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Forums / Sexuality and gender identity / Terrified of coming out

Topic: Terrified of coming out

15 posts, 0 answered
  1. Zoe <3
    Zoe <3 avatar
    31 posts
    20 August 2014

    Hi BB  Forumites,

    I’ve reached a point in my life where I cannot deny my true self much longer. I’ve lived in complete denial for ages, which has fed my depression and self-loathing like a sheep to a starving lion. I’m coming to terms with the fact that my life has been one big falsehood. And it’s nearly destroyed me several times.

    I now acknowledge my true inner self and accept that by living the life my friends and family expected, I have wasted much of my life living like I’m actually in someone else’s body, not my own. To have reached this point of acceptance in my mind before even seeing my shrink (first ‘date’ on the 29/8) is a big step in my process of ‘getting to know me’ and perhaps one day healing the deep, dark pain in my soul. I am no longer the person I was last month, last year, or the last decade. I am a lesbian. There, I said it – whew-  

    Now how the hell do I ever muster up the courage to tell my partner? I am terrified of the hurt, shame, embarrassment. Will I be treated like a freak? Will my kids understand and still love me? Will I be able to face my workmates? This seems like such a selfish thing to do – ruin a family because I am no longer who I pretended to be. I long to be openly part of the LGBTI community, but inside I’m crawling with fear, guilt and shame for what it may do to my family! Guilt and shame are so powerful and they are the main reasons I’ve been in denial for so long. Guilt, shame and fear are the emotions that have caused me to self-destruct on so many occasions. I have a long history of self-sabotage and I lay the blame squarely at the feet of my guilt, shame and fear.

    If I do nothing, and continue living with family for the sake of the kids, I’m very worried about my mental health, but at least the guilt and shame will take a back seat. If I do speak up and come out, I risk losing everything/ everyone I’ve loved. I don’t know what to do! I can’t sleep, I’m so stressed. I’m drinking too much and I’ve even thought of doubling my AD’s so that I’m a zombie and don’t have to think about it anymore.  

    I throw myself on the mercy and guidance of the Forum…

    Zoe x

  2. justinok
    justinok avatar
    151 posts
    21 August 2014 in reply to Zoe <3

    Hey Zoe, there is a campaign that has been running for ages called 'It Gets Better', you might have heard of it, there's loads of videos on Youtube. It's aimed at young people who are gay and having really tough times, usually through bullying at school, and it's just a whole lot of people doing pieces to a camera talking about their journey and how it does get better even if it feels horrible right now.

    There are some big steps ahead for you, so I'd just take them very slowly. You're not the first person to be in a straight relationship with kids and then come out, and you won't be the last - my bf has kids from a previous marriage, and they're still quite young. While the whole coming out process had its challenges, things are ok now, and he co-parents the same way as any other couple would after separating. His family are really supportive too, he's still the same son and you are still the same person too - you've just realised something about yourself that was there all along.  

    Keep talking, hold on to that shrink appointment and try and lay off the booze. And don't do anything silly with the pills, you'll only make things worse. 

  3. Zoe <3
    Zoe <3 avatar
    31 posts
    21 August 2014 in reply to justinok

    Thanks Justinok,

    I will take things slowly – I know if I rush then I’m likely to screw everything up way worse. I’ll check out those youtube clips too, ‘cos I know that I’m definitely not alone in this situation and I can learn from those before me.

    I’m glad to hear your bf worked things out well, I can only pray that my story will one day be a positive one too. The fear of the ‘unknown future’ is what’s really screwing my stomach in knots and making my head want to shrivel up.

    My AD’s are kinda working, so I know I shouldn’t mess with that – I doubled-up on Monday and I’ve only just started to become more ‘normal’ again. I don’t think I’ll do that again!! It really didn’t help at all.

    My partner is so good and we have really stuck by each other in the past. I really don’t want to lose that, but I know that I’m not true to myself or my partner if I continue to live a lie. Boy, I sure can’t wait for my first psych session… I’m a mess lol… I sure couldn’t do their job!

  4. Snoman
    blueVoices member
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Snoman avatar
    201 posts
    21 August 2014 in reply to Zoe <3

    Hi Zoe,

    How awesome that you finally accepted a normal part of you. Congratulations!  Yes you are a lesbian and that is fabulous! :-D

    Like Justinok said, you are still the same person.  I can't see your kids having any trouble with you being you.  Thats the person they know and love.

    From my perspective: With regards to your partner, I guess that will probably be a bit hard for him.  How that goes will depend largely on your relationship and his own personality.  But I think you have to show him respect and tell him first, then your family.  Work through it with him and help him come to terms with it before sharing your news with your kids and then friends.

    Happy Out Day!

    xx Sno

  5. white knight
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    white knight avatar
    9174 posts
    21 August 2014 in reply to Snoman

    Hi Zoe,

    You go girl. You are entitled to be yourself. We only have one life, be you, be wonderful you.

    Anyone that doesnt accept it, they can get off your train and board another going the opposite way. Remember children are resilient and in time will be fine.

    Enjoy the day and life!!

  6. Zoe <3
    Zoe <3 avatar
    31 posts
    26 August 2014 in reply to white knight

    Wow guys,

    You all rock! I’ve been enduring a bad weekend, but I saw your posts this morning and feel way better thank you.

    I’ve spent the best part of a good weekend second-guessing, stressing, losing sleep and just being thoroughly miserable over my indecision. I know my depression just loves this state of mind (hell, it causes most of it) and a couple of positive comments can really help to lighten my mood a little.

    You’re right White Knight, I only have one life to live and it’s time to let the real me start living. I know there will be a price to pay, ‘cos no change is free… but I will try to be stronger and not let my resolve weaken so damn easily.  

    Thanks again, now I need to return the favour to someone else here :)

    Zoe x

  7. geoff
    Life Member
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    15102 posts
    26 August 2014 in reply to Zoe <3

    dear Zoe, you have absolutely nothing to be concerned about, his is a body that you were born with, so why on earth do you feel ashamed, maybe you feel guilty to your husband, but there must have been signs that there was no attraction to him sexually, or perhaps emotionally, so it shouldn't come as a shock, he is probably relieved that it has come out.

    Yes your children will cope, just as long as this is kept private, but if it's not then your children will protect you, and if by any chance your husband goes to the pub and gets drunk and opens his mouth, so be it, because how you feel will dominate what you and how you feel.

    There is no reason why you should feel strange because you aren't, and I just wish that more people would come onto the site and talk about their circumstances like yours, everyone is born how they are meant to be born, and you can't decide any of this.

    The favour that you want to return to this other person, thank them so much for telling you and us on how you feel.

    Please keep this post going it's going to be important for you that we support you. L Geoff. x

  8. white knight
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    white knight avatar
    9174 posts
    26 August 2014 in reply to geoff

    Hi Zoe,

    Geoff is right. I'm also surfing here and interested in developments.

    So proud of you.

    Tony

  9. Zoe <3
    Zoe <3 avatar
    31 posts
    27 August 2014 in reply to white knight

    Hi Guys,

    I still find myself over-thinking everything and stressing myself out, but since I’ve “come out” to the BB world, I’m slowly coming to terms with what I must do next. I’ve started reading lots to learn about what other went through, and what advice they can give. One article was so interesting I lost track of time and ended up with a 1.5 hour lunch-break… Luckily I didn’t get any trouble!

    I’ve found the whole subject of coming out so fascinating that I’ve been reading and watching stories and journeys of women, men and trans people. Their stories are similar yet different and many are quite inspiring, especially trans people - who seem to have trouble with not only coming out, but integrating through later years. I did read one article that was “preparing readers” by telling them all the bad stuff that will happen, and how much your life changes upon coming out that most people can’t bear it and end up worse than before. I can only hope that’s not true in my case!!  

    I truly can’t wait until my first therapist session on Friday – I really hope she is understanding and helps me. The waiting has been so much more difficult than I imagined. Each day I’m filled with dread and fear, but also an emotion I haven’t felt for many years since my depression returned: excitement. Just a little excitement, but it’s definitely there. I almost didn’t recognise that feeling, it’s been so long. Hopefully I can feel that again soon.  

    There is a long road ahead of me, and I know I’ll trip and fall sometimes. I hope that there are people around me to help me back up, or that I build the strength to lift myself. Time will tell.

    Thank you all very much for your support, I truly appreciate it. Will report back in on Friday after my 1st session!

    Zoe x

  10. Steph.S
    Steph.S avatar
    1 posts
    28 August 2014
    Hi Zoe
    I actually created my account JUST to reply to this thread. Although you're much older (im 19) and have a family of your own, I do understand how hard it is to come out as well as accept yourself. Firstly, I am proud that you're starting to take baby steps in your journey. *claps* I hope that tomorrow your psychologist gives you clarity that you need. But, if she doesn't, because some shrinks are not well educated in that department, sso to speak, there are counselling hotlines for LGBTIQ people BY LGBITQ people.
    You won't be treated like a freak. I think that will only factor depending how your children were raised. If they were raised in a way that respects difference of all walks of life, you'll be okay. I think it will also depend on their age. Well, maybe, maybe not. I told my brother that i'm gay 2 years ago, and he would have been about.... 14? Since he was in that bratty stage, he gave me crap about it, but doesn't anymore. However, its one of those things that he doesnt feel comfortable talking about (but he is very accepting of other LGBTIQ people). He's just a brat. Hopefully your kids arent brats, lol. Your kids will eventually understand, but they will always love you. Once you tell them, just give them time to accept it and if they have questions about it, try your best to answer it. Try not to force it, and dont always question them on their opinion on it. 
     Yes, you will be able to face your workmates, but I don't understand why you would feel that you wouldnt. If you tell them, I personally, dont understand why you need to tell them. Family and work life should be separate. 
    It's not selfish. It might sound like it to some people at first, but it's not. You deserve to be happy, with whoever you want to be with. After all of this, you will still be a part of your families life. 

    I think you should join some support groups, but given your age (they're generally targeted at people under 25) it may be limited. 

    I personally think you should take one step at a time. It took me a very long time to accept who i am, what I like, and be comfortable with it for at least.... 7 years. I felt different when i was 10 years old, but pushed it down because it didnt feel right. My homo feelings were repressed for so long, that when they began to emerge, I had an identity crisis and was in denial for 5 years, until 2012 where I accepted myself, and I'm really happy that I've done the hard part of my journey to gayvile.
  11. Zoe <3
    Zoe <3 avatar
    31 posts
    29 August 2014 in reply to Steph.S

    Hi Steph,

    Wow! I feel quite humbled that you’d go to the trouble of creating an account just to reply to my thread – thank you, thank you! :)

    Your words are really hitting the mark with me, and I appreciate that. I completely get the whole ‘pushing down’ the feelings of being different. Somehow I suspect I’ve been doing that for ages and not even acknowledging it… No doubt that has caused a lot of my internal strife.

    I’m glad to hear your brat-bro has accepted you. I’ve raised my son and daughter to be very inclusive (they both do dance training with some gay male teachers) so they’re quite okay with that side of things. I just hope they’re really okay with a parent coming out. That will rock their little worlds. My workplace has a few openly gay people, but it’s such a “boys-club” that any sign of queer-ness usually is a career-killer. Stoopid corporate environment!!  

    Anyway, my therapy sesh is in less than two hours.. I’m shaking and jittery.. My first step into the unknown haha  

    Zoe x

  12. Zoe <3
    Zoe <3 avatar
    31 posts
    1 September 2014 in reply to Zoe <3

    Hi All,  

    Well I’ve been to see my shrink and I have to say I was soo relieved she didn’t judge me, but has given me some words of encouragement and wisdom. I got along with her quite well and will be back to see her in a week or so once I’ve completed a little ‘research homework’ she set me. It’s early-days and I’m still so confused and worried with how I break the news to family/ friends/ partner etc. How on earth I’ll build up the courage I still don’t know yet. Hopefully my therapist can help me there.

    I feel like a mouse staring at a piece of cheese… I want to rush out and do what will make me happy, but my fears keep dragging my body and mind back. My little mouse-legs won’t move a muscle. Slowly I can feel movement, but I’m one step forward, half a step back. It’s better than two steps back as I’d normally be. It’s progress, but that cheese is ages away I suspect. Little mouse steps!!

    Now I just have to watch out for a nasty black cat.  

    *Hugs* Zoe x

  13. justinok
    justinok avatar
    151 posts
    2 September 2014 in reply to Zoe <3

    Hey Zoe, you've got the right idea! Just keep thinking about the next little step, and before you know it you'll be able to look back and be amazed at how far you've come. So glad you've got some good therapy support. Keen to know how you're going at each step of the way as well. ;)

  14. Zoe <3
    Zoe <3 avatar
    31 posts
    3 September 2014 in reply to justinok

    Thanks Justin, You're right in saying that the journey will be amazing to look back on someday. Today has been a pretty good day compared to many, and I suspect it's because I'm slowly growing to accept what I am, and what I must do.

    It's the 'doing' part that is stressing me out however. Courage has never been my strong point! But my therapist should have some tips to help me with that. I just have to be patient and give the process time.

     

  15. missmuppet
    missmuppet avatar
    35 posts
    9 September 2014 in reply to Zoe <3

    Hugs Zoe

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