To those who came out later on in life.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 20, 2014 7:45 PM GMT
    How old were you when you came out and knowing what you know now would you have come out earlier/ at a younger age?

    Also in need of some advice/guidance/help:

    I'm not out and haven't really found the right time to let those around me know i'm into guys. I don't want to have to wait until I'm much older to come out but at the same time i would like for myself to feel comfortable and for the timing to be right when i do so. What do you suggest be done in a situation like this?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 20, 2014 8:29 PM GMT
    I'm 48. I figured out I'm gay at a late age, at about 30 and started coming out four years ago. I'm completely out now and even told part of my story on outsports.com - it was published this week. Do I wish I'd started coming out earlier? Not sure. I can say that had the world been what it is now when I was your age that I would have done so, but it was a very different era.

    As for the advice part, you'll know when it's right. There are several threads on here that handle this...look them up. I can say that they consistently say you'll know when the time is right. You'll have to figure out the how on your own - there are also several threads reviewing how other guys came out. Everybody's story is different.

    Good luck!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 20, 2014 8:46 PM GMT
    smithnickwvu saidHow old were you when you came out and knowing what you know now would you have come out earlier/ at a younger age?

    Also in need of some advice/guidance/help:

    I'm not out and haven't really found the right time to let those around me know i'm into guys. I don't want to have to wait until I'm much older to come out but at the same time i would like for myself to feel comfortable and for the timing to be right when i do so. What do you suggest be done in a situation like this?

    I came out at nearly 46. I have no regret about being gay, quite the opposite, but I do regret I lived in honest ignorance for so long, truly convinced I was straight. I really wish I would have understood my orientation at your age. Living as a gay man has given me the happiest years of my life, and I might have had more of them, but for my ignorance.

    At 21 I wouldn't call you a late bloomer. For one thing, you already know you're gay, which I didn't. The timing of coming out is a personal matter, depending on many circumstances you must consider. No one answer fits all.

    Some guys come out in their early teens. Others wait to complete their education, get a job, become financially secure, when coming out is less likely to hurt them, in the event of disapproving family, friends and community.

    Time your coming out to YOUR best advantage, not to suit the ideals of others, to include us here on RJ. I will say I was far happier after I came out than before, but by then I had the luxury to do as I wanted, with no fear of negative repercussions. Whatever you decide, good luck!
  • Elian

    Posts: 60

    Jul 20, 2014 8:56 PM GMT
    I came out at 23. That's more or less when life bitch-slapped me icon_razz.gif and I realized that the gay was not going away and I would never be happy otherwise.

    You are not late to the game mate, the fact that you already know that you want to come out at 21 is a great achievement.

    But yeah, that doesn't make things easier though it will be good for you in the long run. THe best thing you can do is not to rush things and come our in your own terms. For me it required to move to a different country to gather the courage to be out (funnily enough I was out as soon as I moved just acted as if I have never been in the closet) and then I slow came out back home. It is different for everyone It is really diffcult to give any kind of advice without context:s
  • Lincsbear

    Posts: 2603

    Jul 20, 2014 9:16 PM GMT
    I came out at 37. It took me until then because I was too fearful of a negative reaction, though I think my mother especially knew anyway, but never said anything. I knew I was gay by puberty and there was no confusion over that!

    I do regret not coming out earlier, say at university, as fear held me back in so many ways, not just the sexual. It was an effort to come out, but I`ve been much happier since.

    As several guys have posted above, come out on your timetable and agenda. I think you should listen to your heart. It will tell you when the time`s right.

    Best wishes!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 20, 2014 10:18 PM GMT
    The right time is when the information that you're into guys is relevant to the person you're telling. Like if you have a boyfriend that you want to introduce to them. Otherwise, it's sort of ridiculous to randomly tell someone "hey, I'm into guys." What would be the point of that?
  • somedaytoo

    Posts: 704

    Jul 21, 2014 2:33 PM GMT
    I came out at 42. Yeah, that was late. I hesitated because I came from a religious family and knew I stood to loose a lot. I waited until the right time for me. Only you will know the right time for you.

    Knowing what I know now, yes I would have done it much sooner. It's not easy to get up the nerve to come out, but I've learned that being true to myself became the top priority for me.

    Best of luck and let us know how it goes. We all support you!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 21, 2014 3:03 PM GMT
    I came out in 1991, at age 21, in a rural hick town in the sticks...population <3000. As you can imagine, it wasn't easy. Not to mention my entire family is deeply fundamentally religion/protestant. Yeah, it sucked baws.

    The way you put it, "into guys," is the best way to tell people. The word "gay" has a socially negative connotation with it (ie. that's gay) so saying I'm "into guys" makes it much easier to manage.

    Be aware that coming out is a lifelong process. The first few people you tell are the hardest (immediate family and friends), but you'll eventually meet new people and need to tell them too.

    Also be ready to laugh at some really stupid, generalized, stereotyped, and uninformed questions, like "are you the male or the female in a relationship" and "how can you think a hairy ass is sexy?" Don't be offended by such questions. Just LOL and say "dude, boobs suck, dicks rock." I guarantee your friends will love you for it. icon_cool.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 21, 2014 3:03 PM GMT
    I realized I was gay some 50+ years ago as a teenager at a time when society - and my family - didn't consider it to be even tolerable, much less acceptable. By the time I had finished university and my military obligation (that was still relevant in those days too!), I came to terms with myself at 27 and sought out/entered the slightly sub rosa gay community of the 1970's. Within a few short years I had become comfortable enough to inform my parents who were surprisingly accepting and found myself active in the gay lib movement, even serving on the board of relatively early gay organizations.

    As others have said here, you will know when it is right for you. Just be glad that you have options and that the broader society has become sufficiently accepting for you to find support even if your family or friends take some time to come around.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 21, 2014 3:26 PM GMT
    It's a great time to come out; it's even trendy. I think it's best to come out when you have a solid boy friend. It's easy to diss the concept of being gay but not so easy to deny a human being radiating love and affection.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 21, 2014 4:10 PM GMT
    smithnickwvu saidHow old were you when you came out and knowing what you know now would you have come out earlier/ at a younger age?

    Also in need of some advice/guidance/help:

    I'm not out and haven't really found the right time to let those around me know i'm into guys. I don't want to have to wait until I'm much older to come out but at the same time i would like for myself to feel comfortable and for the timing to be right when i do so. What do you suggest be done in a situation like this?


    I didn't officially come out until very late. I was in a clandestine relationship in my twenties with someone I met in college. When he rejected my proposal that he and I come out and live our lives as a gay couple, he rejected me. This was during the height of the AIDS epidemic and I was terrified of the disease so I retreated deeper into the closet. After a failed marriage I decided to live my life as I authentically am.

    Regrets? Maybe a few but I honestly think that if I came out when I was younger I probably would have ended up an AIDS statistic as so many in my age group did. My waiting was a blessing in disguise.

    As far as "coming out" goes just life your life as you see fit without any formal announcement. In time those closest to you will figure it out. Straight people never make a formal announcement of their sexuality.
  • fitartistsf

    Posts: 638

    Jul 21, 2014 5:35 PM GMT
    I knew I liked other boys, and wanting a boy friend (in a non-sexual way. I didn't know about sex then yet) when I was about 12-13 years old... But because of my own fear and lack of risk taking, and compounded by serving in the US Navy from age 20 to 30, (knowing by then I WAS gay, but too afraid to act on it, and serving even before DADT was imposed, when the merest whisper could get you Dishonorably Discharged) and still fearing coming out to my family even after age 30, I finally came out at age 40, but only after my mother would keep asking my brother and sister-in-law if I was gay. I did tell me dad before he died, and he told me he knew I was gay years before and had accepted it then... In 2000, I told my brother the week he was getting married, but only after he asked. Since then, if someone asks, I tell them, otherwise, its nobody's fucking business...
  • allatonce

    Posts: 904

    Jul 21, 2014 7:04 PM GMT
    Firstly, you aren't old at all for coming out. While it may not seem like it, 21 is relatively young for coming out. I think now people are coming out older but I didn't come out to the majority of people in my life until I was 26 (a year ago). And I don't think there was anything really wrong with that. Everyone's journey is different.

    If you feel ready now then that is great. You will have to take the leap and just do it. You will feel very nervous but it is very freeing to do.
  • warrior1234

    Posts: 204

    Jul 21, 2014 7:30 PM GMT
    I don't quite understand how many people you have to come out to.

    I came out to my Dad a day before my 20th birthday. He pretended to accept it because I couldn't eat and kept getting panic attacks because I couldn't stand the pressure I was going through.
    My mum found out when I was 22 and she freaked out big time and my dad proved what a homophobe he really is.
    I didn't have any friends back then because people don't like me and I try not to get too close to people because I don't want to freak them out about me being gay.
    It took me years to make a friend.
    I then came out to the only friend I have when I was 24. He accepted me.
    For some reason I thought life was supposed to get better after coming out gay. I thought it will make it easier for me to get a boyfriend and have some sexual experiences with guys.
    Unfortunately nothing good came out of it really. Everything just stayed blank after. No boyfriend, no sexual experiences. All that pressure was for nothing.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 21, 2014 7:52 PM GMT
    warrior1234 saidI don't quite understand how many people you have to come out to...

    ...For some reason I thought life was supposed to get better after coming out gay...Everything just stayed blank after. No boyfriend, no sexual experiences. All that pressure was for nothing.


    While I have had boyfriends, lovers, and one-night stands, I am disappointed in the gay community at-large. I was expecting a more accepting community than what I've found. The gay community can be just as bigoted, narrow-minded, judgmental, etc. as any community.

    So if anyone out there is thinking, "Oh, if I just come out everything will fall into place and be glorious because I'll among my own people," I'm sorry but your sadly mistaken.

    Don't get me wrong. I'm not trying to dissuade anyone from coming out. I just want them to realize life doesn't automatically become all rainbows, glitter and unicorns.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 21, 2014 8:54 PM GMT
    You may find that coming out is easier than you think. Only you know your situation well. You might try with the people you most trust and then go from there. The only thing I would caution about is the West Virginia gay scene. I was part of it, sort of, back in the late 90s before moving away. Just choose your friends wisely. I had trouble finding people who were of solid character and who didn't have a drinking problem. Back then the gays who had their s#!t together moved away ASAP. But being at a large university hopefully you will find great gay folks to hang out with.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 21, 2014 9:20 PM GMT
    I came out in my early 30s. I will be 50 in a couple of months. Each person is different and the journey is different. If I could do it over again, I would have come out sooner, of course. I would have learned to love and accept myself much earlier. I would have established boundaries and expectations of how I would be treated much earlier in the process... THIS IS ESPECIALLY TRUE FOR MY FAMILY (siblings).... All of the things that make for a happy black gay man from Alabama. Oh, I also would have moved from the south at least 10 years earlier.

    I can tell you it will not be easy, but its worth the journey I promise.
  • ursa_minor

    Posts: 566

    Jul 21, 2014 9:20 PM GMT
    Came out to my friend (girl) about 6 years ago. I think, all it takes is one trusting friend you can lean on and understand you. Share hookup stories with, and giggle like highschool girls.

    From there, I found courage to mingle with the gay crowd, and found my niche among the Bears. Unlike the divisive typical gays people complain about these days, Bears maintain a mantra of openness and guidance. Perhaps I was just lucky. I met a Triad in the Netherlands who were like adoptive parents, even for a short time. Being in their presence helped support the idea in my mind that what I feel is real.

    And gay love is in abundance.

    To blossom, all I could give as advice would be, find your mentor. He doesn't have to be the best one.

    In coming out, for me it felt easier just blurting it out for no apparent reason. No emotional buildup. No messy breakdowns. My lack of courage was helped by two glasses of wine. And one person at a time.

    Yes, I feel like I should have come out sooner. Preferably when I became independent of my parents. Coz now I feel I have a lot of catching up to do.

    Best of luck and always use protection.
  • Chargermuscle

    Posts: 9

    Jul 21, 2014 9:44 PM GMT
    I came out at the age of 51 after a 21+ year marriage to my wife. We have two college age kids. I have no regrets and am happy for the first time in many years.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 22, 2014 5:40 AM GMT
    I came out when I was 17 and boy was I fortunate to have such an awesome and supportive family. icon_biggrin.gif
  • KJayasuriya

    Posts: 1253

    Jul 22, 2014 5:54 AM GMT
    TBA! xD
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 22, 2014 5:54 AM GMT
    Came out in my late 40ies. Sometimes I feel like I missed out on my best 'gay' years, but i have no regrets. You will know when its timeā€¦ but it is very trendy to 'come out' these days.. All the best!! icon_smile.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 22, 2014 6:52 AM GMT
    The first step is to come 'in'. In other words you have to figure it out and admit it to yourself. Which you've done so congratulations! Some of us took a lot longer to figure things out...
    At your age I was still a virgin and was so deep in denial. I didn't admit I was attracted to men till I was 25! And proceeded to fight against those unnatural lusts for several more years after that. Now I just enjoy them! icon_biggrin.gif
    If your parents are paying for school and might react badly to you coming out I'd suggest waiting till you graduate before coming out to them. Start with a sibling or friend you are 99% sure will take it well. It's scary, but afterwards you'll feel so relieved!
    Would I do it differently if I had to do it over? Maybe, not really though. I've had some great experiences in life, if I knew I was gay I might not have had them.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Jul 22, 2014 7:53 AM GMT
    I've just come out recently at 31. It's very hard for my dad, and he often avoids talking about it, but my mum is absolutely fine with it. She wants to know everything about gay culture, and just wants to see me happy.

    It's a huge weight off my shoulders being able to live the life I want now. A life without lies and sneaking around on dates for fear of people knowing. The feeling of freedom is amazing.

    Just come out when you're absolutely 100% ready. It's a life changing experience and is in my opinion something very precious that you're sharing with the world. Be prepared for some to embrace you and others to block you out. Most people come round in time.

    Good luck!
  • Scalese89

    Posts: 122

    Jul 22, 2014 11:38 AM GMT
    There isn't really an 'ideal age' to come out, as everyone has completely different circumstances, social contexts, family situations etc. I came out at 23, and that was because I had been in a relationship already for a year and a half, and didn't want to hide this from my parents anymore. I was fed up with performing, and playing my now fiance as a 'good friend'. The best advice is to assess the situation you're in, and question your incentive for coming out. Most people I know have never regretted it though, and have enjoyed the freedom that it can bring.