Is He Gay?

Q: I think my best friend may be gay. He hasn't been out with a woman in years, and every time I mention dating, sex or meeting women, he seems to get very uncomfortable and changes the subject. I want him to know it's okay if he's gay but don't want to bring up the subject and offend him. How can I bring up this issue in a supportive way without making it uncomfortable for him? -Dave, 41

Dr. Anna: That you have noticed and are thinking about this question shows you are already doing a great job of being supportive. Sometimes, though, being too supportive can be a problem. If you come right out and say, "If you're gay, I totally support you!" might come from a good place but it may not land as well as you hope. If you are trying to find a subtle way to communicate that you would accept him unconditionally, try making a point to be inclusive in your speech or talk to him about how you stand against discrimination. Leave the door open but don't demand that he walk through it before he's ready.

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