I just googled my area. It said there was only one in the area but I know for sure that there is at least one or two others.
Omg I feel sick!!
It never occurred to me how prevalent this sort of behaviour is. I find it repulsive to think people are conducting themselves in this manner inside toilet cubicles at shopping centres and next to play grounds. I would be mortified to think ds has ever been exposed to anything untoward when he visits the facilities alone.
He will be coming into the parents room with me from now on and possibly until he is 25!!
We stopped at a public toilet in a park on a main rd in sydney as I was feeling sick. DH went to the loo too.
When I came out DH was white as a sheet and standing near the women's toilets. He grabbed me and pulled me to the car. I had no idea why he was acting weird. In the car he said that when he walked into the men's toilets there was a naked man standing there. DH ran out in shock. He had accidentally stumbled onto a beat.
In my area, lots of parks and beaches, there's virtually a beat in every place.
I don't see it as a gay issue - presumable there's just as many gas women out there? But women don't partake in this kind if sleazy behaviour in spaces that are meant to be family-friendly areas where kids frequent. It seems to be only men who do this. It's tacky, sleazy and downright dangerous behaviour!
I wonder how men who need to use the amenities feel about going in, or followed in by another male who might have other ideas. And how can councils at least not have the holes between cubicles repaired? That's foul.
The toilets at my local park were always known as a beat. My siblings and I used to throw our dogs' tennis ball over the wall and into the men's loos so that our dog would run in there and give them men a fright! Don't know if there were men in there but we thought it was hilarious.
I never felt unsafe - we thought it was pretty gross and funny as kids and of course knew not to go in ourselves.
At that park now they have those induvidual "smart loos", the ones that clean themselves and open automatically if you're in there for too long. They seem much safer.
BEATS – WHAT ARE THEY
Beats are public places such as parks, beaches and toilets where men who have sex with men (MSM) go both for sex and also for some as a point of social interaction and contact.
Beats are not exclusive to men who have sex with men as areas such as parks and car parking areas often act as a point of congregation, social interaction and sex for heterosexual or ‘straight’ couples. However, these beats are far less likely to gain the same level of intense negative media coverage and police attention that ‘gay’ beats attract.
WHO GOES TO BEATS
MSM – men who have sex with men: often these men do not identify in any way with being gay or bisexual; they simply see themselves as ‘straight’ men who also like to have sex with men; they can also be married men who present primarily in their social lives as ‘straight’
Gay men – men who are same sex attracted and identify to at least themselves that they are gay but may not necessarily be ‘out’ or open about their sexual preferences to anyone or may only be ‘out’ to a very select group of friends
Bisexual men – men who may identify to most people as ‘straight’ but also like to have sex with other men
Gay curious men – men who are curious or inquisitive about men who are sexually attracted to other men but do not yet identify as bisexual or gay
I was telling hubby about it this morning and he had a bit of a laugh. He has never felt unsafe going in to a men's toilet and a lot of the places mentioned in my area I didn't even realise were local beats. Now I know I can think of times where I've seen someone waiting, but it was very discreet. Example - one of the local beats here says there is usually tradies waiting at lunch time. I have seen tradies sitting outside the toilet block, on the grass, eating lunch by themselves. Now I realise they were waiting for some action, but it just looks like a tradie eating lunch in the sun to anyone who doesn't know.
The website I stumbled across also talked about abiding by the law and making sure that both parties are consenting adults, and saying that it is not okay to give a 'signal' (getting it out) to young teenagers etc. There was also talks about some cubicles not having doors so not going in high traffic times, and being discreet etc. I don't understand the attraction to having s.ex with a complete stranger in a dirty public toilet but it obviously arouses some.
It's been happening for many, many years. When I was a teenager I worked with a woman in her 50's who told me that our boss's friend (in their 60's) used to be a regular 'under the bridge'. When I knew him he had been married for nearly 40 years, but obviously it wasn't acceptable to be gay in that era, and it appears he has never felt safe coming out because he is still married to his wife. I always was curious about what happened behind closed doors in their marriage....did she know, but was happy to keep the secret for him, was she oblivious to it all, did he really love her or was she always just a cover for his true s.exual identity etc. In public they held hands and always appeared happy.
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