From: (Jake Coughlin)
Subject: Re: Update on XX
Date: 31 May 1995 15:03:11 GMT


one more followup because i was thinking about
this topic this morning while i waited for
the wheels and bells of the compiler to stop

how many other people have had 2 cataclismic**
coming out experiences?

i remember my frustration in high school as i
strived to keep my sexual orientation repressed,
and i was very successful.  i would masturbate
thinking about the school jocks, and i would
peek almost gleefully during gym, and i had a
small stash of gay male porno, including i
don't know how many boxes of fashion briefs
depicting some sports star in his underwear,
but it just didn't quite click in my conscious
mind that i was gay.  i don't even think that
the word gay was in my vocabulary, but i knew
that i didn't want to date girls.

over summer break, while i was in college, i
came home to act in _charley's aunt_.  the
director was my drama teacher in high school
(we didn't have a notably gay presence in our
drama club, either,) and we were very close
friends.  while we were working on the set,
she told me that she had some juicy gossip
about my "co-star" shawn.  she had heard that
he was gay, and she was dying to know whether
it was true (i guess shawn was straight-
acting.)  i was too.

shawn and i started hanging out together to
memorize lines, and one night, we were sitting
at his house running lines, and i noticed that
he was inching his way toward me, ever so slowly
on the couch.  then his feet were sharing the
ottoman with mine.  then his feet were nearly
touching mine.  then his feet _were_ touching
mine.  then we were right next to each other,
and i started to feel a little nauscious from
my excitement.  then he was looking right into
my eyes and i was experiences fight or flight
syndrome.  then there's a haze in my memory.
the next thing i remember after looking into
his eyes is that i was lying on top of his
chest.  we were fully clothed, but we had
both had orgasms, and i was astounded at how
"right" this felt.

shawn and i dated for the run of the play.
we started talking about how we were going to
have a house together and a dog and how rosey
our life together was going to be.  ozzie and
harriet; jake and shawn.  of course, everyone
must have known from our behavior toward each
other.  my relationship with my father was at
an all time low, and he suspected that i was
involved with shawn.  one night, in a heated
argument, he asked me directly, and i told him
that i was gay.  the argument stopped, like we
had both been hit by a truck.

things were pretty smooth between us for a
couple of days, but about four days after the
incident, he called me into the kitchen.  he
had drunk about half a bottle of scotch, from
the bottle to his glass with no interruptions.
he called my step-mother into the room, and he
proceeded to tell me that he would not accept
my being gay.  he grabbed the bottle of scotch
and started walking very quickly around the
kitchen, his voice was rising.  my step-
mother just kind of looked at me in shock,
and i felt totally humiliated.  at one point,
i was sitting in a rocking chair and he was
walking around me, shouting at me that it
was not possible for me to be gay and god damn
it i was NOT gay.

i didn't see or call shawn for a week.  when
i finally did need to close the relationship,
i went to his house because i was afraid of my
father catching me on the phone.  i told him
that we couldn't see each other any more because
i was not gay.  he was dumbfounded at first,
and then he went into a rage.  i will never
forget how badly i hurt him.  as i was leaving,
he cursed me, "you ARE gay, and you will
ALWAYS be gay.  you will NEVER escape it."

i wasn't gay for about 3 years after this
incident, but i was involved with that
drama group off and on during that period.
i saw shawn occasionally, and he absolutely
hated me.  he would never speak with me, and
he would always look at me with smugness.

well, i guess it's about 6-7 years after
that incident now.  i am gay.  i was out
on campus my senior year, presenting papers
on homosexuality in several classes,
organizing blue jeans day, wearing my pink
triangle, writing an article in the school
paper so everyone would know what the pink
triangle meant (and that a HOT selling
issue, let me tell you!  clarkson was seething
with the scandal that one of its white,
upper-middle class, priviledged students
was a faggot.)  i've had a couple failed
relationships, and i'm now in a very happy
relationship, approaching our second year (!!).

this past christmas, my father called and
said that it was time that my family met
Art, my partner, since it was obvious to him
that this relationship was longterm.  one
day, i left my partner at home with my
father.  my step-mother and i went to the
liquor store to buy wine.  i was wandering
around the store because i couldn't find
a single wine which i recognized, and then
i noticed that the guy standing behind me
was shawn.  i ducked behind a stack so he
couldn't get a good look at me.  when i
purchased a bottle, he was standing
directly behind me.  we pretended that we
didn't see each other.

christmas went without a hitch; my family
adores Art.  but i am still bothered by that
damn curse.


**i MUST remember to bring my dictionary to work.
i keep procrastinating because i have it in my
head that i am committed to this job the minute
my dictionary graces my bookshelves at work.
while it collects dust at home on top of a box 
full of my technical books and journals, i hold
on to the hope that i'm going to find a job which
is much, much more fun.  in the meantime, i feel
like an arm has been cut off because i am a
horrible speller.
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