My favorite drink is Dr. Pepper. I don't get offended when my friends offer me a Mountain Dew, which I don't care for. My friends know that Dr. Pepper is the best drink on Earth because I've taught them.
My friends know other things about me. They know that I refer to my spouse as my husband, but I don't get upset when they call him my partner -- I simply educate them when it's appropriate in our conversation.
Most of the people we will meet in our lives are straight. Most of the media we consume is by and for straight people. While we may not be the first gay person our friends have met, we may be the most influential gay person in their lives. And, if we want to have long relationships with our straight friends, we need to understand that they won't know as much as we do about being gay, and that we need to help fill the gap in their education.
Teaching them is easiest when we assume that they are good people with good intentions. If they do something wrong, or say something stupid, we can take on the job of being their "gay translator." We can teach them to do better in the future. But we can't teach them if we get offended every time they do or say something that's not quite right.
Being a good teacher also means being a good student. Your friends may have traditions that are different from yours, and they may have beliefs that we don't understand (or even disagree with). By being willing to learn from them, we help them become willing to learn from us.
While it can be frustrating, and we sometimes feel hurt by what feels like an intentional slight, if we understand that part of being a good friend is being a good teacher, we will make our relationships stronger and help make the world a better place.
I'm a gay father with gay sons. My mission is to work with the community to prepare them -- and other young gay men -- for a happy and successful life.