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Taking the Plunge


I love to write. It’s fundamental to who I am. But sometimes I get blocked. I can sit for hours, knowing I want to write, totally unable come up with something to write about. When I get this way, the best thing I can do is to simply take the plunge and start writing. That’s what I did to get this blog post started. I find that inspiration and insights often come along as I write. So I just started writing.

It’s like that with coming out, too. It’s not possible to know exactly where you’re going when you start the journey. And if you sit around waiting until you get everything figured out, or until the perfect moment arrives – like me sitting around waiting for a writing idea to come into my head – you’ll likely sit there forever and miss all the good stuff coming out has to offer.

By this I do not mean this step should be taken lightly or without preparation. You can use as much preparation as you can get – therapy, a support community, a clear idea of how you’re going to rearrange your domestic life – but sooner or later you have to make the step. And once you do that, the unexpected invariably occurs. The unexpected can be good or bad. Usually it’s some of each – much like the rest of life.

One wonderful thing I discovered was that I could have a better relationship with my sons. I didn’t expect rejection. They had been raised in a gay-tolerant atmosphere and both of them had gay acquaintances their own age. But I didn’t expect my coming out to draw us closer. One of the boys told me several years later that, while he had always loved me, he had always felt a distance between us. Now that I was out, he felt like he knew the real me, and the gap had closed. How great is that?

On the downside, I found that dating was harder than I expected. I had had visions of being surrounded by all sorts of eligible, willing men who would be all over me because I had the coolness and courage to come out. Well, it didn’t exactly happen that way. It’s not like I’ve been a hermit, but dating successfully has required a degree of work and persistence I hadn’t foretold.

Would advance knowledge of either of these things have changed my direction or my timing in coming out? No, probably not. But fear of the unknown certainly did slow me down. As a result, there’s no doubt I missed some good experiences living out.

Coming out isn’t all that much different from any other major life change. It’s like moving to new city to take a great new job. You prepare for the move as best you can, but moving and living in a new place will be full of surprises, both good and bad. You can’t predict who your new friends will be, or what your favorite places to eat will be, or exactly what the commute to work will be like. But you know you’ll have friends, go out to eat and get yourself to the office. So you accept the unknowns, make the move and find your way as you go along.

So, if you’re wondering or wavering, I say, Take the plunge! The water’s fine. Inspiration, encouragement and insights will come to you as you move along the road.

Photo: Snappybex

9 Comments leave one →
  1. Margaret Ellis permalink
    10/09/2012 6:31 AM

    As always, great writing. I suspect that any person in mid-life, whether they have come out, or just gotten a divorce, or whatever their sexual orientation, finds dating a challenge.

    • 10/09/2012 8:42 AM

      I agree. So much of what I’m writing about in this blog is common to all of us.

  2. Patrick permalink
    10/09/2012 11:57 AM

    I’m so very happy for you. To Life!

    • 10/09/2012 3:15 PM


  3. havegottobeme permalink
    10/09/2012 3:55 PM

    Hi David, I love your blog. I read it with my granddaughter, who is recently out. Thanks for sharing. XO Debi

  4. havegottobeme permalink
    10/09/2012 3:58 PM

    Hi David, I love your blog. I read it with my granddaughter; she is recently out. Thank you for sharing. XO Debi

    • 10/09/2012 7:18 PM

      So glad you like it. I hope it’s helpful.

  5. 10/10/2012 6:10 AM

    Amen! Well said, David.

    • 10/10/2012 8:52 AM


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