For many of us, a new craze has swept the world: To Be Offended By Absolutely Everything. In keeping with this, it would seem that even the act of coming out of the closet isn’t getting away clean. The Guyliner’s recent post (Why "We All Knew!" is the Worst Thing to Say When Someone Comes Out) plays into the hands of the offence taking camp. Here’s a quick and more in-depth guide of how to be offended by this — for those who are finding it hard to grasp.
First, the most obvious thing you should think is: I am terrible at keeping secrets. In fact, not only am I terrible at keeping secrets, I am also terrible at hiding a big part of my personality from people. This walks nicely into a self-induced panic of: "Oh my God, what if they know how much of an asshole I am too?" News flash: It’s too late. They knew that you were gay and an asshole and somehow they are still your friend. That’s pretty lucky, right? Wrong. You really should think about your secret keeping capabilities some more — maybe that application to Spy School was a bad idea.
Second, you should be exceptionally angry that they never told you. I mean, you’re right. That makes total sense and is definitely something we can all understand. Most days people tell us the darker parts of who or what we are and instantly accept them into our being. In fact, I would almost parallel the obscurity of it to this:
Your friend is totally in love with her boyfriend (who’s an asshole to her) and when they break up, you finally get to say: I knew he was bad for you. Or, I knew he was cheating on you. (Delete as applicable).
Finally, you should be furious that they have stolen this big day from you. The spotlight. The microphone. The lights. All of it. This is the one that is the most upsetting, right? You picked out a day! You marked the calendar! You wore a nice outfit! It’s almost like your wedding day. It’s so perfect and then someone runs into the church and says: NO! You can’t marry them, because I love them! The day is no longer yours, but theirs. This is even more annoying because gay men never do this to anyone else. They are incredibly conscientious in making sure that everyone gets their time to shine.
So, how do you move on from here? Your feelings have been hurt. Your day is ruined. You’re like, so super, like, angry. What do you do next? Reevaluate! Think about all the times in your life that could have led them to knowing before you did. Maybe it was how you said hello? Or the way you say words that start with S? Or that time you got blackout drunk and had sex with a guy? Whatever it could be, you need to make sure that you go over everything a million times until you figure it out. Regress some more. Keep going backwards instead of forwards. At this point, you should be so far up your own ass, that you’ve missed the most important things to ‘come out’ of this whole situation:
You’ve told someone that you’re gay. You said it out loud. You accepted it for yourself and hearing the words come out your mouth has finally taken an unnecessary weight off your shoulders. The person you told, said that they already knew. They didn’t beat you. They didn’t kick you out your home. They didn’t kill you. Instead, along with those words — probably used to make you feel more at ease, they gave you a hug and kiss and said they love you no matter what. You are no longer in a self-constructed prison of sadness and you can move on — with a friend at your side — and be the person you are.
Being gay isn’t about your friends telling you they already knew. It’s the journey and realization that you get to on your own — and if some others figure it out before you, then good for them. With sexuality, we shouldn’t be telling people what they are, and if you are, then you’re doing nothing more than robbing someone of their agency.
The most important thing about coming out is how you feel afterwards. For many, that feeling is no longer like crap.
As we pioneer through 2016, why don’t we stop grasping at any reason to take offense and do something good with the voices we have. Educate each other. Stand together. Fight for equality. Every day there are men and women who come out, and are killed for doing so. Think about how lucky you are to have the reaction of: we already knew. Then, have a think about what the real problem is: Why we should even have to make a thing about coming out at all and how can I help to make this change.
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