Recent scientific data suggests that straight people are, in fact, born heterosexual. And despite their declining numbers, according to the very scientific records of Wikipedia, they overwhelmingly represent the majority of the world’s population.
Still, customs of Straight Culture™ can be baffling to unravel. What’s the deal with those socks that say “Wine Time!”? Is Olive Garden truly where you’re family? And what the hell is so appealing about Ed Sheeran?
With all things love and sex on our minds this February, NewNowNext asked some real-life heterosexuals to answer your burning questions about straight people. Here’s what we got:
What’s with the polar fleece vests?
If you’re questioning your sexual orientation, check your closet and see if you have a Patagonia fleece. If the answer is no, welcome to the family. I asked my brother—the token heterosexual white man in my life—why his tribe had adopted this uniform. He tells me, “I think people started wearing it because you could put it with a business casual ensemble.”
To which we reply, “Um, not really.”
How do you figure out who is the top and who is the bottom?xavierarnau
Get this: In many cases, it’s just the man!
If you’re friends with another straight couple, can friends of the opposite sex from the other couple hang out?Comeback Images
The short answer? Sometimes. According to a totally unscientific Facebook poll I conducted, a lot of straight people are totally weirded out when their guy or gal chills alone with a friend from another couple unless they are the same gender!
One straight person, however, says he finds these social norms “bizarre.
“I guess I always assumed the answer to this was actually about trust and communication,” he says. “Are you in a monogamous relationship with good communication and trust? Great! Then what’s the concern? No? Then maybe your partner hanging out with an ’opposite sex’ person isn’t really the issue here…”
Do women really wear makeup to bed to wake up with a “fresh face”?LifeJourneys
Sometimes! My friend Che, who is married to a straight dude, says she has done this. I asked her, “WHY ON EARTH?!”
“I mean, there really is no justification,” she says. She laughs at it now, since she has given birth twice, which she says is really “intimate and disgusting.”
How does dating change when you don’t already know of the majority of your dating pool, or when you can’t walk into a gay bar and already know who likes you from a dating app?Blend Images/Jill Giardino
“You feel as if there’s an unlimited shopping list of potential partners and begin disqualifying people based on increasing superficial biases,” one straight says.
Is it terrifying to know that you can make a baby when you get it on?PeopleImages
Yes. Like, absolutely everyone I polled who is capable of getting pregnant says yes.
When did you decide to be straight? Did you think it was a phase?Morsa Images
David Guinan, a straight New Yorker, tells me that he knew he was hetero at age 3 or 4, when his mom told him he had female babysitters coming over, and he wanted to know if they were pretty.
“But I’m a child of the ’80s, when being gay was also an insult that was thrown around,” he adds. Guinan had a lot of gay friends who weren’t out, and he says he’s ashamed of homophobic jokes he made growing up.
“I was at a family vacation and my uncle had a friend from college with him who was gay,” he says. “I didn’t know and apparently made a gay joke or said something stupid. He told me a few weeks later that it angered him, and Fred [his friend who was totally awesome] was gay, and I felt physical embarrassment and shame.”
Do straight people completely cut off contact with their exes?Deborah Jaffe
For the most part, the answer is yes, according to our really flawed, deeply unscientific poll Facebook survey.
“There is always a risk that the powers of attraction “overcome” the perceived friendship, especially during private moments involving alcohol,” one person says. “If they’ve already had sex, this is just exacerbated due to the effects.”
Sorry, Bobby. It was nice knowing you.