Being gay is okay: Information and advice for gay, lesbian, bisexual and unsure under twenty-fives.
Problem page > Archive > December 2010
From [Alice] Age  Gender [F]
I am still in highschool and I have alot of friends and because it is a small school and a small neighbourhood we are all kind of friends with eachother but I have this friend called Holly. Holly told me about 7 months ago that she had really strong feelings for one of our really close friends (Chloe) and at first I thought it was a phase but it's been 7 months. During this time Holly told Chloe how she felt but Chloe has recently got a boyfriend and it is hitting Holly really hard. I am straight myself so I don't know how it feels to be confused about your sexuality but I respect it and just want her to move on from this. I wouldn't make a big deal out of it because I know we are only young so this may sound a little stupid but Holly has been drinking alot more than usual lately but she has also been using soft druggs alot more than usual and has even come close to self harming. She is still a friend so I am doing everything I can to keep her mind off of it but I am really worried about her now and don't know what else I can do to help. It also doesn't help that Holly's mum is majorly homophobic.
I just want to help her because she is still my friend but I'm worried
Please Help xx
Holly has a very good friend in you; it's great that you're looking out for her and have asked for advice on her behalf.
Rejection is painful for everyone. It's hard to have strong feelings for someone who doesn't feel that way in return. It's the same for heterosexual and homosexual people. It's very common for gay people to fall for straight people. It's often the first crush experience for a lot of young gay people, simply because there are more straight people around.
It's positive that Holly is opening up to you and speaking about her feelings. But it's also clear that she's displaying some self-destructive behaviour in the drinking, drugs and coming close to self-harm, and she needs professional support like a school counsellor. Please urge her to seek help. She could also see her doctor and ask for a counselling referral. There are some useful links here. It may also be helpful, if she likes, to write to me directly and explain what's really troubling her. Apart from distress over Chloe, I can't really tell what's making her behave recklessly. It would certainly be useful for her to visit the site, regardless of whether she gets in touch.
I'm sure you'll continue to be a good friend to Holly and please know that you are helping her by being there for her. Talking about problems, and therefore acknowledging them, can begin to allow a person to tackle the causes.
From [Finley] Age  Gender [F]
Um, Is it normal to completely hate yourself because of your sexuality? I'm the only person who is having trouble accepting it. My mum, and all my friends are totally fine with it, but I'm just sick of it all. I just want to be normal, I never chose to be gay, and I don't want to be gay any more. I just want to be straight. I'm SICK of it. Does this make me homophobic towards myself or something????????
No, it's not normal to hate yourself for any reason. It's an unhappy and unhealthy way to be and prevents a person from moving forward in a positive way and enjoying life as fully as they could. But sadly, it is common for people to have problems with their sexuality or, more specifically, have a negative way of viewing it.
To an extent, you have similar problem to Kevin – next message down. It's not the first time that I've had a message from someone who's family and friends are fine about their sexuality, while they aren't. So you have to ask yourself: why do you hate being gay?
Have you met horrible gay people who made you worry about your own future? Have you had a bad same-sex relationship experience and you blame sexuality instead of the person? What do you imagine life as a gay woman is like? Do you see yourself in the future being disadvantaged because of your sexuality? What is it about being straight that would make life okay?
The simple fact of life as a lesbian is that you can be as happy as a straight person. Apart from not being able to have children naturally with a same-sex partner, there are no disadvantaged to being gay. If anything, it's other people with a bad attitude that can affect quality of life. But the power to feel good about your life is down to you.
You can't change your sexuality, but you can work toward feeling better about who you are.
Get started by reading my page here.
From [Kevin] Age  Gender [M]
I visited a tourist site with a friend of mine a couple days ago. We saw a gay couple as we were walking and after that day, I was just dumbfounded. Just after seeing how passionate and loving those couple were, part of my heart just sank and I began to wonder who I am or what I am. I was in so much pain after seeing them, which I never thought I would be effected so much by them. It's not like they were the first gay couple I had seen. I've seen other gay couples before but I don't know, just something about them threw me into a state of awe and depression all at the same time.
Ever since I was young I always believed that this might just be a phase and it will eventually fade away just like everything else. I even had a crush on a girl before, but later on I felt like it was more like a attention seeker and I don't think I had really fallen for her.
I always thought I might be more interested in guys more and as the years went on the desire to be with a guy became more uncontrollable and I could no longer push it down any longer. Then after seeing that couple holding each other, I just felt heartbroken and I realized I had been suppressing this feeling for so many years. But now, I'm still scared of admitting to myself and coming out to myself cause I still feel this is wrong and I shouldn't be thinking like this or be doing any of this.
So I feel terrible about myself and I'm constantly tired and exhausted from thinking about this and I would lose concentration in what I was doing and lose focus cause I will be thinking about this every moment I had. I just don't know what to do and I feel like an outcast.
In my mind, I do wish to meet a guy and fall for him, but I don't know, like I think that is the life that I would wish to have, but then also there is the whole "continue the family line" thing that I have to deal with and I just don't know what to do cause this whole idea is just so energy draining and frustrating. Honestly, I am freaked out about this cause I never thought that I would actually be thinking and admitting this to myself someday. And now, I just feel dumbfounded and torn apart. Like as of now, I still feel like I can't really face and admit to myself about this. And I just keep telling myself that IF I do end up meeting the right guy, then that will probably be the day that I will finally admit to myself. But I feel like that "someday" of maybe meeting the right person might be years from now and I'm lonely and sad thinking about it and I really don't want to always be dealing with this frustration.
I'm just so lost and depressed lately that I don't even know what I should do any more. Each day just feels like a drag and everyday I wake up, I feel more tired than I was the day before. I'm so confused...
Firstly, well done on admitting that you have these feelings. You're making a good start to feeling better by expressing how you feel here. You're doing better than I think you probably give yourself credit for.
Seeing the happy gay couple has understandably stirred you up and has forced you to address some issues that you'd been avoiding. The gay couple represent the good things that you could have if you felt better about being gay.
And that's the key here: you need to feel better about who you are. This isn't about anyone else, because although you worry about how other people will react, it seems that it's you who has the biggest problem with your homosexuality. You say that you feel like an outcast, but you haven't come out to anyone. You haven't given anyone the chance to be okay, or even supportive, about this. You're only an outcast by your own perception. But you have control over how things move forward. You've had a glimpse of something you want and it's in your power to make good things happen.
You have to ask yourself why being gay is such a bad thing for you. Why are you worrying, at only 18 years old, about continuing the family name? You may not have had children even if you'd been straight, and isn't love more important than worrying about producing a child with your surname? Why is being happy with a man both a distressing and wonderful thought?
There's also the simple fact that you don't have a choice when it comes to sexuality; nobody does. You can't change it, so it's in your interest to feel good about it and the make the best of the cards you've been dealt in life. You're a healthy, intelligent, self-aware young man, Kevin, and you can be happy, but you need to allow yourself to be.
Please read my page here.
From [Adam] Age  Gender [M]
I recently came out as gay to my family and friends. Fortunately, they have all been very supportive which is a great comfort as I was very worried prior to coming out how they might take it, particularly as one of my friends in particular is quite "conservative" and a "typical" masculine male. I was a bit worried that he might be a bit freaked out by it. However, he was totally cool with it (as was everyone) which is a huge weight off my mind.
Now that I have come out and told everyone who I am, I am finding myself looking at random guys at uni or in the street and thinking they're quite nice or cute. I don't know these people at all, but am just noticing nice looking guys who I find attractive and appreciating men and why I'm attracted to them. Is that normal? I think it makes me seem a bit of a perv and was wondering if it was normal to just see guys in the street or on campus for example and think they're nice. I had to visit the finance office at university recently and had a conversation with one of the young guys who works there. As I was talking to him, I found myself noticing his arms and how toned I thought they were.
I feel like I'm coming across as a queeny perv and just wondered if it was normal to have mini crushes on guys in this way.
You have nothing to worry about. It's completely normal for everyone to notice people they find attractive. Straight and gay people do it all the time.
The reason you question this behaviour is because you're gay and you're concerned that people might notice you more than they might notice a straight guy looking at girls, or perhaps that guys might be offended to have your attention. But if you were straight, you'd be noticing woman who you found attractive and you'd also be noticing parts of their body that look good to you. Take the time to look and you'll see that everyone does it.
I was in the gym a few days ago and I noticed a very attractive guy. He had lovely strong arms and other features I found attractive. I felt a bit embarrassed when we got eye contact and I looked away, but later on I noticed a guy on an exercise bike checking out the girl next to him, and it reminded me that it's all completely normal and nothing to feel weird about. Obviously, you have to be polite and respectful, but we're not talking about leering at people here - we're just talking about being normal guys who notice people they find attractive.
A lot of people consider it a compliment for someone to check them out. This lunchtime I was in the supermarket where someone was giving me the eye - it cheered me up! Besides, you can't walk around with your head hung low, looking at the floor.
You're a young gay man who's naturally going to notice attractive guys. I bet all your friends have a glance or two at people they fancy too.
From [Chris] Age  Gender [M]
I writing to you beaucse im having problems obviously. I am trying to come out as gay but its becoming really hard for me. I want to tell my parents (they wouldnt have a problem with it) but i just cant. My mom calls me a fag and an embaressment for a son. but then she will apoligize and say she wouldn't care if i was gay. She also went on a hompphobic rant on how gay people dont follow soicety rules or something like that one time when me and her got in a fight. it makes me scared to come out to her. She will say one moment she accepts homosexuality and then the next she is ripping me apart for being gay even before i tell her i am! my dad would not care at all if i was gay. so i am not worrried about telling him. also when i tell my mom to stop saying those things she will say unless i really was gay i shouldnt get offended. My mom even had a gay friend but he died way before i was born. so i dont know why she says these things. also at school i get picked on. i do act girly
and there are times when i feel like i should of been a girl so i am a target for bullies. i have become so depressed i feel like people are judging me all the time. i have no gay friends i have no one i can relate to. i feel so desparetly alone. i just dont know what to do anymore. can you give me advice please?
It sounds to me as though your Mum might have an idea that her son is gay and she probably feels a bit frustrated if you're denying or just being silent on the subject of your sexuality. She seems conflicted about how she feels about gay people and makes thoughtless comments, but then the sensible Mum, who loves and wants her son to be happy, appears and apologises. In a weird way, she might even be testing the water with these comments, seeing how you might react and also encouraging you to be more forthcoming with your sexuality. She's in a sort of limbo at the moment and is lashing out. She thinks she knows that you are gay, but her son isn't telling her anything. She may even be hurting and wondering why you won't speak to her.
I think for your relationship with your Mum to move forward in a positive way you need to tell her that you are gay. The fact is that she already knows. Telling her will stop all the guessing and stressing about it for her. Once she has it confirmed that you are gay, then there will be no more fishing for information, which I'd guess is what a lot of these daft comments from her are about. By coming out you give her the opportunity to be a better Mum around this issue; give her a chance – that I believe she wants – to be cool about your sexuality or, better, actually supportive about it.
Especially from reading your final few lines, it sounds like you need support and someone to talk to. Coming out to your Mum and Dad could be the start of things shifting in a more positive direction for you. On a separate note, please read my section on bullying for help with that problem. Be brave. There are people around you who can help.
From [Bobby] Age  Gender [M]
Hi to all. I am a gay from India. I from start knew that I was gay. I was ready to accept this and live my whole life alone. my mother died in 2000 and then we moved to another city. There I took admission in graduation. I completed my first year then suddenly my father died. In the second year I met this guy. I n the starting I was a normal friend to him but he was special friend to me. I liked his company but I was not attracted to him. In the winter holidays when we both were away I started missing him. This was the first time I came to knew that I am attracted to him. I cried why this is happening to me. Because he is straight and I am gay. I can never love him. I hide my feelings in my heart. Then we came in third year. I started feeling very strange because I was in fear in losing him after graduation. I started fighting with him to attract his attention towards me. I was very sad. Then I became sexually attracted towards him. I wanted to do masters in zoology but I chose geology because he wanted to do masters in geology. I cried so may times thinking that one day he will marry someone and how I am going to bear that. I was very obsessed with him. I used to fight with him a lot because sometimes he was not able do do the same I used to do for him. I used to do his homework all by myself. I used to listen to his answers on the phone when our exams were going on.
I was very worried about his exams. When I fought with him he became angry and then I was in fear that HE WILL NOT ASK ANSWERS FROM ME and he will get less marks. I was not able to bear when he talked about the girls. We used to talk a lot on the phone.
Then we came into masters. I used to tease him by touching his bottom. He sometimes also did that. One day he told me not to do this and then I ASKED him why? he told me that he doesn't likes this. Then I asked him if a girl would touch him then he will very good. He said yes of course. I was shattered and then i told him that I am gay and I am attracted to him. HE was silent. He then told me that this is my problem and all he can do is give me sympathy. He also said that I should not keep any hope from him. Then I SAID THAT I have some fantasies about him. HE became angry and just left away. I was very afraid. Then I went to him and told him that I was joking. He denied my statement. I was broken. next day I told my sister about this. She was not ready to accept that I am gay. She told me that because he was my only friend that is why I have developed these feelings. Then I drank phenyle. I was taken to hospital. When my friend came to knew this he told me to leave the course and do something else because things cannot be like before. i left the course and took admission in another course. Its been three months and I am not able to forget him. I miss him. I CRY EVERY DAY FOR THIS. he doesn't want to be friends with me because he thinks that whatever i did was because of my lust. I really want him back in my life. as a friend I feel all alone. when i asked my other friends about him they said he is absolutely fine and he just like he was before. he never talks of me. I know in the Indian society I cannot come out. My sister's marriage will suffer because of me. I cannot marry a girl because I will destroy her life. plse people guide me. plse tell me whatever i did was my fault or not. plse
The way you feel about your friend is nothing to feel ashamed of. Everyone experiences strong feelings of attraction and love like this. It's a normal part of life to sometimes develop feelings for someone who is unavailable. This doesn't just happen to gay people. Your friendship with this man was real and he obviously cared and had genuine feelings of friendship toward you. He is now upset because he thinks that the friendship you offered may have been motivated by a desire to be romantically close to him, and he may feel misled or betrayed.
It's very clear that he is a heterosexual guy and was never going to be able to reciprocate your feelings. It may have been a mistake to tell him how you felt about him, and certainly a mistake to then tell him you have fantasies about him, but telling him about your sexuality and asking that he accepts the real you is a completely reasonable and positive step forward for a friendship. In an ideal world a true friend would accept the homosexuality of another and the friendship could move on to be more open and honest. But sadly, coming out can mean the end of friendships is the person being told has a negative attitude about homosexuality. It's painful for a gay person to go through this, but I do believe that it's better to find out how your friend feels rather than to hide such a big part of who you are indefinitely. Perhaps it was inevitable that eventually he'd find out that you were gay and he'd react badly to it. It might not feel like it now, but it's better that it happened sooner instead of later. You may have spent many years feeling strongly for him, feeling bad as he marries, and missing out on other man who are available romantically to you.
The events you describe are still very recent and you're hurting, but it will get better as time goes by. It may seem as though he doesn't care, but I imagine that he misses a good friend too. Take some comfort in this and focus on moving forward with your life. You were never going to be able to be close to him in the way you'd like and it's time to start letting go.
Apart from being a touch too forthcoming with your friend about your sexual desires, you haven't done anything wrong, Bobby. Asking friends to accept us for who we are is a normal and healthy expectation and way to live. You can have other good friendships and you can one day feel this way for someone who feels the same way back.
From [Ben] Age  Gender [M]
ever since I was young I knew I was gay. whem i was much longer, I had wrote something down ona piece of paper about my sexuality, and both my dad and brother read it. that's something I've always regretted, and ive been walking on eggshells with them ever since. it's always been not nice at school, with being called names, and it's on the verge of bullying sometimes. my brother and dad are very homophobic. I've come out to some of my friends and they were great with it. I don't know tho if I'll ever come out properly, with loads of homophobia and abuse, and have been driven to the verge of suicide. please help :'l
What did your Dad and Brother say about the note they read? Has it ever been discussed? If not, then you don't really know what they think. Try not to waste time worrying about what someone might be thinking and, instead, focus on the facts. Things aren't always as bad as we imagine the are. An important fact to focus on here is that you've come out – a very positive thing – to some friends who have been great with the news. These are people who accept you for who you are and don't have any daft negative ideas about what being gay means. Enjoy this and make sure you talk to them about how you're feeling. They may have helpful ideas or ways of looking at things that you hadn't considered.
It's concerning to read that you're having a hard time in school with some students and that this has made you feel very low. It's important that you seek help. Talk to a teacher or another adult you trust. Nobody should have to face the day ahead with anxiety and fear. You're a good person who people like and you have as much right to be happy as anyone else. Please read my bullying section for more.
From [Caitlyn] Age  Gender [F]
I've been chatting with a girl online and on the phone for two years with a couple dates sprinkled in here and there (we live too far apart to go on more than a couple).
This isn't about her though.
My mom doesn't know any of this. Or she didn't, until one of my friends posted a picture of me and this girl online, attending the Rocky Horror Picture Show.
The caption did not mention that we were on a date, but I think my mom suspects that we were, she's been asking me off and on for the past year if I was gay, always with this same hard furious semi-disgusted look on her face when she asks.
What the caption DID mention was that the two of us participated in the underwear run. And my mom is furious and talking about kicking me out of the house. Citing that I don't even seem to be ashamed of what I did (I'm not).
I would love to come out to my mom but I can't because I can't support myself, I'm almost 20 but I pay rent to my mom currently and I couldn't afford an apartment as well as college, not to mention that my mom bought me my car and could take it back leaving me totally without transportation (I live in Texas...it's impossible to do anything without a car) plus I KNOW that she'll kick me out for real if I revealed that I'm dating a girl if she's this furious about me participating in an underwear run at Rocky Horror.
My dad knows that I'm seeing a girl and that I'm bi-sexual. He said that he always suspected that HE was gay and said that his adherence to the bible is what allowed him to get past that and marry my mom. I can't even come out to him that I'm an atheist for fear of losing his support, as minimal as it is.
But I can't even breach the subject with my mom, she's the one who controls the household. She's the one with the power and our relationship has just gotten worse and worse over the past year because she thinks that I'm becoming promiscuous (I'm a virgin...I'm not even fond of kissing. But the fact that I have no problem with partial nudity, I draw nudes and I have absolutely no shame in my body or in stripping down to my underwear to run around a theatre with half of the audience of Rocky Horror makes me a slut in her eyes) and that I've fallen with a bad crowd (My best friend is an out gay and my mom discovered that my other friend smokes pot occasionally) and that I don't deserve to live in her house.
I'm terrified that I'm going to get kicked out of the house when I cannot afford to live alone. I've been trying to save money and setting up living arrangements with my best friend should my mom do a bit more digging and discover that I was on a date that night...but I'm afraid she's going to find out soon and I'm not ready. I live an hour away from my best friend and moving in with him means quitting my job and trying to find a new one on that side of town, as well as the fact that I don't have my drivers license yet...I'm taking my test in two days, but I'm not comfortable driving myself to his house when it's so far away, or job hunting in an unfamiliar part of town.
I don't know if I'm asking for advice, or just support right now. I think I might have just wanted to type this all out, to tell SOMEONE at least.
What's really amazing is that despite having a strict and repressed mother, and a father who denied his sexuality and married instead, that you are so brilliantly comfortable with your same-sex desires and your body. I'm really happy, and relived, for you. A lot of kids growing up with parental embarrassment and repression around sexual matters would be struggling with all sorts of problems. It might not seem like it, but it's wonderful that your biggest problem is not one of self-acceptance, but one of accommodation!
I think you know that you can't stay living with your Mum indefinitely. I'm sure she loves you, and in her own way she is looking out for you. But it's clear that she is unreasonable with her expectations of you and is struggling to accept who her daughter really is against her ideas of what a daughter should be. Facing each day with worry about not being accepted and being kicked out is not a basis for a healthy mother-daughter relationship, and this can't continue. You're being forced to think about moving away and, as usual in these cases, it's the parent who's ultimately going to miss out because of her unreasonable behaviour.
It's sensible to have a plan, and your saving up and ideas about living with a friend are good things. It's not ideal to move an hour's drive away from where you currently work, but you have to weigh this up against your current situation: you live close to work, but you also live in a house where you aren't happy or accepted. It might be inconvenient – and a bit unsettling and scary – to move and branch out on your own, but I'd suggest that it's absolutely necessary.
You could say "what the heck" and just tell your Mum about your sexuality and see what happens. You'd be giving her a chance to be supportive and help create a better relationship with you. It's a chance I think a lot of parents deserve, even if they haven't been as supportive in the past as they could have. But from the details of your email it seems unlikely that coming out would improve your mother's attitude. At the very least, it would confirm her suspicions and allow her to figure out how she feels about it and move forward. At the moment, she's just guessing and lashing out.
As for your car: your Mum gave it to you. It was a gift. She can't take it back because she doesn't like your sexuality. The car is yours. If she uses it as blackmail ammunition, then perhaps offer to pay her a monthly amount for it and treat it like a loan. But she really has no right to withhold your possessions because she doesn't like things you say. Let's also remember that you are an adult. It's up to you what you do or don't tell your Mum, and who you choose to spend time with outside of the family home.
It frustrates me that your Mum and Dad can't seem to see what a bright, articulate and positive daughter they have – they should be begging you to stick around and brighten their lives up! But the reality is that to have a better quality of life and the support and acceptance you deserve, you're going to need to be brave and look beyond the family home. I think you'll be absolutely fine. And whatever nonsense the up-tight and repressed adults in your life tell you, please don't change!
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