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Do/did you regret coming out? If so, what is the reason?

Discussion in 'LGBT Later in Life' started by JMFKFL, Aug 20, 2020.

  1. JMFKFL

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    I am a gay male, currently 28.

    I can honestly say how unfulfilling and disappointing being gay has been in my experience. Ever since I privately came out to two friends at 14 it's either been negativity I've experienced.. or nothingness. I was outed by one of them at school, which meant having to drop out due to the torment and issues it caused. I started going to an LGBT group soon after but the people there were cliquey and with a 'if we don't know you, we don't want to know you' atmosphere. I didn't feel welcomed at all (no support). I didn't go out partying/sleeping around in my teens going into my 20's because I was always shy and lacked confidence. I've always been a 'one hand in my pocket' kinda guy. Modest, well-meaning. Thing is, when gay guys can tell you're this way, you don't particularly have any desirability. I'm now 28 and I've only had a handful of sexual encounters, and no relationships. I haven't had a time where I've felt fulfilled by another man in any way, sexually or romantically. When I look at the dynamics of gay attraction and relationships I see only attitude really pays. I say this because I've been told I'm "good looking" ever since I can remember, but looks mean very little (or at least come second). I have never felt a sense of 'community' among other LGBT individuals and the older I get the more I wonder what I'm 'supporting' and 'defending' anymore when it comes to gay welfare, or why I may confront someone who is saying demeaning or hurtful things about gay people in general. I honestly wish I could just cut being gay out of me.

    I have read posts/comments from other LGBT individuals expressing similar, however, I thought I would put this to a forum so there's a chance of a more real discussion.
     
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  2. BiGemini87

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    I think I did have an initial moment of, "Oh, shit. Why did I do that? What's the point in coming out when I'm in a hetero relationship?" but it passed. Anxiety can be a bitch sometimes, and it often makes me second-guess things I say or do, so this wasn't really any different for me.

    Ultimately, I'm glad I'm out. I dread any time I have to subtly drop that info whenever I meet new people or whenever it might come up with people who just missed the memo, but I'm nowhere near as bothered by it as I once was.

    I'm sorry your experience has been so negative, though. Kids can be cruel, crueler than adults at times without really understanding the magnitude of the harm they're inflicting--and it sounds to me as though that experience set the stage for all others that followed it.

    I get the disconnect from others in the community, though. It's hard to feel a sense of community when 1) We're still all individual people with individual experiences, no different than heterosexuals, and 2) Our environments don't always allow for that level of positive experience/fulfillment.
     
  3. 1cgd

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    I would say for a good 4-6 weeks I asked myself “what the fuck have you done??” especially after several hookups that felt hot during the act but shallow and empty afterward. But a few weeks later, I was fortunate to meet the guy who will soon be my husband and ever since, I’ve been glad a made the move. Your moment will come!
     
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  4. AimLew

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    Hi!

    I’m also 28 & living in London but I’m a female. Honestly I know (kind of) how you’re feeling. I feel like a lot of LGBT people in the UK already have friend groups and where they’re mostly so confident and completely out it’s hard to fit in!

    Im only out to 3 people, I mean, if someone was to ask me or mention, I wouldn’t deny being gay, but I also haven’t gone around saying “I’m gay”.

    It’s easy to make friends as a child/teenager because we’re put in social situations like school/play groups where we’re basically forced to make friends. After school though, I lost contact with most people that I knew and really since have had such a DIFFICULT time making friends mainly because of social anxiety. - I tend to get along with everyone I meet but Christ give me a friendship group already!!

    Happy to talk if you need! From 1 UK member to another! ❤️

    Amz.
     
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  5. Dave3030

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    Good post JMFKFL - I‘m personally not ‘out‘, but I feel I can relate to several of your points. I’m a similar age to you.

    I won’t go into long detail about why I’m not out in your thread, but having grown up in a homophobic household, I think one of the things I’ve found the hardest to deal with is realising that many of the stereotypes regarding gay guys are true.

    When I was younger, I thought it was a minority of guys that liked to hookup etc, and that the majority would be into dating and relationships. It’s definitely the other way round.

    I also find there is little individuality amongst gay guys in terms of interests etc, which is very disheartening. I feel if you don’t share certain interests then you’re effectively an outcast.

    There are good guys out there, but they’re very few and far between. I appreciate other people will have a different view to me.

    I would like to be ‘out’, only for the fact I’ve messed up chances with a couple of decent guys by not being ‘out’. But I don’t feel the positives of being ‘out’ would outweigh the negatives. But again, that’s going to be different for each person.

    Keep positive.
     
    #5 Dave3030, Aug 20, 2020
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2020
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  6. DecentOne

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    I’ve been under the impression that in the UK there is far more room for the modest, introverted guy (compared to US culture), so I’m sorry to hear maybe that’s not universally true.

    My sense is you are on the cusp of the perfect age for your “one hand in my pocket kinda guy” to begin to look appealing to the gay guys who were out sowing their wild oats and now realize they desire a relationship.

    I don’t regret coming out as bi, even though it really set back my marriage due to my wife’s emotional outburst and lack of trust. I am surrounded by mature adults, and my adult children (near your age) who don’t have hang ups about LGBTQ folks. But I hear you about the pain of having come out to young teen friends who couldn’t keep your confidential information, and stole your chance to control your coming out process. The thing is, I was a 14 year old once too, and told someone’s secret, and a couple years later had the chance to apologize. I’m wondering how many folks might apologize to you, now that they are grown up.

    Have you had a chance for therapy, or a gay men’s group to talk through your feelings?
     
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  7. Nickw

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    hey @JMFKFL

    I’m sorry you haven’t been able to engage with other gay men. I don’t think this is all that uncommon. My FWB is your age. His experiences are similar to yours. It’s just hard to find guys when you are not into the “defined gay lifestyle”.

    But, this is not limited to LGBT folks. I know straight folks your age who have the same issue. When one lacks this ability to be outgoing, one suffers.

    I used to suffer from this too. I decided that the reason I did not get dates or make friends needed to change. So, I started engaging EVERYONE. It didn’t matter if it was the grocery store clerk or an old man at the park. I just starting talking, and listening. Pretty soon, I started making friends.

    When I came out, at mid fifties, I used these tools to engage the local gay groups. Pride, gay skiing, gay camp outs. Each time I still felt the discomfort and fear but I muscled through it. What I found is that people are just people and many of us have the same issues you describe.

    The thing is. You have to put yourself out there. I’m not diminishing how hard this is. But, you have to do it.
     
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  8. Peterpangirl

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    It has caused a lot of pain and there are bad moments when I wish I could rewrite history and not be gay. But overall, I just accept who I am. And mostly I am ok with myself as I feel whole and comfortable in my own skin. It did take quite a lot of time to reach this point of peaceful acceptance of the truth, though.
     
    #8 Peterpangirl, Aug 23, 2020
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2020
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  9. Bastion

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    I can relate in some ways to what you are saying and I think you are raising some interesting and valid points that not a lot of people are willing to address or talk about.

    These to the best of my knowledge are the toxic behaviors of the lgbt community.

    Some background, when I recently started
    Questioning my sexuality. I tried to to connect with some of the people of thelgbt community, it seemed like the sensible thing to do.

    I did that. But unfortunately I was a bit let down and disappointed by the negativity, the attitudes, behaviors, some were even hostile.

    The most prevalent thing I think and which I think is the big issue here mainly resides with the hookup culture. In my opinion and it’s just that not to malign a specific person in general. Is that people are putting too much an emphasis on sex, sex appeal, body type and all other types of stuff that to me seems superficial and not enough thought goes into things like personality, connections, relationships, friendships, and really getting to know each other better in order to find that special connection. This is lost somehow. I don’t know why. It’s kind of the same thing when women say they are being treated like objects. This is increased twofolds by the apps. Swipe this or that.
     
  10. Bastion

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    I don’t know if what I said is helpful or makes sense. It’s just an opinion and my experience and I don’t much about coming out or being out or the process or struggle people go through. What I said is not to belittle anything or anyone or what might he or she might be going through. Having said that one has to be more positive and hope there is someone or something better to look forward to whatever your orientation is.
     
  11. Nickw

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    Hey JMFKFL

    I’ve been thinking about your situation a bit. I think because I am so devoted to my FWB who is close to you in age and the struggles he has in finding a place in the “gay world” is something we often discuss. @Bastion mentioned the hookup culture and how tough that is. I see that with him. The hookup culture puts a premium on being a sexual gay man and not just being a gay man.

    I guess I wanted to discuss a bit about your comment that you wish you could remove the gay from yourself. I wanted to just mention how, I think, this is not all that uncommon. I know that, as a bisexual, I was tormented by these desires. But, I had the advantage that I could live a “straight” life...for the most part. But, I used to hate the gay parts.

    One thing I did learn from coming out was that I don’t really hate the gay parts anymore. In fact, if someone told me they could erase my same sex desires I would not take them up on it.

    See...I don’t know where the gay me stops and the other me starts. I don’t know if my sexuality is the best part of me or the worst. But, I do know it is a part of me and it’s not gonna change and I’m a pretty good guy. So, it can’t be all bad.

    I hope you can learn this of yourself. It does pain me to hear when gay folks suggest that they wish they weren’t gay. I do know how hard it can make life. But, it can also be wonderful to be able to love another person of the same sex.

    So. What do YOU do to make gay something that is a good part of your life? That’s the question here.
     
  12. mnguy

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    Yea kinda similar but never had any experience with a guy. Two people I came out to I wouldn't bother with if could go back, telling my therapists was good and i told my parents so at least they partly understand why i'm single, before they die. I realized relationships aren't in my future so i haven't bothered coming out to anyone else and no one asks why i'm always alone. It's just tough knowing this is it for however long i have to get through it. Turning off the desire for guys would be good tho bc it's really just a tease and can lead to hurt when the longing is too strong.
     
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  13. JMFKFL

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    I absolutely agree witth the last statement.
     
  14. FleetFoxes

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    It has been really interesting reading the posts above. My heart goes out to you JMFKFL! Thank you for sharing your experience, it sounds like you've had some really tough moments. As said above, you sound like a genuine person and time will come!!

    I am a 26-yo woman and new to the gay community. A lot of the post above have related to gay/male social groups - would anyone be able to share more experience of the lesbian/bi side? I'd love to know what i'm getting myself in to when Covid eventually ends.
     
  15. Tartanskrt

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    I feel like I've heard this so many times before but not just about LGBT groups but about all groups of ppl.

    It's hard to get to know ppl, especially if you're naturally introverted.

    What I do is just talk to ppl. I leave my pride at the door and just talk to anyone on their own. If they don't like me they can avoid me next time. Some do but most don't. I take this little philosophy of mine that its my responsibility to talk to ppl and make them feel important as included with me every day. Do I feel important, included and confident? No but I start to feel that way when I give that gift to someone else. It doesn't need to be complicated just give a compliment and talk about the weather.
     
  16. SiennaFire

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    Once you make your first real connection with a guy, any regrets about coming out will quickly dissipate.

    The challenge is finding that guy.

    It will take a lot of effort and extra care given the pandemic.

    You need to figure out what you want in a guy and then figure out where that type of guy hangs out, either in person or virtually.

    if you look for connection on the apps or clubs then realize that you need to be super selective...

    How else have you tried to meet guys?
     
  17. Choirboy

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    @JMFKFL I had similar experiences when I was your age 30 years ago although I wasn't as self-aware. In the end my desire for a family won out and I got married, but one of the reasons for that was that despite knowing a number of gay men, I never fit in with them and was told so, repeatedly. If there had been a club for gay misfits i would have gladly joined. As it was, i got married and had a couple kids, and didnt come out until my marriage was too toxic to stay in.

    Do I regret coming out? No. There have been some rough patches to be sure, like being outed to the neighborhood by the chatty asshat who lived 2 doors down. But all in all I'm happier, not because I'm part of the magical rainbow community (I'm not), and not even because I immediately met a great guy who is everything i could have asked for. I'm happier because i can be who i am and not pretend to be something I'm not.

    If i hadn't met my guy, i fully expected to be alone, maybe permanently, but my plan was to go about my life, onto work, be involved with things I loved like singing in church, but be honest and open about being gay and willing to meet a nice, quiet, average guy who wasn't obsessed with himself.

    My advice to you is to be happy with yourself and be who you are. If I had met someone like you 30 years ago my decisions might have been very different. Don't judge yourself by the gay "community". There are far too many unspoken rules and expectations. You didn't cone out of one closet only to be locked in a different one.
     
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