After recently returning from a week-long road trip with my family, to visit family, I am left with much that has been on my mind. The trip was nothing short of wonderful, minus of course the eons spent traveling in the car. Prior to leaving town, I came out to my family.
I was, and still am, elated. But we embarked on a trip to visit family whom I see only once a year, and who do not know. This caused for a number of awkward moments, for my part. I did not come out to any of my extended family, nor do I see any reason to. My immediate family are the most involved in my life, and thus the most important ones to me. I am content, at least for the moment, to maintain this status quo. However, awkwardness cares not about such a choice. Here are two examples why.
- I'm walking the mall with my great aunt. She's always on the lookout for nice Jewish girls for me and my brothers to meet, so naturally she brings this up. I converse politely. Suddenly, she asks, "Have you tried JDate? I hear it's wonderful." Of course, the site is a dating site for Jewish singles, and since there's no such thing as a gay Jew in many people's minds, there's obviously no category for a guy like me (on JDate, that used to be true--you selected 'man seeking woman' or 'woman seeking man'. I just looked at the site, and discovered that there is now a way for a man to seek a man. Very cool.). Anyway, I quickly respond that, no, I haven't tried it, and oh wow! Look at these wind chimes! The sound is exquisite!
- Talking to my brother about one of his gay friends and his lack of fashion sense (I'm not the only one!), my cousin interrupts and says "I don't care what those people say, that's just not natural. It's, ugh, it's just not." That was cause for an abrupt end to conversation such as I had never before witnessed.
Everything is so new to me, at the moment, that I did not seek to argue or attempt to alter any familial notions about reality, or about me. Part of this lays in the fact that some of my extended family is of such religious conviction that, were they to find out just how fantastically gay I am, they'd probably never have anything to do with me ever again. And considering I adore them all, and they adore their perception of me, I'm not keen to change that, especially considering I see them only once a year. Perhaps in the future, this will change. But for the moment, I'm perfectly content with the acceptance I do have in my family, and do not require any more.