coming out

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    Feb 07, 2007 11:55 PM GMT
    so im at the point where i know im gay but masculine enough so that no one knows. ive been considering if i want to come out and if i do, how to do it.. mostly afraid of broken friendships, etc. anyone got any advice or stories of their coming out?
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    Feb 08, 2007 3:38 AM GMT
    ONLY YOU KNOW IF YOU ARE READY TO COME OUT IT IS A BIG THING TO GO TRU . SURE YOU MAY LOOSE SOME GOOD FRIENDS BUT IF THEY CANNOT ACCEPT YOU FOR YOURSELF AND LOVE YOU FOR YOU THEN THEY ARENT REALLY TRUE FRIENDS.I KNOW FROM PERSONAL EXP THAT IF YOU DONT IT WILL EAT AT YOU. GOOD LUCK AND JUST REMEMBER THAT GAY ST8 BI DOES NOT MAKE YOU THE PERSON YOU ARE!
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    Feb 08, 2007 4:17 AM GMT
    Hi Boulder,you asck for advice about comming out realy only you can answere that one, you will know when it is the right time for you, but give it careful thought it can be very costly not only to you but to friends, family,and relationships ,college,career, GOOD LUCK.
  • cityguy39

    Posts: 967

    Feb 08, 2007 5:52 AM GMT
    Hey boulder, great topic by the way. It's been my exprience that most people figure the secret by the time you reach a certian age. The people you thought don't know actually do, and the ones you thought that do know, didn't have a clue. Most guys that think they are totally unclockable aren't. As for coming out, do it at your own pace. The weight that will come off of your cheat will be amazing. Trying to hide who you is never easy. GOOD LUCK!!!!
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    Feb 08, 2007 7:21 AM GMT
    yeah. i have a pretty good story. I totaled my dads mercedes, so in order to soften the blow, I came out to him first, them told him i crashed his mercedes.
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    Feb 08, 2007 12:24 PM GMT
    Right on, Cityguy... plan your approaches in consideration of the feelings of others BUT if others are uncomfortable with your statement of reality? Well, give them time to examine why they might 'prefer' you live in fear and hiding...

    Remember 'THE TRUTH SHALL SET YOU FREE.'

  • Laurence

    Posts: 942

    Feb 08, 2007 1:57 PM GMT
    Hi Boulder

    It's great you are considering coming out. Because, no matter what the opinions/reactions of others, it will be the best thing you ever do for yourself.

    Life is too short to hide who or what you are for fear of offending people. if your friends and family can't expect you as you are, then screw them, they're not really worthy of you.

    I've been on a Lesbian and Gay helpline for over 15 years and have heard 100's of coming out stories. And I have found that there is no easy or correct way of doing it. It depends on timing, circumstances and the people involved. I have found however, from speaking to those who haven't come out and regretted it in later life, that after weighing things up it really will will be the best thing you ever do (look I'm repeating myself).

    Good luck mate (fingers crossed)

    Loz

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    Feb 08, 2007 7:13 PM GMT
    I came out to a very close male friend of mine who just so happened to be struggling with his own sexual attraction to males. He's still my friend, but no so close anymore as whenever we see each other we are aware of our possible attraction or attraction to other males. Based on this awkward experience, I will stay in the closet unless events force me to come out. By that time I would have expected to start over socially anyway.
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    Feb 08, 2007 7:38 PM GMT
    I think you'll be suprised at the response you'll get from people. And you'll find out who you're real friends are.

    I came out to friends and family when I was 16. Although my family is conservative, growing up in liberal Northern California made it easier. However, it's still a huge step. Trust me though, as soon as you do it you will feel a huge weight lifted off you. In fact, you'll never feel better.

    Most guys think that because they are masculine, somehow they won't fit in with the 'gay' crowd. The fact is most gay men are very masculine and sports minded... but of course the only ones you can pinpoint as gay are the stereotypes...My point is if you say no one knows you're gay because of your masculinity, then it's very likely there are plenty of masculine guys all around you that are gay to.

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    Feb 09, 2007 5:31 AM GMT
    Hi, I'm actually out only to a few close friends, but after much thought -- I may want to look for an LGBT group because I feel pretty torn -- by what people think of me, by my own judgmental thoughts of how I should behave, etc.
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    Feb 09, 2007 6:11 AM GMT
    hey, this is 2007 and being gay is much more accepted these days. your parents are smart and may know already. for me, i started conversing with other gay people and meeting some really great and nice people. as a result of this coming-out was easy for me bacause i was so happy to be associated with the types of guys I was making friends with. if you date someone this becomes even better - you are so proud of your relationship and so happy you just want to scream from the rooftops that you are in love with this person and it is a guy...go for it and good luck.
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    Feb 09, 2007 4:00 PM GMT
    Well, I am asian and I have only been here in the States only for 6 months and will remain for another 1 year. Because of the different context and especially anonymity in NYC, I thought it's easier to "come out", but I was wrong. I was uptight and kept my mouth shut even though my classmates were talking around rather open issues. Maybe because I didn't "trust" them enough.. or maybe I didn't trust myself enough to take that step forward.
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    Feb 09, 2007 4:57 PM GMT
    That was a great story about the Mercedes crashing. I actually used the idea of coming out to my parents (by leading with that topic, but not coming out with it at the time) to cushion the blow of my getting a tattoo. Like everyone says here, you can't say when, you only know when it is an issue that you can't avoid anymore. For me, it was after my mom found someone in my bed. I'm dating a guy that is waiting for something like that to happen to him. There are lots of situations that preclude us from "getting it over with" but the truth is that only people who should know -need to know, and you should get the burden off your shoulders with them because chances are they were just waiting for you to say something. worst case scenario-- you lose them. That's better than death so what do you really have to lose.
  • jc_online

    Posts: 487

    Feb 09, 2007 6:58 PM GMT
    I agree with the others who have said that you will know when it feels like the right thing to do - to come out to someone you care about. It has been a great relief many times for me. An example: with my mom, I thought she already had figured out that I was gay, and by my not having that conversation with her there was this invisible "wall" between us that prevented me from being completely honest with her. When I told her (while she was driving a car I was riding in iwht her - not a recommended time , in hindsight) she said she had no idea I was gay and she loved me anywway.
    Another example: with my dad 6 months later, he simply said, "Well, I kind of thought you were, and if you wanted me to know, you'd tell me." And we went back to watching the game on TV.

    Best of luck to everyone at the difficult moment of coming out - it can be tough, but it's ultimately personally releiving.
    Peace- JC
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    Feb 09, 2007 6:59 PM GMT
    Heya Boulder,

    As I explained to a guy I was seeing years ago who was at that crossroads... You can't live your life under a barrel. What makes your life worth living is the relationships you develop with others. You can't create a real connection with someone when you're busy concealing a huge facet of who you are.

    Coming to terms with being gay is a big challenge, it can take a long time, but the rewards of being free of the secret is worth it.

    I would suggest coming out to a close friend or a relative you trust first. You need to get a feel for what to expect from people as you come out so you can be better prepared. A friend or trusted relative is a good place to start because if the worst happens and the relationship is damaged, well, it's just a friend, it could be worse.

    I came out progressively over a couple of years this way, ultimately sitting my parents down once I was prepared and equipped to deal with their concerns.

    Always remember, it took you X number of years to deal with you being Gay, cut your friends and family some slack and know it'll take em some time to come around. Once you've come out it's your job to answer questions and prove to them that you haven't changed. You, and maybe some friends or your boyfriend some day are going to be their main example that gay guys are nothing to be freaked out about.

    What you need to do is get ready to answer questions.... And be patient. It'll be frustrating, but I promise, it'll be worth it in the end. Any one whom you lose because of this wasn't worth your time in the first place.

    Good luck mate

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    Feb 09, 2007 11:38 PM GMT
    i surprisingly lost no friends over my coming out. I was shocked and amazed at how cool and accepting all of them were about it. Everyone. My teammates, my fraternity brothers, hell even my professors were cool with it. It's a very powerful and uplifting experience if you're in the right situation.

    Having said that, don't do it if you don't feel comfortable or if you don't think you're ready for it. It will happen when it happens. Don't try and force something before it's ready.
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    Feb 10, 2007 9:23 PM GMT
    Most will accept, most will be pretty cool and some will be genuine with it too.

    I think you will find as you come out you are less likely to lose friends because of it but more because you are more comfortable being you. You may start to openly move in different circles and because of that you can lose contact with existing friends.

    As long as you dont over embrace your new "outness" you'll be ok

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    Feb 11, 2007 12:06 AM GMT
    Hey Boulder - only you will know when its time. I am 38 years old and have known I am gay since highscool...made some real poor judgement calls in my life so to that end, I am still in the closet (thus my screen name) BUT I have made several friends who are gay and know what I am going through. It helps to surround yourself with friends - people who will accept you no matter what. Being gay is who you are....and if people are not willing to accept you for the person you are - then they truly are not your friends. Wishing you the Best....
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    Feb 11, 2007 2:40 AM GMT
    Boulder good luck, I am single now and never been with a women. My Dad retired 2 years ago and left me with the family business. After all said and done he told me that the thing that would make him most happy would be to see me settle down with a wife and start a family. My heart sunk! I took a deep breath and responded, "dad, when the right person comes along and I know he will, I will then settle down." My dad looked at me and Said, "Son, you are the most prescious thing to me and if you feel that a man will make you the happiest person in the world, then so be it." It was both the hardest thing to say but the most liberating experience of my life. My dad hugged me for about 5 minutes in a Manhattan restaurant, he cried, I cried, we smiled and laughed all at the same time. I came out to him at 35 years of age and for 20 years I walked around with this huge weight on my shoulders. I live with a guy for 11 years "as a roomie" lol - To make a long story short, my dad told me later that he knew "what was going on" and it is not because either of us were feminine in any way. But he knew.

    People know and they are not suprized when you tell em. You need not blast the world either with the news, it is none of their business. Boulder good luck!
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    Feb 11, 2007 2:47 AM GMT
    To NICE_BUT_NOT_EASY:

    That was a very moving story. Thank you for sharing that so openly. It certainly touched me a lot...

    I have a "theory" -- that for parents who do not live in a society who know much about gays (e.g. in certain Asian countries), then it is harder to assume that they kinda guessed you are gay. Knowledge of gay movements in the States, I think, has opened people's views that diversity does occur. But I just fear that in certain societies/countries, people are not so "knowledgeable" or gay-conscious.

    I doubt my mom really knows what it means for her son to be gay.
  • HotMuscleFun

    Posts: 96

    Feb 11, 2007 7:40 PM GMT
    We all fear being rejected by society, but a sign of Maturity is knowing that you must be true to yourself first in order to have self respect, if your life is spent faking reality and thinking you can be happy hiding, you will not be a happy person on the inside.

    My parents are lost in religious stupidity, they happily sarcrificed their child on the alter of their fictitous God.

    I think the book that helped me the most and changed my life if Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand, it taught me the value of Individulism in a culture were people think an Ant or Bee hive is an evolutionary movment forward, not backward.

    Jim

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    Feb 11, 2007 8:27 PM GMT
    Dear Boulder,

    I found that for me it was a gradual thing. My parents and siblings found out when I was 17. Some of my friends found out around that time, but I pretty much kept it on the downlow--not sure how I felt about it.

    When I moved to Honolulu, I met my first and only boyfriend. I was not expecting to find him--at all. A week after we met, there was a function that I wanted to bring him to. Now, I spent most of my professional and even personal life "passing" as straight. I personally don't think that it is anybody's business whom I bring to my bed. Full Disclosure: I am bi-sexual, so this does go back and forth.

    With this new person in my life, I decided that I never want someone that I love to feel that I might be ashamed of them or our relationship, so it was then that I started to let people know that we were dating. It was a bit chaotic, but my true friends stayed close are still quite supportive.

    For me it helped that I first accepted myself as a gay/bi man. No amount of acceptance from anyone else will make up for you being okay with you. When I did this, I became able to face anyone and any situation.

    I still don't advertise that I like to sleep with men or women for that matter. When I meet someone that I find attractive and intelligent, I let them know that I enjoy both. That way they can make an informed decision.

    I have found that this has resulted in highly engaging and healthy relationships. And while I am no longer with that first boyfriend, I will always be grateful for everything that we learned together.

    Remember, this is all about you. Move at your pace--that is something that you know better than anyone else.

    Good luck.

    Big Angry 1
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    Feb 14, 2007 6:54 AM GMT
    soooo.. i came out to 5 of my closest friends today and it felt like such a load off my shoulders.. :)
  • Laurence

    Posts: 942

    Feb 14, 2007 10:02 AM GMT
    Wahey Boulder

    Good news on you starting to come-out.

    Have a great valentines.

    Loz
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    Feb 14, 2007 8:24 PM GMT
    Good for you Boulder! :)

    I found the coming out process was a little taxing but like others have said, if you try to hide it or deny it it will eat away at you inside.
    I had come out to most of my close friends and they have all supported me over the years.
    The people I didn't tell for a long time was my family. I feared that they wouldn't understand growing up in the 1940-1950's. It was actually my accident, unpacking for my new house, my mom found by 2QT2BSTR8 coffee mug. She gently teased me about it "What does "be straight" mean?"
    My dad told her to let it go. A week later she asked me and I said "Yes, I'm gay. Are you mad or disappointed?" Being an only child, I felt the internal pressure to live the "American Dream" wife, kids, picket fence et cetera. But my mom was very understanding and said she loved me for who I am. She was empathetic saying it must be hard for me living in a small Northern Ontario community.
    I've been with my partner for 2 years now and they love him like he's their son. It's the same the other way.
    I guess, what I'm trying to say is, you'll be amazed at the reaction you will get from people.
    On the flipside, I only had one negative reaction from a coworker -- someone who I thought would have been okay with my sexuality. Surprise. :O He's now longer working with my company because of harassing me. Nuff said.
    Take care Boulder and wishing you all the best.
    Bill