Being gay, it seems, is a question of luck. Irrespective of what
actually does cause homosexuality, we can perhaps agree that it
isn't a choice. And given that all other things being equal we gays
probably have a harder time than our straight counterparts, it
would seem fair enough to conclude that on account of our sexuality
we are somewhat less fortunate. So if it was a choice, it would be
a bad one.
Except I actually prefer being gay. Partly because I
have a generally contrary personality, so much so that I reckon
even if I was a boy I'd like other boys. But more importantly
because I genuinely think that I wouldn't fair so well if I'd been
Let me explain. Philosophers, often use 'counterfactual
situations', these being 'what if' situations, in which the
circumstances are in some way different to how they actually are.
One such counterfactual is the 'closest-possible-world' scenario,
in which the situation is exactly how things really are, but you
change one detail and speculate about the consequences of such a
change. Which got me thinking (and you can play this at home),
would I be a luckier person in the closest possible world in which
I was heterosexual?
The answer is no, for many, many reasons, but primarily because
I would undoubtedly die alone. Whilst I'm not wildly (or even
mildly) successful with women, at least with lesbians I don't feel
like I'm a no-go from the start, whereas if my chances of familial
happiness relied on my snaring a chap and convincing him that I was
a suitable life partner, I might as well become some kind of
secular nun. Think Whoopi Goldberg circa 92 but minus the
It's been long established that men don't look at me and think
'she'd make a lovely wife and mother'. Hell, they don't even look
at me and think 'she'd make do'. But luckily it's a reciprocal
arrangement. Luckily. Because the alternative would not have a
Now I know a lot of the characteristics that might make me less
than attractive to your average straight man seem fairly entwined
with the lesbian concept. Perhaps if I was straight I wouldn't have
short hair. Maybe Roxy Music wouldn't be my style icons. But then
we end up in a Ship of Theseus type scenario, where we have to
wonder how many things you can change about something before you're
dealing with a different entity entirely.
I'm not saying that everyone should be damn grateful for their
queerness - I'm sure some of us would make wonderful heterosexuals
- but, personally, I am. Being gay, it just suits me better.