Friday, September 30, 2011

Posted: 30 Sep 2011 06:00 AM PDT
"Systemic challenges due pose potential barriers to your dating life, they only have to have power if you allow them to do so. We are not victims; growing up gay requires significant courage, perseverance, and resilience. To survive and prosper through this means we can handle anything."
Step one requires taking back personal control and refusing to allow these dating challenges and disappointments to have emotional power over you.

* Start keeping a journal and write about your dating efforts and lessons learned to watch your evolution in progress. Make a list of all the reasons why you’re a “good catch” and why it’s important to keep your head held high when things aren’t going so well
. Write about the benefits of being single and what this affords you. Refer to this when you get into “funks” as a way to keep yourself motivated and centered on the positive. When you hear a quote or motivational saying that resonates with you, add this to your journal for additional affirmation and incentive.
* Since we are only in control of ourselves and cannot change other people, avoid blaming “the system” or other gay men for the current state-of-affairs as they are.It’s much more productive to focus more on yourself and dig deep to identify any potential areas where you might be contributing to difficulties. For some ideas on where to get started with this, check out my article on “Am I Mr. Right?”  and break out your journal and start writing and tackling those issues that will improve your quality-of-life.
* A recent survey I took indicated that the vast majority of gay men do not initiate conversations with gay men they find attractive, preferring instead to take the passive stance of waiting for others to approach them. Huge mistake! Imagine how many relationships could have started had these men made the first move. Make it a habit every time you go out to initiate conversations with at least one person. If this is a scary thought, take a class in public speaking or join your local Toast Masters club for practice. This very important social skill could really give your dating life that extra boost!
* Be visible in as many different venues as you can. Live your life to the max and join as many social groups, classes, volunteer activities, and events that cater to your hobbies that will get you into the mix with other gay men. If you happen to meet someone special there…bonus! Go into these situations with no expectation of outcome (and that won’t be difficult because you’re in a venue doing something you love to do!).
* If you have a personals ad, make sure you have a captivating headline that draws attention and make sure your personal requirements for a partner and relationship are sprinkled throughout the content to screen appropriate candidates better. Heck, could even start your own gay singles support group or recreation club in your own community. All it takes is some creativity and imagination!
* Alone we can’t change unhealthy scripts in the gay community, but one person at a time and banding together can create a shift in eradicating stereotypes, objectification, and creating value in relationships and intimacy. Is there anything that you’re willing to do to make that impact?


Being single has its pros and cons just like anything else. The trick is to make the most of this time of your life and to view it as an opportunity rather than a liability and explore different ways you can bring more meaning and purpose to your life rather than defining success around having a boyfriend.
When that time comes, it will make the experience that much more rewarding and fulfilling.It absolutely can make you go stark-raving-mad when that guy doesn’t call you back when he says he will or if it doesn’t seem like you’ll ever meet a guy who wants more than just sex. The point is to acknowledge these feelings, but then redirect yourself and re-frame this by recognizing the disguised blessing in these happenings–this void may actually be preparing you for when the right time does come and has just freed you from missing out on such a potential opportunity.
By taking control of your dating life and living a rich and enjoyable lifestyle, you’ll have the power to cope with dating woes and view them from a more positive perspective.

© Brian Rzepczynski

Brian Rzepczynski, Certified Personal Life Coach, is The Gay Love Coach:“I work with gay men who are ready to create a road map that will lead them to find and build a lasting partnership with Mr. Right.” To sign up for the FREE Gay Love Coach Newsletter filled with dating and relationship tips and skills for gay singles and couples, as well as to check out current coaching groups, programs, and teleclasses.Brian is a friend and contributing author to GAYTWOGETHER, please visit him at

~~~~thanks to Brian and to Michael

Thursday, September 29, 2011

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G'day JustinO,
After your post about Irish dancing, I had a look around Youtube and found this... Riverdance. Unbelievable stuff.
A  SIX   DECADE   ROMANCE: of moderate interest. .. ;-))  but it borders on Carrie Bradshaw and SEX IN THE CITY. . .. hehe

SORRY  I cannot post the article itself as I cannot afford the price to reprint. . .$315.00  !!!  nothing in the NYTimes is worth $315 !!!   LOL

Posted: 29 Sep 2011 06:00 AM PDT
GAYTWOGETHER-071308-2wOne of the most common concerns that come through my service from gay singles is the difficulty they speak of securing dates with quality and compatible men; and sometimes it’s even just landing a date of any kind! Invitations for sex seem more readily accessible and the frustration and disappointment is the predominant emotion experienced by these relationship-minded singles who have good heads on their shoulders and are ready and available for love, but just can’t seem to find others who mirror their desire for substance and depth in their involvements.
After a series of let-downs, it can really start messing with your sense of optimism and positive outlook. You might begin to feel jaded and develop resentments toward the whole institution of dating and the gay community, questioning whether gay relationships really can work. Worse yet, you might begin turning these attacking feelings against yourself in the form of developing beliefs that there’s something wrong or defective with you in the face of so much perceived rejection.
Ouch! Stop the madness! You cannot allow all the hard work it took for you to develop and grow yourself into the solid man that you’ve become to be tampered with by the inherent challenges of dating.

It’s Not You, It’s Me

So why is it so hard for gay men to meet and participate in the courtship process? What follows here is a list of reasons (and there’s probably more!) that might be contributory factors to the obstacles we encounter in our efforts to find quality partners.
This list isn’t intended to further reinforce hopelessness or to make you give up on your quest and go running for the hills, but instead is offered to showcase the reality that gay dating CAN be difficult (but not insurmountable!). So before you start beating up on yourself for your absent dating life, recognize that the system of gay dating itself as it now stands holds many dysfunctional politics that make this situation more difficult for us.
* Gays supposedly make up only 10% of the total population, thereby decreasing our dating pool.
* We don’t wear the word “GAY” stamped on our foreheads; therefore, it makes things much more difficult compared to our heterosexual counterparts to determine who “plays ball on our field” when you’re out in public and can inhibit us from approaching men we find interesting.
* Due to our homophobic society, gays grow up with the threat of discrimination, ridicule, harassment, and abuse and violence. This wreaks havoc on our self-esteem, confidence, and identity. As such, our dating pool tends to possess proportionately more men struggling with mental health issues, substance abuse and other addictions, and those unable or unwilling to “come out” and achieve a sense of gay pride that would have them be more visible in the community.
* There is an absence of positive role models to emulate what healthy gay relationships look like or how they function.Unlike our heterosexual counterparts, there are no ascribed developmental tasks or rites-of-passage in adolescence to teach us how to date or honor our same-sex involvements. As such, many men feel directionless in dating and can sabotage potential relationships. Combined with internalized homophobia, fears of intimacy, and conflicts around masculinity, sexual orientation, and identity…it’s no wonder it’s so hard!
* The gay community tends to sexualize gay men, their bodies, and their relationships. Coupled with glamorizing youth, objectification is rampant and sex seems to take center stage. Until the community as a whole makes some radical changes in our views toward and portrayals of sexuality and gay eroticism, healthy dating and relationship development and maintenance will likely be challenged and overshadowed.

Action Challenges

So while these systemic challenges due pose potential barriers to your dating life, they only have to have power if you allow them to do so. We are not victims; growing up gay requires significant courage, perseverance, and resilience. To survive and prosper through this means we can handle anything.
Step one requires taking back personal control and refusing to allow these dating challenges and disappointments to have emotional power over you.
(Continued Tomorrow)

© Brian Rzepczynski

Brian Rzepczynski, Certified Personal Life Coach, is The Gay Love Coach: “I work with gay men who are ready to create a road map that will lead them to find and build a lasting partnership with Mr. Right.” To sign up for the FREE Gay Love Coach Newsletter filled with dating and relationship tips and skills for gay singles and couples, as well as to check out current coaching groups, programs, and teleclasses. Brian is a friend and contributing author to GAYTWOGETHER, please visit him at

~~~~ thanks to Brian  and to Michael

A Word for Today

GAYTWOGETHER.COM - Quotes & Quips"Learn to pause or nothing worthwhile will catch up to you." - Doug King

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Origins of Irish Dancing

Now. . for all of ye who are not Irish and for those wanna-be's among ye I am going to let ye all in on a wee bit of a secret. . . .How in the world did Irish Dancing come into being? . . . so gather all in and I'll be telling you the whole truth. . . . ..sssshhh. . . .
listen close. . . .'tis all in the  beer!  Watch closely now. . .  . 

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Quotes & Quips - Albert Einstein

GAYTWOGETHER.COM - Quotes & Quips"Imagination is everything.  It is the preview of life's coming attractions.” -Albert Einstein 

Quotes & Quips - Albert Einstein

GAYTWOGETHER.COM - Quotes & Quips"Imagination is everything.  It is the preview of life's coming attractions.” -Albert Einste

Posted: 26 Sep 2011 08:31 PM PDT
22007_2Intimate relationships come in many flavors: dinner-and-a-movie dates that develop slowly into something else, dating one guy exclusively and becoming boyfriends, establishing something more permanent, perhaps as lovers or husbands or partners.
Some relationships evolve hastily; others take time. Some men are comfortable “playing the field,” while others move so quickly to stake a claim on a boyfriend's affections that it feels like a return to California Gold Rush days.

"An unarmed encounter between two vulnerable individuals is my favorite definition of intimacy. Most of us understand the "unarmed'part of that equation without too much difficulty. But "vulnerable?" That's tougher. Especially for men; toughness is associated with masculinity – vulnerability is something we're taught to avoid.
Vulnerability is a paradox. A friend recently talked to me about how much closer he felt to the person he was dating after getting food poisoning while on a skiing trip. The experience of being cared for while he was weak (and not very attractive!) helped him to genuinely feel the loving words his boyfriend had been speaking for several weeks. He's not eager to feel that sick again, but he recognized that amid the misery, he received an offering that was very intimate and loving.

If we are going to allow ourselves to open up and feel vulnerable, we need assurance that the person we are with will continue to respect us and will not abandon us. We need loyalty from the other person. In a healthy relationship, that means he'll want a similar assurance from us as well.

Commitments aren't all the same. Some commitments are lifelong pledges of fidelity, and that's probably what most of us thing of first when we think of commitment. But a commitment may look quite differently. Ron tells Jeff he won't date anyone else while they are going out. Mark and Ray agree that while they may have sex outside their relationship of several years, they will always put one another first. Jim and John agree not to discuss ending their relationship until they have given counseling a try. That's a commitment, too.Guys5806

It's understandable that people often feel hesitant, even ambivalent, about making a commitment. Choosing one person means not choosing someone else. It can be hard to make that sort of choice – especially in a culture like ours, that values romance over commitment. Also, many of us have seen marriage commitments not taken very seriously.  Why would we be eager to do the same?

The lack of legal structure in gay relationships means that we have great latitude in deciding what we want our relationships to look like; all areas of commitment are open to negotiation. Sometimes the lack of a formal ritual (like a wedding) can mean that we find ourselves with lots of assumptions about our relationships, but little frank conversation about the nature of our relationships.

Making our commitments clear helps to make them powerful. Sitting down with your boyfriend or partner to talk about your spoken and unspoken understandings is important work within a relationship.  Some suggestions:
  • Choose a time when things are going well, rather than when your relationship is struggling.
  • Speak about your own needs and desires; use statements that start with "I."
  • Listen as much as you speak.
Remember that a commitment is much more likely to mean something if it is freely offered and not given because your partner feels intimidated.
© John R. Ballew.
John R. Ballew, M.S. author & contributor to GAYTWOGETHER, is a licensed professional counselor in private practice in Atlanta. He specializes in issues related to coming out, sexuality, relationships and spirituality. If you have any questions or comments you can submit them directly to GAYTWOGETHER or John R. Ballew, M.S. - or at (404) 874-8536.

~~~~thanks to Michael

Married Gays Stats

Posted: 27 Sep 2011 02:24 PM PDT
Aa-Census-Bureau-logo-ofThe U.S. Census Bureau on Tuesday unveiled new data revealing that 131,729 married gay couples and 514,735 gay unmarried couples live in the United States.
Based on information complied as part of the 2010 census — the first time ever data on gay couples was collected as part of the effort — the new figures revise earlier estimates of same-sex couples published in the summer. Initial data showed 349,377 married same-sex couple households and 552,620 same-sex unmarried partner households.
Census Bureau staff discovered an inconsistency in the responses statistics that artificially inflated the number of same-sex couples. The adjusted results are closer to previously released estimates of the 2010 American Community Survey for same-sex married and unmarried partners.
U.K. Straight Divorce Rates Twice As High As Gay Dissolutions
New data from the U.K. may counter stereotypes about the instability of gay relationships, as it indicates same-sex couples in civil partnerships are ending their relationships at half the rate of straight married couples.  Recently released Office of National Statistics figures from 2010 — the latest available — showed 2.5% of civil partnerships dissolving in the first four years, while 5.5% of marriages ended in divorce in the same span of time. -
U.S. Lawmakers Seek Added Protections For Bi-national Gay Couples
U.S. House Democrats are calling on the Obama administration for more explicit assurances that new immigration policy will enable foreign nationals to stay in the United States if they’re in same-sex relationships with American citizens.     In two separateletters dated Sept. 27, 69 lawmakers seek additional clarification from the Department of Homeland Security and the Justice Department that bi-national same-sex couples will be included in policy that aims to take low priority cases out of the deportation pipeline.-

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Even After Death. . . . .

GAY KIDS are still being bullied after their death.

While Jamey's wake was going on, bullies at a local school dance chanted "You're better off dead. . .We're glad you're dead!"
His parents were on one of the early morning talk shows.

Here is more on the issue. . .

How sick can we get?



charles colbert

"So how do you like them apples?"


WHAT. . . WHO. . . .. huh???

As an existentialist psychologist I take exception, Coopsta Duude, with your choice of the words "define what I am".

Why? WHAT designates a thing, an object. WHO, on the other hand shows a person.
There is far too much de-personalization, therefore de-humanizing in our society for our general mental and emotional health.

When we objectify a person we USE that person. Person-to-person is about relationship: the inter-active dynamic in human growth and living. "We use things; we love persons." . . .unfortunately it is often the other way round.

Thus growth is stunted, emotional fulfillment is crippled. One of the things I object to in the game wars online. Here the characters are objects, things. The greater the cruel, destructive carnage too often rates the 'success' of the so called 'game'. Hours spent daily in this kind of activity cannot but influence, shape a kid's mind and concepts of the meanings of life and the crown of life - loving relationships. What goes on in his cyber-world cannot but influence and even shape his M.O.. . .his ways of coping with reality.

So my dear Coopsta, NorthShore soul mate, you are never ever a WHAT. You are most always and eminently a WHO.  "We use WHATS and we love WHOS."

End of Tuesday's Psych 101 class.
Justin o' the Dunes
September 27, 2011 8:14 AM

Monday, September 26, 2011

More From "Rick Santorum"

Posted: 26 Sep 2011 06:20 AM PDT
More From Rick Santorum's Anti-Gay AdgendaThe most provocative moment from last Thursday night's Republican presidential primary debate came when a few members of the crowd booed an openly gay soldier for asking whether he would have to hide his sexuality under a future, Republican administration.
Former Senator Rick Santorum (R-Pa.), to whom the question was addressed, responded that he would reinstate "don't ask, don't tell," the federal policy that prohibited LGBT individuals from serving openly in the military. And when pressed on the matter after the debate ended, the Pennsylvania Republican argued that repeal of the policy had been harmful for those gay soldiers as well.
"We executed a policy that I think was detrimental to everyone, including them, in my opinion because sex and sexual preference should not be an issue in the military, period," he said. "And it should not be something that is demonstrated in any shape or form in the military. And it shows how much our culture has changed that this is even a subject to be debated within the military."
Santorum didn't elaborate on how allowing open service was detrimental for gay soldiers. He did, however, say that he "would grandfather in people who, because of the [DADT repeal] policy, came out." "It's not their fault," he said.  Source:

Saturday, September 24, 2011

My Story

Saturday, September 24, 2011 8:44 PM

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G'day JustinO,
I'm not sure how relevant my story is, or even if it's worth telling. I've tried a couple of times to explain it on Dunes' comments but ended up trashing it. So I'll leave it to you to determine whether or not it's worth posting, or of any use to others.
My earliest lesson in discrimination was as a kid. I heard noises on the other side of the fence in the backyard, and then peered through a crack in the palings to investigate. I saw six fluffy little chickens. Five of them were pecking the sixth to death. I saw blood and wondered why such a horrible thing was happening to one of the chicks.
I'm not sure if witnessing the chicks had anything to do with my behavior as a kid, but for all my years at school I would spend each recess walking around the schoolyard in circles pretending to be headed somewhere. I figured if I looked busy no one would bother me. I was afraid to stop or be seated on my own in case I became a target.
I knew somehow that I was different to other kids. Not that I knew I was gay. There was no such thing as gay or homosexual. No one knew what it meant. If you were slightly effeminate or whatever, the worst thing you could be called was "sissy". I never played sports or got involved in any organizations because that would have meant associating with my peers. My two best friends were Mr Smith and Mr Jones... both imaginary. My mother once told me she'd have to stand at the back door and listen to my conversations to find out "who" I was before she could call me in for dinner.
I was somehow cajoled into joining the school football team when I was about 12. We were bused to a local playing field where I was told to play "wing". Wing? What was wing? I had no idea. Everyone expected me to know about football but I didn't have a clue. So, early in the game, when I saw all the players headed in a particular direction, I seized the opportunity to head in the opposite direction. I jumped down into a storm water drain and followed it home. And that was the end of my football career.
I left school at 14 because I couldn't stand it anymore. I had to promise my mother that I would continue my schooling at night tech. And then I blossomed. My workmates were different to the kids at school. There was no peer pressure. I was free to be me. There were no teachers to turn my hands black and blue with the cane. I didn't have to line up in the mornings for inspection before marching into class with all the other kids. I didn't have to be like everyone else. There was no school uniform. I could wear what I liked to work, even luminous socks and an Elvis hairstyle. I was an adult. A 14 y/o, 5 foot adult but what the hell. I was treated like an adult. AND I EARNED MONEY!
I'll never forget the day I left school for the last time. I walked through the front gates determined not to look over my shoulder. And I didn't. Those days were gone... dead and buried. Good riddance!
In hindsight, I blame the institution of school for any problems I had about "fitting in". Outside of school, I didn't have that problem. There was nothing to fit into! In the school environment, kids rule the playground. You're not allowed to deviate from accepted behavior... from a rigid code of conduct. If you're different, the other chickens will peck you to death.
It was outside of school in the workplace where I discovered that some guys were into other guys. They were everywhere! At the time I had no idea what was going on. Young blokes would wink at me and smile, and do strange things with their tongues. What the bloody hell was that all about? Yes, I was extremely naive. If they had done that in the school playground, whoa! Big trouble.
When it did eventually dawn on me that I was gay, I became my own worst enemy... convinced that I was a sinner. It took me a long time to come to terms with being different. But that's another story.