Isolated And Devastated


Never been active here, but I'm reaching out tonight because of my feelings of isolation and devastation.

I'm still currently in the process of coming completely out to everyone in my life. I grew up in a mixed-religion family, having a mother who was non-religious but a father who was evangelical/charismatic Christian. I grew up in the church with my father, and most of my friends in high school went to my church, and that was my circle of friends for most of my life. I was always fairly liberal, due to my mother's influence, and very open, but muted this side of myself because most, if not all of my friends were very conservative and very religious.

After graduating high school, my very Christian friends went off to bible college, but I went to the secular state university nearby our hometown, and started to "spread my wings." I had amazing experiences, and met wonderful people, including my now-closest friend, who is gay. As I went through my progressive transformation in college, I finally had the courage to admit to myself that I was gay. Senior year of college I grew close to a woman, fell for her, slept with her, and was rejected by her afterwords. Hurt from rejection aside, the entire relationship woke me up.

This began my slow process of coming out my senior year. I came out to my mom, and my two closest friends from college at the time, one of whom is gay as well. But right after college I moved across country to Souther Arkansas as part of Teach for America, a program to put new teachers in underserved communities. I now teach high school in a tiny *** little town in the middle of no where, and had to shove myself back into the closet for the sake of survival in this religious, conservative community.

I am out to most of my Teach for America colleagues (who are mostly liberals from the North and West, and completely supportive/accepting), I am out to my two closest friends from college, and now my mom, dad, sibling, and grandparents.

I am not out to my students, or anyone else from my town, including my fellow staff and administration at the high school I teach at, because I will be fired fairly immediately. Arkansas has no employment protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation, and my community is pretty homophobic.

I am also not out to most of the people that I grew up with. All of them belong to the evangelical wing of Christianity, and most of them are pretty radically conservative. I know I will loose a lot of them as friends when I come out to them, and I have been too cowardly to do so.

Most of my cowardice stems from my current situation that forced me to find an outlet her to express my feelings.

The only friend that I have come out to from my childhood is my childhood best friend, who I have known for 15 years. We were best friends up until last November, when I came out to her while home for Thanksgiving. I felt like I got a pretty muted reaction originally, but when I came back for Christmas, her entire family was very distant. When I came back to visit family when school got out in May, I attempted to contact my friend and her family to visit, but all of my calls were ignored, and her mother deleted me off of Facebook. I have heard from any of them in over 8 months.

This was a girl whose family I lived with for 6+ months after my parents split up and my own house was in complete turmoil. They took me in and supported me when my family was broken. My best friend was engaged a few years back while we were sophmores in college, and I was the maid of honor. Bought the dress, helped plan everything, etc. The wedding ended up being called off, but then I was made godmother to her son when she gave birth to him. We called each other sisters.

But all that ended when I came out last year. After my visit home in May-June, it became pretty obvious that their entire family didn't want anything to do with me. I tried to just let it go, and shrug off the pain.

Except that tonight, my old best friend got engaged again. To the same guy in fact. But this time around, I was explicitly told that I am not in the wedding at all. In fact, I'm not invited to the wedding to begin with.

I pretty much had accepted that they didn't want anything to do with me, but it was kind of a slap in the face to find all of this out today.

I live in a tiny town where I have to hide everything about myself to stay alive, and to keep my job. There is no LGBT community here, we're hours away from any major city or any type of civilization. The few TFA colleagues I have around me are fantastic people, but they are all straight. My current best friend, from college, is a gay man, who I love and adore, but is currently in graduate school across the country, and my family all lives across the country.

I feel like I have no one. I am alone, and the friend who has known me the best, who has watched me grow up into the person I am today, has decided that I am no longer worthy to be in her life.

I'm feeling pretty numb.

Sorry for the word vomit. If you read this, thank you for your time. I really just needed a place to get this all out.
stormsies stormsies
1 Response Dec 8, 2012

Hang in there. It must be tough to have to suppress who you are when all you want to do is not hide anymore. I came out to my parents who are very religious and have no gay friends except my ex. so in that sense I can relate. I have no advice but to hang in their and offer my friendship. Hope things get better for you.