Saturday, 22 September 2012

Coming out to Friends: One Time I Didn’t, Five Time I Did

It is not easy for me to come out of the closet as heteroflexible, kinky, and poly. My husband’s family and friends are very conservative and my job is weirder than weird. I am a heart-on-sleeve kind of girl though, so I like to come out to my closest friends.

The easiest way of doing this is usually by discussing sex-positive approaches to gender and sexuality. One time it went very badly:

The scholar (30 years): Sex-positive people all wear leather and sit at the back of rooms masturbating. They are just weird and hate people who like normal sex. (Needless to say, this was the end of the conversation. I never outed myself in any way. I’ve hardly spoken to her since. Her attitudes diminished her in my eyes and made me sad.)

Most people I’m friends with are at least sex-positive. If they are, I admit to being a bit kinky. The joy of this is that people judge me based on their own perception of what kinky is. A friend of mine described himself as kinky because he once had sex in a forest. Other people assume it means light bondage, others anal sex. Very few assume it means being used as a toilet. If people show genuine interest, a caring attitude, and openness, I add a little more to the kinky discussion. Sadly most people never get that much out of me. Those who are the most open, and least likely to reject me, I come out to as poly.

The results are always different. Here are five examples:

The blogger (33 years): My wife and I have said that if anything happens, for whatever reason, we shouldn’t feel bad about it and we shouldn’t feel the need to tell each other. Lifelong monogamy is unrealistic.

The vicar (47 years): So, are you are swinger? Your life must be very complicated. I don’t want to know if you do anything with anyone I know. I’m here for you with the rest of it. As long as you are happy and Nic is ok with it.

The receptionist (33 years): Is Nic ok with it? I can understand if it’s a bit weird for him. I’m jealous, I wish my husband would accept that. He’d divorce me if I even suggested it.

The teacher (40 years): Oh, good for you. I had a year-long relationship with another woman and my husband was ok with it. We’ve been so much happier since.

The writer (32 years): Oh, ok, I’ve only ever kissed one person, I’ve never had sex, and I’m happy. Isn’t it great we are all different!

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