Thursday, January 27, 2011

I'm Still a Guy

My reluctancy towards coming-out is attached firmly to the reaction I'm sure to receive from my friends.  Here is my unique reason (perhaps it's not unique but I have yet to discover someone who also feels, or has felt this way).  Naturally I'm concerned about my family's response to me being gay.  However, their grief and surprise will come from religious beliefs and traditions not the fact that i'm interrupting the social norm, and I'm ok with that, I enjoy disrupting normality.  I worry far less about distant friends, and church acquaintances stumbling upon my true feelings.  But the real stressor in my life comes from my closest friends.  Now, I can appreciate them thinking I've abandoned the great-ship-zion, and I would do my best to calm their fears and assure them I have a dingy waiting below.  But what I can not handle is the perception change that I believe will follow.  I wish I had sufficient hope to convince myself this wont happen but in my mind it seems inevitable.   Some of you may be thinking, "well they are not very good friends if they think differently of you."  This is true.  I'm confident they will still love me and spend time with me, but said time, will not be the same as it is today.

To clarify and give meaning to the title of this post.  Brad Paisley sings a song entitled I'm Still a Guy wherein he reminds his girlfriend that despite his lapses in manliness when it comes to love, he is still a guy and that will never change.  I concur.  Giddiness pounces me occasionally when I have a crush or prospect of a mutual attraction but I always revert to my guy ways.  Yes I like the outdoors, yes I like guns, yes I like violence, motorcycles, skiing, hunting, cars, tools, and a whole array of manly hobbies and skills, but, news flash, being GAY wont change that.  But in the eyes of my best friend my manly status will fall.  This is a big deal!  We have manly mantages (male personified montage) frequently.

So this is my SOS to my faithful 6 followers.   You are all champions in my book.  What say ye?

P.S.  If you fell prey to insomnia last night and found yourself at my blog you may notice now, the post I wrote late last night has been removed.  I took it down for further editing, you can expect it soon.  It will be worth   the delay.

6 comments:

  1. Coming out is a complicated decision. I'm out to a handfull of leaders/close friends. My family is completely homophobic and the community I live in is not much better. So I keep it to myself. The thing to remember is that once you say it you can never take it back - you're stuck with it. Personally, I like the options being in the closet gives me. Options are good. :)

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  2. I relate. If I came out to the world, it wouldn't make much difference to most people. But I do fear that my few, close straight male buds, especially the ones that I secretly love, would say they support me, but slowly distance themselves. Part of it might not be because of them but simply their wives not being comfortable with their husbands spending time with a guy who had been dishonest with them for so long. Ah the double bind of the closet.

    I've learned so much about being a guy from my guy friends. I want to keep learning, and for now, I'd rather keep learning without them knowing the full truth, that I'm keeping something from them, for my comfort and, I imagine, for theirs.

    I do know my coming out to my wife forever changed our relationship. It forever changed my relationship with some of my extended family members. I lost a closeness that has never been regained.

    In short, my limited coming out experiences over the years have not been all that positive. When people exalt about the freedom they feel, I say, "Well, good for you, but that hasn't been my experience."

    Most of the people who need to know about me, do. But do I need to out myself further at this point? Yes and no. I'm obviously still conflicted about it. So, again, I do relate. Does this help or just add to the confusion?

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  3. Short answer: Yes, it will make things different with your close friends. Whether that is good, bad or indifferent is up to you and them. I can tell you from experience that I only have one friend who just plain walked, and there are other circumstances that justify that.

    Some, however, clearly have a difficult time handling it. On the other hand, my relationship has actual IMPROVED in a couple of instances.

    Take your time. Don't let anyone tell you when you "need" to come out. It's completely up to you to determine when, if at all, you need to come up and then to who.

    Good luck and welcome to our little community.

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  4. I've never had to come out about my sexuality, but I HAVE had a lot of secrets in my life. (Mine were mostly abuse done to me by other people, but I still felt a lot of shame and fear of what people would think of me if I shared.)

    Some perceptions of me did change. Some of my friends didn't know what to do with me. My family became terrified of me FOR A WHILE.

    All my life, I felt like if people really knew ME, they wouldn't love me. That feeling kept me from feeling loved. Now that people know ME, I can believe them when they tell me they love me. The love and relationships that are still there are REAL. And that feels really good.

    It might not be the same for you, but that is how it has been for me.

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  5. If I were still single, I would probably much more open to the idea of coming out. But since I'm married, that decision affects her as much as it does me, and she's just not ready to have more people know.

    The people in my life that DO know are my (openly gay) sister, my parents, my wife, and my bishops (past & present). I'm starting to feel the need to be more open about it though...

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  6. I just went through this and am blogging about it too. It is such a personal decision. I finally decided to come out to my family and it was one of the best decisions of my life. With friends, I am coming out to them as I deem appropriate in each situation and I have yet to have a negative response.

    You do what is best for you and hope for the best in everyone else. And whatever you choose, know that we will support you. :)

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