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34 of the Best Responses When Someone Assumes and Calls You Gay

34 of the Best Responses When Someone Assumes and Calls You Gay

In the past 20 years or so, things have changed a lot for the LGBTQ community. However, there are still many rotten eggs who throw around slurs and call people gay mindlessly, so it helps to know what to say when someone calls you gay.

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with being gay, but people don’t always put a lot of thought into what to say. Before you know it, you’re stuck in an awkward or uncomfortable moment with no idea of what to say.

The way we see it, there are only two correct responses (and no, it doesn’t involve a slap across the face):

Option 1: Change the subject or distract everyone from the awkward moment. This is for the non-confrontational readers who just want to move on without making a scene or who refuse to feed into the nonsense.

Option 2: A witty response to let the person know that was wrong (or stupid). This can come in the form of educating the person about LGBTQ+ acceptance or shunning ignorance.

Here are 34 of the best responses you can use when someone calls you gay:


9 responses when someone deliberately tries to hurt your feelings by not acknowledging you are straight

Even when someone knows you’re straight, ignorance will empower them to use “gay” to deliberately try to hurt you. The best way to respond to this is by clarifying that there’s nothing wrong with being gay, even though you’re straight.
Here are some examples of what to say when someone calls you gay out of spite:

01“I’m not straight. I’m a circle…of love.”
Use this when you want to distract from the situation or make it less awkward. It says sexual orientation doesn’t matter to you, and the person has failed at trying to make you feel bad.


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02“I thought your [insert relation] was gay? How would that make him/her feel?”
Use this when the person is using the word in a negative way, even though he/she has a friend or family member in the LGBTQ+ community. It will make him/her look like a hypocrite.


03“Don’t get your hopes up. I mean, look at you. I have standards.”
It is good to say this when you want a sarcastic response that will make the person look or feel stupid.


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04“Wow, I thought your sense of humor would have matured with your age. That’s disappointing.”
This tells the person to stop being ignorant or acting like a child. It says that being gay isn’t an insult.


05“This is all the time I have today for stupidity. Try again, never.”
It says you’re ignoring what the person has to say because you don’t entertain foolishness.


06“You don’t have to worry about that. You’re not half as handsome/beautiful as you think you are.”
It says that even if you were gay, you wouldn’t be looking the person’s way because you have higher standards than someone who looks/dresses as he/she does, and is actively homophobic.


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07“The first rule of insulting is to come up with something bad to say. You suck at bullying, so you should seriously consider another hobby.”
This is a good example of what to say when someone calls you gay because calling someone gay isn’t an insult. It says the person failed at being mean to you, and you’re unaffected.


08“I have nothing to prove to you. You’re obviously brain dead.”
It says you won’t waste your time trying to clarify anything to this person, especially since he/she lacks intelligence, maturity and compassion.


09“Is that  the best you can come up with? Let’s forget that happened because it’s pretty embarrassing.”
This says that the insult didn’t land, and you feel sorry that the person lives a life of ignorance, and is overall, lame. It says for his/her sake, you’ll let it slide this time.


9 responses when you’re not gay

The audacity of some people to walk up to someone and inquire about their sexual orientation will surprise you. This is a direct violation of your privacy with a generous dash of discrimination.
We’ve compiled several examples of what to say when someone calls you gay that include direct confrontation

10“No, I just have better outfits. You could learn a thing or two from gay men.”
Use this when someone calls you gay because of your fashion sense. It says that he/she could learn something from gay people because they’re killing it at fashion.


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Photo by Mangostar on shutterstock


11“[Turn to someone else] So, what have you been up to?”
This is a good way to ignore what was said and move on without acknowledging the nonsense.


12“Why? Were you hoping for a kiss?”
This says you aren’t offended by being called gay, because that isn’t something bad. It pokes fun at the person for saying something silly, and in turn, makes him/her feel stupid.


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13“Stupid questions don’t deserve responses.”
It is good to say this when you aren’t interested in the interaction the person was hoping you’d have. It pumps the brakes on the plans and will hopefully cause feelings of embarrassment and reflection.


14“What makes you an expert on a gaydar?”
They say it takes one to know one. This response turns the question back on the person. The response, especially in front of others, will show exactly who that person is.


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Photo by Eugenia Porechenskaya on shutterstock


15“They say ignorance is bliss. Are you having fun?”
This is another way to say the person is being ignorant and stupid.


16“No, but even if I was, I hope it wouldn’t be a problem.”
This confronts the person without being aggressive and can open the door to a conversation about how what we say can make others feel.


17“Well, I like to think I live a happy life, so yes.”
Gay also means happy, so use this example of what to say when someone calls you gay to flip things around on a positive note.


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18“Why would you think that’s any of your business?”
This is good to use when the person is being rude and invasive. It tells the person to back off.



8 responses when someone innocently thinks you are gay while you are straight

Some people associate certain mannerisms or behavior with being gay, as well as certain aspects of one’s behavior. The truth is, we walk by people every day whose sexuality can’t be guessed based on these factors, and may even have personal relationships with people who are still in the closet.
Ignorance isn’t always malicious, and there will be people who assume you’re gay with no ill intent in mind. This doesn’t excuse ignorance, but it greatly influences the appropriate response.
These are examples of what to say when someone calls you gay innocently:

19“I’ll take that as a compliment because I put a lot of thought into this outfit today, but no, I’m not.”
Use this when you make over-the-top and flamboyant outfit choices that some identity with the LGBTQ+ community. It says you’re glad someone took notice, but the person should never assume.


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20“Not sure what made you think that. It’s not like you can tell someone is gay by looking at them.”
If the person isn’t being intentionally disrespectful, this comment will force him/her to really think about what was said, and why it was wrong.


21“Gay people and other members of the LGBTQ+ have different personalities and appearances. You should get to know someone before you make that assumption.”
It’s okay to be annoyed or upset in the face of ignorance because overt emotions work better at showing a person the consequences of their ignorance than words do. When you say this, be direct and stern to show your disapproval of the comment.


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22“I’m going to assume that you didn’t mean that it is wrong to be gay, but for future reference, keep those thoughts to yourself.”
This says that while you have noted it was said innocently, it is still wrong and should not happen again.


23“I think gay people are awesome. I have more fun being around them than being around you.”
Use this example of what to say when someone calls you gay to show your support for the gay community. It also says you don’t care enough about the person’s perception of gay people to go out of your way to clarify whether you’re straight or not.


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24“Gay isn’t a hairstyle, color or wardrobe choice. Think before you speak.”
This stops the person in their tracks, and makes it clear that their grave error can offend a large group in our society. It also clears up misconceptions and opens the person’s mind about the realities of being a part of the LGBTQ+ community.


25“There’s a word for that: discrimination. You should spend some time learning about LGBTQ+ acceptance so you don’t make this mistake again.”
It says that people should educate themselves on proper etiquette regarding the gay community, and how certain stereotypes can be damaging or hurtful.


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26“Assuming  someone’s sexual orientation is never okay, so unless you’re interested in having a relationship, you don’t need to worry about it.”
It says that sexuality is private and personal, and that the person is better off minding their own business.


8 responses when someone calls you gay while you actually are, but prefer being called by your name

The gay community experiences discrimination at every level, and even as you read this, someone, somewhere, is being called a gay slur. When certain people discover you’re gay, that’s all they will see you as, and they will show their lack of respect and acceptance by calling you “gay” instead of your actual name.
This will require you to put your foot down, because unless you do, the abuse is likely to continue. This is what to say when someone calls you gay instead of your actual name:

27“Wait, so my mom’s been calling me [insert your name] for no reason?”
This is a lighthearted response you can use when someone is trying to insult you, but you aren’t affected.


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28“Yeah, what about it?”
This is very confrontational, so be prepared for however the person may respond. It can be with hate, embarrassment, or in the best-case scenario, acknowledegment of their ignorance and a promise to do better.


29“That’s none of your business. Next time, refer to me as [insert your name].”
Use this when people have actively gossiped about your sexuality. It is good to say this when one out of the group of people steps out of line in front of others.



30“I think you’re trying to be funny, but if I had no brains like you, I wouldn’t have noticed. Save the cheap shots for yourself.”
This says that your sexuality isn’t a joke, and you’re not amused by this display of ignorance.


31“We all know I’m gay, but I go by [insert your name].”
This is what to say when someone calls you gay and you refuse to respond to that name.


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32“Gay yesterday, gay today and gay tomorrow, but most call me [insert your name].”
This is good to say when you’re unaffected, and you’ll be as gay as possible, regardless of their feelings. So, the person can call you gay, or whatever, and you won’t care.


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33“I figure [insert your name] is too big of a word for you, so just this time I’ll let you get away with it.”
This is a slick way to call the person stupid. It says the insults mean nothing to you.


34“If you  aren’t going to call me by my proper name, kindly refrain from referring to me at all.”
This tells the person to stay out of your way if he/she plans to continue the disrespect.

Unfortunately, the world can be a cruel place sometimes, especially for the LGBTQ+ community. What’s good is that we have the support of each other to get us through these times, and enough allies to make us feel welcome in society.
With that being said, whenever you need it, you can refer to these sets of examples of what to say when someone calls you gay to stick up for yourself or ignore the nonsense.