Once I said the words, like a production line starting up for the day, everything went into motion and I was like a charging bull. For me, the ‘process’ of coming out to people was going to be like ripping off a Band-Aid – quick and clean. And for the most part, it was.
It was about a fortnight after I had come out to an old school friend at Midsumma’s Carnival that I gathered the courage to go out as a gay man with him, his friends and a whole host of new guys he’d met at Carnival. Nervous as all hell, as I walked towards the bar little did I realize I would meet the very people who I hold very near to my heart today.
The night was fun and eye-opening. It was also the night that I met him. And even now I am thankful I have the privilege to be one of his closest friends. Additionally that night, I met a very cute and young Italian boy who would be the catalyst of coming out to my closest friend.
It was at a gay club that I had run into this young Italian stallion and as we noticed each other and I very enthusiastically kissed him hello and then continued on my merry way, that my friend queried and questioned and probed several times of whom it was that I just planted my lips on. I put it off each time in those five minutes. For what reason, I don’t know. But then in an instant, I blurted out that I was gay and spilled out details of my movements over the last couple of weeks much to his excitement and exuberance. Now there was no stopping me!
Over the following few months I progressively told each of my friends. For most, it was confirmation of their suspicions with only one or two being genuinely surprised by my revelation. But all in all, they were all and still are supportive. It makes no difference to them and they still see me as the person I was when we first met. I knew that I had nothing to worry about, which for some can be reassuring.
Of course the process of telling people was structured in a strategic way by my own admission and naturally there were a couple, shall we say, hiccups along the way. Nothing major, but in some circumstances it pushed me along much quicker in telling certain people. But I guess you can’t plan everything to the last iota, can you?
Before long, all my friends were told and they started seeing me being far more relaxed and forthcoming with my comments about men and sex – both to their amusement and shock. But they were the easy part, as it always is, the next step would be family. And although I was on a speeding train heading express to Outsville, inevitably, it all slowed down as the time came for the family…
-to be continued-