WeHo Wallflower

I went out with a couple of (girl) friends from work to West Hollywood on Saturday. One of my friends has been trying for weeks to get me to go out to meet guys, partly so I can get over my (straight) work crush.

Even though it’s been nearly eight years since I first came out, I still felt incredibly awkward and out of place in the gay club/bar environment. I basically freeze up; I don’t know what to do or say. I become a wallflower.

Part of my awkwardness might come from the fact that a loud club/bar really isn’t my scene. A larger part, though, is that I still don’t really feel comfortable being around gay people, which probably stems from still not accepting who I am (almost eight years after coming out).

On a day to day basis, I’m completely fine. I feel like a normal boy, and I don’t see my being gay as an issue. But when I’m put in a situation where my being gay is called to attention, I get shy and down on myself. I know that it’s okay to be gay, but I still don’t feel that way sometimes. I feel like it makes me “different.”

I was still feeling pretty down about it yesterday, so I sat down with my work crush during dinner (it was in the office this time, but still just the two of us) and told him about my weekend and how I felt about it. He thinks that I need to find more gay friends and eventually make a network of gay friends. As much as he tries to relate to how I feel, he can’t because he’s straight. He also thinks it’s important that I put myself out where others will see me, and maybe they’ll approach me instead of the other way around.

Anyway. After having talked about it with my work crush, these thoughts aren’t churning in my head as much, so I’m better now. But I’m sure I’ll get these feelings again when I’m back in a similar situation.

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5 Responses to “WeHo Wallflower”

  1. Lisa S. Says:

    Don’t dismiss his advice — sure, being gay is a somewhat unique situation, but it’s not unrelatable to someone who isn’t gay. Maybe he can’t relate to the ‘gayness’ of your situation (for lack of a better way to say it) but he can probably relate to the feelings of isolation you feel. Who hasn’t been in a situation where they feel alone and disconnected, whether it’s because of moving to a new town or starting a new job or going away to college. And he’s right… the proper way to remedy that situation is to put yourself out there and find yourself some gay friends and a gay network.

    If you need a place to start, try checking out meetup.com — it’s how I found my kids’ playgroup (and some cool mommy friends, too) after we moved, and *I* felt alone and disconnected.

  2. Lisa S. Says:

    Also… if there’s one thing that the gay community has going for it, is a huge web of support and social groups. Have you googled?? I just did, here’s a small sample of stuff I don’t think is too far from you:

    http://www.gapsn.org/project2/org/

    http://www.pflagla.org/PFLAGLA_Home.html

    http://www.pflag.gapsn.org/

  3. normalboy Says:

    I wasn’t dismissing his advice. My comment about how he can’t quite relate to me because he’s straight was just supporting his suggestion that I find more gay friends.

    Thanks for the advice Lisa! I love it when you comment. 🙂

  4. Amy Says:

    I agree… Have you thought about maybe a support group? I’m sure they have some in your city… Maybe for ex-christian or asian gay men, or something of the sort? Maybe talking things through with people having the same issues would be informative.

  5. Jonathan Says:

    Though I used to feel way out of place in gay bars, after I started meeting people (admittedly online) who like to hang out in them, I started spending more time in them, and now I dare say I like it.

    Just keep going out; you’ll get comfortable with it.


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