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Dinner with my friend - an experience
#1
Hi Guys Smile

Wanted to share about an incident that happened in my life.

This happened around 2015 - 2016.

I went to have dinner in a restaurant with my male friend.

Most of the dishes offered in the restaurant were à la carte and came with 3 different portions (Small, Medium and Large).

The small portion was like for 1 person and the medium portion was like for 2 people. 

The price of the small portion was around $8 and the price of the medium portion was around $13 (if I remember correctly).

We both decided to buy the same specific dish. I suggested that we could get the medium portion and ask for 2 small plates (for each of us) to share the food as it is slightly cheaper.

He said okay and we had our dinner.

After dinner, we walked around the mall and park nearby. All the while, I noticed that my friend was slightly uncomfortable. Like something was bothering him in his mind.

When we sat down in a bench, he told me something which affected me until today.

He told me "You know we were sharing food in the restaurant just now right. I don't like it because I don't want the people around us to get the wrong impression that we are a gay couple or something."

I was very shocked but did not say anything. 

We split the food to the 2 plates and ate our food separately. I mean we did not eat from the same plate. And I remember nobody were looking at us in the restaurant.

I felt quite hurt because my intention was only to save a bit of money. (I'm closeted and he's straight btw.)

After this incident (and a few others), I started to become very self-conscious of myself and my actions in public. Because I'm worried if people will start to suspect my sexuality.

Even though this incident happened around 5 years ago, I am still confused if there was a mistake from my part in suggesting so.
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#2
The question I do have. Do people gossip or speculate if people out in public are gay? I think he was quite self-conscious over it. I don't know how social etiquette differs between the US and where you're at. If the general populace is anti-LGBT I can see why people might be worried if strangers get the wrong idea, especially if gay people are likely to be harmed if they're out. If you're risking losing your home, your job, your life because someone finds out that you're gay, yes, I think I would be mindful about what I do in public. That being said, I don't think I would allow it to change who I am.

I know here in the US it is not all that uncommon for two guys to dine together, that part is normal enough, might be good friends, co-workers, or hell they might be family. It is also not uncommon for people to share large dishes. There are also restaurants that don't allow you to share food, oddly enough.

Overall, I find that most people don't really care. People only care when it is politicized, so if the LGBT issue is "blowing up" in the headlines that might be something to watch.

@soulfulriver Perhaps you can give us some insight about how people are concerning the LGBT issue. I mean I can google and stuff but I think your own personal insight is probably going to be better.
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