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The Daily Dish Relationships

What Is This "Gold Star Gay" Status That Andy Cohen Referred to?

Plus, why some people hate these labels and status terms altogether. 

By Marianne Garvey
How Lance Bass Joined the Mile High Club: With a Woman

Andy Cohen wears his "gold star gay" status with pride. The Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen host often talks about being a GSG, which means he's never slept with a woman. 

Lance Bass, on the other hand, is not a GSG, admitting on WWHL that he had been with women before he came out as gay.

"It was well before because I was with a woman. I know, breaking news!" Bass said.

So, what does that make Lance? Let's do a little refresher.

Relationship expert April Masini breaks it down for us. 

"'Gold-star gay status' is a term that Andy Cohen used to describe his sexuality. He said that he’s gay, and he’s never been with a woman, so he’s not just gay — he’s gold-star gay," Masini told Personal Space. "Someone like Lance Bass, who is also gay, but who has had sex with women, would not be described as gold star gay because he hasn’t been with only men. He’s gay, but he’s been with women in the past."

She continued, "Just so you know, this isn’t just a term for gay men. Gay women can be described as 'gold-star lesbians.' This is a term that some people use to describe lesbians who have never had sex with men."

While a "gold star" is typically an award given for achievement, "in this case, it’s used to signify a particular type of purity within sexuality," Masini added. "If this is confusing, you’re not alone. Sexuality has gone through so many different vocabulary changes, as fluidity has become more mainstream. People don’t just choose pronouns to describe gender, they now use these award terms, like gold-star, etc."

Andy has talked about almost losing his "gold-star gay" status when he considered participating in a threesome, where one of the three was a woman. It didn't happen.

There are more levels of "stars" too.

"Double gold-star is a term I’ve heard used as well," Masini said. "This is for a gay man who has never been with a woman, and was never born in a vaginal birth, but was instead, a C-section baby. Platinum star gay means you’re a double gold-star but you have also never touched a vagina. Meaning, you’ve had no physical contact with a vagina, and limited proximity to them."

While these statuses have really nothing to do with sexuality, they still exist.

There's more:

Girls star Andrew Rannells has said he is “pure-bred” gay, which means he knew he was gay from practically the minute he was born. 

Suzie Orman, the financial expert, has recently spoken out and said that she is a 55-year-old virgin because although she has a lesbian partner, she has never been with a man. "A better definition of her situation might be heterosexual virgin," Masini said.

What's it called if you're a gay man or woman and have slept with the opposite sex?

"If you’re gay and have had sex with someone of the opposite sex, a couple of things could be going on. First, you could be bisexual, which means you like having sex with people of both sexes. Pansexual means you’re fluid and you don’t choose to be gay or straight. You are what you are in any given moment. Or, you could have a straightforward history as a heterosexual person, who is not having a history as a gay person, and that means you used to be heterosexual, but now, you’re gay," Masini said.

Some people hate labels and status terms altogether. 

"There is a lot of disappointment and anger about these terms from people who feel that gold, double gold, and platinum, are all status symbols and to differentiate sexuality within a hierarchy like this is discriminating," Masini said. "There is anger over sexuality being measured.

"The bigger view is that there is so much about sexuality becoming normal, that society is struggling to understand it, and these terms are attempts at bringing sexual experiences to the surface, and they are opportunities to talk about them, debate them, and more. Sexual and gender fluidity is not new, but its socialization and normalization are. These terms are not going to stick around for long. They’re part of the growing pains that sexual and gender history are undergoing."

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