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Living Life in the Closet. Will the GLBT community ever find peace and happiness?

Updated on June 11, 2016

Life in the closet

the uncomfortable and cramped lifestyle of living in a closet
the uncomfortable and cramped lifestyle of living in a closet

I am what i am

My life in the closet - Repression in a hostile world.

Bigotry and intolerance kills.

Hatred is self defeating and serves no purpose.

Oppression is wrong on every level, and defeats equality as expressed in our very constitution.


"My Life in the Closet".

What an awful term.

What an awful life.

I am dedicating this story to fellow hubber calpol25 and all other gays who have experienced this hatred in their lives.

Reflections of the past

After my recent retirement, i began reflecting on my life and did not like what i was seeing.

I was always independent, had a fairly decent job in the medical field, made a good wage, and managed a quiet comfortable life for myself.

After all, i didn't need very much in life.

One can't fit too many things into the small confines of their closet. So, conscious choices were made as to what to allow into that closet so as not to smother myself with things that could possibly eventually harm this protected little limited and safe life i had created.

The clothes we wear have to be comfortably fitting. Colors neutral, mainstream, and basically banal so as not to draw any attention to one's self.

I couldn't be too fat, or too skinny, so i maintained middle-of-the-road comfort to fit my middle of the road clothes.

My "friends" had to be chosen carefully. People who "looked" or "acted" outside my middle-of- the-road life could not be allowed access to my closet. After all, one is not only judged by the clothes we wear, but the "people" we associate with, or the company we keep.

Then there is the problem of one's "relationship status" to consider.

Loners were (and still are) shunned. Flamboyant lifestyles were to be avoided. Opposite sex friendships always ended in tragedy. Straight women always wanted more. They demand to be treated as equals, but if you were not interested in them sexually, or romantically, then there was 'something wrong' with you.

Same sex friendships equally had the potential for disaster. Guy friends always had that need to prove they (had to be), (or were), (or wanted to be) seen as being a bigger dick than their friends. [And that is both figuratively and comparatively speaking]. So, if you didn't date the opposite sex and score, then brag about it, then there was 'something wrong' with you.

Finding a practical solution and re-inventing the past

The solution to this dilemma?

Simply move hundreds of miles away from everyone who knew me, to start a new life with a clean slate. I could not let my lifelong friends know who i really was, and did not want to take the chance of being ostracized by my family, or worse, make them also the target of hate and shame by the ignorant outsiders.

In order to overcome these obstacles of my past, that seemed to be the inevitable plague of the unmarried man (either gay or straight), I had to find a way to compensate for my short comings (societal speaking, of course). I found myself back to, and living in, a fresh new closet, though devoid of baggage from my past.

So, i 'invented' a past life to be able to comfortably stay in my closet.

When people asked (and they always will, for nosiness is just the nature of the sizing-you-up beast within all of us), i would spin my tale of woe that would win hearts, sympathy, empathy and hosts of other horrible emotions to surmount. These obstacles were easily traversed once the foundation was set in the concrete recalling of my sympathy evoking past .

My story? Simple, yet genius in its simplicity:

I was a grieving widower, who lost his wife and two children in a tragic accident involving a drunk driver. Too tragically painful to talk about in any detail. And when the supposedly well meaning friends, acquaintances and co-workers did their inevitable "let me fix you up with a nice girl" thing, it was easy to rationalize not seeing them again after a date or two. I was still too traumatized by my past loss to get involved in any relationship.

Now i was freed up to build my life of independence. I saved my money, bought a modest home (thus expanding my closet to include more space, and privacy), bought a modest mid-sized car, got a dog and cat and proceeded to live my life in total silence and anonymity.

I was immersed in my little middle-of-the-road lifestyle of quiet comfort and solitude.

Living the lie

When I re-visited my hometown friends and family it was easy to assure them that i was indeed doing well, 'dating' a wonderful girl and contemplating marriage some day.

In reality, i had met a couple of lesbians with whom i had become very close to. We helped one another out by providing each other with required dates at such functions as family affairs, office parties, and other social functions. Life was good. I was perfectly happy and content in my closet with the door now just slightly ajar. I even met a wonderful boyfriend, we dated, (double dated with our lesbian friends), fell in love and moved in together.

He was just like me. We shared our closets. Maintained a 3 bedroom home, socialized with our lesbian counterparts and wallowed in our happiness. Life was indeed good.

But, then life happens. Happiness ends. Tragedy struck our happy home.

My life partner, my soul mate, my lover, my friend, died - And believe it or not - in an auto accident involving a drunk driver!!

I had told that story about my past so many times it had become a real part of my past memories. But, now the pain and loss was real, and extremely hard to bear. There is no pain in this life that could equal that of losing your soul mate and having to hide that pain away with you in your, once again, solitary closet.

Coming of age

Now, i am retired.

The closet door is wide open.

No-one can hurt me out there in that evil world of hatred and deception.

But alas, i am too old to re-capture all that was lost from my wasted past.

The moral of this story?

Live your life to the fullest. Live each day as if it is your last. Live your life for yourself. Live it not, in the shadows of what someone else thinks it should be.

I truly regret not having been more pro-active in fighting for equal rights for all people who are forced to spend their lives hiding in that proverbial closet. Take my advice for your own happiness and peace of mind.

  • Take the closet door off its hinges. Break down the walls of confinement. Shout out loud for the world to hear you: I am what i am, and what i am, needs no excuses.
  • Adopt a "new attitude" of - If you do not like what you see, or who i am, there is no room in my life for you.
  • Do not be a slave to an ignorant society, or to religious bigotry.
  • Don't ever let someone else's fears, ignorance, or unfounded religious beliefs dictate or influence you; or impact your life's quest for happiness.
  • Do not give anyone that much power over you. No-one deserves it. No-one will ever earn it.
  • Live your life to the fullest.
  • Do that much for yourself.
  • Do it for me.

by: d.william 08/31/2010

Anti hate video. This discrimination must end.

No more wasted lives

When this article was written 6 years ago, i never dreamed that there would be a totally exhilarating change in the world around me in such a short period of time; although it was centuries in its coming.

In spite all the backlash by ignorant religious radicals, and god fearing so called 'Christians', the world as i knew it finally grew up.

When President Obama declared same sex marriages an exercise in equal rights, and the supreme court agreed, it was life changing for millions of Americans who had been forced to hide from public view and endure discrimination in every walk of life (housing, work, social venues, religion, restaurants, businesses - the list was endless).

I could very easily be a hater of all of those people filled with that hateful bigotry that kept my personal life from being more than just an inconvenient lie that denied freedom and happiness to myself and millions of others like me. But negativity will never change the past. I am overwhelmed and over joyed that the future is now brighter and better for the generations to come.

The radical conservatives will continue to exercise their rights to hate, judge, and abuse, but their power and control over such a huge minority will only diminish and eventually totally disappear in time to come.

Updated 11/06/2016

© 2010 d.william


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    • d.william profile image

      d.william 6 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

      In the world that I grew up in, being single was considered tabu, and a sign of something negative, not only in personal lives, but in the work force. And when i say, by the world i grew up in, i mean, a 'christian' society, with their warped sense of reality, who live their entire lives around a book of fair tales, and spend all their time judging others, and pointing fingers, then thinking they are doing 'god's work'. I find that quite sad. The world of the Roman Catholic church. The greatest joke on humanity of all times.

    • profile image

      ruffridyer 6 years ago from Dayton, ohio

      I found it sad that you felt it necessary to make-up a false tale of a wife and two kids killed by a drunk driver. There are straight men&women that never marry. If a person remains single it is nobody's business why.

    • d.william profile image

      d.william 6 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      Thank you so much for reading and your uplifting comments. I would expect nothing less from those wonderful people in Boston. I actually lived in Providence, but spent way too much time in Boston. (My favorite place in the world). I often wish i had never left that area for here, but would not have changed the experiences that i have had by moving either. Too bad we could not experience both at once. Maybe next lifetime. thanks for reading.

    • Mrs. J. B. profile image

      Mrs. J. B. 6 years ago from Southern California

      You my friend deserve a standing ovation. I am so blown away by your hub. I got chills while reading it. How beautifully written and said so gracefully. Hats off to you!!!

      Now that your closet's wide open, life must be seen through different eyes, thoughts etc. very cool..

      Even though things have changed and your soul mate is gone... BABY swing it... Live... Love. Your partner would have wanted that for you.. Heck I will come party with you Boston style anyday!!!

    • d.william profile image

      d.william 6 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      Thank you so much for reading and your kind comments.

    • atlovesbm profile image

      Anna 6 years ago from Orange County, California

      This is a very beautiful but tragic hub. Thank you for sharing this. A lot of people take life for granted and I'll admit that I do too sometimes but after reading a story like this.. makes me realize how precious life is. You are an amazing writer and a very strong individual to have gone through what you have and to still be standing.

      Much Love.

    • d.william profile image

      d.william 6 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      Thank you so much for reading and your kind comments.

    • neeleshkulkarni profile image

      neeleshkulkarni 6 years ago from new delhi

      great to see a person who has been thru so much and yet is so grounded.

      you really know LIFE friendand write very well about it

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 6 years ago from Southern Illinois

      OMG,This brought a tear.Your words so true.The world,so full of hate.I like you,am a retired R.N. You are an excellent writer. Your words," The creator is my strength", tells me you are real and well.

      Love and Peace

    • donotfear profile image

      donotfear 7 years ago from The Boondocks

      Wow...deep and meaningful.

    • d.william profile image

      d.william 7 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      Thank you for your comments and your compassion. That was many, many years ago, and i have since come to terms with all things in life. I am as free and happy as anyone can be in this life. The Creator is my strength and my true source of compassion and understanding in a cruel and unforgiving world.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town

      This is a tragic story, I wish I could take your pain away.

    • Alison Graham profile image

      Alison Graham 7 years ago from UK

      This is a very beautiful and moving hub. How wonderful that you are able to write this and share it with us. I guess it will resonate with many of us who feel the need to run away from our past for many different reasons but the effect is the same, a life 'closed off' from the richness it could hold. Thank you so much and so glad to have found your hubs.

    • profile image

      Elijah George 7 years ago

      I David this is very beautiful My Life in The Closet

    • calpol25 profile image

      Callum 7 years ago from Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (At Home With My Wonderful Partner)

      I love this hub and thank you so much for dedicating it to me, Im glad that I have inspired you and to know that my work has helped you in any way makes me humble. You truly are a good writer and im glad you kicked those doors wide open of the closet :)

    • RedElf profile image

      RedElf 7 years ago from Canada

      Glad you're finally out, my friend. " thine own self be true..."

    • profile image

      daj 7 years ago

      Life is only what we make it.... grab it while you can!