My family would have me believe that I have let the world down and have caused too much pain and disappointment in their life's.
I'm sorry they feel that way! I'm even sorrier I allowed them to make me feel that way.
Thanks for some sound words of advice Alan, ideas which helped me to understand that this is not the case. I do not mean to sound trite but dealing with the death of my father was in many ways easier than dealing with the family once they found out I was gay. My older brother approached me yesterday telling me how disappointed he was because I had not come to him sooner. He let me know that he had done more for me than anyone else and that he "deserved" better than this. He then told me how disappointed he was because I had lied to him. At first I denied the fact that I had lied to him but the more I thought about it I realized "damn straight" of course I've lied, I mean how could I not have lied in trying to keep this hidden in the closet. If I have to be honest with myself I have lied much more than I would like to admit to way too many people trying to keep them from discovering my secret. The more I have thought about our conversation the more I wish I would have talked about how many times I have listened to my Father and my brothers bash gays, how many times I have listened to my father and my twin talk about how Gays, Queers, Fags, etc are responsible for the degeneration we see within society. About the time I sat in my brothers suburban for over an hour on our way to help a sibling listening to "them" "discuss" prop 8 and the total and complete support they had for the church and their actions in trying to put down gays. How if we allow Gays to continue in their plight for equality they will somehow destroy the family and all that it stands for. They somehow had a way of making the Gay population responsible for most all that is wrong in our world. I wish I would have asked him if this was the group of people I was supposed to have been honest with and told them from the beginning that I was gay. Should I have spoken up at the time and told them that it was I they spoke of, well OK I probably should have but who would? They are oft times angry with us for lying to them yet they continue to foster an environment which makes it nearly impossible for one to feel that they can be honest. Once you have listened to what they have to say and know how they feel about who you are, once you have read the words of a Prophet of God referring to homosexuality as repugnant, ugly, perverse and "The Sin" of the ages, you are supposed to admit that all this is You? Get Serious! If they feel hurt that we have lied to them, can they imagine the pain and guilt we feel for having lied to ourselves? No more lying to neither they nor myself.