You’ve had that moment, right? You meet a guy after you’ve had a few too many cocktails and you can’t get it up … But, wait, we have pills for that, right? And if you’ve prepared, you took the pill earlier, and modern science saves the gay!
The Hard Part
Much harder is falling in love. As frustrating as it is for Virgos like me, getting your heart on is a process we can’t control. I’ve been in love with two people in my life — a woman and a man. For platinum gays, you have now stopped reading this column because you can’t cope. Take heart. We must accept that women are an integral part of the gay male journey, not only at our literal beginning, but from the countless women who have stood up as allies for our kind.
Each time I’ve fallen in love, it was completely out of my control and came at a time that I would not have expected. When it comes, it comes. But falling in love isn’t just a point in time. Countless of us in relationships face the hard reality that love, to some degree, must indeed be maintained. I’ve lived half of my adult life in committed relationships and have come to be more aware of the struggle and the reward.
Getting it Up
So, how exactly does one get a heart on?
As simple as it seems, I suggest starting with a dose of “main character energy.” The one constant in your life, the person you reason with the most, and the being you spend the most time with and will walk into death with, is you. You are the single most important person to love.
Most humans, including me, grapple with the drama of dating or with their marriages. Not often enough do we stop and think to look inward and more deeply at ourselves. You want to rekindle the magic in the bedroom or the conversation at dinner? Start with yourself, and then work on connecting to your partner anew.
This includes taking the regular time to fall in love with yourself. Make it a practice and don’t be lazy. We are multidimensional creatures. Invest in every single dimension of you — from your mind and body to your personal life and career.
Play with Yourself
MIND: Take walks in nature, meditate in the mornings, listen to podcasts, read your favorite book, or have a spa day. No matter how you do it, it’s important to take the time to quiet your brain and feed it sustenance.
BODY: Run, lift, or hike. Eat healthy, limit alcohol and drugs. Masturbate. Yes, even if you are in a relationship, enjoying yourself and feeling connected to your physical form is vital!
SOUL: So neglected by the queer community! Even if you left Jesus, that doesn’t mean you have to leave the universe! We are all connected, so do an act of kindness for another human or for the Earth. Whether you pray, meditate or contemplate, exercise vulnerability with yourself or a loved one. It may be difficult, but you have a lifetime to practice.
SOCIAL: Get off your damn phone and connect with real humans. Go old school — play board games, cards, or have an intimate conversation. Make dates with friends or family. Whether you’re single or in a relationship, your personal, platonic, and familial connections matter. Placing all your hopes and dreams on any one person is no way to play the love game.
WORK & REST: Do what you do with passion. Enjoy the work that the universe puts in front of you — whether it’s spreadsheets or clearing the dinner table. Go all in! But don’t forget to reward yourself with rest! Give your body the time to sit, to be, to rejuvenate and reset its clock.
In reality, when you are being you, you’re at your best. When you’re vibrating at your frequency, you can best interact with the ocean of other humans that will cross your path. And finding love isn’t as much work because you will find it in so many forms. Be prepared. Most love comes in kind deeds and glances with strangers and in fantastic moments of friendship.
And when you meet that someone — you will be ready. And for those who have someone, when your eyes meet your partner’s, you will certainly have your heart on for that hard on.
Happy Valentine’s Day to all the Dolls!
Helmut is the founder of The Gayly Dose, an Atlanta based podcast hosted by an all-gay cast. Unique in its mission and follow-on format, weekly episodes are known for their real conversations about things that matter to the community and their listeners. Purposefully candid and brutally honest, the cast speaks on a range of topics, including monogamy, body issues, coming out, dating apps and growing up gay in the church. Listen at thegaylydose.com.