What's Wrong with a Pity Fuck?
During a re-watch of the American Queer as Folk I was re-awoken to the idea of the “pity fuck.” In episode 2.04 of the Showtime dramedy, a hunky guy named Troy hooks up with Ted. Ted goes on to find out that Troy considers hooking up with a guy who isn’t hot is his once a year “good deed.”
Ted was Troy’s “pity fuck.”
To elaborate a little more, a pity fuck is when you hook up with someone out of pity instead of because you’re attracted to them.
Have you ever been on either side of a pity fuck?
It’s a question I’ve been asking myself lately. Plenty of drunken, we’re-horny-and-the-last-people-there hookups. Plenty of hooking up with friends just for the release and not for the feels. But, was there ever a true pity fuck?
I know that I’ve never initiated one, but I guess I can never really know the motivations behind some of the guys I’ve been with. Maybe, at my lowest body-shaming point, I’ve felt that al of my hook-ups were somewhat out of pity. I guess it’s someone having a crush on you. You might suspect it—but, it isn’t knowable to you.
Are Pity Fucks Wrong?
This is a hard one. Sometimes you just wanna get off and neither party really cares about the reasons or intentions. But, some people expect a little more form even the most basic of hookups. Maybe it’s part of a friendship. Maybe they want something more.
I would say it like this, you shouldn’t hook up with someone out of pity. The problem there is you both get off from the interaction, and maybe neither of you would have otherwise. And, is it much different from calling up a stranger on Grindr? What if the pitied party is the initiator wanting to stop a dry spell with a first new hook-up?
In the end, I think everyone just has to be crystal about intentions. It’s OK to make it clear up front that you intend for something to be a one-off. That in-and-of-itself shouldn’t hurt anyone’s feelings. And, the recipient could probably be saved some hurt feelings after you ghost them and make them look crazy because they’ve texted you 9 times in a row with no response.
The Resolution on Queer as Folk
As for Ted and Troy on Queer as Folk, Ted opts for revenge. After some plastic surgery and gym time, Ted is feeling high on himself and runs into Troy again. Troy doesn’t remember him and they start a bit of a relationship instead of Ted confronting him right away.
Eventually, Ted sees Troy reject one of his old pity fucks and breaks it off. Getting a bitter-sweet revenge since Troy was the kind of guy Ted wanted all along and they had started to get “real” in their relationship.