Just going to put a question out there. When was the last time you had a genuinely fun night out? No hassle. No drama. Just the best night clubbing.
Now, this time last week I was recovering from a weekend of partying on the gay cubbing scene.
It was the most fun night out I have EVER had.
There was not once where I felt like I was being looked at or “preyed” on. There were’t the rowdy groups of lads causing trouble. Instead, there were groups of open, happy people, genuine conversations and great music.
Having never been before I was a little skeptical – I didn’t want women assuming I was gay and hitting on me. I’ sure I am not the only one who has had this worry. But how was this any different from going clubbing and having men assume that I am happy to dance with them?
For single women, a night out isn’t safe – mostly thanks to inebriated “lads” who like to make us feel uncomfortable or threatened. We are equipped with an armoury of secret codes, signals and facial expressions to let our friends know when we don’t feel safe. Even bars and clubs are behind this with safety schemes such as ordering an “angel shot” to inform staff that you’re not safe. Surely there is something seriously wrong with society that women need secret codes in order to try and stay safe on a night out?
The way I like to try and explain the gay clubbing atmosphere is akin to the women’s toilets in a generic club. There is nowhere quite like the women’s toilets on a night out. It’s a secret and safe community where we bond and create life-long friendships. A place where no one puts anyone down – everyone is everyone’s own cheerleader. This is exactly how I felt last week. Not once did I think – “can I go home now”. Not once was I scared that I had been separated from my friends.
Now I know what you’re thinking – straight clubs aren’t all that bad, we bring most things upon ourselves, we’re equally as much to blame for being objectified by men etc. So I asked around for some opinions and stories on the generic clubbing environment:
“A couple of months ago, I was clubbing with some friends and a very drunk man came over to me and bit me on the shoulder saying; “you’re delicious”. Luckily I had sleeves on so he didn’t tear my skin. The same night, another equally as drunk man followed and man-handled one of my friends which (unfortunately for him) ended with a punch in the face.” – Female, 22.
“One of the main concerns that I face during straight clubbing, is when I go out with my female friends. The whole point of going out is that everyone should have a good time and feel safe, but most of the time you will either see drunk guys being too friendly and touchy, or staring in a creepy way or worst – can try to spike your friends drink. Thus, making it usually hard to have a good time at a club if you go with your female friends and could result with physical confrontation if someone’s testosterone and alcohol levels are too high.” – Male, 24
“Some guy was grinding behind me and put his hands over me, felt really uncomfortable. Luckily though, had a group of friends with me who would protect me and one of them slapped him in the face. Granted not the best reaction but it got the point across. But I’m lucky in the sense that my face says it all, and if I’m dancing with a group of friends they can usually tell if I don’t want the attention some guy is giving. I’ve had guy friends (with gfs) who have come over and pretended to be all over me to get me away from the creepy guys.” – Female, 22.
These are a far cry from the experience I (and others) have had gay clubbing. Last week I had lost my friends and was talking and dancing with a small group of men when one of them asks; “Girl, do you watch Drag Race?” On my over-excited reply of “Yaaasss” we slut-dropped in unison and celebrated with hugging. This is all we ask for on a night out. Pure, friendly fun.
Now I know that some gay clubs have a bad rep. I’m not trying to say that gay clubbing is perfect, straight clubbing is dangerous or that straight men don’t sometimes feel unsafe on nights out too.
I guess I am excited that I have been able to have a great night out without being hit on, wolf whistled at, groped or had to worry about keeping my guard up. Is that too much for a girl to ask?
Featured Image Credit – Sharon McCutcheon