My name is Alejo, I’m a 22 y/o gay guy.
I was raised at a small town, in somewhat religious and extremely homophobic environment. My father used to tell horrible things about “those faggots” and I heard from my mother that she hopes her children are “not like that“. I still remember certain remarks about sucking dicks, about “bleeding hemorrhoids that faggots have from butt sex”—I am ashamed to quote this, but this is the stuff I used to hear in my teen years at, say, family dinner conversations. I think even at 18 I still was trying to convince myself that wasn’t 100% gay and I could get a girlfriend. So I feel very lame compared to people who say they came out at 13 or 14, have had family support, etc.
I was happy to move far away from my family. I’m out to friends and colleagues, but I still haven’t came out to my family (my parents are likely to disown me or something, I have no money and no reliable friends) and nowadays it’s very hard for me to get emails and calls from parents and stay extremely short spoken with them (I prefer not to talk rather than lie about anything).
This has affected me in a way that I’m desperately looking for a relationship where my partner can really love and support me, but I still haven’t had a proper boyfriend or even a truly enjoyable date. Which should I do:
- Resolve my own issues and then look for a date?
- Look for a date without hiding my rather depressing story? (At times I feel like I need someone to introduce to my family to show them I can be happy with someone; and that man could also help me to cope with parents’ reaction.)
- Maybe play cool and still try just to have fun with someone? Relax my expectations and go for hookups?
Is it healthy at all to seek strong love from a boyfriend to fill the absence of family love and support?
I’m not disturbed so much by these issues all of the time, but now and then I feel like I’m very depressed and I can’t do anything apart from whining for love. Since all this stuff makes me look a bit too pathetic, I decided to get an account here to ask for advice pseudonymously.
I am gay and you probably wouldn’t think it to pass me in the street. I look perfectly “normal”. The point of coming out is that, for one thing, it helps break down stereotypical views of what gays and bis are. It helps the general population realise that gay people aren’t just rare like unicorns and that they are everywhere. Their doctor, lawyer, architect or boss could be gay as well as the soap actor, favourite football star or green grocer.
And coming out can mean that you as a gay or bi person no longer have to keep pretending that the guy you are seeing is just a mate, or the fellow who lives downstairs. It means that you no longer need to make excuses about why you don’t have a girlfriend and that you can be honest to your parents about who you love so that they get invited to Xmas too.
Coming out isn’t just something that you do because you can’t pretend that you’re straight. Coming out is something that you do so that you can lead an open and authentic life. It isn’t for everyone. Not everyone is trapped in a closet pretending that they are something else and living a life shrunken by the fear that people will find out. But if you spend any energy, at any time pretending to be someone you are not, it is costing you something.
Coming out doesn’t always improve your relationship with family and friends. If you are still dependent on your family and they are very antigay, be caustious about coming out as their are horror stories.
But firstly and most importantly is to recognise who and what you are and to accept that. Realise that being gay or bi or whatever you are is ok, and that it desn’t make you a bad person or that you needn’t feel ashamed. Coming out isn’t about should it from the rooftops, or shoving it down others throats, but it is about being honest. If someone say are you married, you might say, “No, but I do have a boyfriend”.
It is much easier to find and get a boyfriend when you are stable, self sufficient and confident. It is worth sorting out your own issues. But I don’t think you have any issues. There is no need to come out to your family at all, or until you are ready. If they are very gay hostile, their reaction could be negative and it may stay that way for years. The most important thing is that you accept yourself and feel no guilt for how you are. Then telling other people such as friends or colleagues just helps you live a freer mor authentic life. If being out to you family or some work colleagues would restrict you career options or other things, don’t do it yet. Much as we wish famous sports stars or movie stars to come out, many wait until they are near the end of their career before they take that risk.
You sound pretty balanced. I am sure that you will find a guy you like soon enough. These things take time. Boyfriends tend to come to you when you aren’t looking for them, rather than the other way round.
Not everyone is ready but I am sure you can see just how much better someone might feel about themselves after they recognise that it’s fine beinh who you are.
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