Monday, May 18, 2009

Loneliness

2 ½ years ago I wrote a poem which I titled Alone. After years of suppressing and denying who I am - I was finally coming to terms with the fact that I am gay. However, I had not yet found anybody else who was like me - gay, but trying to stay active in the LDS church. I was feeling very much alone - at church, I felt like I was alone in a crowded room.

Beck and I were reminiscing recently. He is not only the first and only MoHo I've met in person - but he is also the first MoHo I talked with on the phone. I still remember that day - I was so nervous. Beck did most of the talking. He would try to ask me questions, but I would give monosyllabic responses.

I've grown in so many ways the last 2 ½ years. I'm actually able to use the word "gay" out loud when referring to myself. later, I've found others like me and I've been active in the Mormon queerosphere. I'm overcoming the shame of being gay.

But, I am still battling these feelings of loneliness. On that front I've made no progress at all; in fact, I'm wondering if I've even slipped backwards - if that's even possible.

I go to church each week and I interact with the other brethren at church. But, any semblance of friendship seems contrived and forced. Truthfully, if it weren't for our shared church membership, we probably wouldn't even give each other the time of day. I don't mean that as a criticism in any way - they are good people. It's just that I don't feel like I have anything in common with them; and, our conversations are short and superficial.

I've tried reaching out elsewhere. I joined a photography club - but it's pretty much fizzled out. It's just so difficult for me since I'm a complete and total social retard. I feel like I'm a nice guy and people like me once they get to know me - I just can't get to first base with anybody with whom I might have common interests.

I have my friends in the queerosphere - but it's just not the same as a flesh and blood friend who lives nearby. I really enjoyed my visit with Beck last week - but it's been bitter sweet as it underscores what I am missing in my life - someone I can just hang out with; someone I can talk to; someone I can just be myself around without having to maintain the charade.

Is this really so unreasonable? As a married man, is it selfish of me to want a close male friend? My wife has her outside interests and groups of ladies she talks with on the phone and meets with on a weekly basis. Why is it so hard for men to do so? Why is it so hard for me?

I'm not looking for pity (well, maybe just a little) - I'm just trying to figure out what I should do.

Perhaps I should just accept the inevitable - I'm never going to have a close friend nearby that I can just hang out with. My friendships will remain virtual with the occasional physical visit.

I'm such a pathetic excuse for a man.

7 comments:

Sarah said...

I hope venting on your blog made you feel better! But I want you to know that I don't think you are pathetic. Being gay and married and Mormon is a very tricky combination, and I'm sure it is hard to figure out what you want, but that is okay.

Hang in there and know that there are a lot of us who love you and think that you are FAR from being a pathetic excuse for a man

By the way, how is the job hunt going? My brother finally just found a new job after being laid off at the beginning of December. I hope and pray that things work out for you as well, faster than with my brother, if possible.

Beck said...

You really are an incredible person. You are so talented and creative and gifted in many ways. You've created a beautiful family, a beautiful home, a beautiful garden and you are beautiful!

If you read most of what we gay mormon/committed LDS / and mixed-married blogs, we all are anxious about connections and the unsatiable voids in our lives. I know it's not any consolation, but in that regard you are quite normal in your desires.

Living where you do isolates you from others in this community. But even your cyberspace / virtual connections with the rest of us are meaningful and significant. I hope you realize that...

Scott said...

... with no job tying you down, you could always move to Utah? :D

Only somewhat kidding, but being totally serious, I'd say that it seems to me that you're just going through one of the (very familiar) cycles of loneliness and longing that even I--surrounded by gay Mormon friends in the middle of MoHo Mecca--experience now and then.

[[HUG]]

Philip said...

That damn closet...

You're articulate and wise and fooled me into thinking you were that way with everyone.

I know I must come across as being fixated on everyone coming out but then posts like yours just reinforces what I have seen over and over again in the gay community.

That is that the closet holds gay people back. Makes them, as you put it, "socially retarded".

But there is good news...

Being "social retarded" is not part of your personality; it's a function of you being so closeted.

So let me throw out a few predictions...

It may not be easy and it may take a while but you will eventually get to where you will be the same with everyone as you are with us.

In other words, coming out won't change you but make the real you more accessible.

All it will take is coming out to more and more people.

Safely and with intelligence, of course.

And, though you may doubt this, once the people in your life get to know the real you, most will like you just the way you are just like we do.

And, you will survive those that don't.

A few more predictions...

As you come out to each group, you will experience some of the same things but you will also learn new things that will make it easier for you to come out to the next group.

And then one day you will find that you have done a complete 360 and are right back where you started - that is you are as comfortable in the larger community as you were before you left when you realized you might be gay and went into the closet.

And, while the journey may be difficult and take many years, in the long run it is well worth it.

At least that is what I found.

Regards,
Philip

Sean said...

hey!

i am sorry i dont get to talk to you much anymore.... stupid employment stuff!!! :)

my thoughts and prayers are always with you.

GeckoMan said...

Okay, so here's a little pity. Man, you are alone! You are out there by yourself in the never-ending vacuum of straight Mormon Texas! I'd feel sorry for anyone who was as isolated as you are, and in the closet, no less!

Now out here in the green and liberal forests of Oregon, where everyone thinks they have a right and a duty to be different or weird, I confess, I feel alone too. I know I'm an odd duck, but at least I'm no longer ashamed of it. Sooner or later I'll bump into a real friend where I can share my man thoughts with, but in the mean time, I read your blog and others, and I tell myself, "See, you're not really alone."

J G-W said...

I'm thinking of you.