It's not being called a "Faggot" by a homophobic person. It's being ignored by fellow gay men. This happens to me far more frequently than being insulted by homophobes. I've probably been insulted about my sexuality about 3 or 4 times by passing strangers ever since I left school. The thought of being insulted for being gay hardly bothers me any more because it does not happen regularly enough to be a major problem. But being ignored by other gay men does happen quite often, and it does get me down. I reach out to another gay man, either for a date or just friendship, and I get no response. Not even a belated response. Just nothing. I'm not needy and attention seeking. I'm perfectly capable of enjoying my own company and I go out by myself quite often to enjoy a movie or live show, or just to walk down a country lane to enjoy the scenery or visit a museum or gallery. I don't need a person to hold my hand when I do those things. But sometimes, I do like to invite a man to join me and share the experience with me. And if he can't make it or can't be bothered, that's fine. I can handle rejection. But I don't like being ignored completely. I would rather be fobbed off with an excuse than ignored. "Can't come, I've got relatives coming over" or "I've already made plans to go out that day" or "I'm not well, have fun" or even "I don't fancy going it doesn't sound like my sort of thing" are all perfectly good reasons to me, better than no response at all. Even if they contact me the next day saying "Sorry, I only just got your message" that's better than nothing. Being ignored makes me feel like I'm boring and not worth thinking about. Maybe they have more important things to focus on than my invitation - work issues, family issues, prior engagements - if I'm not told what's got their attention, then I'm left to make assumptions, usually negative ones. I don't expect anyone to drop everything for me and make themselves available for me 24/7. But in this day and age where technology and social media make it so easy to stay in touch, why do I end up feeling so out of touch with my fellow gay men? It does take me a lot of guts to ask someone if they want to join me for a day out or just meet up for a drink. And that goes to waste, because the person can't be bothered to respond, even to decline the invitation. It depresses me a bit. Especially when it comes to the summer and we're supposed to be all about pride and boosting our community and enriching our culture. In some sick ways, being called a "faggot" or "poof" by a total stranger is better - at least they are giving me some attention. When I get ignored by fellow gay men who I want to share myself with, then where is the compassion that we feel for each other?