Questions About Being Out & Closeted

  • Joeyphx444

    Posts: 2382

    Apr 22, 2013 2:17 AM GMT
    In the last year of so, I came out to my family. I already told my friends, but they didn't find out at once, more like in separate instances. So I would say I am completely out.

    If you are out, does it really make a big difference in life? I mean if you are out in public you wouldn't really be cuddling with another man on the bench or kissing, at least I wouldn't. If your family doesn't even approve of you being gay, then what would it matter if you dated men? Is it just the fact that you told someone? I guess I am saying coming out is really more for YOUR sake and not others.

    If you are closeted, which I technically was when I joined this site, why be so paranoid? Especially in my situation. I moved out here and really knew no one so who cares if I was seen with a guy? Could always be a friend? And online, what's the REAL chance of someone I know being on here? I eventually posted face pics and everything on sites and have never come into any trouble. .

    Do you think if I see your face that I'm gonna post in on google and say this guy is gay? And if you told me your name is John, what good is that? Some guys I talk to don't even wanna tell me their first name!! What the heck is point of being on here then?
  • Apparition

    Posts: 3525

    Apr 22, 2013 3:10 AM GMT
    I hold hands in public all the time. I dont think about it being a problem.

    Being out means not really thinking about being gay ever, unless you are not getting laid. If someone asks you a heteronormative question, you just correct them as if it is an everyday thing.

    "Are you married?" - no Im just dating my bf
    "do you have kids?" - no I keep trying, but he wont get pregnant
    "are you gay?" - I dont even have straight hair
    "what did you do this weekend" - bf wore me out and then we went to see oblivion
    "what movie did you see" - some british gay thing

  • Joeyphx444

    Posts: 2382

    Apr 22, 2013 3:54 AM GMT
    yourname2000 saidToo many questions, but I'll take a couple. To me the difference between being out or not is being able to be honest with your friends/fam, and actually participate in discussions about relationships, "what did you do last weekend", "are you seeing anyone", and a whole slew of questions that closeted guys have to evade or outright lie about. That creates a serious barrier (imo) to being truly close to your friends, so I found it very isolating....self-isolating.




    This is interesting cuz I am out to family and friends. I can openly talk about my dating life with my friends but not comfortable yet with my family (mom and dad is who I would discuss things with really). Does that mean I am not fully "out"? I guess as time goes by and my parents accept it and I bring a guy home they like, then it will get better
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    Apr 22, 2013 12:12 PM GMT
    As you were not always out and as you are not yet completely comfortable with your parents, understand that others might not be completely comfortable with themselves in the world either so be gentle in judging both them and you. For even while someone might be comfortable with their self as a gay man, they might be somewhat uncomfortable in the world because people develop a double consciousness: one of ourselves looking at ourselves as we see ourselves, but the other, ourselves, looking at ourselves as we perceive the world seeing us.

    Just because someone might be very uncomfortable in the world do not assume that person entirely uncomfortable with them self as one doesn't necessarily speak for the other. You can develop a certain confidence or build some walls or come to some realizations about the view of the world, understanding how the world seeing you effects you and thereby get to whatever degree beyond that, but nobody walks through shit without getting some shit on their shoes.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Apr 22, 2013 12:33 PM GMT
    I think it interesting that the OP makes it "one way or another". Many people here (myself included) are out to those people that are important in life and the rest (it isn't any of their business). My assistants know, but we don't discuss it (in a professional setting). A number of my newer neighbors probably know, but some may not since they have their own lives and something like a "gay neighbor" probably isn't that important. I would say they probably point at my house and say, "thats where the HOA president lives", not "thats our gay neighbor".

    My point is, like anything about me, I share it with those who I share it with and don't with the rest. I'm very comfortable with it.
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    Apr 22, 2013 1:08 PM GMT
    It isn't about the random people you encounter it is all about the important people in your life. The difference between being out and being closeted is whether or not those people know the truth about you.

    As regards to your parents, my parents are the same way and that doesn't mean you aren't out to them. They know your gay and just don't want to know all the details. My parents are hooked on the aspect that their son likes butt sex with another guy so they are trying to get over that.

    Being out is where you are comfortable in your own skin (As Dove says), not having to lie to the people who care about you and just being yourself and not having to hide or feel alone.
  • CarbGoggles

    Posts: 705

    Apr 22, 2013 1:22 PM GMT
    HndsmKansan saidI think it interesting that the OP makes it "one way or another". Many people here (myself included) are out to those people that are important in life and the rest (it isn't any of their business). My assistants know, but we don't discuss it (in a professional setting). A number of my newer neighbors probably know, but some may not since they have their own lives and something like a "gay neighbor" probably isn't that important. I would say they probably point at my house and say, "thats where the HOA president lives", not "thats our gay neighbor".

    My point is, like anything about me, I share it with those who I share it with and don't with the rest. I'm very comfortable with it.
    Yeah I agree. Individual results will vary. Everybody has their own reasons for being out or not. As far as coming out, I don't consider it anybody's business. If I tell a person, it's because they are important to me and I hope to have them in my life till the end. I'd rather that relationship not be based on false understandings so I clear the air and let the person decide on their own hoping they'll realize I'm still the same guy and this is not an act.
  • twentyfourhou...

    Posts: 243

    Apr 22, 2013 1:44 PM GMT
    Joey,
    Great questions. My coming out process occured later in life - around 37. I expected this huge sense of relief that somehow there would be this drastic change when in reality life just simply went on. For me the coming out process was more about getting to know myself and allowing myself to better explore who i was as a man - not straight or gay but simply as a man. Fast forward almost 10 years and i am still "coming out". I avoid PDAs, but you know what even when i was married to a woman for the most part i avoided PDAs as well. I would say, 20% of why i do not kiss or hold my partners hand in public is because - i prefer not to deal with the stares or verbal insults. The 80% is simply because that is not who i am. The question then is - why do it - what is the big deal. For many it has to deal with the emotional well-being / mental health. If one is ashamed, embarrased, or uncomfortable with who they are then..........................over the long term it becomes a heavy burden - sometimes leading to self esteem issues or engaging in activities that ultimately hurt not only the individual but those who love you and those who try to love you.
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    Apr 22, 2013 2:14 PM GMT
    twentyfourhourslater said...I avoid PDAs, but you know what even when i was married to a woman for the most part i avoided PDAs as well. I would say, 20% of why i do not kiss or hold my partners hand in public is because - i prefer not to deal with the stares or verbal insults. The 80% is simply because that is not who i am....


    I've tended not to kiss guys in public or hold hands either but not because of who I am rather of how it is that I am who I am. How it is that I grew up with all the heteros kissing but not the gay people. How it is that all I see in television or the movies is heteros kissing. How it is that I'd have been afraid, earlier in my life, of being judged poorly by society if I kissed who I wanted to kiss in public. How I wasn't able to be myself as my friends & peers & associates and the world was able to be them selves. It never seemed quite fair.

    I very conveniently determined (read: rationalized) that public displays of affection were inappropriate for the most part because I perceived the world telling me that my natural inclinations were inappropriate for public display. I so internalized the inappropriateness of it, that I thought I was naturally like that. Not publicly affectionate. Though now, of course, I hug and kiss even my str8 men friends.

    If I am not the only gay guy who has ever entertained such thinking, then might that not also apply to closeted married guys who don't enjoy kissing their wives in public, because not only would they rather be kissing a guy, but on top of that they then might perceive society judging what they'd rather be doing. You might not be like that but I'd question myself. Does that make it too easy to say: well, I'm not like that anyway?
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    Apr 22, 2013 2:23 PM GMT
    I've dated closeted guys, and a big problem for me was walking on eggshells in public so I wouldn't give "us" away. Watching what I said, how I behaved.

    Glad I don't have to do that with my husband. It's that freedom & ease I feel in public I think I enjoy most, even though I'm not running around telling everyone I see. But neither do I need to conceal anything. icon_biggrin.gif
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    Apr 22, 2013 3:00 PM GMT
    It means you're not living a lie.
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    Apr 22, 2013 3:15 PM GMT
    CarbGoggles said Everybody has their own reasons for being out or not. As far as coming out, I don't consider it anybody's business. If I tell a person, it's because they are important to me and I hope to have them in my life till the end. I'd rather that relationship not be based on false understandings so I clear the air and let the person decide on their own hoping they'll realize I'm still the same guy and this is not an act.

    I agree with this. As for PDA, I have no issue with PDA. It just depends on where I am and how appropriate the gesture is. I hold hands when it's appropriate, I kiss (peck) when appropriate. I'm mindful of my safety, my surroundings and those around me. It all depends on the situation!
  • MikeW

    Posts: 6061

    Apr 22, 2013 3:19 PM GMT
    rickmenbashi saidIt means you're not living a lie.

    Totally this. So it means you're not constantly living in fear that someone will figure it out, either.

    There are different levels to being out, though. (Note *being* out as opposed to *coming* out.)

    Ok, so you're not yet ready to talk about relationships with your parents. Maybe someday you will. But there is the question, how much business is it of theirs anyway? I mean if you were a straight guy dating girls, how much would you tell them about that unless it began to get 'moving in together' serious? Of course they'd be curious but how many guys talk openly with their parents about the *details* of their relationships?

    As for being out in the every-day world, it depends. Depends on your personality type, depends on who you're with, depends on the situations (some are not safe, they may be rare but they exist) and it depends on how much anyone else needs to know.

    I live in a city where, for the most part, being gay is basically not an issue. But that doesn't mean I tell every store clerk or passer by on the street HEY I'M GAY! Do I care about *their* sexuality? Nope. But like someone else said, if I'm having an interaction and someone says something that shows me they don't 'get it', I just say something to nudge them in the right direction.
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    Apr 22, 2013 3:47 PM GMT
    Personally, it made a difference. Even after I had come out to my friends and family, there was still a bit of residual paranoia in my life. Will someone from my homophobic extended family find out? What if someone from work sees a Facebook post? I would even find myself worrying about what random strangers might think, which is truly sad. When you're in the closet, even part way, you are always looking over your shoulder.

    Since coming out all the way, I find feeling more comfortable in all aspects of my life. I'm a lot more open with people and I feel like I'm living more, without feeling the need to censor myself. Like Yourname2000 said above, it feels like second nature to talk about your sexuality, like its no big deal. I'll find myself correcting people without even questioning what their reaction might be. In fact, sometimes I get a bit of mischievous glee in turning people's assumptions on their head. icon_twisted.gif

    To be fair though, I was lucky in that I live in a fairly gay-friendly city and am surrounded by open-minded individuals. Some people are not so lucky, living or working in places where there could be life-changing consequences for being completely open. For them, fully coming out will be much more challenging. For that reason, I try to be sympathetic to those in the closet, even if I personally wouldn't want to be in that situation.

  • Joeyphx444

    Posts: 2382

    Apr 22, 2013 8:29 PM GMT
    Do you think coming out makes you less guarded and thus people can read you better and tell you are gay?
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    Apr 22, 2013 8:55 PM GMT
    There's only one way I know how to sum up an answer in one sentence and that is:

    Nothing feels as good as freedom!


    Not even a good BJ.
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    Apr 22, 2013 9:00 PM GMT
    Well being out allows me to feel more confident about myself but also a little isolated. Everyone knows I'm gay so I instantly become the gay one. I have a very supportive female friend who I love to pieces but she is too damn fascinated about my gayhood.

    However when I'm with my male single friends I can hit on cute guys while they are hitting on cute girls. We can share sex stories and I can share mine without replacing he with she.
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    Apr 22, 2013 9:04 PM GMT
    Apparition saidI hold hands in public all the time. I dont think about it being a problem.

    Being out means not really thinking about being gay ever, unless you are not getting laid. If someone asks you a heteronormative question, you just correct them as if it is an everyday thing.

    "Are you married?" - no Im just dating my bf
    "do you have kids?" - no I keep trying, but he wont get pregnant
    "are you gay?" - I dont even have straight hair
    "what did you do this weekend" - bf wore me out and then we went to see oblivion
    "what movie did you see" - some british gay thing





    Hahahhaaa Nice!
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    Apr 22, 2013 9:11 PM GMT
    yourname2000 said
    UndercoverMan saidThere's only one way I know how to sum up an answer in one sentence and that is:

    Nothing feels as good as freedom!


    Not even a good BJ.

    A good blowjob is half an hour. Freedom is all day. icon_cool.gif


    Freedom is a lifetime!

    Half hour BJ. Somebody isn't doing it right or someone isn't cooperating and holding out!
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    Apr 24, 2013 1:24 AM GMT
    Joeyphx444 saidIn the last year of so, I came out to my family. I already told my friends, but they didn't find out at once, more like in separate instances. So I would say I am completely out.

    If you are out, does it really make a big difference in life? I mean if you are out in public you wouldn't really be cuddling with another man on the bench or kissing, at least I wouldn't. If your family doesn't even approve of you being gay, then what would it matter if you dated men? Is it just the fact that you told someone? I guess I am saying coming out is really more for YOUR sake and not others.

    If you are closeted, which I technically was when I joined this site, why be so paranoid? Especially in my situation. I moved out here and really knew no one so who cares if I was seen with a guy? Could always be a friend? And online, what's the REAL chance of someone I know being on here? I eventually posted face pics and everything on sites and have never come into any trouble. .

    Do you think if I see your face that I'm gonna post in on google and say this guy is gay? And if you told me your name is John, what good is that? Some guys I talk to don't even wanna tell me their first name!! What the heck is point of being on here then?


    I think it makes a good difference in my life. I love being able to walk around and hold hands with my boyfriend or give him a random kiss. and I like that we can go to a gay bar and not worry about anything.

    I feel so incredibly comfortable by being open and honest with myself and my relationship with my boyfriend.

    I agree with you --> what's the big deal? why hide it? I used to (because of my job and family too)...but I know I've felt a lot happier after coming out.....but I know a lot of guys just can't quite make that "jump" and continue to live in hiding. I say instead of judging them, help them. Don't push them -- just offer your own experiences.