Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Why Some Married Men on the Down Low are not Cheating

Here's a recent comment, posted on Married Men on the Down Low:
I asked my wife what she defined as cheating, is it just sex with other people? and she said "going outside the marriage for things you could be getting from inside the marriage". So no, not just sex, kissing, hugging, loving, those types of things constituted cheating as well.

So I discussed "pegging" with her. (her wearing a strap on device to have anal sex with me, as though I'm the female, and she's the male.) She was appalled, disgusted, and completely uninterested.

So no, I'm *not* cheating when I let my boyfriend have anal sex with me. Its not something I could be getting from inside my marriage. There is no kissing, hugging, loving, etc. It doesn't overlap in any way. I never have an orgasm, I don't even get an erection. I'm always safe, and we're both disease and drug free. There's no risk of STDs.

Besides, its not sex I'm looking for. Its abuse. Wonderful beautiful abuse. I get the verbal and emotional abuse from my wife, but she won't abuse me physically the way I need. 

I am not gay. I am at most bi-sexual. I LOVE having sex with my wife. She gets me rock hard all the time. I can't get enough of having sex with her. Other hot women turn me on, and make me rubber-neck. I never check out guys. I think many men who engage in this behavior are like me seeking to reproduce physical abuse from their childhoods. And people think that spanking their children is a good thing. I need beat now as an adult because I was beat so much as a child. Its how I feel "normal". 
I wonder how many other married men have anal sex with an abusive boyfriend just because it makes them feel normal.  I've never really heard of that before, but maybe I'm naive.

There are other aspects of this comment that I am familiar with.  One is that there's a lot of variability in how people define cheating.  Is a kiss cheating? A passionate hug?  What about masturbating to thoughts of someone other than your spouse?  What about putting a penis in your mouth for just a minute or two?  There is no universal definition for cheating.

It seems to me that in an authentic, loving marriage, the couple would discuss and agree to a definition - which is exactly what this man and his wife did.  And based on his report of their discussion, he is clearly not cheating.  Or at least he doesn't think he is.

I won't go so far as to say the man is delusional, however, I'd be far more convinced if he disclosed his activities to his wife and SHE decided he wasn't cheating.  It seems rather disingenuous to me to claim fidelity to an agreement but then to hide an activity which (supposedly) would be acceptable.  If it's not cheating, why not tell her?

So, yeah...creative definitions of what doesn't constitute cheating are pretty common among men on the down low.  No surprises there.

What interests me most about this man is his how he separates a certain sex act from his sexuality. He even says that the sexual act is not about sex at all, but about physical abuse.  It's for that reason, in addition to the fact that he doesn't have an erection or an orgasm, that he very logically labels himself as "at most bisexual."

In all honesty, I don't want to understand the physical abuse aspect of the man's down low activities, however, the clear separation in his mind between a gay sex act and his sexuality is something that really fascinates me.  It seems to be a common phenomenon; I can't count the number of times I've read stories about men who have sex with dozens, or even hundreds of men, yet they see themselves as straight.

Women, as a rule, never believe that.  Their sexuality does not work that way.  For them, sex and emotion are closely linked so it's impossible for many of them to imagine that any straight man could have sex with another man, even once, and still be genuinely considered straight.  Authentically straight men, they say, don't have sexual contact with other men, ever.

I know what women think and the logic they use, but I'd really like to hear from the guys who have sex with men but are straight.  I wish a few of them would clearly explain why a man who mostly (or even exclusively) has sex with men is not mostly gay.

I'd also like to understand why sex with men is not cheating, yet it's still something that must be hidden from wives.

These are not facetious questions.  I really would like to understand the answers well enough to be able to explain them to others.

Please, share your thoughts and experiences in the comment box below.


  1. Hey Cam,

    think the article below might have some info regarding reasons why straight men have sex with men. Only some of which have anything to do with homosexuality or bisexuality.



    1. That article has some options, though most of them would be seen by the average person as some form of mental disorder.

      An extremely common reason that isn't mentioned? Gay stereotypes in society. There are guys out there who are romantically and sexually attracted to other guys but who don't identify with the stereotypical gay lifestyle (sometimes to the point of hostility) and, thus, reject the label. They're "straight" because they prefer ballgames to ballrooms or because they don't say "girlfriend" or whatever. The fact that they love men is of less importance to their identity, in their minds, than everything else, so they don't define themselves by that aspect.

      One guy who blogs on the subject goes by "No Hetero"; his "late introduction" is here: http://nohetero.blogspot.com/2013/02/a-late-introduction.html

    2. I don't like that article by Joe Kort. If you're a "straight" man and you're having sex with men, then it's very likely that you're also having sex with women. Of course that's not always true, but very often it is. Female partners of these "straight" men have the right to accurately know their man "is", for all sorts of reasons, including their physical and emotional safety.

      Kort is a well-known authority on male sexuality and I think he does a grave disservice to women by writing this article and thereby encouraging "straight" men to label themselves as straight. He really should be encouraging these men to label themselves as "not straight", "not hetero" or "bisexual." After all, there are MANY men who go through adolescence and never fool around with other boys, who go to prison and never have sex with other men, who never sell their bodies for sex, etc. Clearly, those ARE straight men. Those men and their partners are entitled to an unasterisked label that authentically describes them. Likewise, men who have sex with both genders should be encouraged to label themselves authentically. Kort's article totally subverts that idea. For that reason, his article does far more harm than good.

      Austin - As always, you make a good point. "Not Straight" and "Not Hetero" seem like reasonable, useful labels to me. The key issue is using labels that match behavior. Labels that don't do that are, well, lies, and as such they have the potential to cause huge amounts of pain and suffering. If Joe Kort wants to be helpful, he should encourage the use of these terms rather than packing a variety of not-straight sexual behaviors into the straight label.

  2. I'm in a sexless marriage. I met a man in online chat who was planning a trip to be near my home. We talked about meeting. He agreed, Wanting to be honest with my wife, I told her about it. She agreed. Next morning she said she'd changed her mind. I told her all we planned to do was masturbate one another. Didn't matter. She won't even give me a handjob these days. She had a total hysterectomy. All downhill since. I've tried to reason with her. I told her if I lost my testicles I'd still have a mouth and two hands. I'd do whatever it took to please her. It falls on deaf ears. If I should meet a male friend who shared my philosophy you can bet we'd have some fun. And I wouldn't feel like I was cheating. Btw, I'm 73 and my testosteron'a 692.

  3. Anonymous--I commend you for being honest with your wife. As to where you are headed from here, your are entitled to your feelings on the matter. It may not feel like cheating, but it is.

    If your wife has abandoned your sexual relationship then you have plenty of grounds to file for a divorce. You may ask her to go to counseling and if that is responded to with inaction, you may even ask her if you can keep the living situation as it is, but end the marriage.

    Perhaps you are saying to yourself, why should I have to go through the pain and fall-out from a divorce when I am not the problem. While I do have empathy for your situation. The fact remain that your vows, assuming they were somewhat tradition were for fidelity in good times and in bad. You are now in the bad part. That sucks! But if you can not keep good faith to your vows then you should release her and yourself from them.

    If that puts one or both of you in a place where you are no longer financially solvent or otherwise is untenable then you should in no uncertain terms inform her that if she is unwilling to address her end of the matter, through hormone replacement therapy, counseling, or simply fulfilling her obligation to the partnership then you will end the marriage relationship in all manners except legal and free yourself to pursue other relationships with integrity.

    By the way I would say the inverse to your wife. You pledged your fidelity to your husband. Fidelity is not simply keeping yourself from sex with others, it is engaging fully with your partner. If you are unwilling to perform those duties then you should openly acknowledge your unwillingness and free your husband by granting him a divorce.

    1. Thank you Anonymous for sharing your story. And thank you Laughing Creation for responding to it. These kinds of "he says/she says" discussions are extremely illustrative and make for a terrific addition to the blog.