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The Long Process Of Coming Out
# 1 : Sunday 26-12-2004 @ 18:47
For those who know me, know the story with my family, for everyone else my family doesnt know im gay (yet). I'm finding it so hard to come right out and say it! My eldest sister was sussing me out about boys and dont i like any boys so i think she is on to it, and my other sister asked ne straight out but i just laughed. If it was a friend I would have said yes! Its just so hard with family... how should i bring it up? They would have to be stupid not to have guessed something by now, but im afraid they will still freak the tits over it!
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# 2 : Sunday 26-12-2004 @ 19:00
You have a right to be respected by them, whether or not you were born gay. Next time they ask, you can tell them that you prefer not to discuss it if you like, or you can tell them if you like. Whatever you are comfortable with. Unfortunately they will have a load of stereotypical ideas in their heads about you being a good dancer, fascinated by interior design, having great fashion sense and a desire to be a woman. You could explain that you are still you, the same you that you've always been and that nothing has changed about you. What will have changed is a label in their heads, a box they put you in. Their reaction is their issue, not yours, and it's something you've no control over.

You've nothing to be ashamed or embarassed about. Some people like pizza, some are left handed, some like rainy days, some hate ice cream, some are gay. Big deal. They'll get over it :-)
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# 3 : Sunday 26-12-2004 @ 20:31
"Unfortunately they will have a load of stereotypical ideas in their heads about you being a good dancer, fascinated by interior design, having great fashion sense and a desire to be a woman."

Her family's worst fears are confirmed Zozimus. Sheeben IS a woman!!
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# 4 : Sunday 26-12-2004 @ 20:32
Sheeben, I am in the same position. Sometimes I suspect the think I'm gay but this is over compensated in terms of oh sure you need to go out and get a girlfriend, when you have kids and Santa etc..... Also they don't believe that a son of theirs could be gay. I think they would feel disappointment and ashamed!! Also my parents are homphobic which doesn't help. My sister has many gay friends so she would be great to come out to but secrets don't work in our house!!!

I empathise completely with you Sheeben but I disagree with Zozimus. It's not as straight forward as Zozimus potrays. To many of us our families are the most dearest group of people we know. We have grown up together, shared our dreams and aspirations and our parents want us to be happy, have kids if we want and want us to lead a fufilled life!! I make this statement on the basis that you are lucky enough to get on with your family, as all are not so lucky.

However I view like you that coming out to our parents and siblings is the hardest thing of all to do. We fear rejection and also I don't want to upset my parents or lose the close relationship I have with them. It is very hard to live the lie!! Also when we laugh off or deny that we are gay I fell that I am betraying all those who are out and who are fighting for gay rights!! I feel like a double agent lying to both sides!! I also fear the potential loss my parent may feel such as no grandchildren or wedding for me and them!! (This doesn't upset me really!!)

What I feel is that when the time is right for me I will come out. I am probably the most unlikely gay person as no-one would suspect me. However at my age people do begin to suspect as to why you don't have a girlfriend, why you don't chat up girls when I go to nightclubs etc...

I offer my full love and support to you Sheeben as we are both on the same stinking boat..however there is a ray of hope in the form of the support we receive here on the boards and we will come out when we are ready and comfortable to.

Sheeben, relax and enjoy Christmas and you never know how things might be this time next year!!

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# 5 : Sunday 26-12-2004 @ 20:44
Hi Sheeben,
Happy Christmas.
I think we all know what you're feeling.
I have to agree with Zozimus' sentiments - if there is a problem it's theirs not your's but you may have to deal with some fallout.
I put it off for years and years - so long, in fact, that it was patently obvious too all but me but you still feel you have to go through the formal process of telling them.
Just set a date and do it - you will spend ages waiting for the right moment - you already seem to have missed one good opportunity - I did that once and regretted it later. Make the moment yourself.
How should you bring it up?
I called around to family members one by one and told them the reason I had dropped in was to officially tell them what I felt sure they had already assumed...........I was right, they had assumed it. My approach was slightly different but basically the same for my mother. Her reaction was the same as the others - not a problem.

So, best wishes for the New Year and go for it - you need to get rid of the unnecessary pressure.
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# 6 : Sunday 26-12-2004 @ 21:13
I don't know your parents - you are the best judge of them - but I feel they would be more upset if they knew the pressure and unhappiness you seem to be feeling - and also that you felt unable to talk to them despite a close relationship.
Yes, the first step is being comfortable with yourself. Once that point is reached don't spend too long worrying about disappointing others - it's your life - that may seem selfish but it's still true.
Talk to your sister - it seem to be a fairly easy first step - forget about secrets or lack of them that will probably work in your favour. it was the "living a lie" bit that got to me finally.
Don't beat yourself up so much as I'm sure it's unwarranted.

All the best for the coming year.
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# 7 : Sunday 26-12-2004 @ 23:10
Hi there Sheeby!

first of all don't fret! (that is not in any way meant to come across as patronising)

i know what its like, ive been there myself and i can totally relate to your post. christmas time is when the family is most united and also its a time of the year where you've lots of time on your hands...which consequently means you are filled with thoughts and possibly being in a 'home' setting makes the issue of you not being out all the more emphasised. this is natural! just keep in mind that theres no time limit on when ANY gay person should feel they should come out to family/friends. i've learned that it just happens when you feel the time is most suitable. and don't worry you'll be filled with courage and strength whenever that time may be(thought still a hint of fear,which is only natural) but until then only you will know when Sheeby!

i don't mean to be at all sexist but i believe females(espec within the family) are more sensetive to loved ones feelings etc. just like your sister! since your sister seems to be open about it all, perhaps you should then be inspired by this and maybe confide in your sister. take note this is merely a suggestion and nothing else. you decide what happens!

personally i thought i'd never be out to anyone from such a young age,least of all my catholic parents but sitautions lead to my consequent actions and i felt passionate about taking the step of revealing to them my sexual preference.

take care Sheeben,don't let your thoughts ruin your break, enjoy the hols and think things over...(the key is

positivity and keeping in mind whats best for Sheeben!

if you ever need to talk, mail me and i'll gladly send you my number!

love and light

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# 8 : Sunday 26-12-2004 @ 23:23
Heya hun

i recently came out to my folks - and to be honest in my opinion you cant really plan it .. yes the inital "im gay " bit u can bit after that u cant

no matter what thoughts are in your head always remember

they are your family and they love you

yes u hear horror stories from people about ocming out . .. but the good ones outweight the bad.. remember be urself . and be honest if they ask stuff it makes things easier in the longrun..

* HUGZ *

oh .. and only do it when your ready .. its your life babe

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# 9 : Monday 27-12-2004 @ 13:36
Hey, just thinking what to say, there is so much advice to give but just don't rush it. I have not come out either at home and I completely understand your feelings.
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# 10 : Monday 27-12-2004 @ 14:24
when you're a child, it's the first duty of your parents to make you feel as safe and loved as they possibly can. when you reach maturity, the dynamic changes. some gay kids decide that it's now time to protect their parents instead. (protect them from the truth).

but here's the really awkward bit: just what kind of truth are the gay kids protecting their parents from? the answer: gay kids aren't protecting their parents from the simple truth that they're gay – instead they are protecting their parents from the ~awful~ truth that they're gay. it's an important distinction.

and internalized or unconscious homophobia keep gays in the closet. so they often justify being stuck in there with one of these contingencies: my parents are totally homophobic; or i really don't want to upset anyone (i prefer to feel upset myself).

hiding in the closet may make you feel safe, but in reality you're doing yourself far greater damage: because you are lying to yourself and you're misleading others. society would generally prefer to keep you in the closet, so you'll get little help there. but your family and friends should be a different matter, because anyone who truly loves you would prefer that you live your life with courage and honesty out in the open.

respect yourself and those you love enough to tell them the truth. if they truly love you they'll deal with it.
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# 11 : Monday 27-12-2004 @ 14:39
There should be no pressure on you to come out. Go at your own speed and come out when the time is right for you. On a decision like this you've got to think about what's right for you. If you don't feel that right now is the time to come out then don't do it. When it's the right time you'll know and it will just happen
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# 12 : Tuesday 28-12-2004 @ 00:04

Sorry for assuming you were male :-( you know what I mean. Assumptions get made which don't fit you and generalise too much. You are the person they have always known, no matter what the label. You know that, I hope they will. But ultimately you need to feel relaxed around them. Have confidence, they love you, you love you. As others have said, you are the best judge, but you can take a feeling of support and confidence from these responses. You aren't wrong. It's not your fault. You are good.

xx zOz
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# 13 : Tuesday 28-12-2004 @ 00:06
Hey Curly! I totally can relate! although my mam knows and is completely cool with me being bi i still feel like im living a double life as my dad doesn't know. its terrible feeling like i always have to lie just so he wont find out.. i hate lying and i stress myself out and obsess with the stupidest things... ive been weighing up coming out lately because i just hate that whole secret part of my life and its magnified by the fact that ive been in a serious relationship for the past year but i dont think im ready to come out completely right now (for mixed reasons) and thats ok. i'll have the strength and courage to go through with it someday but not today and im gonna try and be patient and live in the now until that day comes.. maybe you're not ready either hun and theres no point beating yourself up over the fact that you're finding it hard.. if you are ready then you know that you have people that care about you and who'll be there for you no matter what and everything will turn out ok in the end!

txt me or gimme a ring if you need to talk xx
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# 14 : Tuesday 28-12-2004 @ 00:52
maddy and sheeben and your beautiful partners,i love y'all to bits and i wish i could be there for yiz more,you're fantastic and inspirational,dont worry too much,just keep the light burning,love will always outshine the darkness,love is too powerful to be stopped by any ignorance,and all will be well in the end,remember the love and support of everyone here for you,we can channel our energies together in the new year,surrender to love and lets hold hands in support.
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# 15 : Tuesday 28-12-2004 @ 13:19
@ Butters that was a really nice thing you said to them both, bless ya

At the end of the day they are your family, they brought you up, they have seen you grow and become the women you are today, if they can't accept you for being you then it's their problem, we all experience ignorance and rejection in our lives, it's what makes us.

I guess at Christmas it's a more emotional time and you just wanna tell your family and want the assurance that they will accept you, they will though even if it takes time, after the initial (possible) shock and tears they will still love you, the bond between parent and child I'm sure is one fo the hardest to break.

Hope it al works out for ye both cus you are both lovely girls and seem well decent
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