Monday, July 21, 2008

Wait for it...

Sure, I get everyone all excited with my talk of coming out to my oldest friend, and then... nothing. There was nothing nefarious about it, I assure you. It was a lukewarm response at best, and there was other exciting stuff that happened, which I wanted to focus on more.

Since I've written coming-out letters to a couple people, and they were materially the same, if not identical in places, I think I've gotten the set of talking points down pretty well. I managed to say all the things I wanted to get across, and only ventured into teary-land once.

As for his response, perhaps room-temperature to slightly cool would be a good description. It seemed like at first he just didn't believe me, or maybe didn't want to believe me. He also didn't have much of a foundation for what the heck I was talking about; it seemed like he had most of the stereotypes running through his head, and no real facts. And of course those stereotypes are pretty bad (thank you, Jerry Springer). So he was somewhat resistant to the idea. No, that's an understatement; he was rather resistant to the idea.

I also gave him permission to out me to his wife. I thought for a long time about this; I really don't know her all that well, but what I do know, does not inspire me with confidence for a positive response. He knows her a lot better (of course), so he might know how to frame things in a way that she would (a) understand, and (b) accept. The big stumbling block: she's a preacher's kid. Not only is she a preacher's kid, but she's one of the goody-goody preacher's kids. You know, the ones who are daddy's perfect little angels, never do anything wrong, are extremely religious, all that stuff. When the subject of his wife came up in the conversation, he said "expect reduced interaction". As in, he expected that she'd freak, and disallow him to talk to me much, if at all. Which I half expected anyway.

I suggested that he do some web searching, and learn something about what it means to be transgendered, since it was pretty obvious that he didn't know much about it. I'm a big believer that education can solve a lot of problems - it's easy to hate somebody when you don't know anything about them, but once you know someone, and have a better idea just what they're going through, it's a lot more difficult to work up a bunch of nasty for them.

So. Lukewarm at best. I halfway expected this to be like driving into a minefield, and I'm just waiting for the kaboom.

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