Outness confusion

  • trl_

    Posts: 994

    Jul 10, 2010 7:36 PM GMT
    I'm out to two of the five people in my family besides me.

    One brother and my mom.
    This brother used to use gay and fag all the time as an insult for something until I was out to him, and I think he still uses those words in the wrong way but filters it to when I'm not around. Everything's good on that end.

    The troubles are with my mom. She's always telling me whenever I check up with her that she's dealing with my gayness just fine and it doesn't matter to her. What has scared me though are her comments. My dad and other brothers have said things about gay stereotypes (for example calling a bad driver an angry lesbian just because she has shorter hair), which is intimidating for a gay person but usually I confront them about their use of stereotypes like that, but my mom never supports me, she just stays silent and lets them say whatever they want.

    That appears to me as if she's scared of saying something or just doesn't think it's a big deal which either way is distressing to me because it shows that she is not ok with gay people as she had told me.

    Another issue is that I asked her one night when we were talking about it if she would ever tell anyone and she said no, which basically broke my heart. She said that if people asked why I wasn't married in the future or something she would just say some round-about thing like "Oh, well, he's just not interested in getting married I guess!", instead of just saying "Oh, he's gay!".

    She also always pressures me to be out to my dad like it's a really easy thing to do. Every time I suggest reading material for her or websites on parents dealing with their child's homosexuality she brushes it off with "Well I can't read that with your dad around. Have you told him?" I don't think she understands the weight of it all. It's not like saying "I got an A in Global Governance".

    Sorry this is long.
    Oh and I'm asking for advice on how to deal with this situation lol
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 10, 2010 7:51 PM GMT
    First of all, congrats on your coming out so far. I think you should do the rest of your family as soon as possible. It seems as if your parents are still married, so you are putting your mom in an awkward position, because she has a secret from your dad.

    I understand that coming out to your dad is difficult for you, maybe if your mom is really supportive, you can ask her to be present when you have that talk with your dad.

    As for your brothers and their name-calling, maybe you can use some humor to deflect the situations. like
    bro: That's so gay
    you: Really? I thought it is totally lame
    bro: That's what I mean
    You: icon_rolleyes.gif You're so gay.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 10, 2010 7:53 PM GMT
    Thanks for sharing---Give it time and it should work itself out---

    The first person in my family that I came out to was my one brother that I loved the least--- he was 2 years older--football jock and the guy who got me into weight lifting in the first place---he had free weights in the basment and I would use them. But we hated each other---constantly fighting---I have scars from a ROCK fight and he would point his gun--a 22- at me and my younger brother to scare us-- However, dumbasses that we were--we did have bb gun fights--and we could have shot an eye out!!!! But back to my coming out to him first-- I had purchased a lid of pot for him (my roommate at the time was a dealer) and we got stoned and I just came out to him. I still laugh about this to this day. Yes, I got stoned and came out to my least favorite brother---Not that I'm suggesting you get stoned and come out to the rest of your family! icon_lol.gif
  • Webster666

    Posts: 9217

    Jul 10, 2010 9:00 PM GMT
    A) Come out to the rest of your family. Otherwise, your torment will continue for the rest of your life.

    B) Send for some information from PFLAG and have it sent directly to your mother.

    Ninety percent of homophobia is pure ignorance. Once people realize that they know someone who's gay, who is "normal", and whom they love, and who is a family member, it destroys all the stupid reasons for being anti gay, and for making stupid hurtful remarks.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 10, 2010 9:12 PM GMT
    First, as bernd said, congrats on getting this far.
    Now for the constructive criticism you requested:

    It takes time, often years, for us to adjust and accept that we are gay.
    Why expect that others will understand almost over-night?
    Give your mom some time.

    You haven't yet come out to your dad and 2 siblings(?), and you're already worried that your mom won't tell others, be they distant relatives, neighbors, or relative strangers, that you are gay?

    You're complaining that your mom has an excuse (she says she can't read books your dad can't see), but you gave her that out.

    Here's what I think your next step should be (and this is from less than a screenful of information about you and your family, you'll have to fine tune it if it sounds like the right approach): "Mom, I need your help coming out to dad. I don't know why it's so difficult for me. Or maybe I do. I'm scared of him, or of his reaction. I fear he's going to say that I'm a big disappointment and reject me. It's not like we have much of or a good relationship. Maybe he'll even cut me off. But not telling him isn't helping any of us, it's creating secrets and walls and just making a bad situation worse. What can I do to prepare him? How should I tell him? Can you be present/near and support me? In fact, maybe one way we can prepare is for you to call them on making gay jokes or support me when I do...."

    Yeah, I know, all tidy and wrapped into one paragraph (real life conversations never go according to the script) and easy for me to say from a million miles away. But we were all (to some degree or another) in that boat once, too.

    I also came out to my mom first. I knew she would be ok with it. But I was scared of dad. Had no clue what he would think, I'd avoided him for years, we didn't have much of a relationship at the time, etc. Mom told him that night so I never saw how he initially received it, but to make a long story short he thought I should be "fixed". The three of us went to a therapy session, the psychiatrist asked me a lot of questions and saw that I was comfortable with my sexuality (I was already out for 1.5 years, had a good group of gay friends, and in a relationship; 3 years earlier I was lost in the wilderness and things would have played out differently). The doctor pronounced that he doesn't see a problem... do my parents have one? Dad asked about "fixing" me and the doc gave the answer you'd expect to hear were this asked on RJ.

    It took a while, but dad adjusted, we adjusted, and now things are great. Dad and my partner get along great (when they start talking about Greek mythology or some other things... I just sneak off and find something else to do).

    Hope that helps and that things go well!
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    Jul 10, 2010 9:23 PM GMT
    Just come out to the rest of your family. If they become aggressive, kick their asses. That should nullify the stereotype of "limp-wristed fag." icon_wink.gif
  • Latenight30

    Posts: 1525

    Jul 10, 2010 11:10 PM GMT
    let it lie. Things will not adjust themselves overnight. Remember when you had to change pronouns. She for he and stuff like that before you came out.
    They have to adjust too. It will be a slow process. It took 20 years for you.
    Give them time. But Congrats.