Do Gay Men Have A Bro-Code?

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Straight Men Appear To Have A Lot Of Unspoken Rules, But Do Those Apply To Gay Men As Well?

Do straight men have the gay community beat when it comes to friendships? Over the last few weeks I got to spend some great quality time with my favorite, trustworthy gays of West Hollywood and chatted with my ones near and far in other cities. I kept questioning all of them if gay people have any unwritten rules of friendship like The Bro Code, which straight men seemingly abide by. Funny enough, most of my friends didn’t even know a Bro Code existed. Heterosexual men have some ridiculous, but also simply understood and valid rules about their friendship.  


According to the official Bro Code website (yes that exists), the rules are kind of obvious. The first Bro rule is “Bros Before Hoes” AKA friends over females in all situations, unless that female is your mother, wife, or sister. The list continues: Bros must always honor their friends by helping them move (for free), not to gaze at one another while naked, cannot sleep with each other’s family members or ex-girlfriends, are allowed to do something stupid if everyone else is doing it, never speak about another Bro’s sex life, bringing booze to a party, cannot cock block, reciprocate a round of drinks, not to be offended when a call or text isn’t returned immediately… the list continues to go on. Basically, it’s a silly sounding list that makes anyone a good friend to someone else… with a lot of heterosexual references. I loosely started to compare these rules with the gay community and found some differences in the rules mentioned above and still on the website.

First, I have been on both sides of the Bros Before Hoes argument. I’ve definitely ditched my friends in favor for a boyfriend – sometimes over years – and have been on the receiving end of that as well. I’m a firm believer that your friends won’t keep you warm at night and my social network is aligned in agreeance. Thankfully, any gay friends of mine who have moved hired help to do so. While my group of friends doesn’t participate in sleeping with one another, I tend to think we’re the only group who doesn’t. Thus, the whole “can’t gaze at one another” kind of goes out the window. Have you ever visited a West Hollywood bar? Heck, a gay bar?! That sexually transmitted ghost from the horror film It Follows would have such a complicated journey trying to find the next victim in gay communities where a lot of people sleep with one another constantly.

Gays get a bad reputation of being catty, I’ve also been guilty as charged with this one and couldn’t find another innocent participant in my survey: We’ve all cock blocked, gossiped about other’s sex lives, and have been judgmental when people we’re doing something stupid that we didn’t want to join. Basically, according to this Bro Code, the gays are awful friends to one another. But, this is an alleged rulebook for straight men that we fortunately don’t have to play along with.

The Bro Code is basically “industry standard” when it comes to friendships. Yes, the gays do have their moments of bitchiness and weakness, but that’s honestly everyone and anyone- even straight men. Besides our sexual orientation, I believe gay men equalize the playing field when it comes to Bro Code. We have done what our straight counterparts haven’t: We’ve came out of the closet and are living authentic lives, despite the fact that many of us have to come out of the closet over and over again throughout our existence. We’re able to talk about discrimination, being afraid of a heckler who followed you home, laughing about how obviously gay we were as children, generally sharing in the struggles and bliss it is to be a gay man in America. We may not have a scroll of unspoken rules and, perhaps we did hook up with a friend’s ex-boyfriend once, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that as a unit come together and move in the direction of equality and living happy. The Bro Code is great if society was made for you, instead the gays have to play by their own rules.


Do you believe the gay community has a Bro Code?

Writer’s Note: This is the opinion of one Instinct Magazine contributor and does not reflect the views of Instinct Magazine itself or fellow contributors.

H/T: The Bro Code

11 thoughts on “Do Gay Men Have A Bro-Code?”

  1. The belief that a bro won’t keep you warm at night may work on superficial friendships. But if the new bedmate does work out will your close friends take you back?

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  3. I’ve been living this by example but I don’t have the energy to teach the millenials. Can somebody please grab the torch and lead the next generation?

  4. Do these guys who have never heard of Bro Code live under a rock? Silly article. I can’t believe someone got paid to write this.

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  6. To that extent that there is a gay community, any “code” would be best summed up as “Be a good and considerate friend”. And that Bro Code website is some toxic masculine BS. I had to roll my eyes at “A Bro never cries”, like c’mon.

    • The “Bro Code” is comedy. But all good comedy has a hint of truth in it. NPH would be so disappointed in you.


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