Perhaps one of the most difficult aspects of this "Journey" is the uncertainty where relationships are concerned. Let me explain; Until recently I have had a healthy social life, being single, gay and in the closet, serious dating had not been a viable option to fill the social needs in my life. Therefore I have filled my life with friends and family. I have considered myself one of the lucky ones because I had more people whom I called friends than most anyone I knew, and I truly considered them friends. Until recently I have seldom questioned how others have felt about me, I have known that people liked and trusted me. Unfortunately the coming out process has caused me to question these relationships more than I thought I would have to. I have come to realize that tho people care, in most cases there are stipulations and or requirements involved. In my heart of hearts I am having a difficult time understanding how anyone could turn on another simple because of their sexual preference. I have believed that brotherhood/ friendship bonds transcend all and could withstand the tests of time. In the long run this may still prove to be true, but for now it doesn't seem to be.
Most of my friends and much of my family have been OK with my being gay. Only a few have completely cut me off, yet the relationships are just not the same. I knew things would change but I guess I was hoping they wouldn't. Communication with loved ones now comes at my initiation and even then I can tell how uncomfortable many are. Even with those whom love you the most, things change. I know this is a normal part of the process and that I have to have patience and give people time, but knowing this does not make it easier. Not that long ago there was seldom an empty evening on my schedule, now they seem to have taken over. Tho I know people care and love me, the invitations have all but ceased. It's like I'm losing my Straight Life and haven't as of yet "found" my gay one. I miss my old friends and am currently unsure as to who my new ones are. I would like be part of a group again, to develop new friendships and kinship's and fear as a result I am at times over zealous in the process. I hope that my new friends and brothers are able to have patience with me as I realign my life.
A few years ago my twin brother gave me a small magnet which read, "We are brothers by birth, but friends by choice". Throughout the years my brother had indeed become my friend, my best friend and many friends had become my brothers. The changes spoken of above have come with me kicking and screaming the whole way striving hard to hang on to what I had. Three years ago my twin brother started shutting me out of his life, I think he and his wife began suspecting but didn't know what was going on or how to handle it. Their solution was to begin closing down and pushing me out the door. Their reactions have caused me to doubt relationships the most. If your twin, literally your other half can turn on you then anyone can. This is not the attitude I desire and am striving to begin trusting once again. This may not be a healthy view but in being honest with myself it is how I feel. A good friend once told me to be ware when coming out of the closet because life would change. He said that when he came out of the closet, being born again took on a whole new meaning. He came out many years ago and talks of what he and others went through in regards to this process. He believes that people often lose everything and have to start over in the rebuilding of their lives in order to truly accept who and what they are. He believes that when this happens the person often comes through it a much better person than before the process began. Who knows? What I do know is that for the time being I feel like a lone tree lost in the center of a thick forest. I am caught between two worlds, no longer in the one but not yet in the other.