Coming out to my parents falls near the top of my list of most courageous moments.
Home is 2 hours away, and it worked out nicely that I would be making a trip home for a Thursday overnight (summer Friday = no work).
Not sure if I was 100% ready to tell them I was gay, but I didn’t know when the next opportunity would arise to tell them in person. Once I started this ball rolling, there was no stopping. Every person I told was another weight lifted off my back.
I was out with a friend at a bar the weekend prior and was dying to tell one of my best friends (only the second person to know). Her boyfriend went to the restrooms, and I pulled her aside. I just blurted it out. He came back a minute later, and we never got to fully discuss it that night. Probably not the most ideal situation, but it was like a band aid. I needed to rip that sucker off!
After work, I hurried home and packed up a small overnight bag. At this point, I knew Broadway for only 2 short weeks. I texted him asking for words of encouragement just before walking out the door. I figured when I pulled into my driveway, I could look at my phone and read a small pep talk that would help me summon the courage to tell them. My plan backfired. He responded immediately. I read the text just before pulling out that read, “Just be yourself.”
Granted, this was great advice, but it wasn’t what I was looking for. I’m not sure what I was expecting. Maybe an “it will be alright.” All I know is that when you’re on a motorcycle for 2 hours with no radio or person to talk to, you crawl up into your head and drive yourself NUTS!
Once home, my parents were in the middle of making dinner. I settled in, and we sat down to eat (at the dinner table, but in front of the TV nonetheless). In most families, the dinner table might have been a good opportunity to break news of this measure. But the TV rules in my house, so it would have to wait.
Following dinner, I sat down on the couch sore from the ride home. My mother sat in a chair watching TV while my father cleaned up some dishes. At the moment when he came back into the room, she decided to leave the room. I remember thinking in my head, “Would you two sit down so I can get this over with!”
My heart was in my throat. Every commercial break my heart started beating out of my chest. An hour and a half passed. I opened my mouth to speak and nothing came out. Finally I mustered the courage to speak. I casually turned to them and said, “So I’m finally dating someone….”
They both just stared at me. Neither said a word. Probably only 1 or 2 seconds passed, but it felt like 30. And I topped it off with, “And his name is Brian.”
They both just sat there staring at me. Neither saying a word. Then, after what felt like 2 minutes of silence, they said something. They asked how I met him. In as little detail as possible, I explained the fundamentals of manroulette. I told them a little about him. Then my mother said, “But I thought you always said you wanted kids?” I explained there is no reason why I can’t still have them. “You both watch Modern Family. You know a lot’s possible these days.”
My mother asked me if that’s why I cam home. “While convenient timing, it was not the main purpose for the trip,” I responded.
Then came all the questions about women. Am I still interested in them? Is this a phase? etc. I told them this was all new to me, and I had no answers. “I see no reason not to pursue this. It feels right.”
In the end, they were very accepting of the news. I was a little disappointed they weren’t more supportive. I figured they already had a strong idea I was gay, but maybe I was giving them more credit. In my own selfishness, I wanted them to embrace it immediately, but that was not the case. As time passes, they will be comfortable with it. We will be able to talk openly about it, and they will bring it up without me initiating that portion of the conversation. Until then, I will just be patient…