Credit: Jason Jaskot Photography

The word “fetish” runs rampant in the gay community.  Sometimes for the good, and sometimes for the not so good (see here).  Something that can easily be fetishized within this ever growing cafeteria of gay subcategories is when a guy happens to be into someone who is carrying extra weight on them.  This term used to be referred as someone who is a “bear”, however the meaning of that is now so misconstrued that even I don’t know what is and what isn’t (it’s basically a state of mind at this point.  Which is fine).  So what happens when you are like me, and have the weight on you, but don’t like being called words like “chubby” amongst others adjectives?  At what point does someone draw the line with how they fetishize a dude with size?

I am someone who always has had weight on them.  Ever since I was a kid, I was big.  It’s something that will always inherently be in me, and I make no plans on ever becoming skinny.  There is a confidence to being the size that I am (full disclosure: I’m a size 40 pant, but I rock them), that has grown over the years which is due to a mixture of maturity, wisdom and the attraction I do receive from other men.  Some of these men years ago would be ones that I would give myself a pat on the back for, as in my mind I saw them as “out of my league”.  I no longer have that thought process as the older I get, the more I feel the playing fields are evened out and everyone gets a fair chance.  Like this.

As much as I am embrace my size and feel comfortable in my skin, there has been a ton of situations that question how I am viewed by some men in this community.  There are actual apps out there that are developed to embrace this sort of idealism, where men get off on aspects like “belly play”, feeding, gainers and other hot buttoned items.  I want to preface this with the whole “no judgment” thing, because really to each his own, but at the same time, it’s not for everybody.  I do, however, question if the heavier set man is really 100 percent enjoying that kind of behavior for whomever is interested in them, as it seems to become exploit 101 with the stories that I have heard.

There are terms out there that tend to sound more complimentary in my eyes compared to the word “chubby”.  Ones like husky, proportioned, and other words tend to weigh better (pun) in my mind with how to effectively say something nice about a guy without getting offended.  Getting messages on apps like “Sexy Chunky”, “Nice Moobs”, and “Well you’re a cute, chunky fella” really doesn’t do well for me as it just comes across so wrong to where the mental hard-on that I could possibly have for the person I’m talking to becomes limp within a minute.

Outside of the app world, which I am consistently trying to log myself off of even though it can be hard, there have of course been situations in real life that has spurred this annoyance.  Back when I was living in Long Island, there was a “chaser” of sorts that I used to hook up with even though it became more and more brief.  Why?  Because anytime we would hook up, he would spend the duration of it grabbing my stomach fat to where it actually hurt.  Yes, unless you are into I guess what is called “belly S&M”, then you will find that grabbing onto that really hardly can hurt someone. Yet, they get off on it.  The response was always “But… you are so sexy and I love doing this to you!”  Bye.  Seriously bye.  I didn’t talk to him after that, because he wasn’t seeing it from my POV that this doesn’t work for me and I don’t like being in pain for your pleasure.

Another situation was when I was at a, um, strip club here in Manhattan and one of their employees approached me.  Without even saying hello, he said “Damn, you are hella big and thick.  You are just as thick as my wife… but better”.  BISH WHAT?  Seriously, what?  Is this supposed to make me run to the ATM because you compare my size to your wife?  I didn’t even know how to respond, except with “Thanks”, and then I made a beeline for my diet coke.  Has mannerism literally gone out the door?  Have we gotten to a really bizarre place within this community where online verbiage you would never say in person actually gets said face to face?  And normalized, even?  I mean, really.

I do question the mentality of these guys sometimes, and wonder if they ever think about how it is for the other guy in question.  Men with weight are always targeted with having a higher insecurity level within them due to the gay norm being very “six pack” friendly, so it makes me think if they are agreeing to this sort of exchange as a way to feel validated by the other person.  I’m not sure, though.

Just like race play (which continues to grow as well), there needs to be a severe line drawn here when it comes to how men who are into men with weight can communicate their thoughts without hurting someone’s feelings or insulting them.  I’m confident with how I look, however when it boils down to it, I don’t enjoy being used for your fetish.  And I know I’m not the only one that feels this way.  Conversations like this need to be started within the gay community, as there seems to be a ton of misappropriations with materials like this that keep being “the pink elephant”.  The elephant now needs to be pointed out, and we gotta chat.  It’s really that simple.