My coming out story back in the 80s ...

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My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Jack C » 9 October 2021, 19:31

Things were pretty rough back then. Anti gay violence was common to a point where you couldn't even file a report with the police as a victim. Coming out is still a struggle for most but there's a ton of resources and support channels out there. I recorded a short/lite version of my coming out experience that also gives a little insight into the past. Feel free to check it out if you're interested in this type of content. Thanks.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4bF8zoiDNA&t=1s
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby NobodySpecial » 13 October 2021, 16:15

Hi Jack C. I'm really surprised that no one has commented yet, so I figured I would. (Also, to be honest, I'm desperately procrastinating doing my taxes which I MUST get done by the 15th -- no more extensions!)...

Anyway, I'm not young, but you have me beat by about 10 years. I thought your video was very well thought out and you seem like a very kind person. I hope you keep doing these videos.

All that being said, I have come to some different conclusions. For instance, I'm not a big fan of coming out. I always had a different take on people knowing my business. I feel like too many people buy into stereotypes -- some positive some negative. I don't like that. For instance, if I'm talented in music I wanted it to be because "I" am talented - not because gay guys are talented. If I'm acting stubborn, I want it to be because "I" am stubborn -- not because being gay makes me stubborn. Anyway, I think you get what I'm saying. Basically, I'm me, and gayness is just one facet of who I am.

Note, I have a wonderful partner. We have been together 18+ years. About 3 years ago I almost died from West Nile. My partner was put in the weird position of having to take over my life. I was in the hospital for 5 weeks from Aug 31 to Oct 5th of 2018. I was sedated for about two weeks most of that time I was intubated. In some ways I was outed by necessity. He was the one who needed to make decisions for me. My nearest of kin would have been two half siblings who while I get along with them fine, live clear on the west coast and thus are in no position to make decisions about my life and well being.

I think thing in many ways have gotten better over the decades as the medical staff was willing to let him be my partner in my care. (We had not made any prior arrangements,) I remember when I was finally coming out of sedation, that he was right there crying over me saying he was so thankful that I didn't die. I love my partner, but he shocked me by the level of his love. It wasn't that I doubted HIM, but that I doubted that any MAN could love that much. That was part of my own stereotypes I had to deal with. Anyway, he was there for me EVERY day. He only went home to sleep and take care of our pets and farm animals. He took a leave of absence from his job, and while at the same time his mom was dealing with cancer and heart issues, his focus was on me. I had done nothing to deserve such devotion, but I'm so grateful that he does. It is like I fell in love with him all over again.

I confess that I am very sexually attracted to certain types of men: manly, hairy, muscular men. (My guy is just right), but to be honest my attraction to men is much more emotionally driven despite the physical attraction. Just like straights, I was raised in a society that the ideal life was to grow up, get a good education, have a good job that you like and are respected, get married, buy a house (I too bought a house in my early 20's), have children, pets, etc. I just wanted that just like everybody else. The only variation was that I wanted the person who was bare-ass and pregnant to be this wonderful, hairy teddy-bear of a man instead of a woman.

I was no saint over before I met my guy, but in the back of my mind that was what I always wanted. I even tried to go straight a few times. It wasn't that I was ashamed of wanting the love of another man, but because it seemed unattainable. Sometimes I felt that if there was some kind of spiritual condemnation to being gay it was desiring a man's love that could never be returned. (It isn't so much about internalized homophobia as that I had a Virgin Mary complex about women's capacity to love vs men's capacity.)

I'm pretty much a loner, but I always wanted that one man always there. I won't go into what I think is behind some of that wanting/need because I write way too much as it is. I'm just so thankful for my partner. We have our ups and downs as it normal for any kind of a relationship, but I could never replace him. I know our lives are probably boring to most. We don't party or go to bars. We just have each other. I could brag about how we have been monogamous all these years. However, given that I have ED from my diabetes, heart, etc., the trophy would be his. However, even if I got rid my ED, I just wouldn't stray. I don't have a porn star's body, but I do have my heart and my word. When I tell my partner I love him, I have to give him my all - including my faithfulness. It is the least I can do for such a wonderful man.

Anyway, I know this is way too long and probably way to sappy -- plus I still have my taxes to do. I just hope you keep doing your videos. We all have stories to tell, and the more they are shared, the more that the younger generations see that while we are all different, life does get better.
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Jack C » 14 October 2021, 18:16

Thank you for sharing your experiences. Yes, we are all different. Coming out is different for everyone. What motivated me was that my mother wanted me to stay in the closet, and I was so fucking tired of the closet. I wanted out in a big and in public too. But that's just me. I'll be uploading more videos talking more about coming out, about gay violence, about the religions, how I met guys back then, first sex, and so on. Stay tuned.
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Peter123777 » 21 October 2021, 14:03

Jack C wrote:Things were pretty rough back then. Anti gay violence was common to a point where you couldn't even file a report with the police as a victim. Coming out is still a struggle for most but there's a ton of resources and support channels out there. I recorded a short/lite version of my coming out experience that also gives a little insight into the past. Feel free to check it out if you're interested in this type of content. Thanks.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4bF8zoiDNA&t=1s



Hi jack,

Have read your post and saw your YouTube video about coming out. Interesting and informative story, sounds like it wasn’t easy at all - figuring out who you are, coming to terms with yourself about your sexual orientation through lots of thinking and also experimenting, coming out to your parents, acquaintances, neighbors and experiencing some sort of rejection by many of them etc.

You said that when you were 6 or 7 years old, you remember that you'd imagined yourself marry to this actor, Doris Day. After that, you’ve never had a “crash”, i.e., feelings for a girl or a woman? Not necessarily being turned on sexually by a girl, but kinda wanted her to be yours in some way?

When you went to this prostitute in Hollywood, you said she couldn’t get you turned on sexually, no matter what she did. Can you expand on that if that’s not too much to ask? (What practices she did? where you not just turned on, but even turned off by some of those practices? What in particular? Did you felt embarrass or anxious by the whole situation? Have you tried intercourse with her? If so, were you “succeeding to perform”? etc).
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Jack C » 21 October 2021, 16:27

Thank you for your interest. I never had sex with any woman... ever. To me, it was just unnatural. My feeling was that it was odd, weird. Definitely uncomfortable. Since I was raised to be straight and thought (as a child) I would marry someone like actress Doris Day, my feeling that sex with women was not for me must have come from my inner self, something innate in me told me that this is not me, the women, sexually, were not a part of my life.

I was never influenced by others or anything events in my life to be gay. I was never molested by anyone. My homosexuality was simply a natural feeling that developed within me. I am clear about his because I never had a gay sexual experience with a man until I was 22. So, no one “made” me gay.

As for the female prostitute, she was dressed in a see-throw, flimsy Roman Goddess outfit. That meant nothing to me. Then she massaged me with light and teasy touches, never touching my penis, but she tried to arouse me everywhere else. But clearly, she did not. The entire experience was a big nothing. Certainly, I was not aroused, but worst, I just wanted her “sensuous massage” to be over, because it wasn’t.

Then I next went to a male massage place, the cute guy (also a prostitute) massaged me teasingly. He never touch my penis, but I was erect like a flag pole, and, in fact, I climaxed without him ever touching my genitalia. Wonderful.
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby pozzie » 21 October 2021, 22:35

Jack C wrote:Thank you for your interest. I never had sex with any woman... ever. To me, it was just unnatural. My feeling was that it was odd, weird. Definitely uncomfortable.


totally the same here
— formerly pozboro
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Jack C » 21 October 2021, 22:39

Thanks buddy! Yes, at some point you just know what turns you on and what doesn't.
Last edited by Jack C on 22 October 2021, 03:13, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby dseag2 » 22 October 2021, 02:35

Jack, thank you so much for sharing you story. Your journey is amazing! I watched your video, and your visits to prostitutes, your coming out to your neighbors before they asked, etc. is so interesting.

We have similar experiences. I was brought up in the Baptist church so I was always taught being gay was a sin. I knew there was something different about me but denied it. In the 70's I had a crush on Olivia Newton-John (like yours on Doris Day).

One area where we differ is that I also had girls who wanted to date me but I actually dated one for 3 years in High School and we were intimate. I also dated a girl in college. Same thing. But I was just never satisfied. So a girl I met in a straight bar told me about how much she loved going to a particular gay bar because she could dance with the guys and they wouldn't hit on her.

Like you, I had no references as to what gay men were like. I assumed they were all outcasts. So I went to this particular bar and sat in the car to see who went in. Wouldn't you know that a carload of drag queens who performed there were the first to go in the bar! (No offense to drag queens at all. I was naive.) But I went into the bar anyway and started to see that there were actually cute, normal-looking guys who were gay. I developed a crush on the bartender and we flirted each time I was there. The funny thing is, I was still going to a straight bar with straight friends and he would work there one night a week. They didn't understand why he threw ice at me, winked at me or gave me extra-large drinks. So I was still living a double life.

Anyway, I quit going to straight bars and the rest is history. My coming out story is this...

It was the late 70's. I was in my early 20's. I had not spent much time at home because I was enjoying my newfound gay life, but this particular Christmas I decided it was time to be with my parents. A guy I had been seeing called me. I was in my bedroom but I sensed my mother was listening in on the other line. I told him we needed to hang up. When I went to the family room my mother was crying and my father was just in his chair watching TV.

After this, my parents fought me when I tried to go out and they sent me to a psychiatrist who told me nothing was wrong with me. I quickly moved out of the house and found a studio apartment. Like you, my father was also the sensible one, who told me that being gay was difficult but he supported me. My mother had more difficulty.

I won't go into the rest of my experience except to say that I had a partner for 6 years, then we split up in 1988. (My mother knew and liked him but asked if I was now ready to marry a woman.) We were both just too young to know what we wanted. I went for a few years without someone special and then met my husband in 1991. We have now been together 30 years. My father (who passed away in 2000) became completely accepting and my mother now likes him more than me.

You are right that the 80's were a very difficult time to be gay, especially with the prejudice around AIDS. I lost many friends during that time and it was painful. Not to mention the fear of gay-bashing. Even before that, I had a friend who was kidnapped outside a bar and murdered in the late 70's.

Like you, I also never came out at work, even in the 90's, because I wanted to advance. I wasn't really out at work until 2000, when I was hired by a boss who was gay. I never looked back. One openly gay co-worker told me I was doing that "young man at home a real disservice by not acknowledging him" but even he now says I probably did the right thing. And my partner wasn't openly gay at work either so he was fine with it. The one area that maybe I differ from you is that rather than telling people I am gay up front I typically let them get to know me first, then tell them. I find that when people relate to you they eventually accept you. But we each have our own approach.

The LGTBQ community is still not where it needs to be, but it has truly come a long way based on our experiences. Thank you so much for sharing a story that feels so familiar!
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Jack C » 22 October 2021, 02:51

Wow! We are alike in many ways. My anniversary is this January 20. It will be our 30th. I will be posting videos soon
about numerous anti-gay violence assaults I encountered in Long Beach CA in the 70s and 80s which caused me to accomplished a partnership (of sorts) with the police chief. We, together, stopped the violence. It is the work I am most proud of. So, stay tuned.
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby AGIS » 23 October 2021, 00:03

I grew up on the bible belt in Alabama. I had no issues coming out. I think a lot of the alienation or even aggression many people feel towards gay people, is based on gay people acting way too outward (not really an excuse for them, but just something I've noticed). I never got any homophobic remarks or attacks in the very conservative South, but when I moved north, it was a different ball game.
people got mad for not checking all the "gay" boxes, as if my sexuality has to define my life, politics, passions etc...
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Jack C » 23 October 2021, 02:04

Hi buddy,
I know what you mean. I'm thankful you had it easier than many of us. The reason I know there was a lot of anti-gay violence is because I created and operated the Hate Crimes Reporting Hotline, and I personally interviewed everyone who called. I will definitely upload a video on that soon, along with many others. - Jack
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby stevie1400 » 24 October 2021, 22:16

Hello Jack. Welcome to the forum. I've not long since joined myself.

I've just watched your Youtube videos and they were very interesting. If you're doing any more I'll be interested to see them.
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Jack C » 24 October 2021, 22:23

I have quite a few more to add... well, I have had an interesting life, and it's not even over. I'm not new to the internet and technology in general, but just recently decided to publish home-made mini-episodes on YouTube. It's nice to be able to share personal experiences.

If you'd like to be notified for future videos, i'll be posting them here:


Jack's Gay Chats:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpIDox ... 8-i82JEtnw


Coming out is such a unique story. I would love to read your story as well.
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Peter123777 » 25 October 2021, 19:09

Jack C wrote:Thank you for your interest. I never had sex with any woman... ever. To me, it was just unnatural. My feeling was that it was odd, weird. Definitely uncomfortable. Since I was raised to be straight and thought (as a child) I would marry someone like actress Doris Day, my feeling that sex with women was not for me must have come from my inner self, something innate in me told me that this is not me, the women, sexually, were not a part of my life.

I was never influenced by others or anything events in my life to be gay. I was never molested by anyone. My homosexuality was simply a natural feeling that developed within me. I am clear about his because I never had a gay sexual experience with a man until I was 22. So, no one “made” me gay.

As for the female prostitute, she was dressed in a see-throw, flimsy Roman Goddess outfit. That meant nothing to me. Then she massaged me with light and teasy touches, never touching my penis, but she tried to arouse me everywhere else. But clearly, she did not. The entire experience was a big nothing. Certainly, I was not aroused, but worst, I just wanted her “sensuous massage” to be over, because it wasn’t.

Then I next went to a male massage place, the cute guy (also a prostitute) massaged me teasingly. He never touch my penis, but I was erect like a flag pole, and, in fact, I climaxed without him ever touching my genitalia. Wonderful.



Good for you budd
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby NobodySpecial » 3 November 2021, 17:18

Hi JackC,
I figured your thread might be a good start to mention a gay themed video I saw that was very interesting. I sometimes watch Gay news. It is called Gay USA and is the longest running show of its type...

(https://freespeech.org/shows/gay-usa/)

Anyway, about a month ago they mentioned some PBS special broadcasted in early Oct. Anyway, I didn't catch what it was about. Sadly, I don't get PBS very easily since I don't get local TV stations, so I figured it simply was my loss...

Well for some reason I ran into it. It is called "Cured" and is about this history of the fight to remove homosexuality from the list of mental illnesses published by the American Psychiatric Organization.

While I knew about bits and pieces of all they have done over the years including shock treatment, etc, I never saw it all put together and explained. I was appalled by what some gay people endured by the mental health establishment in the past..

Anyway, I figured I would put a link to it. Perhaps on your youtube channel you might want to critique this documentary. Here is the link to watch it:

https://www.pbs.org/independentlens/videos/cured/

It is about 55 minutes long, and you might have to enter your local PBS channel. Also for my browser, I had to right click on the image of the video to do full screen otherwise I just saw a narrow band. Yes, I know all this is annoying, but I think the video is worth seeing to understand the topic. Again, individual parts of this are probably something many of us are familiar with, but to see it put together makes it much more clearer how horrible this all was. It seems to me a catch-22 for gays. Fill us from earlier ages that we are sinners (from the religious stand point) that we are sick (from the medical stand point), then wonder why there weren't many "healthy" gay people. In some ways it was self fulfilling for the medical establishment. I'm sure they made lots of money off us telling us we were sick and needed their help.

Anyway, I hope you get to watch it.
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Jack C » 3 November 2021, 20:12

Thank you for your important suggestion about taking on the subject of the treatment of gays (and lesbians) under the psychological designation of mental illness. Not only have I seen the video you referenced, and know about the position psychologists took in regards to it as well as their “treatments” of homosexuality. But I have first-hand experience in dealing with change ministries (as they were - and still are - called).

For those who are not familiar with “change ministries, let me say that they are religious groups (usually) who work with those psychologists who purport to be able to change one’s homosexuality to heterosexuality. To be blunt, this is cruel, psychologically harmful, and the most perverted practice in the field of psychology. I’m proud to say that I was instrumental in closing one such “ministry” (of national acclaim) down in Long Beach.

I didn't think about this topic, but since you mention it, I will do a video on my personal experience in discovering one of the sick organizations and shutting it down. Maybe you will want to subscribe to my YouTube Channel (Jack’s Gay Chats) so you won’t miss it.

It may take a couple of weeks to make the video because this is such an emotional issue for me, it’s difficult to talk about it, but I promise I will. Thank you for your suggestion.
Jack
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Peter123777 » 4 November 2021, 10:00

Jack C wrote:Thank you for your important suggestion about taking on the subject of the treatment of gays (and lesbians) under the psychological designation of mental illness. Not only have I seen the video you referenced, and know about the position psychologists took in regards to it as well as their “treatments” of homosexuality. But I have first-hand experience in dealing with change ministries (as they were - and still are - called).

For those who are not familiar with “change ministries, let me say that they are religious groups (usually) who work with those psychologists who purport to be able to change one’s homosexuality to heterosexuality. To be blunt, this is cruel, psychologically harmful, and the most perverted practice in the field of psychology. I’m proud to say that I was instrumental in closing one such “ministry” (of national acclaim) down in Long Beach.

I didn't think about this topic, but since you mention it, I will do a video on my personal experience in discovering one of the sick organizations and shutting it down. Maybe you will want to subscribe to my YouTube Channel (Jack’s Gay Chats) so you won’t miss it.

It may take a couple of weeks to make the video because this is such an emotional issue for me, it’s difficult to talk about it, but I promise I will. Thank you for your suggestion.
Jack


Can you share more here about your experience with this "change ministry"?
What they're doing there, like what is the "program" they offer?
Have you participated in their "program"? if so, what it was like?
How were you an instrument in closing it down, what actions did you take?
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Jack C » 4 November 2021, 14:48

I will be making a video on this very soon involving what I did in Long Beach. But the short answer is thaty "change ministries" have been totally debunked for decades. You can not make a homosexual heterosexual nor make a heterosexual homosexual through ANY KIND OF THERAPY. Those who say you can are frauds as well as dangerous people. The video will be released soon.
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby NobodySpecial » 5 November 2021, 19:55

Hi Jack,
I think it is great that you are doing a video of something you are familiar with. I hope you will still consider making a comment about the barbaric, non-scientific psychiatric community back in those days.

Note, I too tried two different change groups. However, they didn't bother me too much from a spiritual, mental, emotional state. I think part of that was because my reasoning behind why I wanted to change. I think most gays that go to those groups because of the burden of their religious background compels them to change to stop "sinning". For the most part, I was past that. I just wanted to stop being gay at the time because I couldn't deal with other men. Wanting the love of a man but every time I tried gay relationships, I was hurt. On the other hand, my experience with women (non-sexual) seemed that they weren't as cruel as men could be. Perhaps it was my Catholic feeling at the time that women were like the Virgin Mary -- all goodness... All I know is that I wanted to loose the overwhelming desire to have a man's love since it seemed so unattainable.

Anyway, I cannot write much right now, but just know that I wasn't bothered that much by them as I could see that they were still gay. I will write more later. Note, I still go to church, but my attitude is more like eating at a cafeteria. I take and eat what tastes good, and leave the crappy food for someone else in the line. The flaws that the Catholic church or all human organizations for that matter are because humans are flawed. Again, I'll write more later.
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Re: My coming out story back in the 80s ...

Unread postby Jack C » 10 November 2021, 23:38

My experience is different than yours. First, I did not mean to speak so generally about change ministries. What I experienced were preachers going to the bedside of dying AIDS patients and at their moment of utter vulnerability, the preacher “persuaded” that dying person to “admit” he was not gay. Of course, he was gay. In conjunction with that horrible psychological mistreatment, the AIDS patient would be talked into creating a will giving whatever he had to that change ministry. This was a totally disgusting practice. And this is not what you experienced.
My friend, this is difficult to talk about. I will soon make a video about my experience and how I exposed the malpractice of that change ministry.

Jack
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