Where’s that closet’s door?

I have talked about my sexual orientation quite a lot on this blog because, you know, it is my blog and my little way of working through the mess in my head. The thing is, I am not as open about being gay in real life as I am on the internet. I’m not hiding it either but there is no good way to come out in your mid-twenties as far as I know. Then again, coming out is never quite easy.

The thing is, I am just so fed up with all of this, I am not fully in the closet, my friends know, I am not actively hiding any of it, but I am also not making it public knowledge because I don’t exactly know how to. Basically there are two groups of people that do not know yet and I’m not sure how to address them. Number one is my family. My Grandma would be okay with it, I have never heard her make a homophobic comment in my life and she loves me so dearly that I can hardly do much wrong. But she is a worrier and she will one day worry herself to death, I am sure of that. She has worried all her life and only after having found a job, did I see how hard she took my unemployment and not knowing what came next. I don’t want to worry her, not unnecessarily.

And that’s the thing, I feel like there is no particular reason for me to come out, I don’t have a girlfriend or anything even close to that. So why bother with it, right? The answer, in fact, is quite simple after all. For me. This inbetweenness is constantly on my mind.

Should I do it now? What will be the consequences? How will people react? How should I do this?

These are just a few of the questions that run through my mind when I think of this subject.

As much as I believe my Grandma will be okay with it, I have no idea about my uncle and his family as I already feel judged by him for almost everything I do or better not do. But then again, I only see him a couple of weekends each year, and the phone conversations with him and his wife can only become slightly more awkward than they already are. I’m not sure about his reaction but you can never be. Even with Gran there is still this infinitesimal chance that she will be upset and that’s what’s keeping me inside this closet, only peaking out. And it sucks.

Group number two is all the theatre folks. Homosexuality is not uncommon in artsy circles and I am far from the first gay person there but the first woman as far as I know. Also, I have heard the way they talk, which they of course do in my presence due to their complete oblivion of my own sexual orientation. It’s a gossipy place, so only a few need to be told for it to make the rounds I guess. I can’t help but wonder how they would react. The far more interesting question is though, how will I tell?

This summer as I visited my friends in Sweden I, for the first time, answered the question of whether I have a boyfriend by saying that I’m not interested in boys and all was well. It felt only a little weird, mostly good and like I needed a pet on the back for saying it. It was no big: I have to tell you something, I AM GAY!!-Moment. If asked, I will always say the truth but I do not get asked this question anymore. Even my uncle stopped a while ago.

October 11th is coming out day and my plans involve the presence of Mini!Willie’s artwork on Facebook, that would, in the best possible outcome, take care of a LOT of people including theatre folks so that’s a plus. It will only be slightly weird as that’s also the day our weekend trip starts as far as I know.

I’ve also found an old photo of myself in fourth grade that I’m going to post on thursday with a caption of which I am not sure, everyone will get. I hope they do though. Gah, why do I always need to take the more difficult roads? I could just change my gender interest on FB from nothing (as it is now) to women but is that even a thing that pops up on the News Feed like a relationship status change?

With all the things I don’t know about this, as shown above, I know that I need to come out for myself. So that the space in my head that this thing is occupying at the moment, and it is a LOT of space, can be set free to do more useful things.

I am fed up with having to wonder what happens if this person or that person knows.

I am fed up with having this on my mind.

So if you have any wisdom to impart on me, feel free to leave it in the comments. Until then, I will proceed as described above, hope for the best and that it reaches enough of the people so that most of them know without me having to step on my soapbox in front of every individual and proclaim my homosexuality.

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  • Tim

    As much as I’d like to think that anti-homophobic sentiments have died down in recent years, there are numerous examples of where that hasn’t been the case, be it an example as large as the Russian government or as small as individual members of my family. There’s at least one member of my family who has had some homosexual experiences (I think he’s bisexual, though I’m not totally sure because we’re not on speaking terms), yet I know he’d never come out to my family because of how he’d be perceived by all my family’s elders. It’s a shame really. No one (he, you, or anyone) should have to hide who they care for.

    • Wilhelmina Upton

      In large I do think that anti-homophobic sentiments have died down, they are just not gone completely (and probably never will). You are right, no one should have to hide who they care for but it also sometimes annoys me that straight people don’t have to come out. It’s like ripping off a band-aid though, it’s usually only weird while you do and then it’s over.

  • MJ

    I hate to say it, but the longer you leave it, the longer you will ruminate and overthink it all– which according to science actually makes people less happy and less able to solve problems. It is who you are and you have the power to embrace that. Those who love you will come around if they have any negative reaction. The rest really don’t matter. I know its hard, but it is very clearly eating away at you. Allow yourself to be authentically you. You may be surprised. You may also be surprised that a lot of people already know :)

    http://www.thesunnysideofhappiness.blogspot.com

    • Wilhelmina Upton

      I know, that’s why it’s gotta happen in the not too distant future. Thanks for your comment :)

  • cupitonians

    The thing is, Willie, that there is so much pressure to “come out”, I hate that you’re facing this dilemma. Because I never have to go around to people and declare to them that I’m straight and have to stay up at night worrying about how people will react, what they will say. It should be something that is inconsequential to human relationships and yet I hate that it is. Your life shouldn’t be on display like that and you shouldn’t have to feel like you’re hoarding state secrets. You are AMAZING and that should be enough.

    • Wilhelmina Upton

      Exactly, this is what is so stupid, most people never have to do this. Usually when you meet someone you assume they are straight and rightfully so. I do it too (unless the other person juts oozes gayness) but maybe one day we will live in a world where it’s not necessary to come out anymore, who knows.

      • cupitonians

        Hopefully we don’t have to wait generations and generations for that. Your sexual orientation shouldn’t be what you’re judged by on first meeting.

        • Wilhelmina Upton

          True, and maybe not judged on the first meeting but at some point, it is most likely gonna happen. “You don’t look gay”-Blah.

          • cupitonians

            Yeah, so many stereotypes, so much of a revolution that’s waiting to happen. I wonder if there will be a day when I dress “flamboyantly” and I come out and say I’m straight and people tell me I don’t look straight. Pissing off!