When should you tell someone you're gay?

Discussion in 'General Advice' started by Yulia, Jul 28, 2016.

  1. Yulia

    Yulia Member

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    So I feel like this is kind of a dumb question but I somehow often end in situation where I feel like I "should" come out to someone while also not feeling ready or close enough to that person. I'm proud of who I am but I also feel like my sexuality isn't everybody's business. I am generally just a private person - especially around people I don't know that well. Sometimes I just can't help feeling like I'm lying to someone if I don't tell them I'm gay when they talk to me like I'm straight.
    So, I've been in this situation a couple of times before. I just got a new job and me and this guy have been talking a lot since we're both into the same music. He recently asked me on fb if I wanted to go to a concert with him. I said yes. He then said that he could buy the tickets. I immediately replied back that I would buy my own ticket - that would be fine.
    The fact that he offered to buy the tickets made me think that he might have thought of this as a date. It could just be him being nice to me but it still makes me a little uncomfortable. I don't want to go to the concert if he thinks there's a possibility of this being anything but an experience between friends. There's two months until the concert so I've been thinking that I could somehow casually mention the fact that I'm gay in a future conversation. I guess my question is, what do you do? When do I "have" to come out to someone? it doesn't have to be for this specific situation but I just constantly have that question in the back of my mind when I meet new people. Am I just overthinking this or do other people feel that "pressure" to come out whenever people are talking about what guys are hot, feeling like a guy is into you, gay issues or whatever?
     
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  2. greylin

    greylin Well-Known Member

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    The question is not dumb at all and I understand how you feel. I have met people who have become friendly acquaintances and I have wondered if they would still be friendly acquaintances if they knew my orientation. Wondering about that does not motivate me to set myself apart so they can discern whether or not to judge me for who I am.

    For me, the answer would be the principal that I hold onto that I am normal and okay. I do not need advertise my sexuality to make sure I dissuade someone's assumptions about me. If there is someone, whom I am not interested in, hits on me or starts to assume we have something going on, then the best thing to do is to make sure that person knows nothing is going on between us. Disclosing my sexuality to thwart such attention from this person maybe an easy let-down for the guy. I feel that you have done well to offer to pay for you own ticket. That is a good starting point. You can play it by ear and to find an opening to let the guy know he's got no chance with you. And seeing how thoughtful you are already, I think you will do that in the nicest way possible.

    Sometimes, people don't come out because of personal safety. Sometimes people come out because they want to let people know more about them instead of making assumptions. Sometimes people come out to make a stand or simply to celebrate who they are. People have different reasons for coming out or not and it is entirely up to you and it should not be some mandatory baptism of disclosure.

    I would read the coming out section here on AE. There, you may find a story similar to your own and you can draw parallels to your situation. Maybe that can help you search your mind for answers.

    Good luck, you are a nice, thoughtful person. Please do not beat yourself up whatever you decide.
     
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  3. Yulia

    Yulia Member

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    Thanks. Sometimes it helps just knowing other people have the same thoughts. I will take a look at that forum and hopefully I will find something useful. I'll try to let the guy know we are only friends and hopefully he'll not look hurt when I tell him. Thank you for taking the time to reply. It was actually really helpful to read and thank you for the kind words!
     
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  4. Bluenote

    Bluenote Well-Known Member

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    Telling guys you are gay never is enough to get them to back off. Guys somehow think a lesbian is just a woman who hasn't had sex with- them- yet. Heck, some of them even start thinking threesome and get more persistent.

    If he offered to buy your ticket, he likes you. Period. Put some distance between you and him until he gets the hint.

    Telling him you are gay, then hanging out / talking with him a bunch is a mixed message. Give him a clear message- back out on the concert and spend way less time with him/ talking to him.
     
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  5. TheScandinavian

    TheScandinavian Well-Known Member

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    Hoping that he's a decent guy (yeah, they exist but are rarity), I think he'd understand and just be stuck in the friendzone. Just mention it or even make up a story like someone's trying to set you up with their sister or idk. If you're dating, just casually mention "my girlfriend (insert name here) did this for me and it was awesome).
    I don't think that there should be this huge coming out. Just randomly mention it and go from there :)
     
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  6. Yulia

    Yulia Member

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    I know the type but he is so not like that. He's kinda shy and I imagine he doesn't have a lot of succes with women. But I am definitely going to try to let him know I'm gay the next time I see him. I have already discussed fake scenarios with my girl friend to talk about to let him know. So I'm not gonna back out of the concert unless I get a weird vibe from him after coming out. And no, I am also not interested in making a big deal out of it ;)
    Thanks for your thoughts on this :)
     
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  7. greylin

    greylin Well-Known Member

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    "I have already discussed fake scenarios with my girl friend to talk about to let him know." Does that mean you have a girlfriend or am I misreading this, like your girl friend is part of the fake scenario?

    If you have a girlfriend, the first thing I would do when a guy asks me out is to say, "Sounds fun, but I will have to check with the Mrs./partner/girlfriend." Then I would check with my gf in terms of scheduling or whether she would mind if I turned another guy to be my lesbro. And the only reason for my gf not coming with is this music's not her thing.

    I like guys, they can be sweet, but even the shyest ones will not always stop trying to go beyond the previously defined friend zone if they like you. Don't be surprised that he might test the waters when you guys are alone. Happened to a friend of mine and she got really disappointed in the guy. Hope this guy's different and will remain a good friend.

    Just also want to add that I am not talking about some sexual aggression. I am talking about wishing so much that someone would like you back that things and signals are completely misread. There are so many threads in "Does she like me" as proof that a simple look gave enormous hints to the someone who is smitten. So it is good that you are treading so carefully and asking advice on this.
     
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    Last edited: Jul 30, 2016
  8. Bluenote

    Bluenote Well-Known Member

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    In my experience (and I am a middle aged lady), even nice shy guys don't back off when told "I am gay." Just be prepared that you may have to do more than say "I am gay," you may have to add "and you are a sweet friend, but I am not into you and never will be."

    It's like this guy mentality that they are taught to compete for everything. So somehow, even a gay woman is something that they can "win" if they just use the right strategy and try hard enough.

    Anyhow, good luck. Hopefully someday you will meet a cute lady who wants to take you to a concert.
     
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  9. Eloise

    Eloise Well-Known Member

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    Don't ever feel obligated to tell someone you're gay. However, in this situation it might be a good idea.

    Back when I was in my 20s (a time long ago) a male co-worker and I started talking about art and he told me of a sidewalk art fair coming up and asked if I wanted to go. I said "sure," thinking I was just going to hang with a friend. I seriously had no idea he thought it was a date. Since I was never, ever into guys I never thought of them as in going on a date. Anyway, it rained that day and the art fair was called off. He asked if I'd like to see a movie instead. When we got to the box office I walked up and purchased my ticket. He seemed shocked and asked if I always paid my own way and I said "yes, when I hang out with friends I always do." He became angry and asked, "Friends? Is that what this is?" Until that moment in time I had no idea he thought we were on a date. Well, he was not only cool to me at work but became down right nasty.

    Tell your friend before you buy the tickets. He probably has other ideas about going out with you than you do.
     
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  10. Yulia

    Yulia Member

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    Right, I see what you mean. I guess all of us can keep having that tiny bit of hope that someone we're into will somehow fall in love with us.
    To clarify, I don't have a girlfriend. It was just a friend (who is a girl) that I was talking to about this.
    Yesterday I found out that me and this guy won't be seeing each other that much at work because of different schedules. So I think I might just go ahead and ask him. Or at least make sure that we agree that this isn't a date. I can totally see now how he could think this was a date even if I talked to him about my ex-gf or whatever. I guess that would be the best thing to do for the both of us, even though it might get awkward.
     
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  11. hum_dinger

    hum_dinger Well-Known Member

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    Hi Yulia! I have these similar situations when I start a new job too. It's difficult to know the right time to divulge that kind of information to someone. Even though it shouldn't be a big deal, not knowing someone's feelings about it often makes it seem like it can be. I have usually found that if I am having a conversation with someone, there will be a natural way to drop it in like 'My girlfriend and I watched that' or 'I went there with my girlfriend' etc. Usually people don't react much. I tend to mention it to people I feel comfortable with. I have never had a problem with people knowing which is really lucky, I know.

    In terms of this guy, as long as he knows you are totally gay, I see no reason you couldn't be friends. I have a few male friends who I know had crushes on me when we met before they knew I was gay and now we are just really good friends. I think it's really important to have male friends for some balance and sometimes they can be less complicated than female friendships as long as they understand there can never be anything romantic.

    I hope it works out and you make a really good friend. Good luck!
     
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  12. Yulia

    Yulia Member

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    I also don't really care if people know. Honestly I wish they could know just from looking at me but they can't. I've never had any bad experiences telling people. It definitely is easier when you have a girlfriend. It really made it easy for me to come out to new people. I just often end up in situations where certain topics come up where I feel like my being gay is kind of "important" but I just don't feel comfortable bringing it up yet - and therefore I feel like I'm lying or hiding who I am.
    I definetily feel like male friends are important, too! I just haven't had that much luck in that department. But thank you for your view on things. I feel like we've been in similar situations.
     
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