Coming Out…A Few Days Late

As many of you know, the past few days have been hectic for us here in Non-belly Mama land!  I have been reading many of your coming out stories in honor of National Coming Out Day and they have been awesome!  I also have a coming out story, but mine is very different from the ones that I have read.

I was 14 years old.  My siblings and I were the “popular” kids in school, and not for any other reason than we were really well rounded.  We were all-star athletes, we excelled academically, we were funny, we were musical, and we were just a whole lot of fun.  We had awesome parents who never missed any of our games.  We were close, we stood up for one another, and more often than not, we covered each others butts!  We didn’t have “friends” per se, but we did have lots and lots of acquaintances.  We mostly went to school, went to sports, went to “extras”, and hung out at home doing the crapload of chores that our parents assigned daily.

Freshman year of high school was an…interesting…time for me.  A lot of self-discovery.  A lot of writing poetry.  A lot of time alone.  I joined the musical theater group and met a rather eccentric group of kids that in a short period of time, I ended up calling my friends.  We started spending a lot of time together.  We would go to each others houses and watch movies, mostly really artsy stuff (theater kids!), make our own movies, and just random shenanigans.  At some point I knew that something was different about me.  I knew that what I felt for Dee, one of the girls in our little circle of friends was something that I shouldn’t be feeling, not because anyone told me it was wrong but because I knew that no one else was like me.  Or at least I thought.  One day we went to watch “Boys Don’t Cry” at a small theater in Bronxville, and something clicked.  All of a sudden the 4 Spice Girl poster covered walls in my bedroom made sense (no seriously!! EVERY INCH! Like $300 of my McDonald’s paycheck for tickets for my younger sister and I. Like tear away Adidas pants in every color! Like all the CD’s, movies, interviews! TOTALLY OBSESSED).  All of my acquaintances were in love with BSB and N’Sync, and I just didn’t get it!  Dee and I cried through the movie, and at some point, I reached over and grabbed her hand and she didn’t pull away.  She held it back, and ran her thumb back and forth along the side of my thumb.  It send shivers down my spine.  Even though my head said, “NOOOOOO!!!!”, my heart said, “OMG!! IS THIS REALLY HAPPENING!”  That day began a serious affair of some massive hand holding!

At this point in time it had been close to 2 months of really understanding who I was thanks to researching on Ask Jeeves (which took forever because those were Dial-up days), and realizing that I, at all of 14, was “A Gay”.  A bonafide lesbian.  I started decorating my bunk, my backpack, wearing bracelets, and socks with rainbows on them.  A few weeks and lots of hand holding (in secret) later, I had my friends to my house for a movie marathon night of Gia, If These Walls Could Talk Too, and Better Than Chocolate. My mom kept coming into my room and offering a ton of treats and sweets, water, juice, soda, dinner. We had to keep pausing the movie because we didn’t want her to see all the nudity and lesbian sex scenes.  I was totally freaked that my mom would find out who I really was, and that she would have a total cow and send me off to go live with my grandparents or something. After a few hours, everyone went home.  Mom came into my room…

“I gwanna talking wishu baybee..” She sits on the edge of the bed

“What mom?!?!”, I say, completely exhausted and just wanting to go to bed.

“I berry like-a jew friengs!” She smiles genuinely

“They’re nice right?” I smile back.

“Pero, can I asking jew somesing”

“Si, mami.” I’m nervous

“I see jew have a lot of deh rainbow, eng jew friends, jew know, un poquito….i don’t know…maybe a little gay. I don’t know”

“Jesus mom! Seriously!?!” OH SHIT! She totally knows!

“Si, pero, dats ok! Jew know, if you, tu sabes, eres gay, bueno, I don’t care, becoz, I’m mami, eng I love jew! I love jew forebeh and dats ok! I know what means rainbow.  My seester is a gay tambien, eng I love her too.  And jew my daughter and i love you too. Mami loves jew, mucho ,mucho, mucho!”

“Mami, I’m gaaaayyyyyyyy.”

She hugs me, and I can’t control all the tears that have been inside of me for months. All of the hiding, all of the sneaking, all of the hand holding and all of the love that I felt, suddenly poured out of me and I couldn’t contain it.  My mothers love for me, her understanding, support and love, pulled me out of the closet kicking, screaming and crying.  It was probably one of the ugliest cries I’ve ever had, hyperventilating, snot and tears streaming down my face, and mami just held me. She held me and said she loved me.  That nothing was different.  That nothing changed.  That I was still her “nena especial” and that her love for me would never, ever change.  I was one of this lucky ones.  My mom found me a group for gay youth in the county that I live in.  She would pick me up and drop me off.  She would give me money for my friends and I to get pizza and ice cream afterwards.  She encouraged me to bring my friends over more often and to talk to her about my crushes and my relationships.  She told me that nothing was different. She hugged me more and she listened more.  She made it easier to come out.  And I did! Everywhere!

I came out at school, at church, at work, at sports and at extras.  I didn’t care who knew, because my mom knew and she loved me regardless.  My coming out story isn’t a story of regret, or triumph against the opposition, or heartache and pain.  It’s a story of a mother’s love for her daughter, and the strength, support and courage she gave her to become the person that she is today.

ME AND MAMI WHEN I WAS 14

ME AND MAMI WHEN I WAS 14

ME AND MAMI NOW

ME AND MAMI NOW

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41 thoughts on “Coming Out…A Few Days Late

  1. I was smart, read this post at home!! No ppl looking at me sniffling!!! I love both your parents. They are amazing!!! And raised an amazing group of children

  2. I love your coming out story! Your mom sounds amazing. Those movies remind me of my coming out days too. I think it’s awesome how your mom found you a queer youth group, and continued to actively spread her support long after you came out. Your mami really is amazing.

  3. Mothering done right. This is the exact type of response that can give LGBTQ youth a head start with both self acceptance and the social coming out process. So often, we hear of kids who just didn’t have a word or a concept for what they were, and your mother coming out and helping you with that is so wonderful. This is the exact type of parent we should all hope to be. What an amazing lady.

    Also, look at you two! That’s a good lookin’ pair right there. 🙂

    • She also bombarded my brother with the same question, and he too had an emotional break down. He was weighing in at over 200lbs, was suicidal and depressed, and when he had that conversation with my mom at 18, he shed 60lbs, got more comfortable in his own skin and found those very words your speaking about. My dad took a little more time to come around to my brother being gay, but now, their favorite thing to do on Sundays is accompany my brother and his boyfriend of 3+ years to brunch and a gay club! It’s hilarious! They really are amazing parents. Took tons of cues for parenting from them! And thanks! my mom is hot stuff!

  4. I love love love your story 🙂

    Also I’m betting my Spice Girls obsession/collection could rival yours. I had not only posters, but also t-shirts hanging on my walls. And bios I printed off of the (dial up) internet. And all of the movies and CDs (actually I had the TAPE of their first album) … It’s one of those “should’ve known then” things 🙂

    • I still have all the dolls in their boxes! Never opened! I have Chuppa Chupps lollipops that I ordered on ebay (via dial-up) that am ashamed to admit how much I paid for! LOL! It was horrible. I can tell which one is talking with my eyes closed and can imitate each of their voices. I went to TRL with some friends to see BSB and i couldnt care less, but it just so happens that Geri was there as a surprise guest and I lost it! 2nd worst ugly cry ever! LMFAO!

  5. Oh man this made me cry. Minus the adoring, accepting mom part, our stories have some parallels. High school… musical theater… friend becomes more than a friend… I feel ya! I always feel a bit nostalgic around this time of year because that’s when it all sort of started for me all those years ago. Mad props to your mom.

    • This is definitely that season…i specifically remember getting a role in the spring musical around this time, and getting together every day after school to rehearse, and my heart racing because i knew i would see her…isnt that funny?! Sometimes, when it smells a certain way ( like leaves and perfume) when the wind blows, it brings it all back…

    • She really is great! And she has been amazing during this whole pregnancy. I was worried that she wasn’t going to see them as her grandkids (only by extension), but every time she sees Callie she kisses her belly and talks to the boys and tells them “Wita esta aqui!” Grandma is here…its super cute. I’ve been so blessed…

  6. Such a great memory! Love hearing about someone’s positive journey into acceptance and especially the spice girls obsession!!! I too was quite obsessed! Must be a lesbian generational thing!! Thank you for sharing!!!

    • She really talks like that! Even my mom cracks up when I do it because I sound just like her! She still continues to be a huge advocate for gay/lesbian rights. I have a cousin who didn’t feel comfortable coming out to his mom who is a Jehova’s Witness. She loves her son, but refuses to accept that he’s gay. She is great with us, but not her son. My mom talks to her often about him not changing and embracing the fact that she will get another amazing son if she wants to allow him into her heart. Its a battle, but she said she won’t give up on them. She really is an amazing women.

  7. Tears streaming down my face. I am so delighted to read such a beautiful, compassionate and unconditional-love-filled story. You have one awesome mama. No wonder you’re one heck of a non-belly mama yourself.

  8. Everyone should be met with such love, and I dream of a day, so soon, where no one has to come out at all. 🙂 Love your Mami…she does all the Mamis proud. 🙂

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