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Chris Kryzan

March 1999

Dear Chris,

I don't really know what to do. I have been dating my fiance for well over three years. Now, I have finally decided to acknowledge something that has been weighing down our relationship.

I think I am bisexual. Well, actually I'm pretty sure. It's weird. I know I've always had these feelings, but I was always afraid to say anything. But I'll be hanging out with our guy friends watching WCW Monday Nitro and I find myself paying more attention to the Nitro girls than to any of the wrestlers. I think two of the guys have noticed this, because every once in a while they will look at me funny.

The problem is, I don't know how to tell my boyfriend. He is pretty tolerant of such things, but I know he wouldn't react well. I know I have to tell him that I'm bisexual, but I don't know how. Please help.

Jen

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Hi Jen,

You're at that crucial point that many gay or bisexual men and women get to as they become aware of their sexual orientation, or as they start dealing with this knowledge -- how to tell their boyfriend or girlfriend, husband or wife. For many, at some point they simply can no longer ignore these feelings, and the honesty which is a big part of their relationships is hard to reconcile with hiding this part of themselves.

It sounds like you're at this point, and as you become more comfortable with who you are, including your bisexuality, it becomes hard to hide. You let down your guard, and one day your guy friends notice that you are watching the girls in the same way they do. And then you get to a point where you know it's time you tell the people who are important in your life.

If that's the case, then you're probably sitting there wanting to be open with him, and being frightened of how to do it right. How you approach this is something only you can determine, but I believe that approaching this discussion with honesty and compassion, as it is clear you intend to do, is the best thing. Ultimately I believe that people appreciate this honesty, and more than anything, it's important for your own well-being, as well.

How he will react is hard to say. For example, as open-minded as parents may be, it's often difficult for them to confront the news that their son or daughter is queer -- usually that's because their expectations for what they thought your life would be are shattered with one brief admission.

It can be much the same in telling your fiance. It's likely that he has some expec-tations as to what your life together will be, and all of a sudden he is going to have to face a new reality. No matter how tolerant or supportive he might be, he proba-bly is going to have issues to deal with. He may wind up being shocked, feeling hurt, he may go into denial, he might get angry.

Try to pick a time to talk when you can spend three or four hours together, alone, in a comfortable and private setting. You're likely to talk, to yell, to cry, and you're both going to need the freedom to do all of this.

You're going to have to be the one to help him through this, I'm sorry to say, as well. That means if you get to a point where he starts yelling, that you resist any urge to get into a more heated confrontation. Remember, he's most likely dealing with a major change in the direction he thought his life was going to go. This may seem unfair to you (and to a large extent, it is), but overall I believe things will go better if you try to step back every once in awhile and think of yourself as a facili-tator or therapist.

You two have been together for three years, though, and assuming your relation-ship is strong, he'll get past all of this. That may take days or weeks, but at some point he'll probably deal with it. How is hard to say, of course. Your relationship could end, that's always a possibility that you need to be prepared for. Or it could continue, with your bisexuality not an issue to him.

You have my best wishes that this goes well, and in the direction that leaves you both feeling good.

Take care,

Chris

Hi Chris,

I'm in love with a guy that just turned 16 and I'm 18 going on 19. I haven't told him that I'm gay, but I'm trying my best. We haven't really talked much because he has his friends and they are unkind to me. Sometimes he acts the same as they do to me, but that's when they are around. But when we are together he is very loving.

We really don't have much in common -- he likes basketball and I like music. I'm hoping that we can go out on a date, maybe a movie or something. He is very cute. I mean he is the cutest guy in the whole school. I've heard of girls saying that he is very, very cute, but I haven't seen him with any girls, only his friends, and his friends are guys only. anyway what should I do.

Thank you

Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

I think we've all been where you are right now at some time or another (alright, and probably more than just once or twice, too) -- lusting after some cute guy who we're not even sure is gay.

We look for every telltale sign that he might be gay. Does he hang around mainly with guys, thinking that if does, it means he's really into guys, so he must be gay). Does he hang around mainly with girls, thinking that if he does, it means he's gay, because don't cute gayboys always have lots of girlfriends. Does he like theatre and dancing, because most gay guys do, right? Or maybe he does all those sports be-cause he likes being with other guys, so he must be gay.

Sometimes we keep our distance and yearn in misery.

Sometimes we keep dropping hints and they seem just too dense to pick up on what we're hoping for, so we remain casual acquaintances and yearn in misery.

Sometimes we find ways to spend every waking minute of the day with them, and don't find our attentions returned. And we may even become good friends, but sit there yearning in misery.

It's hard to say exactly what's going on here. He may be uncomfortable wondering why a guy who's a senior wants to hang around him. He may be insecure and that's why you see two sides of him, friendly with you personally, but looking for the other guys' approval in a more public situation.

It may be that he's straight, or it may be that he's gay and having a hard time of dealing with his feelings, or just not ready to take the next step and admit it to someone else.

But the bottom line is, you're just going to be miserable until you take some ac-tion and find out whether or not he is, in fact, gay, and then, whether or not the in-terest is mutual. So, if you think you're in a safe situation, and you're either con-vinced he won't go telling everyone else you're gay (or if you frankly just don't care if he does -- you didn't mention if you're openly gay at school), then you might think of telling him about your own sexual orientation sometime. But hold it there for awhile. If he's gay, and he's ready to let you know, he'll do it. If he's not ready, then he needs his own space and time to decide when, if ever, he will share that as-pect of himself with you. Or he may just say that that's cool, but he's straight.

Hope it goes well and you get to live out what's probably been all of our fantasy: finding out that the cute guy you're interested in is also gay and just as interested in you.

Chris

Chris can be reached at chris@kryzan.com


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