No one will dispute the importance of good girlfriends – they support your delusional hopes of one day being Mrs. Sam Kass, listen to you vent about your idiot boss and evil ex, and assure you that you haven’t gained an ounce despite that steady diet of french fries you’ve been adhering to, as a coping mechanism for the aforementioned idiot boss and evil ex. But it goes without saying that no modern woman’s circle of friends is complete without at least one gay bestie. The unique bond between a straight woman and a gay man is a many splendored thing, one that’s inspired sonnets (not really), TV shows, books, and the true barometer of mainstream credibility, a possible incarnation as a Bravo reality show. A new study conducted by Nancy H. Bartlett of Mount Saint Vincent University in Canada (and covered in the December issue of Allure magazine) suggests that having a large contingent of gay male friends may actually be good for you.
With this in mind, we asked women we knew if they felt that gay men made better best friends than girls. Two women share their opposing views, after the jump …
|I’ve always had gay friends — a lot of them. I’ve always gotten along well with them because we like the same things—gossip, gay music, long drunky brunches, talking crap about boys at happy hour, graphically describing penis, etc. And they make me laugh with their honesty and openness. But at the end of the day, if I have a serious issue and need to hash it out I talk to a girlfriend. Even if I have the most fun with gay men, as guys they just can’t truly know what it’s like to be a woman. And that’s when I need someone understanding who can be empathetic. The gays can make me laugh and make me forget about the issue, but they can’t give me the same heart-to-heart advice I need. Just because they’re gay doesn’t make them sensitive. Example: I was talking to a gay about whether or not to circumcise my kid. And he said “No, maybe he’ll be a hot uncut stud.” Sick. No. But my girlfriend instead sent me a photo of uncut ween and said “look at this anteater pic and decide.” – Heather Bollings*, 32||It’s always nice to have a supporting/approving male figure in your life. [My gay bff’s] opinion of how I look actually means more to me than my girlfriends’. He’s still a guy, but with better taste. Generally, I guess I trust them more. It’s the hybrid of the XY chromosome mixed with the feminine sensitivity. With girls, there’s always a Schadenfreude thing. Females are always going to be in competition with each other. As we’ve evolved, we’ve become more sensitive and the whole “bond of sisterhood” has become more ingrained, but its still there. Gay friends don’t have that. Since we’re not competing in the same pool, we can be happy for each other. Granted, you can’t get all girly and talk about periods and stuff with the gays — they think we’re disgusting.
Part of the appeal might be that I’m at the stage in my life where I like to go out and be fabulous and get drunk and dance and talk about penises. Gays are great partners in crime. But I think even once my lifestyle has changed and I settle down, that closeness will endure. That’s the nature of pairing off — even your closest girl friends aren’t as close when you’re with your mate. – Abigail Cusick, 27
*Names have been changed