Top or Bottom: Frankly, My Dear, I Don’t Give a Damn

Executive Director of PhillyGayCalendar

Actual Grindr message that I received (side note: I wasn’t looking for a hook-up): “This may be crass but r u a top?”

Am I the only one around here who doesn’t give a crap about whether you are a top or bottom?

I mean, seriously: I could honestly care less (even if I do want to have sex with you—more on that in a minute).

Our obsession with the labels “top” and “bottom” seem to stem from some sort of internalized means to justify our sexual actions, to define our intercourse into neat, tidy linguistic boxes. 

But real sex isn’t like that.

What does happen between two people when they have sex is a hell of a lot of grey area—to me, the most amazing sexual encounters that I’ve ever experienced quite frankly couldn’t fall in the black-and-white boundaries of “top” or “bottom.”  To me, limiting yourself to one type of sexual label quite literally limits your sexual life.

There’s also some pretty deep internalized and cultural homophobia going on with this “need to define” our topness or bottomness: let’s just get out there the ridiculous preconceived notion that you’re “masc” if you top and you’re “fem” if you bottom.  Not only is this damaging to our own mental well being, but it’s the psychological reason why there are so many dudes who claim they are just “men having sex with men” and are not “gay” (think the “down low”).

You have wonder how many potentially awesome dating situations (or, hell, even sexual experiences) have been ruined due to the short-sightedness of individuals who label themselves as top or bottom and rule out all possible romantic involvement with a person if they do not seem to fit the predetermined one-size-fits-all category that their partner MUST FALL INTO OR ELSE.  That Grindr conversation I mentioned above?  It stopped cold-turkey after I explained my positioning on the subject (pun intended).

It’s 2014.  Quit asking that stupid question.  As Rhett Butler says in a certain movie, “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.”

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