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About coming out

There are so many reasons for telling the truth about yourself, and the appropriate reason for you is more than likely to depend on what phase of the coming-out process you're presently in. Coming out is such a personal thing that you have to make the de cision based on your own situation. Coming out is a process of becoming comfortable with yourself and sharing yourself freely with others.

Sometimes it is difficult to do good things for yourself when you don't feel that you are deserving. If you are hiding who you are it is unlikely that you will be able to develop meaningful intimate relationships, since you will always wonder whether these relationships will continue once the truth is known about you.

When you don't openly discuss your sexual life-style with someone important in your life, you must constantly avoid discussing other things as well. You may change the name of the person you spent the weekend with, or not quite tell the truth about where you were on Saturday night, or even keep separate bedrooms in a long-term relationship in order to avoid a confrontation with others. If you are doing this you may say that it isn't important that they know, and besides nothing will change. If it truly w asn't important, you would not spend so much energy withholding the truth. If you really felt that nothing would change you would be comfortable being open and honest.

The rewards for being truthful are great and the self-respect and self-esteem that follows cannot be explained until you experience it for yourself. If you have already come out to a number of people, what effect has it had on you? Who do you want to sp end the most time with, the people who know the truth or those that don't?

Coming out to those you care about allows you to do many things:
You can share more of yourself and your life with others
They have a greater opportunity to know you as you really are.
You have more of an opportunity to validate your own life and your own life-style.
You give the important people in your life a real opportunity to support you, and you become far more available to them, as well.
Love flows more easily between you and others because some of the barriers you've constructed in your relationship are removed.

When you tell the truth, some of the consequences will be positive and some may be negative. Not everyone will like the truth. Trust yourself to effectively handle all consequences. This will involve taking some risks. Usually we play it safe, maintain ing things as they are. But when things remain the same they often seem to get worse and worse. Taking risks is part of what makes life interesting and usually leads to personal growth.

Most people - homosexual and heterosexual alike- were taught that homosexuality is a sin, a crime, disgusting, an aberration, or an illness. If you are heterosexual, consider how it might feel if you were told that the type of people you found attrac tive and wanted to have relationships with (romantically and intimately as well as sexually), were not OK for you to associate with.
What would you do?
How would this affect your life?
Would you behave as you were taught, and if so, how do you think you would feel? How would you feel about life? How would you feel about those who told you that you shouldn't relate to the very people you most want to relate to?
If you decided to act on your attractions, and not do as you had been taught, how would this make you feel?

Perhaps answering these questions honestly for yourself will give you some modest incite of what it would feel like to be homosexual. Now add to this what it would be like to have been dealing with this issue from the time you were very young (as ma ny gays and lesbians do) and try as you may, you still find yourself attracted to those you were told you shouldn't be.

In the matter of the present, Gays represent a minority to the minorities, someone new to kick the dirt off their shoes -- someone lesser in the minds of many -- to bestow the same behaviors that society has bestowed upon them. This is not a motivating reason for anyone to state that they are Gay. Therefore, Gay is something deeper than a choice. Gay is a struggle to exist. Gay is something that is felt from birth.
To come out is not something we do to shock people, nor is it done to invoke fear. Instead, it is, for us, to individually fight our fear, to accept ourselves, and to move forward into life. But often, families take the action of a person coming o ut as an affront; as a direct attack upon their heritage and their parentage.

This is not the case. We just want to continue to be loved by our families, and the fear of losing such love is overpowering. So many Gay young people commit suicide rather than take the risk and see if there can be love.

So, this is my way of saying that I love you, that I hope you will still love me, and you will, somehow, understand why it is that I need to tell you what is deepest in my heart. I am Gay. I don't know why, but I just am.

Please do not take away your love for me. I need you in my life.

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