Neal C.

December 1998

So there I was, lying on my bed, reading "Two Teenagers in Twenty," when mom knocked on my door. I didn't bother to hide the book when she came in.

She asked what I was reading, and I told her, my heart racing. She asked where I heard about it, and I told her -- an online forum for G/L/B youth. She nodded, and left without comment.

I yelled out the door after her, wanting to know if she didn't get it, or just wasn't surprised. She tells me she doesn't like to assume things. Funny, I thought I was blunt enough in my subtlety. So I told her -- exact quote -- "I'm gay." She asked me if I was sure. As though I would say this if I weren't. I had been sure for a month or so now. I didn't tell her any of that -- I just told her that yes, I was sure. The next day we talked a bit. She wasn't exactly happy with it, but she was accepting. Worse than what I had hoped for, but better than I had feared.

That was just over one year ago. Since then I've come out to all my friends, one by one, and what a feeling it was. There's no fear quite like the fear of rejection, now is there?

It all turned out well. I've lost no friends, and made no real enemies. A relationship came and went, as did a few little flings.

So you'd think I'd be used to it. I am, in a way. It still feels strange, though, to sit and think, "I'm gay." After all, just over a year ago I was straight, or so I thought. What happened? And when? And why, for that matter? But most of all, why does it have to make such a damn difference?

Unfortunately, I don't think I'll ever get an answer to any of those. So what am I to do? Move forwards, that's what. Move forwards, and don't look back. What is done is done, the only thing left to do is deal with it.

Send me an e-mail if you made it this far.


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