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Old 09-22-2011, 06:44 PM   #1
ToddB
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Coming Out?

Hi everyone! I did a search on the forums for this but couldn't find anything recent or relevant so I decided to just make a new thread.

I am trying to come out to family right now, I came out to my aunt and her daughter because I knew that they would be supportive and they 100% are as well as some of my friends. But now I need to tell my parents and I am really struggling with it. I'm really not sure how to go about it. Every time I go to talk to them I just freeze and walk away. I'm 23 yrs old and I don't want to live my life in a closet. I think my main problem is getting up the nerve to do it and worrying too much about what they will think or say or do.

But, I would like to hear some stories about how you came out and how your family reacted, if you would like to share. I think that might help me out, getting opinions and just hearing about how others have dealt with it. This is the only place I know of right now to go to so any replies will be greatly appreciated. THANKS!
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Old 09-22-2011, 07:28 PM   #2
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Every significant event I told my family was during holidays. I was in the Military and finaly admitted to myself that I was not straight, so I thought I might be bi. I called my family Thanksgiving day to let them know and I had planned it out that my brothers would be "ok" with it, my mother would support me unconditionally, and my father would never talk to me again.
So the official phone call is made, I talked to my brothers, who both accepted it, then I told my mother.......she hated it. She couldn't understant what she did to make me gay and of course, her religious side came out. My father told me he loved me unconditionally.
It would be another few months before I finally decide I was gay but it took years before my mother accepted it. THought she loved me, she used every excuse to try and change me. I heard phrases like "Don't give up on women" and "You're life is going to be really hard if you are gay". We finally worked it out and loves her son-in-law.
But those were different times and may not be similar to your family's reaction. Remember your family only want's the best for you, it may take some time, but they will love you.
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Old 09-23-2011, 12:18 AM   #3
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I dont have any words of wisdom right now, except just do it. You cant hide in the closet for the rest of your life, and the sooner you come out the better your life will be...trust me!

Perhaps you can get some stregnth from this young man!


http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/...171332857.html
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Old 09-23-2011, 05:54 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DVCDan36 View Post
Every significant event I told my family was during holidays. I was in the Military and finaly admitted to myself that I was not straight, so I thought I might be bi. I called my family Thanksgiving day to let them know and I had planned it out that my brothers would be "ok" with it, my mother would support me unconditionally, and my father would never talk to me again.
So the official phone call is made, I talked to my brothers, who both accepted it, then I told my mother.......she hated it. She couldn't understant what she did to make me gay and of course, her religious side came out. My father told me he loved me unconditionally.
It would be another few months before I finally decide I was gay but it took years before my mother accepted it. THought she loved me, she used every excuse to try and change me. I heard phrases like "Don't give up on women" and "You're life is going to be really hard if you are gay". We finally worked it out and loves her son-in-law.
But those were different times and may not be similar to your family's reaction. Remember your family only want's the best for you, it may take some time, but they will love you.
Thanks for sharing that. I do have things thought out as to what everyone will think or say, but it could go in a completely different way and that's a scary thought. I feel sort of like you did, my sister will be ok with it, my mom would love me and be supportive, but my dad will just brush it off and go have a beer like he does for every other problem he encounters. So it could turn out differently, but I'm just hoping for the best when it does happen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OrlandoMike View Post
I dont have any words of wisdom right now, except just do it. You cant hide in the closet for the rest of your life, and the sooner you come out the better your life will be...trust me!

Perhaps you can get some stregnth from this young man!


http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/...171332857.html
Thanks! I know that coming out will make my life better, believe me, my gay friends keep telling me that is what happened to them when they came out. And I did see that video which is one reason I am trying to push myself to do this. I think he was extremely brave to do that as well and I'm very happy for him. I even watch a lot of those 'It Get's Better' project videos which really help motivate. One other thing is I bought a mickey rainbow pin the other day and it is scheduled for delivery today. I won't be home when it gets here so if my mom sees it she might be a bit suspicious. I'm sort of hoping she does see it, it could be like an icebreaker into the subject. But who knows. I'm hoping for the best.
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Old 09-23-2011, 10:19 AM   #5
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It took me going to Disney on the College Program to know I was ready to tell my family.

After I got back I had dinner at my step mom's house. After dessert, we were sitting in the living room talking and then there was a pause. We looked at each other, and I tried to tell her. I couldn't make the words come out. She opened her arms, leaned toward me and told me she loved me. As we hugged, she also told me she knew and that it had no bearing on her love for me or our relationship. She also had told me that she had known for at least eight years. And that before my father passed, he had asked her, "Do you think Todd's gay?" To which she replied to him: "If he is would it make him any less your son or would you love him any less?" He thought about it for a second and said of course it wouldn't change a thing, and was never brought up again.
After that, I told my six sisters one at a time at their houses under varying circumstances, and they were all warm and welcoming. Only one asked questions...nothing inappropriate, just what terms and titles she should use.
I wrote a letter to my mom, because verbal communication has never been our strong suit. She knew for a while, but I wanted to tell her, so it felt as if I were no longer hiding anything.
I have not officially told my grandparents, but they know. My partner gets birthday cards from my gram and she has told him to stop calling her Marilyn and call her gram or gramma. My grandfather on the other hand is a hateful bigot with whom I have no desire to include in any part of my life. He doesn't know where I live, that I have a partner, that I have dogs or even that I go to Disney so often--so I cannot see any reason to tell him. He would only bring grief to my mother (his daughter) and I would not wish that upon her.
I am extremely grateful that I was brought up in a loving family and hope that yours is just as welcoming and warm as mine. You are their flesh and blood. And after everything else is stripped away, your family and friends remain.
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Old 09-24-2011, 06:14 AM   #6
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Todd (Jeanigor), in all the years I've known you that's the first I've heard of this - and its wonderful.

For the benefit of others, my step-daughter is lesbian and I've loved her from the first day I met her. She's family and it was never an issue. I made a point of telling her that the day I married her mom. After 14+ years, we are closer than ever.

So, I guess the point is:
Give you family a chance to show you the love.
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Old 09-25-2011, 06:01 PM   #7
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I started off by telling my sister, since she's like my best friend. I told her in the car while we were driving down the highway. Maybe not the best time or place, but it is what it is. She told my mom, so that made it easy for me. Sadly my dad had already passed away at this point, so never got the chance to tell him. So my advice would be to just do it. You can wait for the perfect time and place but that may never happen. Good luck!
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Old 09-29-2011, 01:40 PM   #8
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I was raised by my grandparents, and came out during my senior year of High School, when I was going away for the weekend and sharing a room with two of my closest girl friends. My grandmother, who was sitting playing solitaire on the computer, mentioned something about having sex and this is the exchange that followed:

Me: Well, that's one thing you don't have to worry about!
Gram: Why?
Me: 'cause I'm gay!
Gram: I know you are. What will be will be; and I will love you forever.

And with that, she turned off the computer, got up and went to bed.
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Old 09-29-2011, 05:42 PM   #9
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I came out to my parents when I was 19 because I got tired of all the homophobic comments the males in my immediate family would make about anyone who was different, or "obvious". Not only did my coming out to them change their conservative, and religious beliefs, but my parents and I are more closer than ever. They have even given great advise to a couple of family members whose kids have come out after me.

Find yourself a big support group, whether it's friends, other family members, or a local group It's all out there for you! Good luck!
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Old 09-30-2011, 12:26 AM   #10
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So Todd,

Any Updates?
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Old 10-01-2011, 09:39 PM   #11
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Thanks everyone for your comments and advice. I have been trying to do this yet, but I keep chickening out. I was going to do it tonight, but every time I went to say something to my mom something else came out not related to what I wanted to say. I am finding this really difficult, simply put - it is scaring the Hell out of me. I really don't know why I can't do it, but I just can't, I really want to do it soon though. There are a lot of things going on right now, family stuff, starting another part time job so now I'll have two, plus school and all the other crap that comes with life, basically = major stress. Anyway, I need to do it because it is dragging me down not only emotionally but socially, ya know what I mean? My family isn't one of those that talks about that kind of stuff, we keep everything bottled up until we have a breakdown, believe me, I've seen it happen and it isn't pretty. But I am trying in my own way to do it, but it just isn't working out yet. So once I get myself motivated again I will try, and I will keep you guys updated. Once again thanks for your stories and advice, it really does help! ~Todd
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Old 10-05-2011, 07:42 AM   #12
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Haven't had this discussion in a while!

Hi, Todd:

I wavered for about 6 years before I finally came out to my parents. In the same vein as you, I would often head up to see my parents, and then turn around or just say hi. In theory, I thought I could do it, but my vocal chords would freeze and my knees would buckle every time I got to the door. Additionally, while in college, I only saw my parents during holidays, and I didn't want to ruin any holidays or to have my parents distracted by thoughts while driving.

I had come out to my sisters (both initially were freaked out) and a few people in college. Later on, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer and I ultimately decided that I had to tell her at some point. Would she rather have gone through life not knowing? I didn't know, but there was only one way to find out. I consulted a classmate who stated that ultimately, there was never going to be a good time and that the major criterion in making this decision should be how I felt. Did I feel that it was right for me? I did. So chemotherapy finished and my birthday impended.

Finally, on my 22nd birthday, I prepared a speech which I wrote down and cornered them in the bedroom. I imagined my tone would be casual and relaxed and confident, but by the time I got to the bottom of the page, I was barely squeaking. Not so hot.

Everything turned out alright. After the fact, you think, "Of course that's how they would react. What did I expect?" Beforehand, though, you don't really know. You feel uncertain of the outcome and that any reaction is possible. It seems like you know yourself, though, which is very important, regardless of anyone's reaction. I felt ready for any reaction.

My parents were disappointed but supportive, if that makes sense. They told me that nothing would change and my mother was even immediately open to the idea of me having a boyfriend, but they wanted me to stay closeted, which is not something I was willing to do, even if I could. I think most people who meet me just know I'm not straight though; it's not something I'm able to hide, and it would be ridiculous to even try.

Granted, I do feel I have a lot more freedom now after moving to northern Illinois, where the climate is a bit more open than in southern Kentucky, where I grew up. There have been rough patches and a few concerns, but nothing devastating. They had HUGE clues all along; they just didn't want to know. My parents would rather have not known (or so they say), but ultimately, they were okay with knowing. My parents really did want me in the closet, they were focused on dangers and bigotry and fear of disappointment from their parents and friends (to whom I probably will not come out as they live far away; I rarely see them, so it's not a giant issue). I think that also comes from the cultures in which we grew.

Thanks to a little bit of drama and persistence from my godparents (who figured the whole ordeal out on their own), they've loosened up a bit (This was a 3-4 year process, which isn't too bad.). I also don't see them quite as much. I'm lucky to have a roommate and people around me who are cool. Nowadays, it's not so much of a hangup; it doesn't pervade my entire existence and I don't think about it as much. I'm proud to be who I am, but who I am doesn't worry me as much as it used to. At the moment, it feels like mostly a non-issue now, which I think is everyone's goal. (I do realize that our laws have a long way to go, though.)

All in all, I wasn't sure what would happen since I grew up in a relatively open but conservative (socially liberal compared to our surroundings), borderline-fundamentalist environment, but I'm relieved at the outcome. It doesn't bother me anymore. Emotionally, I felt I was prepared for anything. Just be ready to stick to your guns no matter what. Anyway, you will come out when you come out--in your own time. It will just happen when you want it to happen. Hope this helps! Let me know if you have any other questions or concerns.
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Old 10-05-2011, 11:37 AM   #13
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I am a straight mother of 5 and just wanted to let you know that you have our support! We visited Disney last week and I saw many gay couples. My kids did not notice and I did not point them out. We have many friends who are gay and my kids are aware that it's ok to have a boyfriend/girlfriend. My husband and I are "old school", couples consist of a man and a women. HOWEVER.....some of my best friends are gay men......go figure. We have a 6year old twin whos gender we question, we will love him no matter what. I hope someday, you are there for him, as we are here for you today. Enjoy your trip!!!! Be proud, you are who you are.
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Old 10-14-2011, 06:14 PM   #14
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Well, I know you'll do a better job than my oldest daughter did today - she posted the info on facebook...

So, knowing how silly some young people get on good old FB, I sent her a text asking her to call me about the changes she made to her info page. I've been getting calls from many family members, and I couldn't tell them anything for sure.

So, she just called and told me yes, it's all true and serious. Her partner is a wonderful young lady, I really like her, but I wish they had just let me know when I saw them in person a week ago.

We parents, even when we accept 100%, need some time to digest and process the info. It's almost like grieving - the image we have of our child has changed, and while that love is not lost, the future we envisioned has been altered.

My MIL has already told me she is proud of her granddaughter, no matter what, but my mom I have no idea how she will react.
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Old 10-17-2011, 09:39 AM   #15
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I fear giving advice on something so personal, so I'll only say no matter how hard it is, once you get past the intial terror of telling them, it can only get better from there. It can't get better until you tell them, though. And you must tell them if you want to be happy.

Keep in mind that there's nothing wrong with being gay and your parents love you. I like what OKW Lover said about giving your family a chance.

If you want to hear coming out stories for inspiration, mine is a bit strange in that I was thirteen when I started telling people. I want to start by saying I'm NOT an overly religious person. I wasn't raised going to church or anything like that, but I was aware that people believed being gay was wrong in God's eyes.

Anyway, once I realized I was gay (in Grade 6) I started praying. It took me two years to "come out" to God, and then I asked Him for signs that He forgave me (I was a little scared that I was going to hell for it way back then). I asked for something VERY specific (my friends, because I was lost and praying for help--yeah, I know, I'm making it sound like I was some God-fearing kid, but I wasn't), and after I finished praying, I looked over my shoulder, and they were all there looking for me. I know this sounds corny, but at 13, that was all it took for me to know there was nothing wrong with being gay. Just try to understand that I was looking for them for a lonnnng time before I sat down and prayed for help, lol.

Then I started telling people. I WANTED to tell people. Not telling people was frigging annoying.

I've had to "come out" many times because of moving a LOT in my teen years, and it's always different. Coming out to my mom was annoying, because she made it all about her. Everyone else in my family pretty much said, "Yeah? And?" It's safe to say they had known most of my life, lol.

But no matter how awkward it's been at times, I'm glad it's all behind me. The sooner you can accept yourself enough to share you with the world, the happier you'll be. I HATED being in the closet. And I only did it for like a year, lmho.

Good luck



Quote:
Originally Posted by BrdwayBoy View Post
Me: Well, that's one thing you don't have to worry about!
Gram: Why?
Me: 'cause I'm gay!
Gram: I know you are. What will be will be; and I will love you forever.

And with that, she turned off the computer, got up and went to bed.

HA! I love this story ^.^
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