My coming out experience

Discussion in 'Coming Out' started by flamegal, Apr 16, 2015.

  1. flamegal

    flamegal New Member

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    A reader of my blog asked me to share my coming out story. I thought I'd share it in solidarity with everyone who's ever faced difficulties in coming out before, and also as a therapeutic experience. Enjoy!:

    From Love Through All Seasons (http://lovethroughallseasons.blogspot.com)

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    Quora asked: For lesbians, in your personal experience, how have Christians treated you when they discovered your sexual orientation?

    I decided to answer this question prompt:


    My answer:

    Terribly, in the past. I live in Singapore, and when I came out at 16 years of age, fifteen years ago, to my schoolmates, the Christians mostly just dropped me as a friend. Many of my schoolmates were Christian. They just stopped inviting me to events. Many stopped talking to me, and looked at me askance in a half-afraid/half-worldly way when I went to events together with them.
    Once, a Christian classmate who happened to be my neighbor, messaged me that she never wanted to see me again. I'd simply asked her if she wanted to shop at the supermarket together.

    Just shopping for tampons, mate, not trying to get into bed with you. You're really not my type.

    She sent messages that she was busy, and begged off until she finally fired back her shocking missive.
    I have always been a friendly, helpful, and warm person, and I certainly was a pretty good friend in my youth. I completely lost faith in straight women's ability to empathize with lesbians, after that.
    That experience created long-lasting scars, and engendered a distrust of straight Singaporeans, specifically their ability to treat people different from them as equals.

    I've shared that LGBT couples aren't allowed to purchase affordable apartments in Singapore (only married straight couples are allowed to purchase affordable apartments; unmarried people must wait till the age of 35 years to do so. In practice this leads to impossible barriers to housing for gay couples) to tons of straight Singaporeans, even my closest family and relatives. Mostly, it's just greeted with apathy and massive ignorance. My family and others have told me, "single people can't buy flats either", "why don't you migrate to X country" (emphasis mine), "life is fair because we have choices" (are you telling me to "turn straight"?).


    Happily enough. Fifteen years later, young people have changed a great deal. When I come out to them, they are surprised but continue to stay friends with me, even though many are Christian or Catholic. I come out to promote an equal society, and steel myself for rejection, which hasn't happened. I love and enjoy hearing about their stories and life experiences as well. I am encouraged by the difficulties they've overcome and inspired by their mettle.

    It appears enough gay people have come out to create change. Some have told me they sympathize and are unhappy with the legal discrimination LGBT people face, which is encouraging.

    It's changed my impression of Christians. I've learnt that this generation of Christians, at least, appear to be more accepting of differences. Pink Dot (http://pinkdot.sg) and the courage of thousands of Singaporeans in coming out must have made a difference, I believe.

    I am still learning to trust and befriend straight people in my age bracket, because of that experience. I find it much easier to make friends with straight people who are younger, or older, than myself.
     
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  2. sundancer

    sundancer Well-Known Member

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    School is such a troubling time for most people. I mean, kids bully each other every day... and even when we're adults if there are adults acting like they are in high school it's a total turn off for most people.

    There are so very many gay Singaporeans out there, most of them in the closet. But time will change... eventually. The older generation, regardless of their religious beliefs, may take time to change their opinions on LGBT. That's just how they grew up - not because of religion, but because of cultural aspects that don't really have anything to do with religion.

    TBH the people who have dropped me as a friend (or vice versa cos they were horrible to me) over the years were either agnostic or Buddhist... but actually mostly Buddhist. All of my Christian friends supported me, even the one that I thought was going to be the hardest to come out to. Just goes to show it's not about people's religion or lack thereof - but rather the content of their character. Perhaps you should learn to not judge them either?

    By the way, Catholics are Christians which is why I'm not separating the two in the above paragraph. I can never understand why Chinese people (and Singaporeans) separate them when Christians are like the main group, but there just are different denominations and non-denominations like Catholics, Anglicans, Baptists, etc.
     
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  3. cathalyst

    cathalyst Member

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    Having lived and worked in Singapore for some years, I know what you're saying about LGBT there. In my observation, gay people are not out or not much gay couples you could see in public. I can't even remember seeing a single gay couple holding hands in a park or a mall. Most are probably in the closet. The country is just so strict with rules and with great regard to moral issues. But when it comes to religion and race, there is so much diversity. And hopefully, LGBT will be accepted too. It's only in a matter of time, when the government decides to more supportive. But As long as you stay true to yourself, your family and friends, you shouldn't worry by what other people say or how they treat you. Be bold. Be proud. Be happy.
    Side note: I miss Singapore. Wish I could visit sometime this year :)
     
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  4. pikatan2

    pikatan2 Well-Known Member

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    I have a lot of friend in singapore, I dont live there and usually is there for vacation.. my aunt is a singaporean and I do understand that the older straight people tend to shaun the LBGT community, my aunt herself still lives in that idea of once you're lesbian it means you want every living woman.. which I dont blame them because they're not THAT expose to the LBGT community however I notice a lot more changes with the new generation as they are more accepting..

    I still have a little bit of hopes that LBGT community in asia would be accepted and it would be such a tabbooo thing as it used toooo... slowly Asia is progressin towards that direction,.. :) xx
     
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