Coming Out

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  • #27061
    Annalisa
    Spectator

    So I made a resolution this year to be more honest with myself and what I want. That also feels like it means being more honest with the people around me. But I also feel like it opens me up to a lot of criticism, ignorance, and even unintentional insult. I had a friend who came out recently as demisexual, and I got into a discussion with someone who questioned her, and almost immediately regretted wasting my emotional and mental energy on the conversation. I find it really frustrating that coming out as asexual or any variation of it involves so much of a vocabulary lesson, and part of me feels like I should reserve the energy for only the people who really matter.

    I guess the reason I’m putting this out there is because I want to know: how do you feel about coming out? Have you/are you planning to come out to most people you know, or only a select few? Are there any ways to do it or things to say that you’ve found helpful in explaining yourself to people who just. don’t. get it?

    This may be a repeat of a previous topic; I didn’t see it in the recent discussions so I figured I’d start new. Thanks in advance for sharing your thoughts 🙂

    • This topic was modified 5 years, 8 months ago by Annalisa.
    #27063
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    So, I can’t promise it will help, but I can share my experiences:
    I didn’t “come out” in any kind of rainbow fanfare or anything. I just ended up gradually telling people as and when the subject came up. If I had a chance, I’d test the waters by mentioning asexuality firstly in a neutral way, not directly relating to myself, and seeing what the reaction was.
    My reactions so far have been very varied. The best was when I was chatting to a friend (who knew me pretty well) about relationships and he came out with “Well I figure you’re asexual?” and I could simply say “Yes.” That conversation was easy. The worst was when I mentioned asexuality and someone’s response was “Those people disgust me”.
    When people don’t get it, try to pinpoint exactly what they don’t get. Narrow it right down. If you can target the right angle, you can often debate it with them.
    Overall? I wouldn’t dream of going back to the closet. Being out is easier, in a sense. This is what I am, take it or leave it. If people don’t like it and aren’t willing to discuss it sensibly with me, I can show them the door. It’s a good filter for any friendships you’re unsure about!

    #27067
    Amy
    Spectator

    I wasn’t necessarily in the closet, however when I started doing posts for Ace Awareness Week a few years ago I explained myself to all in detail. After those posts and further discussions, I had people who told me they glad they know now, as they knew I was different but not sure how. One of my friends burst into tears, saying she didn’t want me to be alone for the rest of my life. She has such a pure heart and I think is the only one that truly understands me.
    Others, that surprised me, made rude comments about strip bars and the like. I no longer associate with people I thought of as friends that had adverse and rude reactions. And I am fine with that. I am very comfortable in my skin.
    What I do want now, as I get older, is to have someone to spend my life with that understands what being Ace is.
    I was married, he knew I was Ace and thought he could handle it. He couldnt.

    #27069
    Joshua
    Spectator

    My rule with coming out is simple: no-one needs to know. Because no-one needs to know, there’s no pressure on me actually telling anyone. Well, one exception: any relationship partner. But them aside, anyone I tell is of my own decision and when and where I feel about it.

    So the people who know are those who ask me about it almost explicitely. Oh, and three close friends. Those three are only exceptions and I told them when I first identified as asexual because I was so excited to understand myself. All else, optional who need to ask about it first.

    I’ve found that the best way to talk about it is to explain it from the beginning and succinctly, which to me means understanding myself very well. Explaining what asexuality means and the two spectrums. Explaining the differences and where I lie on the spectrums. And then being ready with answers to the usual, and sometimes tough, questions they ask:
    (if it’s applicable) how do you know before you’ve tried? what if you change?

    My general responses:

    “you don’t need to try to know. You don’t need to try homosexuality to know it’s not your thing” (or if they are gay then just pick anything, people don’t need to try something to know they don’t like the thought of it.)

    “If I change, so what? I can’t act based on what may happen in the future, I can only be who I am now.”

    But the long and short is that, unfortunately, if someone doesn’t get it then you can’t banish ignorance. The best thing to do is lay your case out and then be prepared to walk away knowing you’ve said what needed to be said, even if it didn’t get the response. It’s not your job to think for other people; if they don’t have an open mind to imagine people feel differently from them then it’s not your weight to bear.

    It’s a shame about the discussion you had with that person. All my discussions so far have been very pleasant and easy. But it helps that my friends (and as of recent my family) are all very open minded and so accept that just because they don’t feel the same way it doesn’t mean I don’t mean what I say.

    #27081
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    In my fair opinion as an asexual I’m neither in or out the closet. There’s no need to ‘come out’. Being ace is much more private (it only concerns your partner) than any of the other sexuality, where you publicly display your preferences.

    #27091
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    well noone will ever know unless thy try to sleep with me. which will end in tears so…

    but my coming out wasnt at all what I planned :/

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