Carmen – My Story

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Carmen – My Story

My name is Carmen. This is my story.

Coming out was something that I feared for my entire pubescent life. I was terrified about what would happen if anybody discovered my secret, and so I came out fairly late.

It wasn’t supposed to happen like that, though. When I had finally achieved independence and stability I was ready to come out, but my first ever boyfriend talked me out of it. He gave me all kinds of horror stories and convinced me that my friends and family would all disown me.

Since these had been my biggest fears all along, I meekly retreated into the closet and closed the door. There I would stay for several more years. Even after I finally recognized the toxicity of that first relationship, even as I realized that my ex just wanted me to stay closeted for his own benefit, and even as I ended up with a new, far more supporting boyfriend, I could not overcome those fears.

Then, one day while driving somewhere with my father, he asked me to pull the car over. He had been drinking, and I thought he was going to be sick. I was wrong. He reached ahead, turned the stereo off, and asked:

“Do you think Troy (my boyfriend, whom everyone knew as a “roommate) might be gay?”

My heart stopped. I knew what was coming. But I was finally ready.

“Probably”, I said.

My heart had started and along, was now pounding in anticipation of the next question. Sure enough:

“Are you?”

I gathered my courage, stuck my chest out, and proclaimed “Absolutely!”, then waited for the explosion.

It didn’t come.

Instead, Dad looked at me, tears forming in the corners of his eyes. “Ok. We kind of suspected as much just because of how you act around Troy. I want you to know that we still love you, and we only want you to be happy and safe.”

That was it. The big moment I had dreaded since age 13 turned out to be nothing. I wasn’t abandoned. I wasn’t shunned. I, and my boyfriend (now husband, 25 years this July!), are fully embraced by my friends and family. Life couldn’t be better.

Carmen originally published an expanded version of his story as the final chapter of a web novel about his experience and said “by all means please do include the link! The more people that read my positive coming out experience the better!” Sharing that link with his permission. CLICK THE LINK (opens a new window): https://tapas.io/episode/2724394 #PersonalStories