Because this blog is visited regularly by people who search for such phrases as “masculine gay man,” “gay cop” or “gay firefighter,” I am aware that many people have questions as to whether a guy can have what is considered a traditionally masculine job and also be gay.
For me, I work in an office doing work related to my profession. There are some gay men where I work — most men are straight. I figure the proportion of gay and straight co-workers is about the same as it is in the general population, though the predominant sex of those I work with is male — what I do has been traditionally a male profession. (Granted, there are excellent females who I work with, too. My profession is open to all, but in general, there are more males than females who choose this line of work.)
There are some professions, though, where the persona, bravado, and behavior of males who occupy positions in the profession do not align with perceived traits or behaviors of gay men. The perceptions that straight people have comes from stereotypes, where they anticipate feminine behavior and physical weakness.
As I was catching up on email related to the wide span of interests that I serve in my profession, I found an article written by a firefighter who came out to those he works with that he is gay. His story was on the internet (but in April 2016, it was gone). It was a good read. It affirms that gay men can have and be successful in jobs that require physical strength and are considered “traditionally male.” It also demonstrates that it is easier to be “out” at work, and not hide in the closet.
I was also made aware by the email that I received of a website titled, “Coming Out From Behind the Badge.” This is an excellent resource that provides information about and for people who work in the fire, EMS, and law enforcement communities about what it’s like to be gay and work in those professions. It also gives guidance to LGBT people on how to come out and continue to do a good job in his/her chosen field and profession.
I really wish that all that stereotyping about gay people would stop, but that ain’t gonna happen any time soon considering the political environment of the United States, and the influence that organized religion plays on people’s thoughts, decision-making, and perceptions.
Life is short: be who you are, and be honest. That’s what coming out is all about.