Now that you know have came out of the closet and admitted to the world that you’re gay, your work still isn’t done. Oh, you might think that it is but the truth is that there are a lot of other factors that you’re going to have to handle before you can really feel like you’re on the right track.
The reality here is clear: even though you might not want to admit it, you have to realize the effect your family ahs on your life. You might want to pretend like you don’t care what they think of you. And you know what? You might be part of the population that can really make a clean break with their family. However the reality is that there are a lot more people that really do need to make sure that they are following the family line, so to speak. We want our families to love and accept us. Sure, many families support their gay teens just fine. But there are plenty of other gay teens that live with a lot of shame and frustration. There’s a few things that we want to say when it comes to your first family visit after coming out that you should know about.
The first thing is that you need to make sure that you don’t set your expectations too high for the first visit. Remember that when you’ve been one thing for a while it can be hard for people to realize that you’ve changed…for the better. This is something that’s going to make you feel better on a lot of different levels. You need to come out and make sure that you’re living the life that you were meant to lead. A lot of people ignore this, only to find that they are really shooting themselves in the foot. It’s going to make a lot more sense to get this out of the way.
But you don’t want to assume that everyone is just going to welcome you with open arms. There’s a lot of anti-gay propaganda out there, and it tends to pull families apart. You want to still make sure that you give your family a chance to adjust. It’s something that they might find weird, merely because they don’t really know any gay people.
As an aside this is honestly why gay media matters. We want to expose the fact that gay life is normal life — just like straight life, just like swinger life, just like any other type of lifestyle you want to lead. It’s better to make sure that you can honestly get everything you want out of life. It’s your happiness on the lien. If your family isn’t going to support you, you need to figure out how long you want to wait for them to get the picture.
We don’t like eliminating or excluding our family. But the truth is that you might have to do that in order to keep your sanity.
Another point that we have to make here is that you shouldn’t confront them alone if you know there’s going to be a lot of conflict. It’s better to try to work things out peacefully.
If you are going to travel a long way, you might want to call and talk to your family ahead of time before coming. You don’t want to spend the money to go all the way there, only to be rejected. Even worse, if you’ve hoped that they would give you a place to stay while you visit them, you could find yourself out on the street until it’s time to fly or drive back home. Yikes!
Everyone’s family situation is going to be different. We’re not trying to be all gloom and doom here, but we are trying to tell you that it’s always a good time to think about the type of lifestyle that you honestly want to lead. We keep repeating this because it’s definitely true. You have to know what you’re willing to accept, and what you’re not willing to accept.
When you go to visit family, try not to make everything about you being gay. Remember that we want to come off as normal as possible. Even though you might feel that it’s not fair, you do need to make sure that you’re thinking carefully about how you come off. If you come off militant, your family might go on the defensive.
For families where religion is concerned, you need to keep the conversation open. Not all Christians think a certain way. Someone can be Christian and still support gays. However, you still want to make sure that nobody disrespects you in any way.
Coming out means taking responsibility of your life. Life is way too short to be a victim in any way, so stand up for yourself. Remember: nobody has to be in your life unless you allow them to be! Good luck!