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Why coming out is not easy

February 16, 2014

I came out at the age of 25.  It was one of the scariest things I have done in my life because I knew absolutely everything in my world was about to change completely.  In hindsight I can easily say it was one of the pivotal points of my personal growth.  A place where honesty opened up avenues and, for the most part, the stress of lying started to shed its weight. It was where I began to understand the benefits of being an authentic human being.

But not without consequences.

On Friday night actress Ellen Page came out publicly.  For many of us it is a representation of another layer of the onion being peeled.  For others it was the object and focus of hate, ridicule or judgment.

“What’s the big deal,” some who don’t understand what this means would say.  “It was obvious to me for a long time,” said others who felt it easier to belittle the experience than applaud it.  Then, naturally, as is the case in a fear filled world, there were those who found yet another reason to condemn homosexuality while clinging tightly to their own perceptions of God’s word through a man-written and horribly misinterpreted book.  Homosexuals are going to hell.  Homosexuals are sinners.  Homosexuals don’t deserve the rights afforded other human beings.  We’re gross, we’re disgusting, we are perverts, we are monsters.

Is it any wonder it would be difficult to reveal the sort of honesty coming out does to the world?

I want to be angry at the “Christians” who cannot accept anyone other than what they believe themselves to be as worthy of God’s heaven or the rights of others here on Earth.  I want to turn around and condemn them as they do me.  Instead I have found myself questioning the motivation and wondering how it must be to let this sort of anger, fear and judgment cloud your true path to a clear and spiritual existence amongst other men and women who, on the inside are all exactly the same.

What are they afraid of?  What is it that they think is going to happen to them personally?  What is this definition of “Heaven” or “Hell” that paints such dire and difficult contrasts for interpretations of right and wrong?  Is your world so perfect that it warrants the pedestal such judgment alludes to?

Coming out was painful because it opens our world up to this sort of judgment.  To some degree it paints a target on our backs and allows those with weaker spiritual and personal character to point fingers and build up their own faux “moral” platform.  It is easier to feel better about oneself by drawing the lines in the sand that exclude those who are different to help fortify the walls that “protect” from the deep, dark, and psychological fears that separate.  Those who live within these walls will argue that but acceptance outside of parameters creates a painful and limited view of the full picture even the Bible writes about.

So I want to make sure I don’t do the same thing myself.

It is hard to come out because a lot of the world doesn’t get who we are.  They honestly don’t know that we are created with the feelings and inclinations that we have.  They don’t equate the attractions we experience as natural and the same as their own for whatever they desire.  They don’t understand because they don’t experience, and thus, I should always remember that it is the same for me with them.

For those who rely on their religion as a means of separation and judgment I must understand that I am not able to know where you are coming from.  I don’t feel that fear and I don’t hold that anger within me.  But instead of looking at you as something I must condemn (whether it is righteous or self-righteous justification), I ask MY God to forgive you and help you to find the peace that I have found in self-acceptance and authenticity.  I am happy, but not because I feel better than anyone.  I know I am not.

Being who I am is my business.  I am not doing so to please the world or to receive validation.  I do so because one day at a time I want only to be happy and fulfilled in MY skin.  I hope to be the most important one I truly can relate to (if possible) from here until the day I die.

Any time we set ourselves up to be judged it is difficult.  But if being honest with myself and feeling the truest sense of wholeness and completeness possible is the cost of this risk I know it was the right (albeit not the easiest) decision to have made.

Congratulations, Ellen.  You have done a justice for yourself and for many of us.  Enjoy the freedom.  Don’t take the judgement personally.

For those who will hate it we have no control over the dis-ease you are feeling about your own lives based on whatever decisions and standards you have set for yourself.  I wish you peace.  I wish you love.  I wish for you what I have found for myself.

Stop.  Smile.  Breathe.

  1. Kevin permalink

    Awesome cuz!!!!

  2. Kevin permalink

    You had me at “authentic human being…”

  3. Joan DeRosa permalink

    I love my son. I am proud of my son.

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