“Like a Lady?” from AaGG

Dear Gay Guy,
Good day, ok, I’m gonna give this a shot. I’m gay, 45 years old, just finished my career in the Marine Corp where I was never out. In fact, I’ve never been out anywhere. Recently I became online acquainted with a seemingly very nice young guy of 30. This Saturday we are going out for the first time, dinner, movies and maybe a few drinks. He is out himself. I am stereotypical Marine, physically 6’4″ tall, 220 pounds and a top. He is a beautiful young and petite guy and a bottom. My question is this, generally speaking, would I be going in the wrong direction if I do for him what I would do if I was dating a girl? Yes, I’ve dated girls before. I mean, open the car door for him and hold others for him? I know some may like that, others might not. But generally speaking, are the things that I was brought up to do for a lady, acceptable to do for a male, or would they generally be put off by it? Thanks.
D. J.

Hey D. J.
It seems to me that you are over-thinking the situation. I understand it’s a concern of yours so let me just remind you of the Golden Rule: Treat others how you want to be treated. I applaud your inclination to be chivalrous but in this instance, chivalry is dead. Why? Because the ancient rules of chivalry were created for a mans treatment of a woman. Not only do some modern women find chivalry to be somewhat patronizing, but also, you’re not dealing with a woman. So forget chivalry and use manners and common sense. If you want to open a door for your male date, then do so. Not because of what you learned about how to treat a lady but because you want to be polite.
There’s still an etiquette for dating. When you ask someone out on a date you are asking for their time. If they agree than you should be thankful for their time and treat them with grateful politeness. That could mean opening doors or paying for dinner (unless you have made arrangements to go dutch). That has nothing to do with gender roles but has everything to do with just being nice.
And make no mistake, if you open car doors or bring flowers (which some deem “girly” but some guys do enjoy) they will let you know if they’re not into it. And I see nothing wrong with being upfront about your confusion. You could always ask. You can tell them that you WANT to open their door because you just WANT to be sweet.
Now, for some guys, there is a power struggle. Some are appalled by the very idea of being treated like a woman. They are a man and how dare you treat them like anything less. Fuck those guys because not only are they, on some level, a self-hating gay, but they clearly have a poor opinion of what it is to be a women. Then there are some guys who have grown accustomed to doing everything themselves and find it perplexing in some way to have another person take care of them. Everyone is different and it’s best to not assume but rather be completely honest and just ask. Nothing wrong with asking.
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