Is coming out really that hard for people? I don't mean to say that being gay is easy, but are people - especially parents - really that mean? Sure, when I came out to my mom, I was scared as all hell, but that was just because i drilled that social stigma into my head that homosexuality was a taboo. I think I always knew that she would love me.
I never came out to my father, just because I hate awkward scenes, but he knows. He and I got into a fight one night and he said a disparaging remark about homosexuality directed at me. He didn't actually mean it with a homophobic hate, but hell, we were having a fight. Then, after he and I both cooled down, he came up to my room. He sat down next to me on my bed and told me that he didn't mean it, and that he loved me regardless of anything. That was the only time he's ever said something despairingly about homosexuals, at least to my recollection.
He actually cross-dressed one time for a contest back in his Eaglebrook days (boarding school), and actually won a dinner at some restaurant. Unfortunately, he wasn't able to partake in his reward, because he was expelled from the school a week or so later for smuggling booze in (he was a crazy kid when he was younger, or at least that's what I arrived at when he told me this story among others). But he commented on how the Mainiacs (my name for individuals from Maine - what are you actually supposed to call them? Vermont folk are Vermonters, or Woodchucks. New Hampshire folk are New Hampshirites, but what about people from Maine?) were yelling some despairing comments at him and how he thought that they were idiots.
Anyway, are people really that mean at school? Sure, I've received a couple homophobic remarks, but that's been from about from 5 people, at most. Everyone else doesn't really care. In fact, they joke about it with me. They don't seem to mind when I yell, "EW! Heterosexuals" at couples kissing in the halls either. They just laugh and smile at me.
I guess that I'm kind of blessed with how my life's turning out. The only really homophobic person I've met has been my brother, but luckily, he keeps his mouth shut. I don't he would dare say anything homophobic about me in front my parents or my older brother. And it's not that he's homophobic even. He's just afraid of me being too feminine. So it's more of a masculinity thing. Hell, Andy spent the night once, and we all ate dinner together, and my brother didn't mind at all.
Too bad the United States wasn't like Vermont...