Wednesday, 9 March 2011

A comment from anon.

I am sorry that I have only just noticed a comment added to my blog on the Steven Davies coming out posting.  Anonymous wrote:

I am always jealous of people like this. I am 37 years old and completely closeted. I am depressed at the thought of being in the closet for ever. I cant have a relationship for fear of people finding out I am gay, especially my parents and brothers. They would not accept it. And I fear that I have left it so long, that my friends would be unhappy with me for keeping my gay side from them

One night stands dont do it for me any more. Anyone have any suggestions?

Based on the limited information above, all I can say is that this is a tough one, I am sure you will agree.  My advice would be twofold: firstly, if you actually want to come out, make a plan and consider all possible outcomes.  Secondly, perhaps consider going to a support group or finding a friend who can support you.  The "problem" will not go away by itself and life is too short to be depressed.  If your friends and family don't have a clue about your sexuality, I would be surprised and you may well find out that they are more accepting than you think.
I know people who are closeted in a similar way (at first I thought it was one who had left the comment) - I am sure that it is depressing and must limit their ability to be happy.  I don't intend turning the blog into Ask Stephen as I don't have all of the answers.  I am certainly not a perfect "out and proud" gay man as I am not out at work.
I open this one up to my readers...


  1. Perhaps he doesn't really want to come out. It seems that there a few excuses in there and those excuses make it easier to just moan about his situation and not do something about it. I may sound mean, but if this guy wants to be happy, then he needs to do something about it and live with the consequences, both good and bad.

    Coming out is difficult for many and was hard for me, but I do not regret a thing.

  2. I worry for this guy as being closeted and not being happy are a dangerous combination.

  3. To Anon: There are plenty of gay men all over the blogosphere who are either in the same position or who have just come out in mid-life. I suggest finding them (it's not at all difficult), and initiating correspondence with them. Read their stories, share their experiences, gain their strength.

  4. This is indeed a hard situation to be in. ultimately, what i decided was that i deserved, and my friends and family deserved, to have the opportunity to love me unconditionally. unconditional love is the only kind of love that i want anyway...its the only real form of love. anyone who says they love you but then turns on you when they find out your gay doesnt really love you.

    The question of telling my family had been without a doubt the ultimate pressing issue on my mind for quite a few years. Long before I began planning how or when to tell anyone, I knew it was something that would eventually have to be done. Of course, there was always the possibility that I could just never tell them and keep that part of my life permanently hidden from everyone. There are many who advised me never to tell my parents that I am gay, but several factors helped make me
    realize that that wasn’t a viable option. For one, they are too close and too important to me for me to keep such an important part of my life from them. It is a tribute to my parents that I am who I am today.

    Up Until the point that I came out to them, I had excluded them from that part of my life, but it became painful to keep something so important to me hidden from my parents. I wanted to give them the opportunity to share this part of my life with me.

    But there are other factors behind my decision to tell them. I tried to speculate how
    everyone would react to this news, but I honestly had absolutely no idea how anyone would respond. I figured I could either tell people, or I could not, but I knew that if I held it all in, only to find out much later in life you the people I am closest to would have been loving and supportive all along (and from the love they had shown me all my life, I think I owed it to them to believe that they were capable of continuing to love and support me as they always have), the regret would be too great. Knowing that we missed sharing so much of my life would be disheartening and overwhelming.

    And there are still more reasons. One of my worst fears was that of my parents hearing rumors from somebody else; as long as the big secret was kept from them, I would always
    have to watch my back, careful of who I told, and perpetually worrying that somehow they’d find out from someone else, perhaps in a less-than-flattering manner; quite frankly, that would not be fair to me, and that would not be fair to them either.

    So I suppose that ultimately it is up to you. I don't know your circumstances, and your situation may be vastly different from mine, but I had a overwhelmingly positive reaction from 99% of people. I don't know if you will ever read this, but I wish you luck!

  5. Corey may well have won two prizes:
    1 - the longest comment EVER on my blog
    2 - the wisest comment

  6. Let it out bud! You are you! Don't let that stand between you and happiness. I would bet in only a few short weeks, months this would only be a memory. So often we are stuck in a hole. GET OUT because you only have a short time upon this earth.

  7. Not sure I can compete with the length of Corey's post. I came out last year at the age of 35. I was in a similar position to Anon.

    I was fortunate enough to have a friend who is always direct and open. He asked me the question, something no one else had ever done, and it was an incredible relief to tell him. He supported me for 3 months without telling a soul, and then supported me again through the process of telling everyone. It's taken 15 months from telling him, but now everyone who matters to me knows. Each time is hard, even now, although easier each time too. But one thing is certain: I have not predicted with accuracy anyone's response. I was overwhelmed with the love and respect I received from people who I'd feared would never speak to me again. I used to think I could predict people's reactions, but I clearly couldn't. I'm finally happy and honest. It's an amazing combination after so many years. If anon wants to get in touch, I'd be happy to speak to him, although I'm not sure how you do that through a blog.

  8. Some brilliant words of wisdom from around the world. Thanks guys! I think anon has some great advice and I wish I knew who they were and we could all provide support going forward. If you are reading this Mr Anon - get in touch!

  9. As I said some time ago on this blog, I have never undertsood what people mean by 'coming out'. Do you put a small ad in the local paper? Email everyone you know? I personally have never shouted it from the rooftops, but if anyone has asked my reply has been 'Yes, so what?' before moving on to something more interesting. This included during time in HM forces, in business and as a university lecturer. For the benefit of anyone agonizing over this, most people have probably guessed long ago, and frankly most of them don't give a shit one way or the other. I don't think all this 'proud to be gay' stuff has helped. I am neither proud nor ashamed. I just am. P-DdeR.