I know it's been a while since I've posted here, I'm just having a really hard time with my family lately and need to talk about it somewhere. At 25 years old, I still have not told my parents that I'm gay. With the pandemic putting my entire job online, I was able to go home to spend time with them, and ended up living with them for about six months. I'm back in my own apartment now, because things are starting to open up again. In those six months, and honestly in the last several years since realizing I was gay, I haven't actually told them, but I've tried to hint at it to test their reaction. Most of the time it seems like it goes over their head. But sometimes, they'll make a comment or say something in a certain way that makes me think that they already know. Like one time, a few years ago, my mom told me about this cruise she wanted to go on with my dad, and mentioned to me that I could come with them if I wanted, and I could even bring someone like a boyfriend, or, after a long pause, girlfriend. Even though she said that, I could tell from her face that she was incredibly uncomfortable making that effort to seem accepting, and I could hear my dad next to her groaning and avoiding eye contact. So there have been instances like that where they try to test the waters with me and seem accepting, but I can always tell that they really don't want it to be true. I've always taken it to mean that when I do come out to them, they won't disown me or anything like that, but they are going to have a hard time with it. I think they probably are going to think of me differently and when I'm reminded of that, it is very painful. It's something I'm not ready to deal with, and I've been avoiding it for a long time. But then sometimes it seems like they have no clue at all. In recent months, they have increasingly pushed for me to start dating and ask me all the time if I'm dating. Tonight they asked me a lot about when I would get a boyfriend. It didn't feel like they were specifically saying boyfriend to discourage being gay. It didn't seem that calculated, it felt like they were really not sure why I don't have a boyfriend yet, and wanted to encourage me to go out and find one, like they have no suspicion of me being gay. I get that it could just be their way of denying it, but that's really not how it seems, and it's confusing. Anyway, all of this has me really thinking about how I actually am going to have to tell them one day. And when I think about it, and play out a realistic scenario in my head, I know that it's not going to be an easy pill for them to swallow. I've always thought that it might be easier for them, and for me, if I waited until I had a serious girlfriend to tell them. I think it would be easier for them to know that there really is someone that I love and who loves me, but I haven't had a relationship like that yet. Sometimes I feel like that's just an excuse to put off telling them. My family are the last people in my life that I haven't told, and it's starting to feel really heavy in my heart keeping this a secret around them. The more I think about it, the more I see how much it's holding me back, even when I'm living in another state. It really weighs on me some days. I don't know what the right thing to do is, and I don't know how to handle their reaction. I know that it will be hard when I tell them, but that they will come around eventually. It's the part in between that I don't know how to handle and am terrified of.