Welcome to our group, and I hope you enjoy reading our posts. Your story resonated with me in a couple of ways….Although I had a few gay experiences in my 20s, I didn’t fully come out — meaning, come out to myself, until after I divorced my wife in my early 30s.
Coming out to yourself is the first, and hardest step, in my opinion….Then to your parents….siblings, close friends etc.
At the second stage, I had a partner, and that made it easier. Most in my family didn’t care.Â My father was disappointed but didn’t lecture me about it….his attitude was along the lines of “it’s your life, do what you want…”Â
My mother was quite opposed, and unloaded on me big time. Since I was an adoptee, she fired the nuclear weapon at me, i.e. “I wish we never adopted you, you have broken our hearts, etc etc.”Â As a result I stormed out of the house and ceased all communication with my parents for about a year and a half. Ironically, it was the reconciliation effort of my partner Jay who reunited us, and over the next 20+ years, until their deaths, we were a very close family. In retrospect, I’m sorry the breach happened, but I wouldn’t un-do itÂ — it was the only way I could liberate myself from the domineering aspects of my mother, and, in a way, I think it was good for the entire family, she mellowed quite a bit after that incident. She learned that if she couldn’t give unconditional love, she wasn’t going to get it either.
The other part that touched me was your reunion with a sibling later in life. In my 50s, after my adoptive parents were dead, I did a search, and after a couple of years, tracked down three of my 6 biological siblings, and have met them several times. I was open about the gay thing right from the start, introducing Jay as my partnerÂ (not a “roommate”).Â
One brother is an ardent evangelical and considers homosexuality a sin, but he has never lectured me or tried to “save” me, and his whole family has been very friendly toward me. My older sister doesn’t care in the least, nor does a younger brother.
In researching the biological family tree, I learned that there was an aunt, now dead, who was a spinster schoolteacher in Vermont who lived with another woman for many years. That was the only possible gay connection I have found so far.
I attend a predominately gay Christian church in Daytona Beach, and we have a men’s group that has explored “how I learned I was gay” many times.Â Our stories vary a lot, but there have been some similarities — typically having an absent or emotionally distant father, and/or a domineering or emotionally distant mother. I know “gay at birth” is the popular theory right now, but I still think early-childhood nurturing is an important factor. Â
All the best to you and your sister…
member, New Church Family, Daytona Beach http://www.newchurchfamily.org