Last night we went to an 18th birthday party for a friend. It was a great night even if I thought it was funny Tom said to me that it made him feel old. But that's not the point of this post. The friends party was good and it was interesting to hear how much he was excited about being 18 and able to head out to the Valley. He's such a great guy but it made me think about the early days of investigating all the gay side of things.
But in saying that I read a post this morning that talked about doing gay things. I will quote Shannon in saying "Some of my mates say "but I don't really do gay things". What they mean is I don't go to clubs, go on Gay cruises, go to Mardi Gras, have a Manhunt profile, etc. There is no doubt that there is a huge proportion of the Gay community that lives outside of the scene."
I think when growing up all you see is this side of gay however it is really important to realise that this is only a very small portion of a gay person's existence. Studies have shown that the percentage of gay people on the scene or involved in scene or stereotype socialising is actually only around 10%. I guess this is no different to any group whether it be straight or gay. However I do think it's important for young gay people to really understand that there are choices. The scene as such is a small portion of the gay community and generally targeted at the young. This is obvious when every time you talk to someone as they get into their twenties they talk about how young the crowds are getting lol. But I think as you grow up many just move towards life and the things that are really important.
In saying that there are a lot of people as mentioned before who have no interest in the scene for whatever reason. A lot of young people that do get involved in the scene do so because it is the only thing they see where they can come out or socialise with other gay people and if that's what you want then great If it's not really what you want and you are only doing it because it seems like the only option then I just want you to know that there are truly options. One thing I have found is that I have met many gay people during my life both from the scene and not, some only partially connected to the scene. The thing I have found is that once you don't have that connection with the scene it changes people. It seems in general that people are much happier once they start to move on. That's not to say the scene is a bad thing, in fact I believe it can be a great learning experience. Like anything there is a good side and a bad side. However anyone who says that they are not influenced by the scene are kidding themselves.
The point is when growing up stay focussed and by all means experience the scene and non scene alike. they are both experiences that can teach you amazing things. The key is to know when it is time to move on. The other point is to say that if these things don't suit the person you want to be then know there is more and even though it may be difficult, be patient.