Coming Out

3rd August 2005 – The fateful day that I finally spilt the beans.

My mom had been visiting and staying with me, and the week before, she had met S at a dinner I had organized. In the following days, while just chatting to her, she kept mentioning that some of her closest friends are gay and how amazed she is when they show her glimses of their lifestyle, and how different it is in reality to what the media stereotypes homosexuals to be. I had no idea why she was telling me all of this.

On Tuesday night the 2nd, I was freaking out. I had been thinking of coming out to mom for a few months now, trying to figure out the right time and place, and thinking of what to say. She was staying with me, so i didn’t feel comfortable calling up S on the phone to talk as the walls in this apartment are paper-thin. So I texted him and had him go online and chatted there.

S had already met her and enjoyed her company, and I believe the reverse was true too. He was utterly convinced she already knew about me being gay. But even still, I couldn’t help but to worry and get anxious about how she would react, and anticipating the worst. I finally decided I’d take her out to brunch the next day.

Wednesday morning. I was up early and at my computer. Mom came in the lounge room for a bit, then was on her way to the kitchen to make her coffee… I stopped her and asked if she’d like to go out for brunch. She was a bit surprised but said she’d have her coffee first, then wash up and change.

We took a stroll down to a nearby cafe and had a leisurely breakfast, talking about all sorts. Work, family, my brothers. A few times I tried to steer the conversation to something which I could segue into my coming out. But it just didn’t happen. We finished breakfast, mom even had a second cup of coffee. We got up, paid and started walking back. We’d have to walk through a park on the way back and I thought that’d be a great place to tell her… but we walked, and we talked, and I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.

It was literally 2 doors away from my apartment block when I just stopped in my tracks. It was now or never. I couldn’t get a better chance to do this, so I did. I told her, “Mom, I’ve got something to tell you.” followed by a long pause. I tried to remember everything I prepared to say to her, but I blanked out. I continued, “OK, I’ll just get straight to the point. I’m gay.” Her response? “That’s alright son… I kinda figured already.”

My head was spinning. The sense of relief was unbelievable. All the pressure released like air from a balloon. The only thing I could think of to say at that point, was to ask her “so what made you think so?” Her answer was that it was from her observation at how I was unable to commit to my previous (hetero) relationships. This would mean she actually figured it out before even I did myself!

Back in the apartment, while she was preparing some lunch for my brother, I continued talking to her about me being gay and I was so relieved that she is so comfortable with the fact. She even picked up that S was my partner, even though nobody said a word and during dinner we were both trying our best to hide it.

When I told S all that had happened, he said it must have been one of the world’s easiest coming outs ever. Almost a anti-climatic non-event, even. He was a little bit disappointed that there wasn’t more drama involved, but still proud of me for what I did. I have to thank him for the support and encouragement to finally be able to be honest with my own mom.

I told a few of my gay friends about this, including B, from way back. It was also his birthday on that day and his reply was “That’s the best birthday present I’ve ever got!”. Another friend in Sydney thought I was utterly mad for having come out to my mom. But having said that, he had his family staying over a couple of weeks later, and he too decided to come out to mom. Apparently I was some sort of inspiration for him to do so.

On hindsight, I probably shouldn’t have been as anxious as I was, but when you’re put in that position, you just can’t help to worry about what the outcome would be like. I’m out to my mom now, but still not to my brothers, nor to my ‘old’ friends who know me from school or uni life. They will all know, someday.