to “save the marriage.” A major mistake there. A baby should never be used to save a marriage. That often ends in single-parent situations and child support. A marriage should be solidly secure before having a baby.

Thanks for bringing this topic up as several of my friends and I have talked about it many times. It’s most annoying to us as I know it is to you.”

My response: Muchísimas gracias for that. Mi amigo and I were hanging out in The Castro on Sábado/Saturday night and the supposed “straight” couples were pouring in with their required hand-holding behaviour. They’re so predictable with their societal-learned/programmed behaviour. One very young couple looked like they were possibly cheating and/or meeting in person for the first time because they met at Castro/Market and acted as if they had not seen each other’s face before but knew each other to a degree. Was this an online hookup with no exchange of face pics possibly? Then after a couple of minutes of talking they proceeded to cross Castro with him quickly grabbing her hand so they could be in the perfunctory heterosexual hand-in-hand mode. So silly! One thing I’ve learned from watching all the “straight” people coming over here is that they have so many fucked up requirements of what they think they’re supposed to be doing to and with each other! You must do this, you must do that and mostly him doing things for needy her…jesus fucking christ who has the time or patience for all that nonsense?!. Fortunately, gay people don’t have all of these ridiculous and absurd requirements and baggage.

Most of the supposed “straight” couples we saw Saturday night also fit that age category I’ve written about previously: Particularly, the roughly 28-35 year old fucked up in the head gay male closet cases who—in their local personal sex ads on the site I call ClosetList—describe themselves as “discreet” and “down low,” while trying to be heteronormative/ashamed to be gay. They are continuing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” And some of the same muchachos using the language, “straight-acting” and “straight-looking” to describe themselves. There’s lot of gay shame out there, unfortunately. Muchas gracias for your comment. Chau.—el barrio rosa


“Straights” come to the Castro to cheat

It’s (now) Bad to be Gay?

A Concerted Effort for a Hetero take-over of San Francisco’s Castro

Chauvinism in The Castro (San Francisco)

Change Gay Pride to Gay Discreet

The “Discreet” Gay Guys

Are gays going back in the closet?

Holding Her Hand, GF Away

Why are hetero couples going to gay bars?

The “Discreet” Gay Guys

Closeted Gays moving into San Francisco’s Castro

Sexual Freedom and Revolution

[Note: I don't like this site at all, but it's the only place to get this article]:
Chelsea: The Death of a Gay Neighborhood, Murdered by Neo-Hetero-Homophobes

27 comments on “Why are heterosexuals so attracted to gay areas and gay bars?

  1. Cool Dude

    Straights are attracted to gay bars for the Happy Hour booze prices. That’s one reason. I was sitting outside a gay bar in the Castro last night and they had signs on their windows about Happy Hour going until 10pm. Along came this straight couple. The guy paused and read the sign and then they talked a few seconds and headed for the door. I heard the doorguy say, “that’s all right” so maybe they said “we’re straight.” That’s my guess, so they went into this gay bar for cheap drinks. The grocery store in the next block was open so they could have gotten their booze there, maybe pay about the same for more and taken it home and gotten drunk.

  2. DG

    I’m sure you’ve heard this many times before:

    “Gays beautify a neighborhood for the straights to invade and occupy.”

  3. FluffytheMainecoon

    Heterosexuals being attracted to gay areas and gay bars is as eyes rolling as straight guys hanging out in a lesbian bar. It makes no sense.

  4. Timesup

    I’d like to talk about str8s going to gay bars. Like others here have said, there are problems with str8s going to gay bars. I’m scratching my head over why str8s would do that or want to do that. They may say they’re there “to support the gays,” and I don’t even like the way that sounds. They waited until NOW “to support the gays” as they put it? Or are they trying to take over our watering holes?

    Here’s the thing….IN A GAY BAR iif a lesbian shows interest in a str8 woman whom she thought was a lesbian or if a gay guy shows interest in a str8 guy whom he thought was gay, there can be some major fall out to that. Watch out toots! That going “to support the gays” quickly goes away and can be replaced with some (anti-gay) hostility. If that happened to me, I’d lash out and ask them what the hell are you doing hanging in a gay bar when you’re not gay moron?

  5. 24b4Scott

    I typed in the words straights coming to Castro and your article came up. I saw this same thing about an hour ago. I was waiting at the 33 bus stop for a friend who was to meet me and there was this straight couple next to the bus shelter. She was all over him, rubbing his arms and rubbing his back but he didn’t seem that interested. A bit later he started in on her with the rubbing with kissing. Mostly gay guys walked by and ignored them. I’d like to have ignored them. They irritated me. They came to Castro to do this? The guy looked gay. Finally the 33 came and so did my friend I’d been waiting for. I read your article and my guess on what I saw was either cheating or he’s gay and in the closet. He wasn’t all over her like she was all over him. At first he seemed uninterested as if he was thinking why is she all over me when I’m looking for a guy around here? The woman who was all over him seemed really overly determined that he give her some. I found the whole thing strange considering this was the Castro and that’s why I typed in straights coming to Castro. Thanks for your interesting article. At least you’re talking about it; nobody else is.

  6. José Ávalos

    Our top story: Straights go to a gay area and gay bars.
    Next up: Gays go to straight areas and straight bars to pick up guys.
    Next week: Atheists go to church and the pope proclaims he’s an atheist.

    One’s as crazy as the other.

    1. E

      Reminds me of the two straight couples I saw sitting at tables sipping a drink in the Twin Peaks Bar at Castro & Market streets last night. I had to look twice to make sure I wasn’t seeing things. The rest of the bar looked like it was gay men.

      1. rosa_barrio Post author

        Hola, for those who don’t know, the Twin Peaks Tavern is the first gay bar in the US with large glass windows where people passing by the bar could/can see in, which was very unusual in the early days of the Gay Rights’ Movement. (Imagine seeing inside a gay bar!) These days, the Twin Peaks Tavern is mostly a bar where older gay guys hang out. In the last year or so, mi amigo and I have seen “straight” couples in Twin Peaks bar and mi amigo usually says when he sees that, “Oh, I didn’t realise that all the ‘straight’ bars in the city had closed and now they’re forced to come over here.” Yeah I hadn’t heard that either. Gracias for your comment. Chau.

  7. Speak The Truth

    I read local SF sites, including yours. There’s a common theme among all of them of the ones I read. That theme is thatt San Francisco is being destroyed by real estate, landlord, homeowners, TECH, Board of Supervisors and mayor’s greed, and there’s no way to stop it.

    Nobody else says it like you do. You speak the truth (my handle). You call it an oligarchy, and that’s what it is when the government does not work for the average people but for the billionaires and other monied interests owning them.

    1. Maité

      >>>That theme is thatt San Francisco is being destroyed by real estate, landlord, homeowners, TECH, Board of Supervisors and mayor’s greed and there’s no way to stop it. <<<

      I think that's true. Liberal San Francisco is now history. There's nothing liberal or radical here now. They want this to be a provincial little town where the streets roll up at midnight. Conservative and bland is "in" now in San Francisco as they work to make this an enclave for the wealthy and 1%. There may be ways to stop it that none of the people you listed have any control over. I'm thinking of the bad economy and that covers a lot.

  8. mauricio

    re: str8s coming to the castro.

    i live in the castro and was out earlier tonight. they were coming in just as you describe their act….mandtaory hand-holding, arm around each other….they’re quite “in your face” to let it be known they’re str8. they come to a gay area to let everyone know they’re str8 ?? why’s that? i thought maybe there were churches in sf telling str8 couples to go to the castro to proselytize gay guys into being str8. i doubt that tho. this looks more like str8 couple tourists or as your article says cheating. they come in hand-n-hand and pause, look around cautiously, and then run across market street hand-n-hand and then from there i don’t know where they go. like you say, what’s the attraction of str8s coming to the castro in herds? my partner thinks there must be some app on iphones promoting drink or food specials over here and that’s what brings them over here starting on wednesdays.

  9. Larry

    I have noticed how gay guys have sanitized themselves. Presumably so heterosexuals will accept them? Have you noticed how few gay guys are wearing earrings now? Hardly none. Is that to look more heterosexual and less gay to the heterosexuals?

    A few years ago bling was very popular with gay guys in the Castro and most guys were wearing bling. Today bling is gone. In and out. That quickly. Bling went back into gay guy’s closets. Earrings and body piercings were common not long ago. Rare to see either today.

    Gay guys into sports? Some gay guys have always been into sports but now there’s this “you must support the local teams” group think and sports bars. Is that to seem more heterosexual so that heterosexuals will accept gays more readily? From reading your blog I think you would describe it as “eating heterosexual ass and selling oneself out at any costs in order to be accepted by heterosexuals.” I would have to agree with you 100 percent.

  10. FedUp!

    You asked – “Why are heterosexuals so attracted to gay areas and gay bars?”

    There’s a third answer to that. So they can change them to the way they want them like they’ve done in San Francisco’s Castro. The asses.

    What galls me about heterosexual couples moving into gay areas is that when they begin squeezing out babies they demand that the gay area they moved into be changed to the way they want it. They’ve done that in the Castro with the erotica-sex stores. They want this covered up and that covered up. They don’t want their child to see dick pictures…as if the child would know a dick picture if he saw one. Some of these asses even call the cops on the erotica-sex stores who won’t comply with their demands. They’ve also complained about the nudists and some nudists have been in the Castro for years and years.

    I wouldn’t have as much problem with heterosexuals moving into gay areas if it wasn’t for this. These demands to make the neighborhood to the way they want it. Why didn’t they move to a neighborhood that was already the way they wanted it?

    1. rosa_barrio Post author

      Hola y gracias for your comment. The so-called “gay community” bears responsibility for some of this as well. From what I read, they were all for the San Francisco city-wide nudity ban. They put conservative prude Politician Cocks in office. The following situation happened many times for me and mi amigos during the nudity-ban campaign: I remember walking behind some gay guys and there would be a couple of nudists near the Jane Warner Plaza and vicinity minding their own business and I’d hear nasty and even bullying remarks from the busy-body gay guys near me or walking ahead of me. Their snide, prudish and bullying remarks directed at the nudists reminded me of Anita Bryant and it caused me to realise that the so-called “gay community” of today has much more in common with hateful Anita Bryant than they do with Lily Tomlin. I’m not sure when the gay populace became conservative (and became the opposite of what the gay guys of the Gay Mecca were about). I think it’s been since their messiah Obama has been in office with their goal of “assimilating” in their desperate desire for the “straights” to accept them. Ugh.

      But you are correct, the people we’re talking about here have made the Castro neighbourhood what they call “Family Friendly.” Sanitised and sterilised, in other words. Why do they demand that when they could move to all the other neighbourhoods which already are so-called “Family Friendly?” All “Family Friendly” means is that some people have body image issues/problems and can’t bear to have their child see the human body. They’re fucking prudes and need psychotherapy. Chau.

      Sexual Freedom and Revolution

  11. Chica Salsa

    About the cheating thing….my girlfriend and I have suspected that many times in the Castro. Sitting in bars we’ve notice it. We’ve seen male-female couples in gay bars and after a while they’d start making out. My girlfriend has leaned over to me on more than one occasion and said, “they have the run of bars in this city. They could do that in any bar anywhere else in this city and yet they come over here to do that.” It does make us feel uncomfortable as if they’re trying to takeover our bars and this little place we have called the Castro. The same for when str8s make out at Castro and Market Street. They look like they just met and are making out. Cheating?

    Last year there was this str8 couple that just got married taking their wedding pictures on Castro Street in front of one of those greasy spoon restaurants. As we walked passed them this guy in front of me said, “why is a str8 couple on Castro Street taking wedding pictures?” The guy in front of him said, “Because they can. That’s why they’re here.”

  12. Dan

    I think most straight guys accept gay guys in their own gay bars (how good of them!) – IF – the gay guys go back in the closet and try to put on the same macho act that the straight guys wear which makes the straight guys feel more comfy around the gay guys. Then they’re “one of the guys,” sort of. I think this is what’s going on with a lot of gay guys today.

    1. rosa_barrio Post author

      I agree. I’ve said the same but in different words: GLBTQs are so desperate and needy to be accepted by the “straights” for some reason—why the fuck is that important to them?—that they seem willing to do anything and to go to any length including going back in the closet and being heteronormative (with gay shame) in order to be accepted. They disgust me. It makes the now-dead Gay Rights’ Movement mostly seem like a waste of everyone’s time. Gracias for your comment. Chau.

    1. rosa_barrio Post author

      Hola. No, Upper Market is not mostly gay. Not from what I’m seeing. It’s changed, unfortunately. It’s rare for me to see a Queer couple around Upper Market anymore. Whenever I see a couple at a distance around the Upper Market area I’m now expecting that couple to be “straight.” Then when I get closer and see that it’s a Queer couple, I’m pleasantly surprised. This is the opposite of the way it used to be around here.

      Queer couples were in the majority in Upper Market during the Gay Mecca days. But mostly what I see around Upper Market today are young, white “straight” couples. Gracias for your comment. Chau.

      1. ConcernedResidentIn94114

        Adding to that….I guess this is off topic but if you don’t mind….

        You forgot to say that there’s no shortage of babies and children running around Upper Market. Phew! Everywhere I look there are children and baby strollers. Has each couple decided to have a dozen children or more? Have these new arrivals to our city never heard of birth control or condoms? World overpopulation and food shortages not a concern to them either? Like you’ve said, the old city used to care about these social issues. The new city doesn’t give a damn about anything but corp. greed. Sorry to be off topic and you can delete this if you want. I just felt the need to say it.

        1. rosa_barrio Post author

          Hola. Also, officially the new city pretends to be “green” but that’s mostly fake too. And yes it’s like a nursery school in Upper Market. I think it’s a case of that shallow and superficial “Keeping Up With the Joneses” again, as well as that: “so and so has a child now, we should have one too, won’t that be so much fun? and then they can play together.” Gracias for your comment. Chau.

          1. ConcernedResidentIn94114

            Thanks for that.

            Up until recently the Greed-At-Any-Expense crowd hated San Francisco. I don’t know what to call them – they’re conservatives, right-wingnuts, some align with libertarians, etc. They had nothing good to say about our city for at least the last 30 years. That’s all changed now. They love this conservative city and they go on about it being “world-class” and “everyone’s favorite city.” That’s funny, they never called the former city “world class” or “everyone’s favorite city.” The former city was closer to “world class” than this new greed city because the former city was like a small United Nations, but Gentrification has eroded that. It’s amazing what greed has done here.

            Recently out of curiosity, I looked at several lists on websites of “world’s favorite cities” and San Francisco was not on any of the lists. London, Sydney, Qatar, Dubai and Rome were and others. NYC came in 5th on one list. Thanks.

            1. rosa_barrio Post author

              Hola, I never called the former San Francisco and the one I loved “everyone’s favourite city.” That sounds so arrogant, but so typical of that crowd you wrote about most of whom act like obnoxious assholes on local message forums that I’ve read. I can’t stand them; they’re such self-appointed authorities and omnipotent on all matters and so fucking abrasive, arrogant and condescending. And I suspect most everyone has a different answer for “what’s your favourite city?”

              Gracias for your comment. Chau.

  13. Nobody you know

    el barrio rosa: You talked about something in one of your earlier articles but didn’t mention it here and I think it’s important to mention, so I will, and that is the conservatives are all for straights going into gay areas and they call it “bringing diversity” to gay areas and gay bars.

    That’s strange, the conservatives have never cared about diversity before have they? No, for years they’ve mocked and opposed the diversity they now say is good. What they really mean by “bringing diversity” is straights going into gay areas and slowly moving in, changing the areas to the way they want them to be, and taking them over for their own conservative agenda after gays spent years fixing up the areas and making them nice places to live.

    With the straights moving in, there goes the neighborhood!!!

  14. Carmen

    Look at all that I’m missing!! If there were only one bar near me I’d go to that whether it was straight or gay but I wouldn’t go out of my way to do what this article talks about that many people are doing. This seems really weird to me too… unless as you say it’s a case of cheating or closet case. That explains it.

  15. carlos

    like jon said, “There’s a reason we have gay bars.”

    very true. if you go to a gay bar to meet someone for the night and all the guys there are not gay, how’s there a way of telling who is what when no one’s wearing “i’m gay” or “i’m straight” signs? this really seems strange to me.

  16. Jon

    I’ve heard about problems arising when a gay guy approached a what turned out to be straight guy in a gay bar. There’s a reason we have gay bars.

Fin. The End.