Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
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30-11-2016, 09:01 AM
Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
I'm a longtime listener of Seth's podcast, but this is my first post on the forums. I'm posting because I feel I need some help getting myself to think rationally about something.

My closest friend just came out of the closet as gay to my wife and I. We are in our 30's, and I have known this man for 20 years. Over the years he has dated different women, but never had much success. Part of me always wondered if he might be gay.

When my friend came out to us he revealed he has been dating a man for about 6 months. I was not shocked he told us he was gay, but I was surprised to hear that something important had been going on in his life for this long and he was just now telling us. This is the first man he has ever dated.

Now my wife and I are getting ready to meet our friend's boyfriend for the first time. I have a sort of strange anxiety about it. I can't even really explain what the anxiety is even about. I'm not sure why this is. Is it just because this is new for all of us?

To be clear I don't have any negative feelings towards gay people. I will also mention that I have some gay acquaintances, but this is the first person close to me to come out of the closet. Is it normal for me to need time to wrap my head around this? As I mentioned, I've known this man for 20 years, and from my perspective he's suddenly changed a big part of his identity. I feel guilty to say that I need to adjust to it, because I can only imagine how difficult it has been for him to come to terms with this and come out to people close to him.

I love this man like a brother, and my 3.5 year old son looks up to him like a favorite uncle. I don't want there to be any awkwardness between us, but for some reason I feel like there is at the moment, and I feel very guilty about it.

Is there anybody out there who has experienced this and can give me any sort of advice or encouragement? I'm not even sure what I'm looking for. I want to support my friend the best way I can. Will I just get over my strange anxiety as time passes? It would be great to hear from gay people who have come out to their friends so that I can have that perspective as well.

I'm posting here because I know it's a community of rational people. There is another forum I visit and I shudder to think of the responses I would get there.
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30-11-2016, 09:32 AM
RE: Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
Just remember he's still the same person he always was. Only now he is living his truth, happy, and in love and doesn't have to hide anymore. That must be so incredibly freeing for him. Maybe if you focus on that, it will help with whatever anxiety you are experiencing.
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30-11-2016, 09:44 AM
RE: Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
As one member of the rational community, I am with Jennybee; all the things that you love and respect about him are still there. It is great that he will now be able to be himself and find love and belonging. I went through a similar experience years ago with a very good friend when he came out. Nothing about him changed when he came out and eventually, I encouraged him to find a partner since I wanted him to have the love that I had experienced with my now wife. We are still great friends. Last time I saw him, we met up in DC for the Reason Rally.
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30-11-2016, 09:46 AM
RE: Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
To be clear I understand he is the same person. I guess to better summarize, is it common for it to take a little time for something like this to feel normal?
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30-11-2016, 10:01 AM
RE: Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
(30-11-2016 09:46 AM)panthercougar Wrote:  To be clear I understand he is the same person. I guess to better summarize, is it common for it to take a little time for something like this to feel normal?

I think everyone's experience would be different.
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30-11-2016, 10:01 AM
RE: Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
Your friend probably EXPECTS a certain amount of weirdness and adjustment......

If you were absolutely cool with it - and acted like there was nothing going on -- he'd probably think you were JUST acting......

.....

It'll take time.

Eventually it will be "the new normal"...

.......................................

The difference between prayer and masturbation - is when a guy is through masturbating - he has something to show for his efforts.
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30-11-2016, 11:24 AM
RE: Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
Honestly, if my best friend were dating someone for six months, regardless of their gender/sexual orientation, and I just found out about it and were about to meet them I would feel weird too. Plus, I am sure there is great deal of anxiety on his part wondering how this will affect you guys' relationship and if you will like his boyfriend.

Don't sweat it.

However, you should tell him exactly what you told us. What you've said sounds very reasonable and genuine. Just get it all out in the open so you guys can talk through it. He will have a chance to explain why he felt he had to hide the relationship, which I totally get, by the way. And you can reassure him that, even though you might seem a little awkward at first as you are adjusting, you still love and respect him. One day before long, you guys will all be hanging out together like old friends and you will realize that you don't even think about him being gay anymore.

I just wanted to let you know that I love you even though you aren't naked right now. Heart
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30-11-2016, 11:28 AM
RE: Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
open conversations like TB stated above are the best you can do.
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30-11-2016, 11:30 AM
RE: Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
I think this feeling is totally normal, and would be the same as learning any new (and major!) thing about someone you thought you knew really well.

I am sure your friend needs support though, and encouragement to be exactly who he is. He's been hiding a really big secret for a while and likely feels vulnerable and 'exposed'. Just let him know you are there for him.

"If you don't have a seat at the table, you're probably on the menu."

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30-11-2016, 11:31 AM
RE: Friend came out as gay, I'm having some trouble adjusting
I can understand why you're feeling a little weird. Although it isn't really the case, and you know that intellectually, your friend's revelation might make you feel that he didn't trust you as much as you thought..emotionally it could be seen as kind of a betrayal. So maybe acknowledge that to yourself and then wait for the feelings to fade, as they will.

It's normal for you to feel weird, normal to feel guilty for feeling weird, and normal also for those feelings to pass in a little while.
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