Gay Stuff : Do They Know You Are Gay?

Does everyone in your family know you are gay and its all good or do they know and no one wants to talk about it? A friend of mine has been with his boyfriend for 7 or 8 years and was recently confronted with this. 

The boyfriend’s family has a cabin they use a lot in the summer. On this weekend a cousin who hasn’t been around in a while came to up for a visit. Sitting around getting reacquainted the cousin looked at my friend and casually asked how he knew everyone.

My friend answered by saying he was his cousins partner and they had been together for the past 8 years. The cousin didn’t look too surprised and said cool.

Later that night my friend was cornered by his boyfriend and asked him why he told his cousin they were together. My friend was confused.  He told him because it was the truth and he didn’t know he was supposed to lie about it. The boyfriend told him to tell people they were roommates if anyone else asked.

It seems there is an elderly uncle who doesn’t approve of gays and their lifestyle. I guess this family doesn’t like to talk about things in an open fashion. I find this surprising considering the boyfriend had a gay brother who died of AIDS 20 years ago. How do you not mention that when people ask where he is?

Are you in a closed gay relationship and call you boyfriend your roommate or are you in an open gay relationship and don’t care who knows?

Comments?  Thoughts?


g skorich AKA eastvalley

There are 78 comments

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  1. Robert

    I’m out. I’ve lost a sister, my niece and nephew and her husband whom I could care less. It is not talked about unless I bring it up. I don’t care what anyone thinks.

  2. marc

    Everyone knows and all friends and family do not care. But then there are two gay brothers, two lesbian cousins and one gay son of one of those cousins in the family — so it is readily accepted.

  3. Ernie3

    Back in 1977 my wife saw me walking out of a gay bar. We got a divorce a few months later and she told every family member she knew on both sides. Saved me the trouble but still had a lot of questions to answer. Everyone treated me the same as they used to except my mother in law and even she softened up after a few years. I have had a partner for the last 34 years and at first we were roommates and then we were brothers and after a while I got tired of lying and now we are Partners. We feel a lot better about it and if anyone does not like it they should at least admire us for honesty.

  4. shady0208

    My partner and I have been together for five years. I think my family has an indication…although we don’t talk about it. I’m sure his family has an indication, but he is terrified they may find out. His mother passed away, and based on their non-existent religious beliefs she was creamated and an extremely small service was held at the funeral home. Although I supported him through his pain and his lost, he “acidentally” didn’t hit send on the text that included the funeral details and location. Although I am not an open book with my lifestyle….but it does seem depressing being buried soooo far in the closet.

  5. Matt

    Long term closeted relationships are doomed to failure. It’s one thing to not want to declare it to the world and another to when asked about it tell a bald faced lie. I say he needs to dumb him and find someone who’s more comfortable in their own skin.

  6. sjohnson

    Simple!! if the question comes up, an honest answer is given and if the person(s) don’t approve—oh well!!! they can either act as if normal,ignore me/us or distance themselves from me/us. could not care less of what others say–family, friend, co-worker, whomever. but fair warning—this person does not take face-to-face criticisms lightly.

  7. Todd Michalski

    My family knows I’m after hiding it for 25 yrs . Told my mother first she said she always knew .
    Sad thing is she told the rest of the family .
    Of course they reject me .
    Needless to say there are a few others in the family who are also gay but they try to hide family knows. if you only knew how lonely I am longing for a true bf

  8. DonenFtMyers

    Everybody knows. Was closeted for many years and raised a family. When I finally came out, I came out to God and everybody.

  9. KR

    Im still in high school ( yes im 18) and i recently came out to both my brothers, my sister, and my best friend. I’m a masculine acting guy so it came as a bit of a shock to them. Of course they ask if i have a boyfriend or if I’ve been with a guy before. There is one guy (also in high school and not out of the closet) that I hook up with a lot and am pretty good friends with. The embarrassing part about all of this is I met him online. It’s hard to explain that I have an account on a gay hook up website, so i just tell them I met him in “some chat room”. I’m guessing that most homosexuals meet online and explaining this to loved ones may be embarrassing. Hopefully when i come fully out (which will be in the next few weeks) i can find someone not from A4A.

  10. horny-in-greeley

    hi,,,well my family/friends,my own kids know i,m gay and there so kool with it,,,i did have a few friends that don,t want nothing to do with me cause they told me dicks are for chic,s,,,i told them you don,t like or approve that i,m gay then fuck off and don,t bother me,,,guess what they have nothing to do with me,,,the way i see it you loose a friend you gain a friend,,,my own kids want me to fine a boyfriend and settle down,,,i told them i,m to old for dating or have a boyfriend,,,i told them i,m out to have a good time before i kick the bucket,,,i told my friends and kids you except me for who i am and the way i act or no go cause i,m am who i am and not going to change it for anyone,,not in person or in public,,,they have no problem!!!!

  11. mark

    who cares at this point in society….gay is excepted…by normal people and not…buy the republican rednecks….life goes on, being gay isn’t a secret society or a special thing nowadays….you are or you aren’t….who cares anymore….really…..I mean really….why the article even being published on here. It’s like…you like avacados or you don’t…no one cares anymore….just let people come out and not bombard them with the old taboo of omg…he’s gay

  12. Duddster

    First off I have to say that I have the best family in the whole world…when I came out it was like no big deal, my four brothers and I have always been close and we all really get along…even the sisters-in-laws, are very close.
    I have had a couple of boy friends that I have brought to family gatherings and they have been welcomed with open arms…as a matter of fact I think they all liked my choices of boy friends better then my choice of a wife. Even my kids have excepted me for who I am and my life choice, because life is way to short to be miserable and I wished I would have taken the comin out step a lot earlier…the only ones that do not know that I am gay are the ones I work with…and I figure it is none of their business

  13. bf not out

    I am in this exact situation! My bf, partner and I have been together for 5 years come this December and he has yet to tell his family that we are together. I am referred to as the “roommate” and have only met a few of his family members in passing. While at the same time I am completely out and he has spent hours with my family, going to the family reunions for the past 4 years, and my father has grown to love him like another son.

    I am bothered by this as when I look to the future of having children and such, I do not want the child to be confused while growing up when they cannot speak about their other father to their grandparents on his side. How can one teach a child to accept themselves when one of their parents cannot accept themselves as is?

    It makes for a tough relationship.

  14. steve

    I agree…being gay is nothing special, secret or a special club anymore….the article is as far as I’m concerned, is a reach for something special…which in essence isn’t anymore

  15. JaysSN

    If I was the boyfriend, that guy wouldn’t been dumped before the car was warmed up. What an unbelievable coward! I won’t even hook up with someone who isn’t totally out. I mean if the guy wants to be so childish to be in the closet at his age, that’s his problem, but he’s literally dragging his partner of 7 or 8 years back into the closet with him. My head always spins when I hear about something like this, even when I read “out-no” + “looking for relationship” on an a4a profile.

  16. mike

    1st… you might wanna change your terms from closed/open to closeted/out… the open/closed thing speaks to whether you can play with or see others to pretty much everyone.

    To answer the question though…

    Im in an out open polyamourous relationship and do not hide that from anyone…

  17. AJ

    I am currently in a relationship with a guy and I really don’t know how to tell my parents, my mother knows I’m bisexual but I don’t know how she will react if she knew I Had a boyfriend, I’m very sad and confused right now, any suggestions?

  18. Jeremy

    I have been out for nearly 20 years. I’ll be damned if I let someone shove me back in a closet. Homophobia doesn’t just go away because we ignore it. It goes away because we talk about it, because we show people we’re just like everyone else, because we *are* like everyone else.

  19. Manny

    i believe its a complicated situation. i was at a young age of 19 dating a 23 year old guy and he was openly out to his family and i grew up in a religious home with a single mother. when i moved out after i graduated i then begun to see what the world had to offer i had meet this guy from this site and i had told my mom that he was a friend from school and introduced him as that to avoid my family thinking anything about us spending so much time together. i feel for him hard like any young guy would i developed strong emotions for him and i would have done everything for him. he then asked me if i would be his boy friend official but that i would have to come out to my family i put alot of thought into this and told him no and so he then became distant and i had asked what the issue was and he told me he cant love some one who was afraid to be them self and that i was ashamed for being gay. it wasnt that i was ashamed i just didnt think my mom and family would be very accepting and i didnt know the out come but i feared the most. after a few weeks of finally coming to a conclusion i built the courage to tell my mom so one morning on my way to school i called my mom crying telling her that i had something very important and if she would no matter what love me. i broke down into tears telling her mom i am gay and i am seeing someone she then told me not to tell anyone that but that i was just going threw a phase and that it was the devil in my head telling me lies. at that time i was living with my aunt and so by the time i got home my belongings were packed my mom wanted me to go to a rehab to help me but it wasnt what i felt was right. my whole family cut me off because they didnt want to get in between or involved i then told the guy i was with and he did a complete 180 telling me that he can be with some one who doesnt have a who supports him morally. i had no where to go i became homeless and very depressed living out of my car trying to finish the semester and one day i tried to take my life because i was so alone i look back at that day january 26 2008 and remind my self that this is my 2nd chance to be me gay straight or bi but that in everything that i do i would do for me and what made me happy a couple of years later my mom came around and as did my family they love me more then ever and regardless of who fucked up a situation came out of it i am a happier person and truly know how blessed i am to be me

  20. JackWellsDickson

    To lie about your partners (especially of 7-8 years) is not only a shameful offense, it coddles the worthless/ignorant mindset of those who “don’t approve of gays”.
    Their approval (or disapproval) is unimportant.
    What is important is that those who’s minds are small or closed be told the truth.
    Then they can work towards understanding that the love between two gay individuals is just as natural, beautiful, and real as it is for anyone else.
    So many minds will remain shut if nobody is willing to take a whack at opening them!

    You aren’t sparing anyone by hiding who you are.
    You certainly don’t have to advertise your sexuality, that’s not what I’m getting at.
    I’m saying that if we are brave and truthful then mankind might have a chance of reaching it’s potential: unified, smart, loving, open…

    I know it’s hard to “come out” for a lot of people. But that’s life. Life is full of obstacles and tough decisions.
    Don’t let someone else’s ignorance stand in the way of you living your life! Don’t let fear or shame keep you down or make a liar out of you!

    We all have the ability to expand someone else’s mind and enrich their soul, and it’s through our willingness to face our disagreements that we can do it.

    I am 21 and haven’t been in a long term relationship with another guy…
    I come from a loving/supportive background and I recognize I’m coming from a different place than a lot of guys out there.

    Despite my lack of experience and uncommonly fortunate background, I feel strongly about this.
    Just wanted to put my thoughts out their with the hope of inspiring truth and bravery.
    Hopefully some of you guys can connect with my thoughts here. At the very least, I hope this got you thinking.

    Keeps it real, y’all.


  21. joey

    I believe most family members know that most guys roommates that have been together for sometime and tend to spend there lives together doing different fuctions, going on vacation, partys and such together have a prettty good idea the guys are more then just roommates. But weather you openly acknowledge the relationship or not is a tuff question for most of us. Most family members don’t mind talking about there partner and the goings ons between them when asked, but for unfortunatly people still want to live in denile, what isn’t talked about, they don’t have to wonder about.

  22. eastvalley

    i had been living with my boyfriend for a few years and we just finished renovating our house so we had people over. i was taking an aunt of mine through the house, there are pictures throughout with us doing whatever with whomever, we get to our bedroom, more pictures but more personal. my aunt looks at me and says, when are you going to find a girl and get married. some people just don’t get it and that’s alright

  23. David

    I would have said that I’m not hiding a damn thing from anyone and if that’s an issue then I can go home and we can re-evaluate this so called “relationship” when you get home. Grow a pair tell them they can deal with it or kiss my ass.

  24. Yakeem

    Give me a break! All these queers commenting, especially… I’m happy for you being out and proud but don’t forget how strong brainwashing enterprise called church still is in this country… Not everyone wants to wear pink leg warmer sand be feminine and out screaming loud how happy they’re gay. Don’t wanna burst your bubbles but in remote areas of America you still bump into homophobia big time. It’s everyone’s own business to be out or NOT and you can’t generalize everyone and I courage to be out… Is it wrong to be in the closet when you’re with someone for 7-8 years? That’s not for us to judge. If they’re still together, then it’s their problem. And the guy that’s out shouldn’t have been sticking around then if everything would be about “Are you in closet or not?” issue. But they’re still are and you’re raging queens need to chill and be more respectful because everyone has different families and not every family is soooo accepting.

  25. Edward Wms

    Anyone that is being rejected from family or friends may contact me, I would like to be a friend to you, you don’t have to be lonely, rejected… I came out, been divorced, disowned by family, friends and now HIV +……. Life is still good for the most part though, and will get better, foresure……

  26. Gene

    I came out to my family and friends this year. All don’t care, and treat me the same as usual. My kids all support me and want me to be happy. I am currently seeing an awesome man, who is not out to anyone, so far so good, but time will tell

  27. fierypit

    Everyone knows, my dad doesn’t approve. He knows too but seems like he believes as long as its not discussed it will not be true. No one talks to him about it. I don’t care. Some people think I’m being inconsiderate. I tell them I think they’re being stupid. When I myslf don’t hide it from him.

  28. Skaterguy

    Thanks for the topic it really puts things in perspective. I’m one of those guys on here that are not out, but open to a relationship at the same time. It’s not that I’m going to be in the closet the rest of my life tho I’m only in my early 20s. Feels like the only way I can muster up the courage to come out to friends and family without the fear of rejection is if I was in a committed relationship with someone I trust. Not just a hookup buddy. So without a committed partner that closets gonna stay shut ( ;

  29. htbutt

    Ive got a mixed bag on this one, I think you have to test the waters. I had a bf for years and he insisted that I tell them openly even though they included him for every family function and holiday. I said that I would when I felt it was right. He on the other had rammed it down his familys throats, they dont speak. The boyfriend is gone but me and my family are open and doing fine. His family still to this day doesnt talk to him. The “my way or the highway” approach isnt always in your best interest.

  30. radman

    if: u live in a small town or community best to be discrete. Too many rednecks just lookin 2 bash someone. It isn’t anyone’s business what your orientation is except yours. If you think it’s easier to be “out” u might wanna reconsider. Throwing your sexuality in the face of family, friends, or strangers might have unforseen results. Are you willing to go through the grief and depression that your action may cause? JUST SAYIN.

  31. BreakMyKnees on A4A

    I’ve been attacked and called gay since I was 8 (back before sex with either gender never crossed my mind); as an adult who is gay, I don’t feel the need to hide what I am. I’m as proud of being gay as I am of being black and being male; if the way nature molded me is too much for others to handle, that has nothing to do with me; I accept not responsibility for anyones ignorance.

    My fam knows I’m gay and some are homophobic; it doesn’t bother me because a.) I know how shitty their lives are b.) They’re upset that I’ve met some very great gay men while they continue struggling for a heterosexual mate that’s interested in them c.) My homosexuality isn’t the only thing they’ll hate against; they hate my writing, hate my body, hate the way I speak and look; they’re just haters and unfortunately there are many people like them.

    I make it clear that I’m not a walking advertisement for anything; however, I will never EVER wear a mask to please anyone else; what I do in my life doesn’t effect you; if one can’t comprehend that, it’s on them and not me.

  32. Christopher

    Let’s see, from what you tell us:

    They’ve been together for “7 or 8 YEARS”:

    They’ve never DISCUSSED THIS topic??? Really? That’s pretty crappy “communicative skills” right there.

    THEY DIDN’T HAVE A CONTINGENCY PLAN “IN FORCE FOR SUCH AN OCCASSION”? That’s pretty stupid, to say the least!

    Was he supposed to “duct tape” the boyfriend’s mouth shut? If “family is too dense to figure it out”, I’ll send an RSVP.

  33. Scarpien

    Each individual has to decide for himself whether coming out to family, friends, coworkers is in their best interest. To do so just because Out, The Advocate or Perez Hilton says so isn’t good enough because at the end of the day it’s that individual who has to deal with the fallout, if any, of their actions, not Out, The Advocate or Perez Hilton. How many times have we read here on these comment boards that someone came out, couldn’t handle the rejection and commits suicide? How does that advance our “cause?” So, before anyone comes out, they’d better consider all the pros and cons of doing so and MAKE SURE they’re of the mindset to handle whatever comes about as a result of coming out.
    Me, I’m of the opinion that if they ask–which means they must be ready to receive my response–AND if they mean something to me personally–family, close friends, etc.–I’ll tell them. But I’m not going to just come out to any and everyone just to satisfy someone else.
    In December of 2002 my friends (4 siblings) of 17 years at the time got a lil suspicious because a “friend” of mine came to visit from abroad and stayed at my place. I was staying in studio apartment so they figured there was nowhere for him to sleep other than with me in my bed. They confronted me about it and I came right out and told them. I figured we’d known each other long enough that they’d realize my sexuality is only a small part of who I am and that I’m the same person they’ve known and loved over the years. Well I was wrong! They told me they don’t approve of the lifestyle and therefore I can no longer visit their house. But if I ever wanted to talk they are only a phone call away. LOL. That one floored me. I actually laughed after the call ended. My boyfriend was so hurt he was on the verge of tears. He felt responsible for our parting, etc. and I had to spend the remainder of his stay reassuring him he had nothing to do with it and that I’d prepared for this day for a long time.
    Well 3 years passed. Since, I never needed to talk, I never called them and got on with my life. My mom threw a surprise birthday party for me and invited my estranged friends, not knowing about what went down between us–and they actually came! So imagine my surprise when I walked in and saw them smiling as they screamed “SURPRISE!” My jaw fell to the floor.
    We caught up and afterwards said our goodbyes. But a funny thing happened. A few days later they invited me by their house to hang out. My knee-jerk reaction was to decline, since I was pretty surprised as well as pissed how easily they rejected me 3 years prior. But after considering what a milestone in itself it was that they came around and invited me, as well as given the fact it was what I wanted all along–to be accepted for who I am–I accepted their invitation and things have been great. It was like those 3 years never occurred and we’re right back to travelling together, dinner parties, etc. Everything we did before the “breakup.”
    As for my family, I don’t know if they know. But I’m of the opinion they suspect something is up but just haven’t approached me as yet. But if/when they do I’ll be just as truthful as I was with my friends.

  34. John...

    Everyone in my family knows I’m gay I think??? If they don’t know then they are either blind, in denial or just don’t care one way or the other.

    I’ve never felt the need to put on a big “coming out” production with my family members. When I came to the realization I was gay I simply began choosing to have sex with men only. I’ve had 2 long term relationships that my family was fully aware of and knew both guys from holidays or other family gatherings and every day life. No one in my family has ever asked me about it or treated me any differently because of it.

    Of course I’ve never picked up the stereotypical gay mannerisms, fads, slang or other such things so commonly generic in the gay community and maybe that’s why I have always gotten along with straight people (who know I’m gay) and why I have as many very close straight friends as gay friends. My straight guy friends have often jokingly accused me of being a closeted heterosexual lol!

    In my opinion; my being gay is about my sexual preference only, not the rest of me and or my life. I’m just a man who prefers to have sex with men is all and being gay doesn’t mean I have to behave gay or follow any of the so called gay community’s rules as to what is or isn’t gay.

  35. SD

    Whoever thinks that our current society totally accepts homosexuality either is very fortunate to live in an area and know people who are accepting and supportive of it (or at the minimum, tolerant of it), or they are being very unrealistic about our society as a whole. For many of us, for others to know that we are gay does make a difference. Should it? Of course not… same as with political affiliation, religion or other lifestyle elements like being nudist, vegan, or Amish, but it still can, and does.

    I think we should all be smart enough to acknowledge that many of these things do impact our relationships with others – like it or not. Being gay may not have critical impact. Perhaps it means someone in your workplace is less likely to converse with you, or chooses to sit at a different table at lunch. Or maybe it means they won’t go into the bathroom if they just saw you walk in. Maybe they talk down about you to others. Maybe they don’t care. Maybe they admire your courage.

    When it comes to friends and family, though, the stakes are much higher. I’ve literally had a good friend say to me, upon learning that I was gay (versus merely the rumor that I was), “I’m going to hang up this phone and never speak to you again.” And that’s exactly what he did. You may respond, “Then he wasn’t really your friend…” and to that, I disagree. He certainly was – but learning that I was gay conflicted with his personal beliefs to an extent that he did not want to be my friend anymore. If you’ve ever lost a friend for any reason, would you say that they were never your friend to begin with? Maybe… if they were pointedly misrepresenting themselves for some end. But, I think that is an uncommon case. People’s feelings can genuinely change. My aunt once said, “We’re never going to talk about this again.” And for many years, we didn’t. She has, as have others, gradually come around to accepting that I didn’t choose to be gay. That said, no one but my sisters are actively supportive about it, either. No one else asks if I’m dating, and is certainly content to not have me bring it up if I am.

    I sometimes prefer to be out; it is less worrisome in some respect. However, I also acknowledge that in some settings, particularly work, where my sexual orientation has absolutely no bearing, that it simply isn’t anyone else’s business. Why bring it up? Why should anyone ask? I’m not going to tell them I’m a nudist – nor do I anticipate anyone asking. Choosing not to bring that up shouldn’t be counted as a negative, either. It’s my business to share or not share as I see fit.

    Not being out – as in deliberately taking steps to inform people that you are gay – does not mean you don’t respect yourself or anyone else you’re dating. Granted, it’s a tricky situation if someone does ask you a direct question. If it’s a friend, ok… it would seem that honesty is the best response. If it’s a co-worker or a stranger, I’d probably tell them that’s not a question I’m going to answer, and nor should they be asking it. Same as if they asked me if I was a chronic masturbator or if I’ve been “saved”.

    I don’t push anyone to accept my religious beliefs, political views, or like my favorite food… nor am I going to tell someone that they have to accept or tolerate my sexual orientation. I do believe that our nation was founded on high ideals – the right to pursue life, liberty, and happiness – and the laws that guarantee and protect those rights are what matter – even if certain individuals would disagree that I, or anyone else, should be in full possession of those rights. Particularly when I am causing no harm to anyone else.

    I think, just like sexual orientation, that there’s a spectrum to one’s comfort level when it comes to disclosure of sexual orientation. It doesn’t have to be an “everyone knows” or a “no one knows” deal. It also doesn’t have anything directly to do with being comfortable with your sexual orientation, either. I’m fine with it… but that doesn’t mean I actually expect everyone else on the planet to be fine with it. That may be idealistic – but terribly short-sighted. In fact, if you feel a need to tell everyone you know that you’re gay, that’s probably a sign you’re actually not comfortable with it… and you’re possibly seeking others’ acceptance as a way to try and accept it of yourself. Or, attempting to polarize your relationships into “those who accept it” and “those who don’t”, which isn’t necessarily a positive mindset, either.

    All that’s to say, I think we should be supportive of one another – I wouldn’t force someone else to be “out” because I thought it was the right thing for me, and I wouldn’t respect anyone trying to force my hand, either. Being homosexual to some degree is still, and to an extent, will always be something we have to, as individuals, come to grips with. It’s even more challenging to bring other people into that dynamic… so if you’re “out”, great… but understand that not everyone has lived your life and may not be comfortable making the same decisions that you have. There’s no “right” response for everyone.

  36. Ramblr13

    Totally out here, but I respect that everyone comes to that in their own time. The real issue here is that they’ve been together 8 years and haven’t discussed it yet….

  37. goldenloverinmym

    with a friend for 8 months now,he’s out but not in your face and i’m still in the closet I think 1 brother n his family but his son is gay i’m almost sure of so its no big deal 2 them but my other brother n family n sis’s family I don’t know what 2 do yet it will b a shock 4 them lol.Dean

  38. St.Olafian

    I think it’s a matter of choice…if you’re dating someone who is in the closet and you’re not and that’s a problem for you, maybe you should date someone else. No one should be forced to come out

  39. Jay

    They say your mother is the first to know but the last to be told. I decided to tell my mother years ago at the age of 26.

    Don’t let your mother (or other loved ones) pass away w/o letting them know you really are.

  40. Angus2012

    married and divorced here. When I was single, I never mad a point of telling my family who I was sleeping with. (All women at the time, still like them, just not willing to put up with the barge full of crap necessary to get in their pants) Divorced now, I still don’t see the need to inform anybody who Im dating or sleeping with. What is it with this generation obsessive need to tell everyone about their lives. Newsflash men, nobody is that interesting.

  41. Forcing the Door

    I think this is a really good subject to address on here. I am finding it more difficult to come out to my gar friends because they seem so self righteous. They expect everyone around to be gay and well, I am bisexual. The few I have told – some accept it, some think it’s a push away from gay and I am only trying to hold the door open. The truth is that the happiest I have been has been when I was semi-simultaneously dating a woman and a man. While I kept the relationship safe for all involved, it was the best and most satisfying emotional connection I have had. I know this can also lead to the questions of fairness to the partners involved and I have to say upfront I find judging someone else is simply judgmental given the acceptance of open relationships.

    I think what is important is how you feel emotionally when you are with someone. The choice of coming out to family and friends I think is a self-esteem issue and if you can get past how others may view you and be your own person that defines the time. Now to the original question of being out or closeted while in a relationship. I think that becomes a two person decision between you and your partner but a breech on either side is a breech of trust and the foundation of a relationship is honesty.

  42. JR

    What a topic. I have been out and proud since I was 15. I know everyone knows I am gay. I have a BF of 3 years now. We are very honest and open about being gay. We have a lot of guys especially young men come up to us and talk to us when we are out in public. I think they are looking for other understanding guys to talk with or be around. I also have a lot of attention from men who want to have sex. BF is not always happy about that one. When I read your Topic I thought you were asking if people could just tell if you were gay the moment they saw or met you. They can with me, but not with my BF. I think we should be ourselves and live our lives. It is a shame how many men and women are afraid of being who they really are.

  43. reagann

    I would call them my roommate to some and don’t care what others may think. All depends on the environment that you guys r n and who you are comfortable with sharing that type of information with, all that to say it can go both ways.

  44. nicko

    I’m 29, single, never told anyone about my preference. I was tempted, while deployed in Afghanistan to tell my friends but did not want to be treated differently.

    Despite what you hear in the news the military isn’t forgiving, with gay men/women. After seeing my best/only friend get kicked out for having a boyfriend my eyes were opened.

    I just didn’t want to be a statistic. Bottom line I chose not to tell anyone out of fear.

  45. one-n-only34

    Ahhh the roommate bit never gets old. Quickest way to try to explain something away although if you ask me it raises more questions than it answers

  46. Dean

    Came out to parents first, mother was a typesetter for a publishing company and actually did the work on a research sex journal and knew more than I did about gay sex, go figure! Told me to let it sink in for a while with my dad and within a year it was okay. Since then haven’t hidden it really from my family, had a cousin 2 years older that was gay, so was okay. Husband and I have been together for over 20 years and with my family were open, his only recently with everyone, but with the majority open for the past 10 years or so, it has been okay. Current career move it was thrust into the spotlight in a positive way and I am making waves there also. Rare in my field to be open and legally married, so I am making my mark with my husband beside me.

  47. Todd

    I have been together with my bf for 13 years. We are not out. We don’t live together and everyone knows us as friends. No one suspects anything. This works great for us and we could not be happier. It’s not my place to tell people who I bed since no one ever feels obligated to tell me who they sleep with.

  48. Steven

    I’m 54 and I’ve been out since I was 19. If I’ve met anyone along the way that didn’t like my lifestyle they’ve been welcome to learn to respect and accept me as I am or not be a part of my life. I have no time in my life for biggots, assholes, or morons.

  49. Yovanni Calderon

    I do not announce my sexuality, because I believesomeones sexuality is private…IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH SHAME OR EMBARRASSMENT…my family is NOT really my “family”..they are just people that Im related to, my “family” are my friends…becase to my “family”, me being gay is NOT an issue.

  50. Frank

    What’s with all this “cummin’ out” business ? Who ever said you have to advertise your sexual orientation? Heterosexuals don’t go around reminding everyone that they are heteros so why do gays think they have to make sure everyone knows they are gay? I think it’s lots more fun to keep em’ guessing ! How about Liberace? Most people thought they knew but they never got a confirmation so there was always a lot of respect for the man from everyone! Keep it to yourself !

  51. Dynamichard

    When I came out to my wife of 36 years she confided in my children, my brothers and sisters and my parents. I always thought she did me a favor except that it was an intense 6 weeks. a couple years later I met my partner. He is the same age as my children (late 30s) so I thought I may just be ‘shunned’ like some Amish sects are known for, but my ex-wife and my son came around and are supportive, even have shared celebrations and holidays at times. Not one of my siblings or parents have ever acknowledged my partner and only one has ever spoken his name. I am out because I need to live comfortably in my own skin, but it sure would be nice to be able to share the autumn of my life with all the people I love. Still, I am a pretty lucky fellow.
    Cherish life. Your’s and the lives of those around you.

  52. JesseJames

    I’ve been out since I was 16, I’m 24 now. It wasn’t easy being out in High School, but I feel like it helped me grow as a person at young age. My family knows and I don’t hide it. My grandparents not so sure, they are old school Native American kind of people. I can’t imagine being in the closet, I wouldn’t feel like “Me”.

  53. Sidroc

    I consider my coming out story to be interesting (selfishly so) for the non-reaction. I came out to my sister first. Always in the past, she’s used me as a sounding-board for the big life decisions that she was hesitant to tell my parents about, where she wanted to go to school (an expensive top 5 school), when she moved in with her then boyfriend now husband. So I came out to her and she reacted in the liberal way that I expected, she still loved me and it didn’t change her opinion of me in the slightest. Absolutely nothing she’s said or done has contradicted that at all. When I came out to my parents the story changes a bit. My dad is one of those ultra-conservative tea-party types (as so many dads are). My mom, while having grown up in the San Francisco Bay Area, grew up in a very in a very conservative household, luckily she came out quite middle of the road. So I’m 26 and FINALLY coming out to my parents. I’m a nervous wreck, pasing the living room while my parents watch Ghost Hunters or some History Channel show. I say, “Guys, I have something to tell you. I’m sure you’ve already figured this out by now, but I wanted to tell you myself. I’m gay. And NOW I’m going out for a drink to calm my nerves. If you want to talk you can call me at any point tonight and I’ll come home and we can talk about anything. If not, we can talk tomorrow.” Then I walked out of the room and the house. To this day, three years later, they haven’t said a single word about that night. They haven’t treated me any differently. They’ve had “friends” of mine over for Thanksgiving dinner, all the while (politely) refraining from asking what “friend” meant. Honestly with those guys I wouldn’t have had a good answer for them at the time, more than a friend and less than a boyfriend would have been the only way I could have responded honestly. The closest anyone came to mentioning it was when I started Bartending. My mom wondered out loud how she was going to tell her ultra-conservative mother that I was working in a bar. It told her, “Mom, lest be honest… That’s not the most shocking thing you could tell her about me.” To which she replied, after several seconds of hesitation, “No, you’re right, it’s not the most shocking thing.” And that’s where things stand. I’m DEFINITELY not upset about it, but it’s not the best of situations. I don’t imagine having any sort of “confrontation” about it until I get married (if ever), but a show of support would go over quite well with me. As it would with any child of any age in a situation that might very well bigger than themselves. Take from this what you will. Cheers.

  54. mike

    been through that LOL, my younger brother and i are gay, one year for christmas after we had both come out,my folks were having their annual christmas party only this time my older brother was coming and he didnt know about us, my mom said “now you two behave and dont act that way as your older brother and half your cousins will be here and they dont know” i grew up in a small town where eveyone knew everyone and we were related to half the town, anyway after a few beers we figured why the hell are we being told to tone it down so we sort of went on and had a great time with everyone, needless to say there was no doubt we were gay, funny thing no one gave a rats ass. even the die hard red necks, i get a kick out of it everytime i think about it!

  55. Sumner

    I came out at the age of 18 when I was dating an ex… My family are cool about it they just had a problem with my bf who they didn’t like. Right now I’m 21 and for me it’s very important that the guy that I date is completely out. If a guy is closeted I’m not interested. I’m passed that “closeted” stage of my life and I want to move forward and at some point hey married and adopt kids…

  56. steve

    friends posted on here….you delete what they order to keep the ridiculious going for a forum…a bit sad, but you have to do what you have to do to keep it going i guess….sad though…

  57. BooBoo

    When I first started dating my partner of nine years, who has now past away, I came out to my parents. It was alittle odd in the fact that I did it in the heat of an argument so its not a normal coming out story. It turned out I got an “and” from my parents when I told them so it wasn’t anything to worry about.

    My partner had the different situation. he came out while we where dating and got the back lash of losing most of his family…two brothers and his parents to it. They would invite him to family gatherings but would not want me there with him. After two years of this situation he finally told his family if I wasn’t invited he just would not come there.

    The lesson in all of this, for me at least, is that it doesn’t matter who u sleep with at night. You are going to like each other for who they are or not. I have not looked back, I’m out of the closet to everyone, and don’t care if they like it or not.

  58. Hunter0500

    With the social change that has come about in the last 2-3 decades, it’s much easier for younger gay guys to comce out in their teens and be accepted.

    For guys who were teens in the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 1960s or 1970s, the story was a very different one. These guys knew being gay, or even suspected of being so, was dangerous. There were negative consequences for their relationships with birth families, professions, and even lives.

    In the 1960s, gays began to be seen more in public but they were the sterotypical loud and and effemiate types. Many gay guys knew they didn’t fit that mold, some were horrified by it. These guys then buried being gay. Many established themselves in professions, married women, and became fathers. They became “functionally straight”.

    With the advent of the Internet, these guys became able to meet other guys like them. What they cannot do, however, is simply “flick the ‘coming out’ swtich” and say “I’m gay. I”ve been lying to you for decades. That’s going to be OK, right?” because doing so isn’t just about them. It involves their wives, children, families and professional standings. Of my good “buds”, most have been or were married. 2 have come out in the past year or two. One had his marriage end quickly and lost both of his adult children. The other had been divorced for years and lost one of his two adult children. (“Lost” here meaning almost to the point where the child has died. 2 decades of fatherhood ended.) In both cases, fortunately, the response from their birth families and professions have been neutral to acceptance for the most part.

    This can be tough to understand for younger, single gays who say “this is 2013. Grow some balls and come out.” Decades of functionning in the social reality of previous times preclude that from happening without the risk of extensive repercussions. These guys are “Gay tweeners”, caught between old social rules and new ones. As time rolls on, many of them will work through coming out as their marriage, fatherhood, and professional situations allow. Others will come out only to have their lives crash and burn and will rebuild themselves. Others will succeed in living full lives as “functional straights”.

    The social change gays have experienced in recent decades is good, but for some gay guys its evolution did not come soon enough or fast enough.

  59. phoenix

    I’ve been out for nearly 10 years now. My immediate family knows (mother, father, brother, sister-in-law, nephew), as does my mom’s side of family and they are all 100% cool with it. Hell, when my parents met my then-boyfriend, they were super-excited to meet him. My mother baked him three kinds of cookies and my dad ended up buying him an entire massive book series as a gift just because the two of them got along so well.

    My dad’s family… eh… probably not, mostly because that part of the family isn’t really close with each other, or with me. There’s a lot of distance there. Regardless though, I know they are not okay with the man-on-man stuff. My grandmother is a bit homophobic, as are my uncles and at least one of my aunts.

    Either way though, if I found myself talking to them, and my sexuality came up, I wouldn’t hide it, nor would I expect my partner to hide it. I’d say flat out “he’s my boyfriend/partner/husband/etc…” I have nothing to hide, and if they take issue with it… well, not like we’ve been that close anyways.

  60. coolblk

    I am single but only friends know that I am gay. my mother ,sister, and niece don’t know that I am gay.i have been keeping this a secret from them for 42 years.i feel that if they knew I would be disown and they would not approve of me being gay.I continue to keep being gay a secret from them.i feel like I have been living a double life for so many years,but life goes on and I am happy that I am gay 🙂

  61. JaysSN

    I don’t buy the idea that living in a rural area is an excuse to stay in the closet. There are extreme cases of course, like where you’ll lose your job, but that’s rare. Mostly people are simply justifying their cowardice. I came out as a teenager in a rural area and made it through. I’m stronger for it and the gay community itself is better off. People came out decades ago when there was no support network imaginable. They’re stronger for it and we all are better off now. It’s your choice to stay in the closet but in 2013, it’s time to end the pity party.

  62. Pete

    I have been in a ltr for the last 12 plus years and we have always been very open about it. We do not go around shouting we are a gay couple but if asked we do not deny it either. Living in the Bible Belt makes being open difficult at times but our position is this is who we are and what we are if God loves then what else matters? Take us or leave us but this is us.
    Too many guys are afraid to be known as gay I say wake up we are not back in the age of stoning.

  63. John...

    @Forcing the Door

    Gay guys who claim that bi-sexuals are just closeted gays do so because they are still ashmed of being gay themselves and want everyone else to share in their shame. Their ignorance is akin to straights who say that being gay is just a phase you will grow out of.


    Yeah so many gays are convinced by other gays that each has to put on some big dramatic, shock value production in order to make sure everyone knows they are gay. The only people who really need to know are those they want to have sex with. If someone else askes then tell them otherwise nobody else has any good use for that information.

    @ SD

    Being accepted for being gay could have something to do with where one lives or it could have a lot to do with the person who wants to be accepted.

    My job has moved me to many large cities over the years where I have made many close straight friends, mostly guys and I have a lot of close straight guy friends in many small towns too. I have never once had a problem with not being accepted by anyone because I am gay. I speculate that it is because knowing me was the first time they met a gay guy who didn’t feel he had to behave like the gay people they see on TV, in movies, on the news or other media outlets, who always have to either be the stereotypical nelly, flamboyant, in your face or shock value freaks. Other gays like myself who feel no need to behave in that LEARNED from each other, unnatural and uncalled for manner are just to boring to be presented on TV etc. I also have enough respect for my straight guy friends and myself to not objectify them just because they may be good looking and have a dick. I don’t expect anyone to change, just pointing out why so many seem to have such a hard time getting along with others who are not gay and always blame them for it.

  64. bimusclejock

    Truly bisexual here I lbve both men and women none more than the other I have been in LTR with both sexes and they have been great. I just want to say this. If you are worried about losing a friend or family if you come out screw them…. Woudn’t you be happy that you got those people out of your life.Honestly if they don’t except you, they don’t deserve to have you in their lives. Simple and plain. If they are going to disown you because of who you are, you are better off with out them! Family and loved ones included.

  65. avejoe

    Its really not anyone else’s business what you’re doing with the body parts in your pants. Mom and Dad don’t really need to know how your butt is getting along or who has been in it lately, do they? Telling other people about your sex life, or who you’re with, is like explaining which direction you wipe your ass, and its really not required to interact with others. I’ve noticed usually (not always) that men who are out, are usually only interested in being out, that they may have an abundance of sex. It’s used more as a personal billboard than anything else. I don’t feel a need to explain to anyone who’s ass I licked last, or what man I’m banging and emotionally attached to.

  66. John...

    Also keep in mind: If you really need to come out to someone for good reasons other than drama; first consider that it may take some time for others to get use to and accept the fact that you are gay, as it did for you. Give them the benefit of the doubt and some time before you begin getting all bent out of shape and writing them off completely.

  67. Alex

    I’m in my thirties now and still haven’t officially came out to my family only my mom. She said don’t worry it’s nobody’s business unless I wanna tell them. I have a lesbian whose out and proud, and gives me a hard time for not being out loud like she did since a teenager. I told her the reason she came out was to hurt her parents and rebel which she was doing, she said she didn’t care if they accepted it or not. But that’s the difference I do care and want to shove it down family’s throat but in my own time and right place I am going to tell them all and not as way to get back at them when im mad.

  68. John

    I came out after I was married……twice. I have custody of my two boys from my second marriage. They are young so it’s not talked about at home. I came out on Facebook and all my friends were cool with it. Some said they knew all along and were waiting for me to figure it out. I’m not out at work because that’s not the place for this level of personal business anyways. Although everyone knows, I don’t really talk about it and no one brings it up. My brother, who had a really tough time with it at first, has actually been the coolest about it. He doesn’t understand it, but he accepts it. Good enough for me.

  69. steven

    anyone who is older then their early 30’s who still goes to family functions with their ‘roommate’ needs to have a reality check – straight men do not hang out with roommates all the time or bring them to family functions (well maybe once or twice but not year after year)- you are only fooling yourself if you think you are fooling your family – with all the media attention to gay marriage, gay celebrities and teen bullying people are a lot more savvy – they know what’s going on and probably wonder why you havent been honest with them

  70. John...

    So True Steven.

    But unless you want to sleep with your family members or it’s because of some kind of medical emergency where someone needs to know; there is no other good reason to tell anyone else what you like to do in bed. Otherwise the coming out thing is just another opportunity to create some drama for shock value or whatever and gays are notorious for that kind of thing.

    If they already figured it out and haven’t disowned you then there no reason to tell them anyway.

  71. Lamar

    I came out when I was probably 20, the earliest of 80’s. I use to take a taxi to the gay bar, dash in as quickly as possible so as not to be seen. It was my eldest sis’ who was alerted, by one of her friends that her younger bother was seen going in one of ‘those places.’ My mother said nothing of it until that Sunday early dinner of which she then mentioned it, in fornt of everybody, all of my siblings!

    My sister’s already knew anyway, because they worked with and had befriended gay men who took them out to the gay spots before. My older and younger brothers, agreeing with each other said, “well, what’s the big deal, he still talks/walks like a man, he’s not in dresses and make-up. “What’s more, he can still take both of us in boxing, martial-arts, wrestling.”

    My sisters, laughing said, “well, you’ve disappointed alot girls that always liked you, would have been glad to have you’re babies. My mother said, “and that is the only thing that really disappoints me, I had been looking forward to you giving me grand kids.” They all agreed that they just hope that I’ll continue to be the happy upbeat person I’ve always been. WHEW! I didn’t have to hide that anymore, such relief.

  72. Steffan Darr

    I am open to my family and friends, even tho I’m not giving the type of love n support n compansion needed from them I am accpeted ,my mum rare talks to me unless she needs something but I keep hoping sho change but if not I will neer change. I am who I am , n happy to the day I die I will be. As fro the roomate part I’m single but if I get that guy n we tend to fall apart sexually I still wod keep him close cos even if something bad we did each other make me break up , they we’re good things we did n had , I believ never give up on the good in life once ur happy.

  73. Roy

    I am gay and married to a woman . When I met her i was fighting with myself over whether or not i was gay .Natrually i married her to prove I was straight but nothing could be farther from the truth .Although we had two kids together and I am proud of them I have always missed the touch of a man . I find myself hoping some day of her leaving me so I can find the man that i have always wanted . I am a bottom and i keep bottled up in side me the feminine feelings that are just nagging to be let out . I have had a few gay affairs behind her back but i need my freedom to find myself .

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