So... where to start... since the last time I posted a billion things have happened, almost all of them incredibly amazing and postiive.
1) Coming out: Since I last posted, I've pretty much come out to all my close friends in all my social circles, the cousins I am close to, and my immediate co-workers. Everyone has been amazingly supportive, some have been not-so-surprised (my one friend said that she suspected it because I hadn't gotten laid in 3 years and I never complained about it), but what surprised me is how people open up to me after I come out to them. It even happens with completely unrelated topics- I think it's just that when I was in the closet people could feel this blocked off energy from me, and after I opened up to them, they opened up to me about their personal lives and everything. I have started to network in the gay community, and I have some awesome gay and lesbian friends now that I just have so much fun with when I go out. I have lived in New York for 11 years, and suddenly the whole city is new to me again. It's pretty fun.
2) The parents: Umm, I already just typed this story up as a comment on doug's post, so I think I'll just paste it here as a quote. Wall of text go:
Doug, I read your post and it just rang like a crystal bell in my head. I read about your nightmare and I just had chills down my spine because I was totally there too. I'm also Chinese, originally from California, with religious parents/family. I identified myself as gay around 14 or so, and I just put it away in a box and decided it was something I could never have. I actually just came out and started dating men in February (at the age of 29), and I came out to my parents in March, so it was all very sudden. And honestly, I'm not gonna lie, coming out to the conservative Chinese parents was pretty awful.
First of all, they were visiting me (I live in New York now), and of course they had to stay in my apartment even though I live in a tiny studio, and cook in my tiny kitchen because that's what my Mom has to do. They were staying with me for 4 days and I decided I was going to come out to them in person so it had to be then. I came out to them on the second day, and they became just stereotypes. My Dad just decided he suddenly had to take some unrelated business phone calls and just tried not to deal with the situation. My Mom just stared at the wall and started crying. This was pretty much the whole first night. The second night, my Mom started asking me the really weird questions, like if I was molested as a child, or if this was because she was a working mother when I was growing up. On the third day, I decided I had indulged her hand-wringing and "why-me" questions, so I told her - "You can analyze my childhood and wonder what you did wrong as much as you want, but let's just be clear here-- what you're doing there is wishing that you had a different son. I'm what I am, and that's pretty much it." She was kind of sullen for the rest of the time, but my Dad actually surprised me and started saying the right things about how he wanted me to be happy and he wanted to be a part of our lives. My Mom and I were strained for a while after.
The really good part of the story comes last Sunday actually; my Mom just called me out of the blue to talk (we hadn't really spoken much since they were here) and she wanted to know how I was doing, if I was dating, etc. She said she wanted me to be happy, and then (and I quote) "and we want to make sure you're being safe in your dealings." I know it sounds horrible and mildly homophobic, but in the context it was really sweet. And also, I'm trying to convince my circle of friends to start using "dealings" as a euphemism for rough gay sex. (Usage: "I got dealt last night"). I'll let you know how that goes.
And I can't stress enough how important the support network is going into the coming out. If you have family members that you're out to before, like siblings or close cousins, having them to talk to before and after to temper the parental craziness is important. I had my brother and sister on speed dial during the whole thing, and they were awesome.
Anyway, sorry for the monster comment. I just wanted to let you know that the Chinese parent thing can go both ways. Of course they have had our lives planned out since we were 8 years old, and make dramatic proclamations whenever we veer from the path, but they do it because that's how they think it's the best way to show they care about you. When you do decide to come out to them, make sure you give them their space, but make it clear that it is not a negotiation and that it's something you are comfortable with. When you're coming out to them, it's because you love them and you want to share your life with them, and they will accept you for that
I am going back to Cali in May and that's going to be the first time I see them in person since they were here in New York, but I'm kind of thinking the worst is behind me. Like Doug, I used to have straight up panic attacks in the middle of the day, where a rush of images would come to my head and I would imagine my family and friends finding out about me, and there are days where it made me just want to double over and collapse. I don't have days like that anymore.
I've talked to a lot of my new gay friends about this, and honestly, no one has the "Lifetime Movie" coming out story where their parents are amazing and supportive. It's almost universal that your parents are going to disappoint you a little in this space, and that's just cause they're from a different generation and culture, and because they have such specific plans for their kids that suddenly change. I'm starting to have faith that my parents are coming around though, and I think they are going to be happy for me. I may hold off on the PFLAG t-shirts for a bit though...
3) The Sex... So... since the last time I posted, I've gotten around to meeting a lot of cute boys in bars and after 15 years or so of oppressed sexuality, I've definitely unleashed it in a pretty rapid way. Man, I have no idea how to type this without sounding like some big whore. Basically, in the urbandictionary vernacular I laid out in my blog comment, I've dealt, I've been dealt to, I've tried it all. It's been fun. I've been safe of course, and I'm kind of picky, but it has been so much fun :D. I don't know if I'm ready to go and type out every vein and detail, but maybe another time...
4) The Relationship... So, this is the hard part. On every dating site and "dating" site, they ask you what you're looking for and I have to think that if they're honest, pretty much everyone is looking for the same thing. It always bothered me when people said they're "looking for an LTR". I mean, an LTR is just an R that has lasted an LT. I think I would say that I am looking to meet guys to date, and that if I meet someone I really connect with, of course I'm going to continue dating them. Right? I definitely am a pretty monogamous guy though- I know I'm the exception here, but I just don't think I can be one of those people in an open relationship. I'm totally fine right now meeting guys and having sex without commitments, but when I do meet the right guy and we start dating, I'm not going to want to fuck other guys, and I'm thinking the right guy for me will feel the same. OK, so I've laid out my simple definition of a relationship prospect, and it took longer than I thought but oh well.
Well anyway, I kind of met my first relationship prospect on Thursday, but I probably messed it up. I was out with my super gay bestie Alex, who is teaching me how to vogue (!) and we were at this bar that has a gay night on Thursdays (Aspen). It was getting really fun around midnight, there were a lot of cute guys, and there were 2 for 1 drink specials. Anyway I'm getting us a round and walking them back to our table when a guy gives me the look, and I kind of smile back at him as I'm walking by and he tracks me a little with his head. He has great eyes and something about that look just made me happy. So, I bring our drinks and I talk to Alex and he tells me I should just go talk to that guy (and Alex also wants to meet his cute friend hah). I go over and kind of nudge his chair with my foot and when he turns around I introduce myself (I know, I know, I'm like a high school girl at a dance). Anyway, we get to talking for a while, and he's really funny and cute, and I'm a little drunk, and suddenly I grab his head and we start making out on the dance floor for a while. He makes it a point to say that he's looking for a relationship and not a hookup, and that's when I actually start considering it. I hadn't really been in "relationship looking" mode this whole time, but this is really the kind of guy I would want to date. I am a little embarrassed now that I have been sticking my tongue down this stranger's throat (BY THE WAY HE WAS A REAAALLY GOOD KISSER), but it is still fun. He give me his number and we say good night.
The next morning I woke up still smelling like his cologne. Why is that SO HOT? Anyway, I had to confer with my gay oracles and straight girl friends to decide how I was going to ask him out, and I was actually walking on air the whole morning (it didn't hurt that Friday here was absolutely gorgeous weather). It was kind of like I'd never felt before. I met up with one of my best girlfriends for lunch and we basically decided I should be direct and just text him and tell him it was nice to meet him and ask him out for Saturday Night. I was sitting there with my finger on the send button, and I realized that I wasn't going to feel the euphoria anymore as soon as I hit send. It was kind of sad, but I think I indulged myself long enough to take it in. Anyway I sent the message, and then I agonized for the next few hours- he finally got back to me after work hours, and he said it was nice to meet me too but he couldn't hang out this weekend cause he was busy with friends in town (AND HERE'S THE STUPID PART: I KNEW THIS. I MET HIS FRIENDS AT THE BAR AND THEY WERE VISITING AND I KNEW THIS). But what bummed me out is he didn't suggest a follow-up. If he was really into me, I think he would have said something to the effect of making plans in the future. I still replied that he should have a good weekend and that he should text me next time he's free, but I think it's probably over. I blew it, but I learned a lot (and I made out with a cute guy in a bar, I really am not complaining that much).
And the good thing is that last night I met another cute guy (a friend of a friend), and I think he may be into me. I'm kind of going to take this slow and let him make the first move... and maybe I'll wait til an actual date to stick my tongue down his throat. Maybe.
5) This is kind of unrelated, but I love Yoga! I think I never went before cause I thought it would sound too gay and blow my cover, but I've gone like 3 times and it's awesome (and lets be honest, it features hot guys in sleeveless shirts bending over). It's like an intense workout that makes you sweat and works your muscles, but when you're done with it, your spine is perfectly aligned and you feel like you've gotten a deep tissue massage and taken a nap. It's crazy good. I'm about to go to another yoga class in like 2 hours.
So, that's my super-omni update if anyone is even still following. Sorry I have been such a bad blogger, but my life has been a crazy whirlwind lately. Thanks for reminding me why I started this though, Doug, and best of luck in everything. I'm gonna try to post more regularly now, although now that I'm pretty much out, I think I'm just another gay guy on the internet heh... Maybe I should change the name of the blog.