I came out of the closet five years ago next month. There wasn’t much keeping the closet door shut in 2008, other than my own denial. There have been a number of casualties in the wake of my decision, but there have been many more victories. I regret the deception I felt I had to live and I regret the pain I have caused those I love. The fear of the pain and the deception is brought on by the bigotry that runs rampant in some communities and in many families. Just like me in the late-80’s, so many kids would rather live a lie than live the truth.
As I mentioned, there have been wins and losses over the past five years. Many of those losses were brought on by a vengeful ex-spouse who has hurled hate, revenge and spite at me whenever she has had a chance. I have four children, I didn’t get to tell them on my terms, she she took it upon herself to tell the kids their dad was gay; I guess was an effort to drive a wedge between me and them (Hell, she told anyone she could find). So far, she has been successful with one of my daughters. I hope that she will one day overcome the anger her mother placed in her heart and will forgive me for living a lie.
I am fortunate that my other children are more enlightened and have noticed that I no longer struggle with anger as I did when I was married and I no longer take anti-depressants. I guess Bill Shakespeare was right… to thine own self be true.