Recently we had a gay in our gym. Although I was the only one knowing it at the time but I didn’t consider to be any kind of a problem even if everyone else knew it. But from this guys perspective that was a bit questionable.
Me and “Robert” had a nice chat over skype and for the purpose of this interview we’ll call our guest Robert.
Hi “Robert”! First question is do you find word Gay rude? Because I noticed that you call your self Gay and I call you a gay all the time 😀
No! It’s a short word and I find it easier to say then Homosexual 🙂 I don’t have any problems with word “gay”.
Can you please introduce your self to our audience.
I’m 28, from Poland living in Norway. I’m BJJ purple belt training BJJ for 6 years now with some pauses because of the subject that we will speak about today. And yes, I’m Gay for whole my life and I’m not sick 🙂
Tell us what does it mean to be a gay in BJJ gym.
I wasn’t Gay only in BJJ gym I was gay in every sport I trained till now and there was a lot of them. What is weird is that, for instance, in Soccer I had more problems being a gay then in others. And that’s weird because there is no contact like in martial arts so it shouldn’t even bother guys that thinks you’re disgusting or dirty and stuff like that. Guys in martial arts calls soccer players gays so maybe that was the reason hahaha.
When we were talking you mentioned pauses in BJJ because of being gay?
Yes! I switched few academies. I made mistakes with letting people know that I’m gay. And I still consider that as a mistake in a world we’re living in. I noticed that even if some guy is open minded sooner or later he will accept a major opinion of guys training with us that I’m something bad. It happens sooner or later so you can’t really be honest in my opinion! If you are gay and decided to speak loud about it you need to know you will have to carry some consequences. You won’t be called to your club parties, some house meetings etc. I do’t think it’s because they have something against you it’s because they don’t know what other thinks about you. Every time I admitted to someone that I’m gay I would notice a difference in their behavior towards me. It wasn’t unnecessary bad behavior but it changed. They would starting to think what they will say, how to behave and stuff and that’s not something you want to achieve when you’re gay. You want them to behave just as they did before they knew the truth. That’s the reason I decided to stay Incognito once I moved from my home in Poland to Norway.
Describe us some problems you had with people in gym once they knew you’re gay!
I can’t say I had any major problems in BJJ gym. I had a lot more outside :). There is no problem in BJJ gym if you will just come to your training to train and roll. But, you know, we people are social beings so it’s a bit of a problem for me staying in the corner time with my mouth shut once they know what I am. I can remember one question of another BJJ practitioner when he seriously asked me: “Do you hate straight people like most of straight people hate gays?” I really laughed at that one. I can’t hate straight people. My mother is straight, my father, my brother, my sister so how could i hate them?
Do you have problems while rolling with people?
If they don’t know I’m gay there is no problems but if they do, yes, there are some problems. Maybe it’s more in my head and in their head but you can feel it in the air. If I know that guy i’m rolling with knows I’m gay I have some switch in my brain that tells me to watch my every move. I’m not relaxed in sparring like I should be. I’m thinking all the time where is my arm, in what position are we, what is my sparring partner thinking at that moment… It is stupid but that’s how it is. But you rolled with me you can tell me how it was 🙂
I wasn’t thinking about it probably because I was tired from roll before. But if I did I would never let you to turn into the turtle 😀 😀
Ok, you said you moved from Poland to Norway. Was that because you’re gay or there are some other reasons?
There are few reasons and yes, I can say one them is for being a gay in a small place started to become a bit tough in Poland! I think that no matter how brave you are admitting that you’re gay you need to be very tough person to carry it all the time. I wasn’t that tough I suppose!
So now in Norway no one knows that you’re gay?
Some people know but I hope nobody in my gym do 🙂
You have no intention to tell it in your BJJ academy in Norway?
I do but when it’s the right time. I moved here one year a go and I still don’t feel comfortable enough yet. Once I would feel comfortable I would admit it but from my expirience before it wasn’t as good as it should be 🙂
Is there any difference in being a gay in Poland and in Norway?
I believe there is. People in Norway are way more open minded. People in Norway don’t really care what you do in your life neither they will ask you what you’re doing and how you’re doing. They won’t ask you how much you’re earning to live and stuff like that. People here mind their own business much more then in Poland. But I believe Poland is on a good way to be like Norway one day. The only problem is that I maybe won’t be alive when that happens 🙂 Btw you asked me if I’m gay, why? 🙂
I was just curious cause on that coffee day before training I noticed something “suspicious” when we talked about politics in Jiu Jitsu 😀
Any last words you want to say about being gay in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and send a message to all gays?
I’m not the bravest person to say it loud that I’m gay and maybe that’s the wrong approach. I mean that’s for sure wrong approach but it will take some time until saying that you’re gay becomes normal that everyone can accept it as normal without any secret thoughts. I suggest to gay people that they behave like they feel they should in circumstances and environment they are at that moment. There is no pattern on how you should behave. We all chose our own way, we all want to go through our life as easy as possible.
Thanks for the Interview “Robert” and you’re always welcome in my gym!
We’ll see if I’m welcome next year now when people in your gym recognize me 🙂 Just kidding. Thanks for the interview and hospitality I hope I helped someone at least a bit.
UPDATE: This interview is done with Robert because he wanted to do it. If you Google will find his post asking “Would you roll with gay guy”? The question was his. This is just an interview with a guy wondering what’s people opinion of his sexual orientation would be.