Sunday, March 01, 2009

The Last Nail: A Coming Out Story

Many of you that know me well, and maybe others that don't, know that I'm a pretty out-and-out gay man. Yah, for the most part......except for my parents. I'm 37 years old and my parents don't know that I'm gay.....until now.

Yes, friends, mom and dad Benton finally know. It all happened over President's Day weekend on a mountain retreat vacation in Northern Idaho. To put it plainly, I basically did a "drive-by outing."

I called my parents about 2 days before we left to say that I was swooping into town and would love to see them before I headed up to the mountain for the weekend. I gave myself an hour to talk to my folks. So, my friend, Emily, dropped me off at my parent's house while she went grocery shopping for the weekend needs. We would "regroup" in an hour. Tic-tic-tic-tic.....

For me, I felt the whole thing went about as good as it could have....given the situation. The news was not welcomed with open arms mind you, but an adult conversation was had and expectations were set. I calmly and proudly stated who I am and then laid the future out for my parents. I expect to be loved and treated like I always have been in the family. I do understand that there may be a lack of understanding on their part, but I'm okay with that. However, I will be accepted in whole and not just tolerated, and this goes for Brad as well. They now know the future of our relationship is now in their hands and hard decisions will need to be made.

It will take some time, I know, but I do have hope. I hope that my parents will not make me choose between my real family and the family that I have chosen.....Brad and Zippy and the rest of my friends. I feel the next several months, and possibly years, will be a learning process for my parents for now.....they have a glimpse of the other side of the fence because their son is gay. They have been instructed and believe this is an abomination and abnormal.....and morally wrong. But, now they are seeing this in the eyes of their youngest child whom they love. The gay issue has now landed smack dab on their front porch. So, there's my side of the fence and their side of the fence. I pray that questions can be asked and tough conversations had in order for us to be on the same side of the fence one day.

So, with that, I guess you could say the last nail in the closet was pounded into place on February 13, 2009. There's no way for me to get back in, nor would I want to. *BANG! BANG! BANG!*

It's done.