Gay Relations - Can A Relationship Last With One In and The Other Out?
Tips for How to Cope When You're
Dear April Masini,
I'm gay and I am out to everyone, including my 80-year-old grandmother. But my boyfriend of two years is still closeted to people at work, college friends, and even his family. This is of course appalling to me, but I try to look past it as a personal choice. But for the first time we are going to meet his family, and the thought of "pretending" to be just a friend really disgusts me. A part of me wants to out him to this parents just to get it over with. How can I avoid the pending conflict ahead of us?"
Sincerely, Homosexual Going Home
April Masini's Advice :
Dear Homosexual Going Home,
Being out is a huge part of who a person is, and it's impossible to be in a relationship with someone who is out if you're not -- at least not for very long and without conflict.
Here are the reasons and tips to deal with them:
- Being out is just as much a part of who you are as your religion or family background is. If you're not out, you're in denial about a part of yourself to the world. It's very hard to be intimate with someone else when you're not out and they are because you're in that denial to the rest of the world.
Tip: Determine why it is you're not out. Usually, the reason is fear. Whenever anyone hides an integral part of who they are, they are fearful of reactions, retaliation, rejection and other things. Face your fears or live in a shell.
- Compatibility means you have things in common with your partner. If you and your partner are not compatible about being out, you're going to have just as much of a problem in your relationship as if you had a money incompatibility, a race or religion incompatibility or some other compatibility.
Tip: If you're not compatible with someone, move on. Don't waste your time or theirs. The relationship will end if you can't find mutual compatibility or ways to compensate for it. Why would you want to be in a relationship with someone you're not compatible with, anyway? The answer is -- you're afraid of being alone. Face your fears. Fear is a bad place to live. Get a better neighborhood.
- Secrets may seem like an intimacy glue, but they're really not. If you and your partner are keeping the secret of one of you not being out, it may seem for a short while that it's the two of you against the world, and that can feel romantic, but it's not mature love. Honesty is. Secrets are just derivative complications that result in big problems. They also put a burden on the relationship because there will be times when at least one of you doesn't want to keep the secret.
Tip: Be honest in your relationship and about your relationship. Of course, that starts with being honest about yourself to yourself and to others. Secrets are just control mechanisms and the reality is, you can't control the world or your relationship. Accept that. You'll be happier in the long run.