Now that you're out of the closet...

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 23, 2008 12:09 AM GMT
    ... how are you fitting in with the rest of the gay community?

    Personally, I have found it a little difficult to relate to other gay people I've met so far. I'm glad I met them, but I thought the slight fish-out-of-water feeling that my sexuality gave me around straight people would disappear in the company of other gay people. It might be that I come from a very conservative, old-school type of community, but who knows. But I will say that it has nice meeting people here in college that are accepting of my sexuality icon_biggrin.gif

    I'm curious to know, did you guys find it easy to relate to other gay men when you came out of the closet?
  • MuslDrew

    Posts: 463

    Aug 23, 2008 11:41 AM GMT
    I was apprehensive at first. It was summer after graduating high school.I went to a suburban/rural high school. The German Baptisits were the closest thing to ethnic diversity. I took a job at an inner city supermarket that had quite a few gays working in almost every department, even management. a lesbian in the deli spearheaded a drive to drag me out of the closet. i staled as long as I could. The drinking age then was 18. The gang took me out to a gay club for my 18th birthday. It was scary & exciting to walk through the entrance.Once inside, I realized there was nothing to be scared of.
    Not sure where you are in Texas. It should be easier to find people to relate to these days. Look for gay youth group or sports teams in your community and surrounding areas.Get involved in social or political volunteerism & fundraising. Those are great ways to meet people you might not ever cross paths with.
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    Aug 23, 2008 2:52 PM GMT
    I don't think your reaction is odd at all. You just haven't met the right group of folks that you'll be comfortable with. The gay community contains a spectrum of personalities and you will eventually find compatability. Give it time, meet people. Your initial exposure to gay life can be overwhelming. It takes time to acclimate yourself. Don't be impatient. Participate in activities within the community that appeal to you.
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    Aug 24, 2008 8:07 AM GMT

    I managed to go through 4 years of college without meeting an out gay man (a pretty amazing feat in liberal Ann Arbor. I later learned that something like 7 out of 40 people on my freshman hall were gay, including the RA who himself was not yet out but nonetheless set off my gaydar which I didn't yet even know I had).

    I finally met an out guy through a local BBS, but he was a mess. Literally a mental case, incoherent much of the time, and he would drool. That sent me scurrying back into the closet for a year or two.

    Then I met a group of out gay "normal" guys. None of them were into sports, and that's an understatement. I could identify with them on other levels, which was a godsend for me at the time. Ended up dating one of them for more than 2 years. Still, not being the "trendy" type, it was as if I was out of phase with the gay community. (They couldn't take back my "gay card" cause I was never issued one.)

    My breakthrough moment came with the 1994 Gay Games - years after coming out. I don't remember how I even found out about them, but somehow I learned that football was a sport. Things started out badly. I called someone in NY who worked for some record label. I probably was supposed to be impressed but I had never previously heard of the company. Then I called California and talked to the guy who would later found Outsports. He had me call 2 guys in Texas... and Dallas said I could play for them.

    Recall that I'm in Michigan. From way up north I had called the east, west and now south "coast". I flew down to Dallas and two butch, hot guys picked me up from the airport. On the way we stopped at some lavish law office where somebody worked. Having just gotten off the boat (so to speak - no silly, it was a plane), I was playing it straight lest I out these butch guys. Only to then have them yell across the office about "Gay Games" this and that. I was in a different universe and I think at that moment I decided to move to Dallas (not that I ever did). One of the guys took me to a nice (rather than seedy) gay gym (now it was my turn to drool, a condition that worsened when I met the Team Dallas Cheer squad). When we got to NY, on the first play the QB hit me on a post and I raced to the endzone for a TD. A few days later we beat the home team to take the Bronze medal. I felt like I had died and gone to heaven. (And, as you can see, 14 years later I still relish reliving those moments.)

    The Gay Games went overseas in 1998 and 2002, so there was no football, and other than some casual volleyball my gay sports "career" was on hold until 2005. I put together a Michigan team to play football at the Chicago Gay Games. The world had progressed in 12 years and I think most of the guys on the team were comfortable in their skins, but I always hope that we can be of help to someone just coming out who isn't cut from the stereotypical gay cloth.

    Has all that made me fit into the gay community? Depends. When the subject of discussion is pop culture - and that seems to be an important topic in some circles - I'm the fish out of water. But that's true regardless of whether the participants are gay or straight. The difference is that I don't surround myself with straight people who talk about that (certainly not to that level of detail). I've often pointed out the hypocrisy that I'm considered a "freak" because I know a thing or two about a professional athelete. Yet it's perfectly "normal" to know everything about another type of entertainer?


    Anyhow, I think the comments by MuslDrew and Rigsby are on the mark. You need to find gay people who are more in tune with you (beyond the initial commonality of sharing coming-out stories). Rigsby closes with "Participate in activities within the community that appeal to you." The other half of that is don't hesitate to continue lving in the "straight community" for things that the gay community does not provide - or try to provide them yourself. Start a group - or join (and thus support) a group someone else is starting. All too often people complain that there's nothing to do but then don't bother showing up when someone else tries to make something to do.

    To close, let me borrow a line from President Kennedy: Ask not what the gay community can do for you, but what you can do for the gay community. That, and "if you build it, they will come".

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 24, 2008 8:15 AM GMT
    I'm struggling to meet gay friends since coming out last year... I still have the feeling of not fitting in.

    On the plus side, I've made some great new straight friends. I think it comes down to me being more comfortable and not putting up barriers to hide the real me.

  • Space_Cowboy_...

    Posts: 3738

    Feb 18, 2010 3:30 AM GMT
    So far other than rj because all you guys are great!! But gay guys try me and I end up cussing them out or they fall in love with me and start planning out fall wedding in Paris
  • Crucializer

    Posts: 389

    Feb 18, 2010 3:56 AM GMT
    I feel like I dont fit in at all! I go to gay functions around town and they all seem to know each other and its hard to try and fit in when you feel like an outsider. I feel more connected to you guys than the real gay people in my town . . .
  • Space_Cowboy_...

    Posts: 3738

    Feb 18, 2010 3:58 AM GMT
    Starlite saidThis is an interesting twist...
    Space cowboy prefers 'straight' friends because when they hang around 'gay' guys...they find him attractive, and become very flirty and want to marry....

    That is interesting...where as I presume a straight friend who knows your 'gay' and ok with that...won't always 'flirt' with you...interesting point of view...


    lol I dont really sperate my friends as gay or stright they're my friends I just need to meet some not crazy gay guys

    but good way of putting it icon_biggrin.gif
  • Crucializer

    Posts: 389

    Feb 18, 2010 4:39 AM GMT
    Starlite said
    Crucializer saidI feel like I dont fit in at all! I go to gay functions around town and they all seem to know each other and its hard to try and fit in when you feel like an outsider. I feel more connected to you guys than the real gay people in my town . . .


    1139348gm3744qpip.gif


    Flowers for you pal....I havent seen you around in a long while...well actually normally I don't drift out this far from my usual thread...but tonight I felt like exploring this big castle...

    Hope all is well with you....


    Aww, thanks Star . . .
  • Crucializer

    Posts: 389

    Feb 18, 2010 4:55 AM GMT
    icon_biggrin.gif
  • RollDontWalk

    Posts: 187

    Feb 26, 2012 12:05 AM GMT
    When I came out I had plenty of friends at the time but they were all straight. Around the same time I came out I moved into an apartment in the city with a gay flatmate, who sometimes had a few of his friends over on weekends.
    I found I initially felt a bit strange hanging out with them, but this was partly a calibration issue on my part having not been around many gay people before.
    I was expecting to have a bit more in common with them than I did. None of them are into sports/fitness like I am, and they are all a group of friends from the same state while I am from the other side of the world, so while they were well friendly with me, for a while I wasn't sure how to be around them. As I've gotten more comfortable with things I've realised it's not being gay that made it strange trying to fit in, just differences in personalities, interests and upbringing.
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    Feb 26, 2012 12:51 AM GMT
    Not really, I actually don't have a close gay friend I mean I do have gay friends but I never go out with them cos usually I prefer to hang out with my old friends who are straight.
    I think the problem is that if I meet a gay guy who I can call my friend friend he will most likely be straight acting (since I feel more comfortable around them) and there'll be a high probability for me falling for him lol.
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    Feb 26, 2012 2:05 AM GMT
    Like everywhere else, I don't fit in, but I'm not into the scene...or promiscuous sex. I actually want just platonic gay friends that I can go to brunch with...and be each others' wingmen...etc. But I guess that takes time - and it's definitely hard to do in NYC

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    Feb 26, 2012 2:12 AM GMT
    I always felt out of place and uncomfortable so I stopped meeting up and hanging out with them. I'm bi and once I came out with that I always find gay guys just want to have sex with me or they just can't stop talking about partying and sex and these guys are 30 and up. To be honest the only gay guys that I enjoy talking to are the ones I message on here and bigmuscle because they never bring up anything sex related but talk about other shit like the debates going on, football, diets, baseball, and other stuff. The gay guys I've met in person are cool people but after they ask if I'm gay or straight when I say bi some will invite me back to their place and start trying to get me into bed, or they'll change the convo and start flirting after I say no they just brush me off leaving me with the impression that if we can't fuck around then we can't be friends.
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    Feb 26, 2012 2:16 AM GMT
    I don't really fit in that much. Pretty much not into the scene as well
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Feb 26, 2012 2:17 AM GMT
    "... how are you fitting in with the rest of the gay community?"

    I don't, I try to stay away for the most part. I have a few good friends that are gay but I try my best to stay away from that whole "gay scene." You usually wont find me at a gay bar. It just doesn't interest me, I rather be at a sports bar.
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    Feb 26, 2012 2:34 AM GMT
    Well I'm not out yet but ive met a couple of buddies online (some I've met in real life) that are pretty awesome. Its definatly a fresh air to be accepted by them but I too still feel like a fish out of water. Maybe its because theyre so used to this being gay thing and Im not. Im not sure to be honest but I cant wait for the day to be surrounded around people that care about ME and not something as tiny as my sexuality.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Feb 26, 2012 2:35 AM GMT
    THREAD NECRO...........oh someone else already revived this one icon_neutral.gif

    It really depends. Some people want nothing to do with me and some people don't mind me. Mostly a lot of the crowd that listens to a certain genre of music and do the whole theater thing regularly don't want anything to do with me. Its fine really.

    Now when I first came out and was taking my wittle itty bitty gay baby steps into the bars, it was a bit of a culture shock. I didn't really like the vibe of the place I was in, I was defensive as fuck etc...for a while I didn't think there was anyone out there like me. For a while there really wasn't, everyone has their differences etc...but some people are really picky about who they want to be around for their own reasons. Some are good reasons, some are pretty superficial. It was what it was, now days I don't try to fit in necessarily, but I am usually reminded once in a while why I don't belong to certain areas of the community.
  • araphael

    Posts: 1148

    Feb 26, 2012 9:17 AM GMT
    Since I've came out I haven't fit in yet. The gay community, in my brief expereince with it, is harder to deal with than the straight community (I've almost gone back to pretending straight based on these brief experiences, but I didn't, I think for the good).But then it makes a little sense from the whole scientific and biological perspective. Males of every species are guarded and unsure of themselves in the straight community, so it would reason that they are even more so guarded in the gay community.(But I think myself quite competent in understanding scientific animal behavior, lol) The one thing I have found among gay guys so far is that they play as many, if not more, emotional sexual games than females. This blew my mind when I first encountered it because I didn't think any one could be more fucked up than girls when it came to sexual and emotional games. I would never treat a new young gay guy the way gay guys have treated me. I've promised myself that. Gay guys, in my humble opinion, need to remind themselves that they are outcasted from the larger society which means they should have mercy and patience with new emerging gay guys just finding out who they are sexually; especially the young ones. As Jesus said, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." Just my humble thoughts.