Zuco Gay Asian Male (41)
How out are you? I’m out to almost everyone except my mom and a few old church friends I have not had contact with for years.
Where did you come out? Singapore
What’s your story like?
I knew about myself since puberty at 15. I did mess around with two straight (well one is definitely straight now married with kids) guys of my same age (15) who were my neighbours but nothing more came out of that. Coming from a protestant Christian background and family, it was almost impossible to come to terms with my sexuality. I went through the whole earnest and extremely sincere praying that the whole thing is just a phase and I would come out of it, but of course nothing came out of it.
Enlisting in the navy was a good break for me. I was busy with work and partying with my shipmates while on overseas trips. That took my mind off the whole issue and it was placed on the back burner. But while my straight shipmates patronised the ladies of the night while abroad, I didn’t. I had the most convenient excuse to use when queried. I was a Christian and this was something that went against my beliefs. Of course the real reason was that I didn’t fancy ladies but didn’t want to risk discovery by seeking out guys abroad. But all that changed when I was posted to a shore unit where I had an 8 to 5 work schedule.
Then all of a sudden, the whole unresolved sexuality issue reared its head on Christmas Eve. Knowing that it was impossible to reconcile the religion that is so much a part of my life and my innate sexuality, I realised that the only way out was to get out of life permanently. But I love my family too much to inflict that trauma on them. So I resolved to cut myself out of their lives and wait till they were gone before ending it all. But of course things don’t turn out the way we plan.
It was in 1995 that I met a friend through one of the sports that I was actively involved in. Unknown to me, he’s gay but was totally unlike any of the other gay men that I had seen whom my sister hung out with. He came out to me in 1998 and we had quite a number of long talks before I finally admitted my own sexuality to him in 1999.
From then on, it was a slow process of deprogramming myself of whatever hangups carried over from religion. In 2000, I finally came out to my sister who was totally cool about it. I know, the fact that my sister has a lot of gay friends should naturally mean that she would be cool about it. But I thought that having gay friends does not make one automatically accepting of a gay brother. Thankfully, I was proven wrong and she has turned out to be the most accepting and supporting sibling I can ever hope for. She even knows and get along well with my close gay friends and out-bitch any of them.
It’s been 11 years since I came out and the road has been interesting with its fair share of dramas, experiences, laughter, tears and lessons. As for religion, well, let’s just say that that is no longer a part of my life. And thankfully so.
Approximately what year did you come out? 1999
Submitted: March 2010