When I came out as gay to my parents, I didn’t sit down saying “I want to tell you something…”. I didn’t hint anything in advance and I didn’t write a letter. I was still living at home at the time and had been dating my future wife for a couple of weeks. Realizing that this was the real thing, I really needed to say something to my parents instead of continuously referring to her as my friend. In my family we never discussed feelings when I grew up and I can’t remember that my parents ever expressed any feelings other than “happy” (my mother) and “pissed off” (my dad) and “neutral” the rest of the time. So there weren’t really any procedure or natural way to sit down with them to tell them about my love for this person, and it wouldn’t have been any easier if I were straight… So I did the only thing I could do at the time. One day I was getting ready to meet up with my future wife and I simply told my parents “I’m going to meet my girlfriend” and went out the door. We have never discussed the matter since and my wife has always been accepted in my family like any boyfriend/girlfriend of mine would have been. Sometimes I think she’s been better accepted than a boyfriend would have been, mostly because my parents were taken a bit of guard. Especially my dad has all my childhood talked about what kind of boyfriend he think I should have, and by the time I started dating my wife the expectations on a future boyfriend were sky high. That said, it has never been easy for her.
This time around I plan to do a proper “coming out”, and actually having a talk with my parents where I give them the opportunity to reply or ask questions. I’m not as nervous this time around either, I’m a grow man with a life of my own and if they don’t like it, it’s their loss – not mine (our relationship has been a bit fragile over the years and I’ve had a couple of periods where I haven’t talked to my father at all for months). The tricky part is – when is the right time to tell them? At first I planned to tell family and friends first after I’ve had my first appointment at the gender clinic, but things have been moving along so quickly lately and my wife have started to use the right pronouns and my male name so there’s an increasing risk of a slip-up in front of people visiting us.
Last night a golden opportunity presented itself. My parents have been miserable for years and I’ve questioned why my mother put up with my father for over a decade. They still live together, but are hardly talking. So, yesterday my mum introduced me to her new boyfriend… So I grabbed the opportunity, while we were talking about life-changing things, to tell my mum that I’ve asked for a referral to the gender clinic and that I’m considering to change my legal gender. She’s not much for instant reactions, so I didn’t expect her to say anything at the time – just listen. I was even prepared for some negative response as she has a habit of expressing herself that way. The only response I got on the spot was “let’s take things one thing at a time” which doesn’t really mean anything but she texted me the next day saying “I love you for the person you are!” Again, talking about feelings isn’t really my family’s strong side so this short sentence means everything to me!

6 thoughts on “Out

  1. I know what you mean about not discussing emotions. My dad got severely depressed a few years ago after his dad died, I had no idea until months afterwards because nobody talked about it. It’s not good as I’m sure that’s part of why I’ve had to work hard at opening up and being honest about my own feelings lately. Oh well, at least I’m improving!

    I’m glad you feel more relaxed about coming out this time. Good luck! 🙂


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