The Ultimate Fashion Fail? Calling Someone’s Style “Gay”

Listen Now Download

Share this story:

Photo: Brett Myers/Youth Radio

It’s frustrating that people are still using “gay” or “lesbian” to insult or describe clothing. Like…how can you dress like a sexuality?

Hawaiian shirts used to be my favorite things to wear. That is, until my friend looked me up and down, raised an eyebrow, and said, “You dress like a lesbian.”

For the rest of the day, I felt terrible. All I could think about was whether my style was too tomboyish. I wondered, “Should I start wearing more dresses and applying makeup?”

Even though I knew it’s ridiculous to describe a style with a sexuality, I fixated on her words. I’m disappointed in myself for being so affected by it. Being told I dress like a lesbian means nothing. The comment is based on inaccurate stereotypes and outdated beliefs.

By letting myself get so affected by her words I inadvertently reinforced her flawed thinking–that being gay can be an insult or a fashion statement. In reality, that kind of comment has no meaning whatsoever.

So instead of changing my wardrobe, I’m changing my mentality. And I can’t wait to wear my Hawaiian shirts again.

Listen Now