I’ve written this coming out story lots of times. It was kind of a haphazardly written story that I didn’t really feel like was ready to be told because I wasn’t done living it. I wanted to get a better set of thoughts down and be in a better state of mind. So, here it is…
For years, I’ve been hiding a part of me from lots of people. Hiding that part of me was easy at first. There was less to hide back then. There wasn’t an identity, just a thought of the person that I thought that I wanted to become and felt most at peace being. Back then, it was all just a feeling, nothing really but words.
So high school comes along and I’m just this kid with a feeling in his heart and a secret to be hidden. Funny story, I remember telling people I was bisexual, mostly because I thought that I could fit in better if I just liked EVERYONE! Because that’s normal, right?
Turns out, I spent WAY too much time trying to be someone I wasn’t even when I was hiding who I really was. I reached a new level of denial that I fortunately haven’t reached since. I figured that people would like me more if I still had a foot into the hetero side of things. It was not until my freshman year at college that it hit me that I was kidding myself.
So, I did the thing that I thought was responsible (who the fuck knows why) and came out to people.
ME: Hey, I’m gay.
This was nice. I didn’t want it to be a big deal, while simultaneously wanting someone to freak out! My friends weren’t surprised. Which was great! Slightly annoying since I considered myself great at hiding it, but whatever.
Then came a few weeks ago.
After getting out of class and preparing for a night of relaxation, I’m waiting for the bus. I check Facebook and find that my mother is following me and my brother has sent me a friend request. This is strange because I’ve spent lots of time making sure that most of my family doesn’t know about my deep personal life. They get their own side of me and everyone else gets the other. Also, my brother and I don’t have the greatest relationship, so having him want anything to do with me on social media is very odd. I accept the request though, because what the hell! Right?! What could possibly be the problem?
I checked and changed the privacy settings on everything that could possibly give them an inkling towards my sexual orientation.
I’m immediately greeted with a message.
“Call mom now.”
They knew. Oh god, oh god, oh god. I couldn’t believe it. I stared into the night sky in a some sort of catatonic state of surprise and relief. Replying to my brother involved strength that I didn’t expect from myself. But I did and everything was all right.
Then I went home and called my family. It was a call that I had dreaded for years. My mother was crying and my dad was the minimum level of supportive. But at least they still my family. Those terrible thoughts about their reactions that had lived in my head for years flew out of my head. Then I hung up. And you know what?
Everything was just like it was, but different.
I said at the beginning of this supposedly brief, but not brief story that I didn’t want to tell this story earlier because I wasn’t done living it. Well, my coming out has been lived. I’ve told the people that apparently need telling and I’ve come out of the proverbial closet and am now out in the wild. Everything is better but the same. The same, but different.