I am 33 years old and my boyfriend, Joe, is 32 years old. We have been in a “secret relationship” for about 3 years now. People just think we are roommates and best friends.
I am ready to let our family and friends know that we are gay and in a relationship. He is not ready. How long should I wait for him to be ready for him to be ready to go public with our relationship? Does him not wanting to go public yet mean anything besides him just not being ready yet?
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A male reader, WiseOwlE + ♥, writes (23 September 2018):
You should be as “out” and ready to publicize your relationship to YOUR family as you please. News flash! Most will be happy just suspecting, but not being confirmed. Not everyone will shower you with blessings! Be realistic! It’s not up to you to decide when the time is right to “out” a relationship for anybody else, but yourself. Pressuring him is unfair.Every family-dynamic is not the same. You may have been out for a long-time; but you came-out when you were ready. On your own terms, and in your own time. Even if you were discovered before you wanted to come-out; there was a reason you held-back. Why you didn’t advertise it on billboards along the highway. You waited until you were ready to deal with whatever reaction you would get. Avoiding shock and attempts to push you back into the closet. Some will try!The length of time you were together surely has resonated in everyone’s mind who knows you. Most suspecting that you could be more than friends and roommates anyway. You’ve never really fooled anyone; considering neither of you have girlfriends or wives. That doesn’t mean they accept it. They simply don’t comment, and rest comfortably in their ignorance. Yes, they will eventually come to terms; but let him decide when he’s ready to put his personal-life under the scrutiny of hypocritical judgy-people.Your family may react with open-arms to your face; but could feel totally disgraced the minute you turn your back. Some may have written you off; but smile to your face. A lesson many of my rainbow flag-waving friends learned; after viciously harping on people they admonished for being “closeted.” Astonished at the discovery how few invited family-members showed-up at their weddings!I am gay. I came out to my family as an adult. My relationship was kept low-key, and disclosed only to those I trusted. People I knew with certainty their love was unshakeable. They would never be ashamed of me. They know my sexual-orientation is not all that I am. They know that I am still me; and they also cared for my now-deceased partner. We met in our teens, and became pen-pals. Then over-time it evolved into lovers and companions. He died of cancer. God rest his soul! I love him to this day and forever! I now have another wonderful and loving-relationship.You are a mature adult-couple. Which means your/his parents, uncles, aunts, grandparents are from an older school-of-thought. They have been kept in the dark about his sexual-orientation; based on his concerns on how they feel about homosexuality. Culturally, religiously, and emotionally. That it’s a sin or sickness. Some will condemn him, and some will turn-away. Some may go as far as disowning him as a relative. So you have to approach these things according your family-dynamic in-which you grew-up.You may mistakenly inform a trusted-member, who may betray you; and spread it throughout the entire family in order to cause discord, dissension, or just for the sake of gossip.Not every family is politically-correct, and/or you can just say “the hell with them!” They are the people you love; so when you hit them with something they never knew about you, it has to be the right-time. Not everyone is privy to your personal-life. Some will even tell you, it would be better if you had kept that to yourself; because they don’t want anyone to know in protection of themselves! It affects them as well! At least it’s honest! I don’t care to be judged by people who look down their self-righteous flippant noses; while they don’t do squat for me. Someone who may not have a pot to piss in, or window to throw it out of! Yet, some know how to stir the pot and cause trouble. Allow him the right to handle his family, and you handle yours. Choice friends, family, and co-workers who wish you well; are the only people who need (or want) to know.I am sick and tired of gays who have been out since they were 16, hammering and scolding those still in the closet. Many of whom were kicked-out of their homes as teens, left out of wills, shunned, shut-out, and hate their own families. Yet insist everyone come-out and tell the world! Straight-people don’t have to declare they’re sexual-orientation to world, and neither do gay-people! That IS a choice! Not your sexual-orientation!With one exception! Not related to your post. No one should try to fool people who are in-love with you of the opposite-sex. That’s where I draw the line. You don’t hide; and then “come-out” to a wife or husband! They should know at the very beginning; to make a conscious-choice. Not be fooled!!! They have every right to demand a divorce for such a cruel deception!The political-climate in the United States is going totally backwards. We are regressing in attitudes towards civil-rights for gays, women, immigrants, and people of color. Our own Supreme Court upheld a baker’s right to refuse to make a wedding cake for a gay-couple; because of his “religious-beliefs.” As if he could prove without question he is a Christian; and it wasn’t simply discrimination. Nowhere in the Bible does it say one sinner has the right to judge or condemn another. When “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God;” according to Romans 3:23. Yet immoral mean-spirited fornicating-hypocrites point their fingers and judge in the name of religion, or under the delusion of their own moral-decency.Come-out and share the news with your family under limited-disclosure. Respect his right to privacy. You must have his full-consent, before publicizing it on social media. You could effect his employment, embarrass his family; or turn your own disapproving family-members against you. Those who don’t condone your “gay-lifestyle.” The straight-world doesn’t always consider that great news for general-publication!Allow him the same right as you had to tell his truth; when he is psychologically and emotionally prepared to deal with the consequences. With the tribal ape-shit political-climate in our country these days; we have no idea how backwards crazy people are turning. Are you watching the news? Do you see those hateful racist faces at rallies, broadcasted around the world? Well, some of those people might be your own relatives! I’m not saying let those bastards drive you back into the closet; I’m saying let him make that decision when he is good and ready. He lives in his skin, and he has to protect it himself! Not you!
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A female reader, Honeypie + ♥, writes (23 September 2018):
Yes, when someone hides a relationship from friends and family, they do it for a reason.If he was/is ready to DATE you why not share the happiness with others?Or, could it be that he isn’t “out” to others? Or doesn’t WANT to be “out”? Can it be that he thinks it will affect his job, his life, he relationships with family a friends?If so…I don’t think there is much you CAN do. You can’t FORCE him to out himself or even to tell his family..You can ASK him how long he “thinks” it will be until he is ready, even then… that will only be an approximate number.What you CAN do is decide if you are OK being his “dirty little secret” or not.I wouldn’t give any ultimatums as you have BOTH decided to DATE for 3 years and not telling anyone, just because YOU are now ready… doesn’t mean he is.
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