Read an Excerpt
Excerpts from Straight Talk with Gay Guys
Many gay guys are straight chick magnets, with loads of female friends who cry on their shoulders and welcome the practical advice given. The wonderful characters on the long-running TV show Will & Grace are an example of how advice from a gay friend is like no other. While gay guys are more sensitive and more straightforward in their assessment of a situation, they're still guys and part of the man club, and they're going to let us in!
Let's face it: We often need that swift kick in the ass to stop our moaning and complaining—and defending HIS inexcusable behavior. And this kick is what I and the thirty-three men involved in this book hope you will get out of this. You won't find step-by-step 'get that man' techniques, nor is this a self-help book that analyzes your dating behavior in a psychological way. This is just real reactions to some of our actions when it comes to figuring out guys, what they want, and how we should or should not think about any perspective mate. The advice is what you'd hear over a three-martini dinner with your gay guy friend. The mission of this book is to help you change your response to men in a way that will empower, not frustrate you.
Don't have a gay friend? Well, you've come to the right place. Now you have thirty-three, and they won't hold back what they want you to know! Where did I find guys to interview for this book? They come from all over. Some have been in relationships with, or were even married to, women. Others are insightful in their observations because they have experience hearing women complain about scenarios that have driven them crazy time and time again. I made sure to enlist the help of guys with female friends who come to them regularly with guy problems. They were excited to advise women for this book and were more than happy to share perspectives on straight relationships.
Why a Man as Your #1 Goal Sabotages Happiness
'Women sometimes go out of their way to find this Mr. Right, to the point where it becomes a vocation for them.' —Alex
Do you search for Mr. Right? Is each outing with friends another opportunity to scope out a potential partner? When finding a man dominates your life, you devalue yourself and compromise your happiness. The stereotype goes like this: Men are brought up believing that much of their self-worth comes from accomplishments; women are taught that theirs comes from an ability to get a man and get more points if he has an impressive career and money. So women often put most of their energy into finding and keeping a man, while men put their energy into proving how much they can achieve. A man's self-esteem increases with each career milestone, salary raise, victory over something, woman he scores with, or extra pounds he lifts in the gym. A woman's self-esteem goes down with each man who does her wrong.
Making Men the Center of Your Universe
The relationship sections in bookstores teem with material on how to find and keep a man. Why do we spend so much money and time learning strategies to handle men and keep them content? Most men don't go to these lengths to keep us happy! The exception is reading sex tips so they can get more. All of this reinforces the inflated importance of men. Rick gets frustrated when he sees women put their needs aside to cater to a man's. He explains: 'As a designer, one of the most painful things I see is women designing their apartment like some great, big mantrap. I had a client who asked me specifically to choose furnishings for her home in which a man would feel comfortable because she was preparing her home for a man. I said, 'How about you in the meantime? What are you going to enjoy?' That didn't matter to her. It was all about somebody else.'
Men aren't prizes. Many books encourage us to try hard to hunt him down and play games to lure him in. What is the value of that prize? Staying in a role to keep the games going? Catering to him? Going along with his whims? Putting up with bad behavior? Unhappiness with some delicious crumbs thrown in? Make yourself a prize that he'll want to have! We won't tell you how to find and keep a man. Instead, we encourage you to take the emphasis off of HIM, and put it on YOU. Find yourself first—create your own happiness. Open your eyes and pay attention! The better-than-nothing guy will leave you wallowing in regrets later. Being impatient about finding a man leads to unsatisfying choices, as Patrick points out: 'Whether through social hardwiring, an unwillingness to deal with any potential fear, or uncertainty and loneliness caused by seeking out a decent and intelligent man, many well-meaning, heterosexual women continue to sell themselves short—settling into a loveless marriage and subservient homemaker mode with the first or second cretin to satisfy them sexually. Don't do it! Good things come to women who wait.'