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 Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.

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PostSubject: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Sun Oct 12, 2008 9:54 pm

Ok, I know you all think I'm a sad bastard already for waiting till I was 26 to move out, but believe me, it gets worse. One of the reasons why I moved out is because at 26 I still hadn't come out to my parents yet, and didn't want to be left hanging had I been kicked out for doing so. You may all find that difficult to believe, considering I'm probably one of the most on-scene closet cases out there, spending 6 of the last 7 nights in one animal of a gay bar or another, and currently suffering from the early effects of alcohol poisoning.

I had repeatedly said to my sisters that when I did move out that I would come out, even jovially that I'd say it just as I closed the door behind me. But when I moved out I got a bad case of cold feet. It had nearly been a week, and since my mother was away the envisaged sitting around a table and coming out was not going to happen. But, since I like sunday dinner with my folks, I had already arranged to meet me dad for a meal today. Well after that yesterday was international coming out day, it starting to occur to me that maybe this was the best chance I could get.



I was struggling with that idea all day yesterday and today. Told an ex thinking it may just give me the push I need followed by a 'bock bock bock' when I expressed doubt. No luck. Fought it all day today, listed out the pros and the cons in my head, realising how difficult it is to do an anyway decent shop when something is worming it's way into your mind. Told my sister and my cousin I'd do it, just to give me an added excuse not to chicken out at the last minute. Well, finally the decisive hour came, and I met him in the restaurant which is right beside his regular watering hole. All is fairly predictable so far, stomach in turmoil, getting hot sweats, feeling stomach that could only be described as the early onset of a panic attack. I started making excuses not to come out, he's too drunk, there's only ourselves in the restaurant, all his mates are inside and I could embarrass him, I don't like the waiter's accent and the floor is too sticky.

Let me describe my father's character a bit before I go on. He's a gruff man, grey-haired early sixties, car mechanic, not too keen on the ould immigrants, has a soft spot for sinn féin, curses a blue streak at football matches, and uses the word pansy rather liberally. Social liberal he is not.



Well halfway through the dinner, the butterflies started to ease somewhat. I started to get a rush of adrenalin. I started to clumsily introduce topics in which looking after your children was the major topic. No dice. Then I said to myself, like scoring on the dancefloor, I would have to push myself to the point of no return. I would have to do something or say something that I couldn't pull myself back from. So there I was dripping in sweat, and the topic of some red headed who-er of a corkman came up. He explained for love nor money that he didn't want 'that red-headed cork fucker' sitting down besides us, and I said, 'Neither did I, but for a different reason'. We exchanged uncomfortable glances.

I had broken the barrier, there was no going back. No amount of clever talking was going to bring me back at this stage, unless I wanted to look completely psycho. I told him there was a reason I brought him out (other than wanting to eat with family on a sunday). I told him 'Dad, I need to tell you something, I'm gay'.

He paused. Looked at me. It was clear he knew something was coming from when I started it. He basically started saying that no matter what I did he'd love me for it, that the most important thing for him was for me to be happy, and the last thing he would want is for me to be miserably shacked up with a woman just for his sake. He said he was really proud of me for telling him that, and that I was extremely brave for doing so, but nothing would change between us, and we are all different. This conversation went on repeatedly for the next twenty minutes, while my tagliatelle went untouched. I have never felt so relieved and literally have tears rolling down my cheeks reading this, as I had when he said it, as he had when he said it. He was so rational, reasonable, sensitive and emotional, it made me realise for the first time how lucky I was to have him as a dad, and how stupid I was to think he'd take in any other way. We finished the dinner, I paid for it, chatted for ages, and then I left him, only half an hour ago, not before giving him a massive hug.



Which leaves me at 1-0 at the moment, and me to tell the mother this week, though I'm still not sure how she'll take it, but at least I know I'll always have one on my side. Anyway, considering how badly I got this one wrong, I imagine I'll be presently surprised. I'm more a prospective pessimist anyway though, so I'll prepare for the worst. Right now I'm get ready to celebrate at the local, (non-alcoholically of course)!
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Sun Oct 12, 2008 10:13 pm

I'm so happy for you Riadach, you have the tears pouring down my cheeks too.

Cheers!
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Sun Oct 12, 2008 10:18 pm

Riadach that's a brilliant bit of news - you're a great storyteller too - what fecking tension. I had no time to cry I was too tense reading that.

Your mother will be okay with it, won't she? I reckon mothers are secretly proud of gay sons the way they're proud of openly priestly sons.

Edit: That might have not been a good thing to say scratch
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Sun Oct 12, 2008 10:27 pm

Riadach, nobody thinks you're a sad bastard. I love you

What you've done is far more profound than simply telling your dad something, life-affirming, life-enhancing, life-changing and I can't tell you how happy I am for you.

Your mother probably knows though. Wink

Audi, when do we get a hug emoticon in this place?
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Sun Oct 12, 2008 10:59 pm

Fair play to you, Riadach. Fair play to your dad too. I'm very happy for you.
Smile
I have joined the "tear pouring down cheek" crew on this one.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Sun Oct 12, 2008 11:08 pm

riadach, comhgairdgeas, I'm delighted for you, that's a great story with a wonderful ending.

Three cheers for riadach!

cheers cheers cheers

And three cheers for his Dad!

cheers cheers cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Mon Oct 13, 2008 3:31 am

Thanks very much lads, I just needed to get it out. I don't think me explaining it orally could really get across exactly how I felt as I did there. As for the mother, she is the more conservative one, and I'm not sure she has a clue. But all will be told in the next week. I'll keep you posted.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Mon Oct 13, 2008 11:41 am

Thanks Riadach, best of luck. Everything will work out.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Mon Oct 13, 2008 12:10 pm

riadach wrote:
Ok, I know you all think I'm a sad bastard already for waiting till I was 26 to move out, but believe me, it gets worse. One of the reasons why I moved out is because at 26 I still hadn't come out to my parents yet, and didn't want to be left hanging had I been kicked out for doing so. You may all find that difficult to believe, considering I'm probably one of the most on-scene closet cases out there, spending 6 of the last 7 nights in one animal of a gay bar or another, and currently suffering from the early effects of alcohol poisoning.

I had repeatedly said to my sisters that when I did move out that I would come out, even jovially that I'd say it just as I closed the door behind me. But when I moved out I got a bad case of cold feet. It had nearly been a week, and since my mother was away the envisaged sitting around a table and coming out was not going to happen. But, since I like sunday dinner with my folks, I had already arranged to meet me dad for a meal today. Well after that yesterday was international coming out day, it starting to occur to me that maybe this was the best chance I could get.



I was struggling with that idea all day yesterday and today. Told an ex thinking it may just give me the push I need followed by a 'bock bock bock' when I expressed doubt. No luck. Fought it all day today, listed out the pros and the cons in my head, realising how difficult it is to do an anyway decent shop when something is worming it's way into your mind. Told my sister and my cousin I'd do it, just to give me an added excuse not to chicken out at the last minute. Well, finally the decisive hour came, and I met him in the restaurant which is right beside his regular watering hole. All is fairly predictable so far, stomach in turmoil, getting hot sweats, feeling stomach that could only be described as the early onset of a panic attack. I started making excuses not to come out, he's too drunk, there's only ourselves in the restaurant, all his mates are inside and I could embarrass him, I don't like the waiter's accent and the floor is too sticky.

Let me describe my father's character a bit before I go on. He's a gruff man, grey-haired early sixties, car mechanic, not too keen on the ould immigrants, has a soft spot for sinn féin, curses a blue streak at football matches, and uses the word pansy rather liberally. Social liberal he is not.



Well halfway through the dinner, the butterflies started to ease somewhat. I started to get a rush of adrenalin. I started to clumsily introduce topics in which looking after your children was the major topic. No dice. Then I said to myself, like scoring on the dancefloor, I would have to push myself to the point of no return. I would have to do something or say something that I couldn't pull myself back from. So there I was dripping in sweat, and the topic of some red headed who-er of a corkman came up. He explained for love nor money that he didn't want 'that red-headed cork fucker' sitting down besides us, and I said, 'Neither did I, but for a different reason'. We exchanged uncomfortable glances.

I had broken the barrier, there was no going back. No amount of clever talking was going to bring me back at this stage, unless I wanted to look completely psycho. I told him there was a reason I brought him out (other than wanting to eat with family on a sunday). I told him 'Dad, I need to tell you something, I'm gay'.

He paused. Looked at me. It was clear he knew something was coming from when I started it. He basically started saying that no matter what I did he'd love me for it, that the most important thing for him was for me to be happy, and the last thing he would want is for me to be miserably shacked up with a woman just for his sake. He said he was really proud of me for telling him that, and that I was extremely brave for doing so, but nothing would change between us, and we are all different. This conversation went on repeatedly for the next twenty minutes, while my tagliatelle went untouched. I have never felt so relieved and literally have tears rolling down my cheeks reading this, as I had when he said it, as he had when he said it. He was so rational, reasonable, sensitive and emotional, it made me realise for the first time how lucky I was to have him as a dad, and how stupid I was to think he'd take in any other way. We finished the dinner, I paid for it, chatted for ages, and then I left him, only half an hour ago, not before giving him a massive hug.



Which leaves me at 1-0 at the moment, and me to tell the mother this week, though I'm still not sure how she'll take it, but at least I know I'll always have one on my side. Anyway, considering how badly I got this one wrong, I imagine I'll be presently surprised. I'm more a prospective pessimist anyway though, so I'll prepare for the worst. Right now I'm get ready to celebrate at the local, (non-alcoholically of course)!

Really appreciate you sharing this with us Riadach - it must feel terrific to have all that worry off your shoulders. I've made a point of saying to my children in their early teens that if they feel they may be gay they need have no worries whatsoever about telling their parents. We'll be delighted for them. I'm sure Kate is right that your Mum probably knows already. Man, you had me going there - I nearly had an anxiety attack reading your account - tears of relief at the outcome. Maybe your Dad had been wondering when you were ever going to get around to saying it, eh Wink.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Mon Oct 13, 2008 12:28 pm

He had actually. He said he always had questions, and was going to ask me once, but felt it was better if I told him. Never thought he could be so understanding?
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Mon Oct 13, 2008 3:23 pm

I didn't get the bit about the Corkman.

Emm, other than that it raises the intesting question of why you would tell your parents in the first place. I suppose it's an identity thing?

Anyway, good luck with all that. I supose the mother's the easier nut to crack? Being homosexual bears striking resmeblence to entering the priesthood. All that cultural/social capital but without the many years at Maynooth.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:22 pm

I think Riadach's dad didn't want the corkman there for reasons best known to those who don't appreciate red-headed lifeforms from what is traditionally known as the people's republic. And riadach didn't want him there because he had something to say that he didn't want overheard by any idle Corkonian.

While the speedposting was going on last night, there was an excellent documentary on RTÉ that I had half an eye on, thinking of Riadach at the same time. It was about a man who knew from the time he was a kid that he was gay and spent decades, a marriage, four children, horrendously misguided therapy and an unhappy relationship with the charismatic christians telling himself he'd grow out of it. The treatment he received at the hands of his fellow churchmembers was emotional barbarism. But he came out and he's happy, in love and his kids and family are happy too. There's nothing new in the story; it's the old cliché really. What's more interesting is that even now, it's still a cliché because it's still true.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Tue Oct 14, 2008 12:52 am

905 wrote:
I didn't get the bit about the Corkman.

Emm, other than that it raises the intesting question of why you would tell your parents in the first place. I suppose it's an identity thing?

Anyway, good luck with all that. I supose the mother's the easier nut to crack? Being homosexual bears striking resmeblence to entering the priesthood. All that cultural/social capital but without the many years at Maynooth.

Well, how would you react if you were told you could never introduce someone you loved to your family, or that your family didn't love you for what you were, but for what they thought you were.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Tue Oct 14, 2008 2:01 am

My aunt had a very, very long affair with someone who was married, and when he was dying she couldn't go and see him, or even ring up and ask how he was. Very hard, I think.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Tue Oct 14, 2008 2:59 pm

riadach wrote:
905 wrote:


Emm, other than that it raises the intesting question of why you would tell your parents in the first place. I suppose it's an identity thing?

Well, how would you react if you were told you could never introduce someone you loved to your family, or that your family didn't love you for what you were, but for what they thought you were.
The first point is fair enough. Although were I to turn up at my parents with someone not of my own social and economic circumstances or age group, I would have some explaining to do. They wouldn't accept unquestioningly my announcing that a girl of Asian extraction or a woman in her sixties was my one true love, although I daresay they would accept it soon enough. But I wouldn't feel the need to explain beforehand to them that I fancied older women. Am I just splitting hairs, insisting that homosexuality should fit on a scale with other (for want of a better word) deviations from the expected norm when it comes to love?

Your second point I don't get at all. Unless my parents loved my specifically for my heterosexual nature, I can't see why my orientation should bother them. I like to think my parents love me for a multitude of things, with sexuality coming far down the list, if it registers at all.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Tue Oct 14, 2008 3:24 pm

905 wrote:
riadach wrote:
905 wrote:


Emm, other than that it raises the intesting question of why you would tell your parents in the first place. I suppose it's an identity thing?

Well, how would you react if you were told you could never introduce someone you loved to your family, or that your family didn't love you for what you were, but for what they thought you were.
The first point is fair enough. Although were I to turn up at my parents with someone not of my own social and economic circumstances or age group, I would have some explaining to do. They wouldn't accept unquestioningly my announcing that a girl of Asian extraction or a woman in her sixties was my one true love, although I daresay they would accept it soon enough. But I wouldn't feel the need to explain beforehand to them that I fancied older women. Am I just splitting hairs, insisting that homosexuality should fit on a scale with other (for want of a better word) deviations from the expected norm when it comes to love?

Your second point I don't get at all. Unless my parents loved my specifically for my heterosexual nature, I can't see why my orientation should bother them. I like to think my parents love me for a multitude of things, with sexuality coming far down the list, if it registers at all.

Perhaps you need to get the empathy passages in the brain exercised a bit 905 Basketball

Our sexuality, who we fancy, how we interact with friends, the relationships we form, particularly in the late teens and early twenties is quite a lot of what we think and talk about. It must be a pain in the elbow to feel that if you say what you are thinking about these things to the people you're closest to, they might reject you.

I'm sure you're right about how your parents feel about you, and that most parents would be the same.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Tue Oct 14, 2008 5:17 pm

I'm really very happy for you. I can only begin to imagine how tough it is. (I had enough angst telling my parents I was depressed and seeing a psychiatrist; I just marvel at your bravery.)

With your dad on side, there's a chance he'll have soften up your mother for the news. He'll know better than you how she's likely to react.

I should also say that while tears were not freely flowing due to the work environment, my eyes were definitely stinging.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Tue Oct 14, 2008 5:56 pm

Maith an fear. Is fearr a bheith amuigh ná istigh, is dócha.

Fadhb dhúshlánach ach is breá gur luigh tú isteach leis agus gearrscéal iontach i leith litríochta chomh maith.

Fear Fear mar a déarfá.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Tue Oct 14, 2008 6:12 pm

well done riadach!!! that was a really brave thing to do, not sure i have the moral courage to face my father like that.

i'm very happy for you! and kudos to your dad for being a more sensitive soul that you initially thought.

cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Tue Oct 14, 2008 10:49 pm

There are a lot of sad stories out there but this is a good one. Laughing
Seize the day and all that. Good one Riadach!
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Wed Oct 15, 2008 9:39 pm

Has the mother been told, riadach or is that going to happen on Friday or something?
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Thu Oct 16, 2008 12:18 am

She hasn't yet. Haven't got a chance to meet her yet to be honest, been busy all week.
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Thu Oct 16, 2008 12:44 am

Delighted for you Riadach. It's amazing how much we can underestimate our parents boundless capacity for acceptance. Best of luck with your mother, I have no doubt that it will be fine. Great storytelling by the way, you are a man of words!
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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:03 pm

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PostSubject: Re: Scéilín nua agam le hinsint daoibhse- Nua story to tell yiz.   Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:14 pm

Hope it goes well Riadach, but whether she says the right things or not, you will still be the apple of her eye cherry .
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