When I wrote my previous article, “An Open Letter To The LGBT Community”, I published it and didn’t think another thing of it, besides obviously being proud of the piece. Lately, I’ve been proud of the things I’ve written. I think this is because I’ve passed some kind of mental threshold in which the pieces I write are seriously reflective of my mental state, and are actually amusing in and of themselves, rather than me strategically scattering dick and fart jokes for my own amusement.
However, when I went to bed last night, I felt 2 emotions that I’m just not used to. I felt the precursor of fear and confusion because I felt the precursor to fear. It felt weird.
Fact is, I don’t feel fear very often because there aren’t too many things I fear. In fact, I can’t really think of anything I fear off hand. It’s more of a “I’ll know it when I see it” kind of reaction. I can’t really figure out where the fear comes from though. Then my wife enlightened me on something.
She said that with my admission of being “pansexual”, I in effect kind of came out. When she said this, my eyes got wide. Not because I was scared of what it would mean, but because I hadn’t thought of it like that. I simply thought of it as stating a preference, devoid of any kind of value attached to it. So, yeah I guess I’m out. Didn’t think I could accidentally out myself… Apparently, it’s possible.
Then I started to think about how hard it would be for an LGBT person to actually come out and admit this to the world. With me it’s not that bad because in effect, I’m simply stating that I don’t discriminate as to my selection of lovers based on gender. To be gay or lesbian and come out publicly I would imagine to be a level of fear I haven’t had to confront in a very long time. Probably worse. I don’t really know.
Fortunately, I have this narcissistic barrier of nihilism that prevents me from giving a shit about anyone else’s negative opinion of me. But, most other people, especially coming out, don’t have that insulation around them. Most of them are especially vulnerable to criticism and judgment and some have even committed suicide as a result of being teased and bullied for their orientation.
The fact is that my wife and I have always been honest with each other about our orientations, and neither one of us has been anything but supportive towards each other. Judgment and jealousy simply don’t exist with us. Nothing changed with me, or us, after this realization.
Coming out of the closet involves a level of strength that most in the hetero-normative world have never had to muster. Until this morning, I never realized, to ANY degree, the kind of strength that the LGBT community has had to have, just to be part of it. The amount of strength for a gay male in say, Alabama is an amount of strength and personal power that most in the HN world would never have the capacity for. So, I suppose I’m out. For what it’s worth. Nothing really changes for me. But, it has given me an insight into what it could possibly be like for those who come out with so much fear, hoping that when their world does change, it will change for the better.
Here’s to hoping.