When I came out to my mom it was only because I’d just been released from the hospital and I was high on painkillers. She held my hand as she drove me home.
When I came out to my parents at 17, my mother said, “Oh, we’ve always known that.”
When I came out at the age of 36, I would regularly catch myself giggling at how silly it had been that I hadn’t done it sooner.
When I came out in the ’80s, I thought I would finally have some place to belong. Turns out I wasn’t the right kind of gay, either. I’m still alone, without a tribe.
When I came out, I felt a very heavy load lifted off my shoulders. Years of depression and self-hate went away. I abandoned 37 years at a church that couldn’t accept me and went to one that does.
When I came out, my wife took the children to her parents’. We stayed married two more years, which was a big mistake. It took me 20 years to make amends for that.
When I came out in in 1985 my parents dragged me out of the Lesbian & Gay Centre in Manchester and screamed abuse at me on Canal Street. They joined a support group for parents of queer Jewish youth and got over it. In 2006 they came to my civil partnership ceremony. Spare Rib magazine and Channel 4 was the only oases in heteroculture in 1985. Without those and the support offered at the Manchester gay youth group I definitely would have topped myself.
When I came out, my mum was confused. Hesitant. I’d been in an abusive, straight relationship at the time, and fallen for a woman in another country. Four years later, and my parents both agree my wife is the best thing that’s ever happened to me.