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Life Design

Happy Pride Month: Learning to love yourself

It’s nearing the end of pride month and I thought I should write something to show my support. Hong Kong doesn’t have much going on since our LGBTQ activities concentrate in the month of October. BUT, every publicly shared story will help make this world more empathetic than before.

That’s why I’m going to share my coming out story.

I think I always knew I liked girls since I was a kid, but there was no word for it and it was very innocent in nature. Plus, with the constant moving around as a kid, I had more important things to deal with than try to make sense of why I couldn’t stop staring at that girl in class.

Like, trying to get use to a new culture, not fail my studies in a foreign education system or avoid getting my ass kicked. The usual new-kid stuff.

I didn’t think anything of it until I was 18. That was the year when I had my first serious case of infatuation. (yes, I know that’s a little old for infatuation, but I’m a late bloomer guys. Bare with me) Every crush before this point was nothing compared to this one. It ultimately forced me to rethink my sexuality.

My then boyfriend seemed to not make sense and I was questioning my ideas of what love was. I quickly came to the conclusion that I must be queer to some extent. Why else would I be obsessing over this girl like my life depended on it.

I didn’t have much trouble accepting this fact. I was in boarding school at the time and the good ol’parent situation was conveniently at an arms length away. On the other side of the world to be exact.

My friends were supportive and my sister was too.

Everything seemed fine for another two years. It wasn’t something I needed to think about for several reasons and it was almost left to one side like it never happened. It was an afterthought.

But second year of Uni came rolling in and I was in my first serious relationship ever. A serious same sex relationship. The more the relationship developed, the more I felt guilt towards my parents for not telling them.

Our relationship got strained, I had to censor and edit so much out when we Skyped. I barely had anything I could share without letting the cat out the bag. It felt horrible.

 

And if you’ve followed my site for awhile now, then you’ll know how important my family is to me. The weight of the guilt and the feelings of not being authentic was gradually getting heavier on me. It got to the point where our conversations barely existed.

I could tell my parents were confused, worried and hurt by the gradual change in our relationship and it felt so much worse knowing what was causing all of this. So I cracked.

I broke down and cried my eyes out as we Skyped. I didn’t even tell them what was wrong, I tried but I just couldn’t get the words out and ended up in a massive, wet, snotty mess. We ended the conversation with worried looks on my parents and them asking me to rest.

But instead of resting, I…

I poured my heart out in an e-mail. *I’m laughing as I type this out* I chickened out and instantly started writing an e-mail while my eyes were still blurry from tears. I had to breath through my mouth because my nose was stuffed up.

It wasn’t a pretty sight guys. (ten times worse than pretty boy dicaprio above)

Three days went by before I heard from my parents again and in those three days…those were three. long. days. But I just couldn’t bare having this horrible relationship with them. I rather have everyone be honest than not be, even if honesty might not be what I wanted.

My dad replied back with a very cute, short e-mail and it’ll be a few more days before Skyping my mum. Long story short, they took it well. As well as I could imagine them to take it, and things have gotten better since.

Now, I know my coming out story wasn’t very dramatic and the only thing dramatic about it, was me being a crying mess. But when people talk about coming out, they’re not simply telling you how they told people they’re not straight. It’s not a story about what tactic they used to start the conversation. It’s not even a story about looking for acceptance.

It’s a story about learning how to love yourself.

Because that’s what coming out really means. It’s the moment where you learn to love yourself more than other people will.

Or, more accurately, learning to love yourself regardless of whether others will or not. Being authentic and real is the easiest thing you can be, everything else just hurts more.

And I know I’m lucky that my friends and family accepted me, but it’s been a few years and I’ve had my fair share of homophobic people in my life, or new friends making a sudden decision to not want anything to do with me. It sucks. It really does. But trying to be something you’re not, sucks even more.

I know it can feel like it’s life or death, and I know in some cases a person really can’t come out when they want to. But, just know that when you get to a point in life where you can safely do it. Do it.

You won’t regret it. Good reaction, bad reaction, it doesn’t matter. You won’t regret it, because being authentic always attracts good people in your life. It might not be right away, but as long as you stay true to yourself and be nothing but yourself, you’ll always find people that accept and love you.

 

Happy pride 2018 everyone.

Good things need to be shared
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