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Hi everyone!

Discussion in 'The Welcome Lounge' started by Pavel, Jul 20, 2020.

  1. Pavel

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    Hi, I'm 28 years old and I'm gay. But nobody knows it. I live in a small town and in such places, everyone knows each other. Unfortunately, almost all of my acquaintances are homophobes. I have only a few people who are more or less tolerant of people like me. I think I realized to be gay around my teenage. But I was very shy, I had a lot of complexes and I still have some. I have only my mom, who is very ill and I'm looking after her. We live together and actually I really can't imagine her reaction if I tell her I am homosexual. So difficult to hire who you are.
     
  2. Lyman

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    Hi and welcome to EC, Pavel. Congrats for having taken the step of starting to reach out!

    My story is somewhat different to yours (I didn't quit denial until quite recently and I live in a moderately tolerant place in a very tolerant country), but I understand your suffering. I can confirm that you're not the only one stuck with his parents and living a lie. You're not alone!

    Don't hesitate to start a thread on the Support Area, if you feel like it. I'm sure that there are wiser people than me out there willing to guide you. ^^

    “While there's life there's hope, and only the dead have none.” You're still young, so don't give up your hopes and think that, with time and effort, everything may well be alright someday.
     
    #2 Lyman, Jul 20, 2020
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  3. Pavel

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    Thank you so much! I really appreciate it. I have one friend, who is modern and tolerant. I decided to come out to her. She will be the first person who will know about my orientation.
     
  4. Mirko

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    Hi Pavel and welcome to Empty Closets. It's great that you have decided to join and taken that step. :slight_smile:

    There are moments where it is okay and perhaps even good not to come out to somebody - in particular if you know that the reaction or the impact would not end well. It sounds like though that you have one person in your life who would be accepting and supportive, which is a good start.

    I hope you will stay around and feel free to continue sharing your experiences and thoughts.
     
  5. Lyman

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    You're welcome! As you might have seen in my other thread, I'm also about to come out for the first time (if I don't chicken out), also to a female friend. So fingers crossed for you and me! Best wishes!

    I want to add that at first I was very skeptical about how useful posting on EC could be, but it has turned out to be surprisingly helpful. I recommend you to follow Mirko's advice and stay around, to the extent that it feels most comfortable for you. :slight_smile:
     
  6. Pavel

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    At least we have an opportunity to write what we think and receive feedback. I haven't slept since I wrote my first post. Too many thoughts: how to say, play this scene a thousand times, her reaction, and so on. Luckily my friend comes to me sooner than I expected. I hope tomorrow I will open this door. Best wishes!
     
  7. Pavel

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    Thank you for your advice and good words. This month is like the breaking point. I can't live like this anymore. It is not my life and I need to change something.
     
  8. Lyman

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    Yes, simply writing is helpful, but with feedback it gets even better.
    Wow, you seem to be quite nervous. If you panic, just remember that you're doing this because it's good for you.
    I'm less nervous than you, but clearly I'm overthinking everything, so we're in the same boat.

    People usually say “Never let a good crisis go to waste.” So I think it's nice to see the fact of being in the middle of the coronavirus dystopia while being stuck with our parents as an opportunity to start a journey that otherwise we might have never started. Always look on the bright side of life!
     
    #8 Lyman, Jul 21, 2020
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  9. Pavel

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    Yes, I'm really nervous. Maybe now a little bit less. I'm looking forward to wednesday immensely. I hope this conversation with my friend goes well. Yeah, it seems like we are in the same boat, so you understand my feelings.

    I'm trying to look on the bright side of life. I'd like to say that my optimism is only one thing that keeps me on board. And sport is really good stuff to reduce stress as well. I like one song, it's from the great movie "The Help" "The Living Proof" by Mary J. Blige.

    It's gonna be a long long journey
    It's gonna be an uphill climb
    It's gonna be tough fight
    It's gonna be some lonely nights
    But I am ready to carry on...

    These words help me to carry on.
     
  10. Lyman

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    I have news for you... Now I'm more nervous than you. I've been freaking out the past few hours. I think it's because I'm extremely tired and that always makes me be much more emotional, but it's definitely not nice. :/

    I'm almost sure it's going to be alright. If you have mustered the courage to come out specifically to her, then she's probably the most tolerant person you know. And statistically you have to know several people that are supportive to gays, so she's going to be the most supportive among the supportive.

    I do, I do! So please let me/us know how it goes.

    If we lose hope, then we have nothing left. So keep on with your optimistic attitude! As those beatiful lyrics by Mary J Blige say, it might be long, tough or uphill; but the alternative is much worse.

    I also use that strategy and it normally works. But I've just come back from exercising and I couldn't start thinking about tomorrow every time I was having some rest. The funniest thing is that my brain was trying to deceive me with denial bullshit while practising my favourite sport, which is quite homoerotic. So I was feeling arousal towards several dudes and trying to convince myself that I'm not gay at the same time... It's absolutely ridiculous.
     
  11. Pavel

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    Good evening! I have news. I did it. I came out to her and her reaction was absolutely wonderful. She supported me and it was so amazing. Actually I was quite sure about her reaction, but you know, it is not so easy to say about it. Furthermore, she will try to find between her friends somebody who has the same situation as me. And moreover, she invited me to participate in some parties in the capital where I will be with tolerant people, who don't look at my orientation as something weird.

    All in all, I made this first step. I know it was the easiest one. In the future, I need to go through really difficult conversations with people who are not so tolerant.
     
  12. Lyman

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    Good (European) afternoon, Pavel.

    Those news are fantastic!! I'm so happy for you. No matter that you knew there was only a 0.00001 % chance of a bad reaction — I perfectly understand how scary it is. After having hidden it until way into our 20s, it's not that easy to come out. And in your case you required even more courage, given that you have so many intolerant people around. So congrats!

    That's absolutely wonderful. She's great. Take care of that friendship!

    According to what I remember from talking the only Estonian guy I've ever met (who was quite cute, but that's another story), I think Tallinn is relatively open-minded, isn't it? So it's a good idea to spend some time there, as your friend suggested. If it's possible for you not to look after your mother 24/7, maybe you can consider going to the capital for 1-2 days from time to time(?). I don't know too much about your life, so apologies if this is bad advice.

    I wouldn't say it was the easiest one... The first time is always scary, probably more than if the 100th person you come out to is anti-gay. Be proud of yourself for your achievement!

    I'm proud of you! (Especially now that you're ahead of me, as you can see here.)

    Do you have plans for your next steps?
     
  13. Pavel

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    Hi, I'm so happy you've appeared! You make me feel like I am not alone in this situation.

    Yep, she also said that between her friends be homophobic is like something abnormal. I can explain a little bit about why her acquaintances are more tolerant than mine. We have in Estonia a big Russian diaspora(about 25% of the population). My country was a part of the USSR. So, I'm Russian speaker guy and my friend is Estonian. She has I think only one Russian speaker friend (it's me :slight_smile: ). Surveys show us that Estonians more tolerant and liberal than Russians. Maybe you heard something about the situation in Russia against LGBT+. And this shit influences a lot to local russians. My town predominantly populated by Russian speakers. Therefore a have problems to come out widely.

    Yeah, despite all I like my small town. It is a wonderful place: national park, Baltic sea, fresh air and so on. But I've realized that I have no future here. I will not be accepted. And in perspective, I can't make here a family. So only my mom keeps me in place. She is really on the blink. Doctors refuse to do anything because she is "not the perspective case".

    One day I'll sell my flat and maybe I move to Tallinn, or somewhere else. You know, I watch some popular gays bloggers from the US, the UK. Australia and others developed western countries. And it shows how much easier to be gay there. I've never been to those countries, my only trips were years ago and only to Russia(it is definitely not my country). It would be nice to live somewhere else and earn money in addition.

    Thank you very much for your support. I appreciate it! Now I feel much better. This week was really terrible for me, I didn't sleep two nights. It was like a tough crisis. Even at work, I tried to smile but inside I felt so terrible. Usually, I don't listen to music at work. But this week I couldn't concentrate on my regular programs. So I listened for hours my best soundtracks. I'd like to say that music and sport helped me a lot.

    Yeah, I changed my goals. I will concentrate more on my health.
    1. I wear glasses. I decided to make a laser operation next year. I need to save more money
    2. Last year I've made a lot of cardio exercises. Next month I want to buy a special training program for the gym. I'm going to build muscle mass. According to this program, it takes about 5-6 months.
    3. I've been studying English for about 1,5 years. I decided to pass the IELTS test this autumn.
    And last but not least: meet someone.

    I know it will not be easy, but I do my best.
     
  14. Lyman

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    Hi again. Sometimes I give myself a bit of time to breathe and think, staying away from EC, but I always reappear!
    There are lots of people in the world going through the same thing right now. We aren't noisy, we aren't noticeable, but we're everywhere.

    Oh, that rings a bell. I now remember that my Estonian “friend” had told me about that. And then he tried to convince me that Estonian and Russian were super different languages by speaking both of them, but I didn't perceive the huge difference. Both sound exotic.

    And yes, I'm aware of the situation in Russia. I recently watched something on TV about two activists from Nizhny Novgorod (who were a very cute gay couple) and all their struggles. They're so brave!

    Places aren't so important. You can live a good life in many beautiful locations. So it's a good idea to focus on what you value the most.

    I'm so sorry. Virtual hugs! It's good to see that you can find some hope and positivity, even in this situation.

    Yes, maybe you'll move to one of those countries and see it's not as good as you expected, and then go to a different place and love it... You never can tell. So, now that you're still young, it's a good moment to discover new worlds and broaden your horizons.

    I'm also in the middle of a self-discovery journey, that goes beyond my sexuality. So I understand.

    You're welcome!
    It is like a tough crisis... Because it is a tough crisis. Taking the first steps towards stop living the way you thought you were supposed to live is very hard and scary. The “Welcome to the beginning of the rest of your life” sensation can be overwhelming.

    Same here. Well, only as far as music and sport are concerned. As I'm lonely as f*ck, I don't have to pretend I'm okay. It's literally the only advantage of not being in touch with the rest of humankind.

    That's really important.

    It doesn't matter if it takes you one or two months longer, but make sure that they teach you some basic principles of strength training and, especially, how to prevent injuries. I've been injured more than once and it's definitely not nice.

    Wow, only 1.5 years?! You're very good for such a short time!

    Okay, I see where you're coming from. 28 years is quite a long waiting time.
    So do you plan to keep coming out to more people in the short term? Otherwise, meeting someone is going to be difficult.

    I think this moment of impasse that corona created is the perfect opportunity to focus on self-improvement, as you're doing. It gives you a sense of purpose and it keeps you busy. So it's good for you both in the short and long term.
     
  15. Pavel

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    I completely agree with you! It's really funny when some people outrage why is it so popular to be gay today. But actually it is not a CHOICE and only recently homosexuals have started to show themselves. I hope one day we can live free and save in every single country.

    Thank you very much for your support. Sometimes I feel like hope is gone. It is not easy to make it all by myself.

    Sure, it is not so important to reach my goal exactly by January. I'm a planner, therefore, I like to put deadlines and clear numbers. So for me, it is the easiest way to reaching goals. Of course, this system doesn't work well every time.

    Yeah, safety first.

    I've spent 1.5 years studying English at an online university. But before this, I had some private courses during my academic English. In the long run, online course is the most effective one.

    Yes indeed! I'm still thinking about it. And you know what conclusions I've made? Firstly, I think I was too unconfident and shy. I just could not believe that somebody can love me. In addition, I didn't like my appearance. And too focused on my education. And please don't forget I was not sure about my orientation. I had some ideas like: "maybe I need to find the right girl" or "I just should outgrow it". Looking back I see that it was totally wrong and deep inside I knew who I was. But at some point, you just can't deny the reality.

    I watched one movie on Netflix "Alex Strangelove". I recommend this movie. I was shocked by how similar this story is for me.

    Definitely I'm going to come out to more people. The next person is my friend who constantly lives in Tallinn. I want to tell him about it and hope he will accept it fine. Will see. I think by the end of this year all my close friends will know the truth.

    Stay tuned.
     
    #15 Pavel, Jul 27, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2020
  16. Lyman

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    Ok. I’m back to EC and, as I’d promised you, the first thing I’m doing is replying to you, Pavel. ^^

    Yes, any way of discrimination is pretty ridiculous and normally based on ignorance. The more I accept being gay, the more I realise that homosexuality is quite “boring” — what’s the big deal about it? It’s just a slight variation in sexuality. Homophobia is utterly preposterous.

    Ups and downs are a natural part of what you’re experiencing and of life in general. Hang in there and resist!

    Sure! If that’s what works best for you, carry on!

    Safety... And making sure that they teach you why you’re doing what you’re doing, as well as some basic principles. It’s interesting to work out at some level at any age, and probably you won’t want to pay for a personal trainer/programme for decades. Plus, even if it’s a really good trainer, s/he’s not going to devote to you as many time as you devote to yourself, so in the long run it’s better to learn how to train by yourself.

    It’s still a great level for a short time. I’m in awe!

    But you now know that it isn’t true, don’t you? Think about the most disgusting/evil/ugly people you know, and you’ll probably realise that, despite them objectively having less market value than you, they have or have had someone that loved them.

    Yes, this is also me. My case is worse because my social life has been practically nonexistent for most of my life. However, I hadn’t noticed it until late 2019. I didn’t perceive it as a problem before that point. So I guess now I’m just looking for a different kind of happiness, in a different life stage. There’s nothing wrong with how I lived my first 24.5 years, but I want something else for the future.

    Same here. My main self-deception strategies were on the lines of “You’re still too young to like women — you’re a late bloomer”, “That’s just a fetish”, “You know you can’t be happy without marrying a woman and having biological kids with her”, and lots of awful religious stuff.

    Thanks! I had never heard about it. I’ll watch it someday.

    You do like deadlines! Best of lucks with that friend and please let us know how it all goes. :slight_smile:
     
  17. Pavel

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    I like our way to communicate :wink: It gives enough time to think about all carefully. My plans became more realistic and less chaotic. Moreover, I have some updates from my friend who only knows about my homosexuality. She made some research and received from one LGBT activist feedback. Now I have several links to local LGBT communities and places where I can feel myself more or less free. It doesn't mean I'm going to go there right next week, but anyway it's not bad to have more options.

    :thumbsup:
    I just have no idea how to say better. I've watched some videos related to "how to talk with homophobic people". I'd like to say it's quite interesting. Especially facts based on science. I'll definitely use some of them.

    Yes, indeed! But this time it was something special. I'd like to say a kind of "perfect storm": accepting myself being gay, understanding that I can't live here and as a result – a completely new vision. I was blind but now I see. I'm glad I had this experience.

    I'm pretty sure it's a really good program. Maybe you heard about "Built with science" by Jeremy Ethier. He is a quite famous trainer. In youtube he has more than 2 million subscribers. I like this mix of science and training.

    Yeah, I agree. I was like WHAT'S WRONG WITH ME!? Even really stupid, much uglier and rude guys have someone who loves them. Of course, now I know it is all ok with me.

    I had thoughts like I wasted my life. But actually looking back it was not like that. I've made a lot and I can lean on my own experience. Feels like my best days are right in front of me.

    Oh, so true! Damn, how often my relatives, friends, and especially neighbors/colleagues asked me one question: do you have a fiancee? Gosh, I would like to answer Is it the only possibility? You know, people tend to think it is strange not having a girlfriend. I often hang out with my female friends(when they come to my town), so it looks like I'm a "normal" bloke.

    Of course, I do. Deadlines keep me in shape. I will keep you in touch. Best wishes!
     
    #17 Pavel, Jul 31, 2020 at 10:27 AM
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2020 at 10:27 AM
  18. Lyman

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    Okay, today I've spent an insanely long time on EC, reading and writing because yesterday was a very special day — I came out to someone. And it was absolutely perfect. Yay! Now we're 1-1, dear Pavel, ha ha. You move. As a Russian speaker, the stereotype says that you're good at playing chess, are you?

    I'm glad you enjoy my tardiness, since I can't afford to reply more quickly, to be honest. :slight_smile:
    EC is useful because of the introspective thought process it forces you to do. It's not like dumping rubbish on Reddit.

    I feel a strong urge to have LGBT+ friends, at least one or two. It would help me a lot, although I'm not ready for sex yet. Do you feel the same way? If you do, those communities and places seem like a good place to start. Or do you feel like waiting to attend for any reason?

    Although it's great to be well informed (I also try to do it as much as I can), keep in mind that logic will work with a majority of people, but not with everyone. Some are just impossible. Those folks will always carry hatred within them like a disease. I feel sorry for them.

    Right. I find it quite ironical that I'm probably going to remember 2020 as one of my best years, while history will remember it as a catastrophe.

    I wasn't telling you not to do the programme... Do it *and* make sure you learn as much as you can as a result. But if it's such a good programme, great for you! ^^

    That's the right mindset!!!!

    The best part of the prospect of being completely out is being able to reply honestly to such questions. Well, it's the second-best part. The actual best part is being able to be with someone.

    And heteronormativity sucks. For instance, my mom is sometimes “ashamed” of my lack of relationships and she tells her friends or relatives stupid stories about fictional girlfriends. But she's really bad at it and it's painfully obvious she's lying.

    So... You don't need the gym programme, if you use enough deadlines, do you? :grin:

    I look forward to hearing from you again, my fellow traveller. Take care!