Why be out?

  • RogerW19

    Posts: 37

    Sep 11, 2008 6:46 PM GMT
    Why does everyone insist that all gay men should be out of the closet? I'm a more masculine guy and i really love hilariously out there gay guys but why must I let everyone in the world know i like guys? Every time I meet a guy he ask me if i'm in the closet, I'm not, I'm just not going to walk up to every person I meet and be like " I'm a homo how do you do?". So why do so many people get mad when I tell them i'm not openly gay with everyone I meet?
  • TexanMan82

    Posts: 893

    Sep 11, 2008 6:50 PM GMT
    I'm not openly gay with everyone I meet. Hell, there are still acquaintances that I still haven't told. I'm sure they know, but I've never said anything. I don't feel I need to let everyone know. It's a personal thing and I choose with whom I want to share it.

    I don't wear my sexuality on my sleeve. I'm masculine and people are shocked when they learn of my queerness. My sexuality is just a small part of who I am.
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    Sep 11, 2008 7:14 PM GMT
    I don't think being out necessarily has to equate with wearing one's sexuality on his sleeve, nor does it correlate to being un-masculine. I'm not closeted; if someone asks or it comes up in the context of a conversation, I'll tell them I dig dudes. At the same time, just because I'm proudly gay doesn't mean you can necessarily tell from five paces.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Sep 11, 2008 7:18 PM GMT
    I think "being out" or not rests soley on the man. I don't make judgements and whether someone is closeted or "screams gay to the world", its their choice. You have to be comfortable with living your life.

    For me, I'm squarely halfway in between. I don't broadcast it, I'm private about it, but I certainly don't deny it if ask.
  • swimbikerun

    Posts: 2835

    Sep 11, 2008 7:19 PM GMT
    zdrew saidI don't think being out necessarily has to equate to wearing one's sexuality on his sleeve, nor does it correlate to being un-masculine. I'm not closeted; if someone asks or it comes up in the context of a conversation, I'll tell them I dig dudes. At the same time, just because I'm proudly gay doesn't mean you can necessarily tell from five paces.

    Yeah, it's not like I wrap myself in a Pride flag everywhere I go but orientation can come, so why hide it?
  • EricLA

    Posts: 3461

    Sep 11, 2008 7:21 PM GMT
    zdrew saidI don't think being out necessarily has to equate to wearing one's sexuality on his sleeve, nor does it correlate to being un-masculine. I'm not closeted; if someone asks or it comes up in the context of a conversation, I'll tell them I dig dudes. At the same time, just because I'm proudly gay doesn't mean you can necessarily tell from five paces.


    Ditto. I bring it up when it's appropriate. Sometimes it's within a few minutes of meeting someone, other times it could be weeks or months. But I'm not going to censor myself. I worked for one of our national lgbt non-profits for seven years. So, when people asked what I did, I'd often come right out and tell them what it was and what we did. It often created a dialogue. But, there were times I'd downplay it and be a bit more general.

    But my opinion is that the more people that know gay people are just like everyone else the faster people will get past their homophobia. I think there are reasons to stay in the closet, but that list is very short in my opinion.
  • shoelessj

    Posts: 511

    Sep 11, 2008 7:36 PM GMT
    Why? So you don't have to live in fear. Fear of being 'found out.' Fear of having to explain who that guy you were with at the restaurant/bar/movie is. Fear of every major holiday/family gathering. So you don't have to bite your tongue when chatting socially with people.

    I'm not completely out. But I want to be, and i am working toward that point, because i'm just too old to be worrying about it and to be looking over my shoulder, watching what i say or don't say, etc.

    I think, however, that it's a moot point/bad argument to make when you say "it's just a small part of who i am" or "i don't go around telling everyone 'hi, i'm a homo." etc., etc., because that's what you would do if you were hetero.

    Think of the straight folks you know. Do any of them keep their sexuality/relationships in check or quiet because it wouldn't be "appropriate"? How often do people you work with, go to class with, strangers you meet just about anywhere, easily and without worrying about appropriateness or giving out too much information mention their girlfriend/boyfriend, their wedding plans, what they did over the weekend with their wife/husband/boyfriend/girlfriend, etc? If they don't hold back, why should we? Are we ashamed? Are we afraid? Are we waiting to see if there are better options available?

    I don't mean to fault anyone for the way you handle it or the way you live, because everyone's circumstances and living situations are different, but these are just things i think about. I kind of think also that we can't ask for and expect understanding and being treated as equals when we hide some part of who we are.
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    Sep 11, 2008 7:38 PM GMT
    "Why does everyone insist that all gay men should be out of the closet?"

    The assumption upon which you base your question is completely wrong. Everyone doesn't insist that all gay men should be out of the closet. In fact, there are tons who insist that we hide ourselves completely and many of them are gay men (and women) themselves.
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    Sep 11, 2008 7:40 PM GMT
    I don't exactly wear a t-shirt proclaiming the fact but I'm in a relationship that i refuse to cover up or lie about. When I was dating, it was certainly a requirement for long term that my partner not have to hide us from his family/friends. No point in a relationship otherwise, at least to me.
  • DiverScience

    Posts: 1426

    Sep 11, 2008 7:47 PM GMT
    I'll stop mentioning my love life when the straight people around me stop mentioning theirs.

    I'm not "out there" in that I don't introduce myself as gay, but neither do I feel the need to change pronouns when I'm talking with someone specifically about past dating experiences or the like.

    The only reason I'd closet myself at this point would be if I decided to join the military.
  • MattyC0709

    Posts: 1199

    Sep 11, 2008 8:02 PM GMT
    For me being openly gay means indicating that you are gay only when asked or contradicting assumptions are made against you, such as if some girls asks you out. It would be weird if you went up to people saying "Hey, I'm ______ and I'm gay! How are you?" LOL! icon_razz.gif
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    Sep 11, 2008 8:03 PM GMT
    I don't know.. not everyone insists it, but a lot of people do. I, myself, am not open about my sexuality. I'm honest about it. But, like you, I'm not going up to everyone and tell them.. if I'm asked, that's a different story.
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    Sep 11, 2008 8:07 PM GMT
    I think you assume that being out of the closet means that you're always screaming it from the hilltops. I think of being in the closet means denying who you are and lying about yourself when asked.
  • MattyC0709

    Posts: 1199

    Sep 11, 2008 8:16 PM GMT
    matt45710 saidI think of being in the closet means denying who you are and lying about yourself when asked.

    And being out of the closet is just not doing the above. Simple as that.
  • DJZ77

    Posts: 381

    Sep 11, 2008 8:22 PM GMT
    Aren't we all in the closet to a certain extent?!? I mean, when we meet new people who know nothing about us and we let them know about our sexual preference... isn't that like coming out all over again?? Example: Just last night, a group of co-workers and myself get together at a bar for someone's farewell. I'm there, I'm talking, having a few drinks and all of a sudden one of my co-workers, who rarely has any interaction with me I might add, comes over and starts making small talk. He goes off... "So Damian, what's the deal with you.. are you married, single, kids, straight... GAY???" Mind you, by this point in the night I'm already semi-blasted, I think to myself for a bit... I could just cop out and make up some bullshit story and pretend I'm straight or answer truthfully, say I'm gay, get it over with and send them all to bloody hell icon_twisted.gif. I went with the latter option icon_lol.gif So officially, I am now an openly gay man at work. Oh yeah, his response you ask.... "Oh that's nice"... typical straight person response.. ha ha. So my point is, being out doesn't necessarily mean you have to advertise it or much less label yourself. If I am asked I'm not going to deny it, otherwise what business is it to anyone how I choose to live my life. I'm proud to be gay and if you can't handle it, well then that's just your problem! "Go on now go! Walk out the door, just turn around now 'cause you're not welcome anymore..." LOL
  • MattyC0709

    Posts: 1199

    Sep 11, 2008 8:26 PM GMT
    Devilboy77 said"Go on now go! Walk out the door, just turn around now 'cause you're not welcome anymore..." LOL


    icon_lol.gif LOFL! icon_lol.gif
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    Sep 11, 2008 8:29 PM GMT
    i don't know anyone that requires gay guys to mention they're gay at first encounters. people i work with know, only because i mentioned it in passing.last night for example

    "you have a girlfriend right?"
    "nope"
    "oh really? i have some hot friends that are single"
    "oh, shame i'm not single"
    "but you said you didn't have a girlfriend"
    "i don't."
    "but..."
    "boy...friend"

    no one should be demanding that you tell everyone in Mcdonald's "would you like i'm gay with that? or just the fries?" kinda manner. it's up to you to decide if you have to tell someone or not. either they'll find out later on, or you'll tell them at some point. but in the meantime, they can just imagine you having sex with whoever they wanna imagine you having sex with. why they're imagining you having sex with someone, i dunno. but hey, that's up to them to tell you about it and they can tell you when they're good and ready.
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    Sep 11, 2008 8:33 PM GMT
    HndsmKansan saidI think "being out" or not rests soley on the man. I don't make judgements and whether someone is closeted or "screams gay to the world", its their choice. You have to be comfortable with living your life.

    For me, I'm squarely halfway in between. I don't broadcast it, I'm private about it, but I certainly don't deny it if ask.

    Nailed it, HK.
  • DJZ77

    Posts: 381

    Sep 11, 2008 8:36 PM GMT
    muttskins said
    Devilboy77 said"Go on now go! Walk out the door, just turn around now 'cause you're not welcome anymore..." LOL


    icon_lol.gif LOFL! icon_lol.gif


    Hey Muttskins... glad it got a chuckle out of you! Yeah, I can be such a gaytard sometimes. icon_lol.gif
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    Sep 11, 2008 8:38 PM GMT
    The hills are alive with screaming faggots.

    matt45710 saidI think you assume that being out of the closet means that you're always screaming it from the hilltops.
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    Sep 11, 2008 8:59 PM GMT
    Well, it's completely idiotic of people to assume they know who you are and what you like because they know you're gay. Just like you can't tell anything about a guy because you know he's straight (other than "he likes girls"). If you are loud or discreet about your sexuality, well that's you, and people will try to paste stereotypes onto you either way.

    I'm pretty obvious myself, it's just who I am, and I don't see why I need to control what I say or omit information about my life to keep those around me (friends or strangers) comfortable. I've lost a couple of friends because of that, but, srsly, =P at them.
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    Sep 11, 2008 9:27 PM GMT
    To me, being out isn't telling everyone I'm gay. It does, however, mean not pretending that I'm not. If someone specifically asks me or somehow brings conversation to the subject I will mention it. For example, if a friend asks me to go somewhere and I say "I have plans" and they ask me what those plans are, I'll say "Well I'm going to a gay bar today" etc etc. But I'll never just say it out of the blue.

    Eventually people around me figure it out over time, but people who have been around me for short periods of time most likely don't know.

    I think it's key to be out at least in the way I describe, because I personally don't enjoy lying and misleading people about myself.
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    Sep 11, 2008 9:44 PM GMT
    My rule is to always be honest about my sexuality. Not every situation leads to me waving my wang in someone's face, however, I'm not about to let someone assume that my partner is a woman.

    The closet is enormously stressful. My BF - tightly tucked away in the closet - leads an enormously stressful life. Life's great when you're not worried about people finding out who you might like to shag after work.
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    Sep 11, 2008 9:45 PM GMT
    I don't generally tell people. They can either ask me or one of my friends that know. Usually if I'm with my best friend, she tells them. lol. Takes the pressure off me anyways. I'll be telling my family when I find a guy to take home to meet them. I don't announce it at work because my sexuality has absolutely no impact on my job. Though the owner and a couple of the guys I work with might know, they have kept it to themselves.

    Perhaps we could rate "outness" on a Kinsey-like scale. lol.
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    Sep 11, 2008 10:31 PM GMT
    You are right, no need to rub it in people's face; just be honest if the question every arises. That is my philosophy.