The first person I ever came out to besides my therapist completely stopped talking to me.
To be fair, there were other parts of the conversation that explain why she was upset. But that doesn’t change the fact that it felt like I was being friend dumped because I was gay.
After some clarifying emails and declarations that she could no longer be the same friend to me and had moved on, I learned that she didn’t even realize I was gay from that initial conversation.
Apparently she heard “asexual and biromantic” and didn’t realize that was my “coming out.” Apparently she didn’t realize that meant I was “gay.”
Um— this is why labels are important and why awareness about other ways to identify are essential. I didn’t come out as “gay” because I didn’t identify with that specific descriptor at the time. But because my friend didn’t hear that magic word. She had no context for the significance of what was being shared.
I felt blamed for not coming out clearly enough. Almost as if it was my fault for not spelling out more clearly that I was capital G-A-Y. And maybe if I had there wouldn’t have been as big of a misunderstanding and she could have sympathized more.
I know people always say it’s better to not have someone in your life that can’t completely accept you for who you are. But that doesn’t change the fact that it hurts to have someone you used to love reject you.
I guess the bright side is now I can finally move past the bargaining stage of grief onto anger.