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Four weeks on...

Discussion in 'LGBT Later in Life' started by quadratic, Aug 1, 2020 at 7:34 PM.

  1. quadratic

    Regular Member

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    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Family only
    So today marks four weeks since I came out to my family, which you read about at

    https://forum.emptyclosets.com/index.php?threads/well-that-went-about-as-badly-as-possible.484653/

    There has been no real movement with regard to the family: only my 24yo daughter has been chatty in texts to me, telling me what she's doing, and sending me pictures of her cat, and of the beer she's drinking (we share a common love of mathematics, which is my profession and about to become hers, and beer.) I have been told via email by my eldest son, who's studying overseas, that the family expect me to show some desire to want to be with them, and I should try to open up communication, lest they feel abandoned by me.

    I'm mighty confused about all this; and it's very hard to erase from my mind the scene of some 30 or more shopping bags filled with all of my books and CDs from the family home, unceremoniously dumped in the carpark of my block of flats.

    To try to get my own thoughts in order, at least, I've started some counselling (online, of course) of which the first session went very well. The counsellor tells me that I'm not fully responsible for all of my familys' feelings, and if I want to communicate with them I should do it via the people who are happy to talk with me (such as my daughter). This I can do!

    However, I do feel more confident in my sexuality than I have for a long time, and it's an annoyance that my coming out should coincide with a complete lack of any possible socializing. Here in Melbourne, Australia we are in stage 3 lockdown, and about to go into stage 4. There are indeed lots of gay meetup groups, from the young to the old and with every possible interest, but none of them seem to have transitioned to online meetings. I came out in an email to one of my work colleagues, who I know through our work with the employees union. She is married with children, and my coming out to her had her reply that she was in the process of coming out as a lesbian, but finances meant that she would still have to share a house with her husband.

    As part of my gay acculturation, so to speak, I've been reading a number of gay mysteries (I'm very fond of private-eye thrillers, and occasionally whodunnit detective stories), such as the Henry Rios series by Michael Nava, and a few books by Mark Zubro. And there's plenty more to discover!

    Finally, I have thoroughly enjoyed, and been extremely grateful for, these forums. The level of understanding, compassion, advice freely given, is a wonder, especially compared with the nastiness that you can see elsewhere online. I have greatly enjoyed my involvement here.

    Keep safe, everybody!
     
    Bastion likes this.
  2. Lyman

    Regular Member

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    A few people
  3. PatrickUK

    Advisor Full Member

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    It's clear from the messages you have shared with us that you are well capable of articulating your thoughts and feelings using the written word, even if it's more challenging in a face to face situation, so maybe you could use the period while you are locked down to write some letters or emails to the significant people in your life to try to explain why you remained silent for so long.

    When you came out on your 60th birthday you faced the whole gamut of feelings in one very difficult and painful moment. Everything would have been incredibly charged as you told your family what you had been carrying for so long and in the heat of the moment people don't react well. With very little thought or consideration comments are made that can be very cruel and cutting, even if they are not fully meant.

    Being locked down has it's negatives, for sure, but it can also be a time of careful reflection and reaching out using a method of communication that cannot be interrupted. You can take time, make several drafts and really say what's on your mind now and what's been on your mind for so long.

    Your counsellor is absolutely right that you are not responsible for all of your families feelings. They are going through some stages of loss and grief http://emptyclosets.com/home/pages/resources/coming-out/parentfamily-stages-of-grief.php and it will take time, but you can play in a part in the healing process.

    Early days!
     
    Lyman likes this.
  4. Bastion

    Regular Member

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    I
    I can relate mostly with the last paragraph and agree that although am new here. I’m finding these forums very helpful and the community of people here are supportive and generous. I also agree that there is some nastiness in general online and in some places offline as well.