Help, Steph! Am I a Bottom?

Dragony Aunt Stephanie Slack
Dragony Aunt Stephanie Slack

Struggling to find your place in the community? Scared to come out to your colleagues? New to gay sex? In other words, need help?

Introducing reigning Pink Season Drag Competition winner, Queen Stephanie Slack! She’ll be dispensing her unique style of advice in a monthly ‘Agony Aunt’-style column (with the aid of her alter-ego, qualified Life Coach Steve).

Dear Aunty Steph,

It has been many years since this middle-aged Queen hung up her night club persona and opted for a quieter life. My problems are this- life has become a bit too quiet and when I do go out the age gaps within the gay community have become glaringly apparent.

Secondly, my work schedule doesn’t really allow me the luxury (or energy) to frequently socialise and participate in any local organisations (sport teams, etc.) or to develop any lasting hobbies.
What would you recommend? Help!

Yours truly,
Hermetic queen.

– – –

Oh luv… I had to look up Hermetic. Fancy language that. Not that Aunty Steph can’t be fancy in her language…but it’s not a word I’ve come across, and I’ve come across many a thing.

Middle age for a queen… I fully understand your worries (not that I’M old, no no! I’m a spring chicken me!), it’s tough seeing those youngsters out there, twerking till dawn, and us (again not me), wanting to be at home watching the latest Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. A question though, why is this age gap really such a worry?

Who’s to say that gay life needs to be one way or another? I’ve seen an “aged party person” out dance a teenybopper and I’ve seen other gay gents happy relaxing over a glass of vino. Horses for courses as they say.

Worrying about what should happen at a certain age in gay life needs to stop. It is ok to be 50 and disco dance until dawn or be 25 and be content staying at home. Just be happy, do you and don’t worry about what anyone else might think.

So work is hectic and you are in need for something a little extra…well you gotta get out there and find it hunny! Our lives can’t be all work work work. What’s the saying “All Work and No Play Makes Jill a Dull Queen”. Sit down with your diary, find all your available time (even a couple of hours a week) and start to fill them.

Socialising doesn’t just take place in the evening or weekends. Events are available in the mornings too: zumba, yoga, keeping fit, having coffees, swimming, etc… Find something you like and join in. It will open up your life more and you might even make some new friends too. If you are low in energy, how about a nice massage or spa? Take some time to pamper yourself. It sounds like you need it. “Self-care” is the new big thing.

I also want you to ask yourself: “Am I working to live or do I live to work?” If you are finding that life is taking a backseat because you are busy with work, then it’s time to reevaluate. I’m not telling you to quit your job, but just take stock. Find out what’s good for you, the time needed and how to make small changes to make everything workable.

Hermetic Queen. Don’t be low. Life is for living. Make some alterations, live your life as YOU want to, get your diary out and find time to self-care.

Lot’s of love,
Aunty Steph xx

Dear Agony Steph,

I am finding that on dating apps I get guys questioning whether I am a top or bottom. I have myself listed as a ‘top’ but they still frequently ask and tell me that that I look like a bottom, disbelieving that I am actually a top.

Steph, I am slim and have long hair and I like the way I look. I don’t want to look more like a typical top, I don’t want to shave my hair, or cut it short and I don’t want to become really muscly. I am concerned that guys think I’m lying and that someone I might meet, who is a bottom, will be put off as he will think I am not a top.

Do I really need to look like a “top” to find the right guy?

From Shang Xia

– – –

Oh dear! Hello “From Top to Bottom”… that’s the translation of Shang Xia right? Aunty Steph is very bilingual you know.

What makes a top? Let’s say this. Your sexual position isn’t your identity and neither are it your looks and attributes. This is a world of difference and individuality and those differences should be embraced.

Not all tops are the same. That’s the truth. The problem is that we live in a world of stereotypes and unconscious bias. People presume that a top will be taller, bigger, muscley-er and stronger to take control of the bottom. I have an image of the “Blue Oyster Bar” from Police Academy, filled full of leather muscle hairy daddies with their more effeminate bottom boys. It’s an image that many of us have grown up with through TV, films, pornography and the typical gay scene. It’s an old image; one that has changed.

What’s happened, and what the general population hasn’t caught up with yet, is that people have changed and stereotypes need to change with them. More and more gay men find that they enjoy being a top, a bottom or both but others still look at them in a stereotypical way and believe that just because someone is into fashion and sashaying away means that they must be a total bottom. How shocked people are to realise that their beliefs are incorrect. It seems that the beliefs of your connections online also haven’t evolved past the difference between sexuality and looks either.

Do not change! I forbid it. I really do. If others don’t believe you when you say you are a top then that’s on them, not on you. If you like someone, tell them your preferences once, maybe twice, but don’t go any further if they are questioning you and doubting you. Let them get over it. I’m sure that over time they will find more and more of your style of guy saying that they are a top too. They will soon get used to it.

Remember that it is nearly impossible to tell if a man is truly top or bottom just by looking at his clothing, style, his looks etc. I’m afraid to say however that the gay scene isn’t quite open enough to this idea…yet! Fingers crossed this changes. It will just take time.

Good luck you great big top!
Aunty Steph

Need some help from Steph and Steve?
Submit your question to

Follow Stephanie Slack

Follow Steve’s life coaching practice

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.