Is coming out in Newry the big drama some of us believe it to be?

I know that when some Gays, Lesbians and Bisexuals make the choice to come out to friends and family they get a hard time, but do fathers feel let down that their son is more in to sportsmen than sports, do mothers see a future without Grandkids and No Proper Wedding and friends see night out with Abba, Kylie and Cher Music, This is not the reaction I got.

When I had came to terms with the fact that I was “A Gay” – and I only caught on when I was 18, I had had the occasional fumble with guys but I just thought they were Teenage fun. I started telling people that I was out by letting my friends know first, I got looks of shock and disbelief when I told a group of my friends at a house party, but all in all they were cool about it.

This was something I didn’t expect as I was expecting them all to change and to slowly fade out of my life, I definitely didn’t expect them to take me to my first Gay club and for all of us to end up being more open with each other.

Coming out to my friends first was the right choice for me as they helped me to be more myself and told me not to hide who I was from my family. Having friends like these let me know that if it didn’t go well with my family then I could always rely on them. The “G” word was worst than a curse word whilst growing up in my house. When I look back over my younger years I can see there were clear signs of my future sexual preference, so telling the family should have been easy as deep down they probably knew, but I honestly believed that I would be disowned.
So for the next two years I was out to those who asked and to who I trusted. I think I was telling everyone who asked in the hope that it would get back to my family and save me telling them. I never felt that I could be my true self until my family knew. I hated living a lie every time I was at home and was probably why I moved away from home three times in the two years since coming out. It finally took the death of a friends father to get me to open up. My friend never got to tell their father all they wanted to, I could never forgive myself if I was in their position so last summer I came out to my brother. He suspected anyway so it made it easier and then he told the rest of the family who just said “I would have to be different”

It wasn’t until Pride in August that I got to know my mothers thoughts. She was leaving me to the train station when the Radio Traffic Report mentioned delays in Belfast due to Gay Pride. My mother knew I was going to Belfast but didn’t know it was for Pride, so for an awkward moment I waited to see what she would say. She turned to me and said “Have a good time and be proud of who you are cause I am”

This is now my policy in life and I hope my story shows others thinking of coming out that it mightn’t be as big a drama as you expect.

(This is the full version of a recent Newry Rainbow Community Column)

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11 Responses to “Is coming out in Newry the big drama some of us believe it to be?”

  1. Matt says:

    I loved the story, thank god there is people out there who does not have parents that will hate them for being gay! it id a good idea to cum out to friends first then if it all goes pear shaped with mummy and daddy then at leastt we can rely on are true family, are friends.

    who ever wrote that was quite brave to open up and tell the world of there story, bravo.


  2. skinpup says:

    Lets take a step back here guys, and think. Lets face it at some point or another the majority of people will question one’s sexuality. The steroeo types of the outlandish gay guy is unfortunately a huge negative when your mother or father comes to fact with your homosexuality.

    Try reenfocring positive behaviour rather than slappign your hands together and sounding like a seal as marcco in big brother why not be the sauve will young sort…cool calm collected and (well fit!)

    your mindset can affect your sitauation be proactive and prove u ain’t gonn abe painting the front room fushia pink, the kitchen yellow, and runing around in sequin thongs at clubs….(welll unles you have the body for it).

  3. Administrator says:

    Seems the story has touched a chord. Anyone else fancy putting their fingers to the keyboard and coming out to GayNewry. It would be quite theraputic you know!

  4. Adam says:

    I only just got to read the Democrat today, it was good to hear of a positive “Coming out” story, i’ll love to have friends like that guys, He must really be a lucky guy to have friends and family who understood, im going to show that article to my friends when i come out to them, it will take time to built up the encouragment to do it, but i shall do it soon thanks to that story.

    Thank you!


  5. Claire says:

    To the Dude that wrote the Coming out Piece, THANK YOU.

    It has help me to come out to my family at the weekend, i always believed that they wood hate me, my your story put the thought in my head that not all parents will disown there kids, so i did it and it turned out they kinda knew anyway.

    Thanks again

  6. Lee says:

    Hey, been awhile since i checked this story for comments, im very susprised at the comments, i didn’t think it would get priaised as much as it has.

    i was the guy in the story, i really happy it help other people, im glad it help

    lee x(a.k.a Wes)

  7. Michael says:

    I have recently just admitted to myself that I am gay. I have known from when i was about 13, but tried to hide it because if I didn’t admit to it then it wasn’t a problem.

    I finally plucked up the courage to tell my best friend, who was soo loving and encouraging after I told her. I then decided I had to tell my family, I wanted to be the person to tell them as I didn’t want to be “found out” and I didn’t want someone else telling them. It took me a further 2 months to pluck up the courage to finally tell them, every time I was speaking to them all I wanted to say was “I Am Gay” but the words wouldn’t come out of my mouth they were firmly held inside as if by glue.

    I finally broke down crying after a family Sunday dinner in my bedroom alone, I then sent my sister a text message saying I was Gay. I fled from the house crying and got into my car and drove away.

    I didn’t know where I was going driving towards Newry, with the tears running down my face I got about 2 miles away before I received her response “I don’t care your still my big brother no matter what, i have always loved you and always will”

    I pulled over and cried even more, but this gave me the courage to tell the rest of my family, who all responded in a similar way. “You haven’t changed your still the same person we love”

    You Must remember that Nobody will live your life ONLY YOU, so make the right choices and start living your life. There is a big family spread all over the world who loves you too.

    Were all in this together!!

  8. Hi Michael, I couldn’t agree more with you. Thanks for writing your thoughts. We have only one stab at life and sometimes the only person holding us back is ourselves!

    It can be more difficult for some people but help is there and feel free to call in to our NRC centre any evening for a bit of craic and that goes for anyone finding things difficult.

  9. Paddy says:

    Good man Michael, what a lovely story to read. I’m glad you’re much happier in life now. I’d like to chat to you further about your story, if you’d like to get in touch, please click my name above and you will find my e-mail address. Hope to hear from you soon! 🙂

  10. there2be says:

    great story about a lived experience. good on you and your parents.

  11. Martyk9019 says:

    Most gay men show no stereotypes whatsoever. Effeminate guys are few and far between but gay guys are everywhere. I think it must be harder for us straight acting guys to come out. Most if not all our friends are like ourselves, they’re masculine. Could they even be homophobic to an extent but not even be aware of it? Unaware to themselves they are playing football then sharing a changing room and even sharing a bed after a night out or when on a holiday with a gay guy. I think many gay men will loose all their friends and their life will change dramatically after coming out. It’s a huge deal for anyone but i think for the straight acting guys who have only masculine as laddish as you can get friends it must be more difficult.

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