LGBT Feature: Anonymous Story
In our feature, the term gay refers only to the attractions and orientations of individuals and not to their sexual activity. The writers have left out any reference to positions on moral and political questions to avoid polarizing discussion.
For those of us who are not LGBT, we hope these stories provide a glimpse into the lives of some of our brothers and sisters at Calvin. For those of us who are LGBT, we want you to see that you are not alone, and the Calvin community cares deeply about you.
Many of the students who are LGBT have not experienced a supporting, caring community at Calvin, but after we hear stories and place a face on an issue, we may still take our differing positions, but we will refuse to do battle. Join us as we listen attentively, respond thoughtfully and love graciously.
I’m a gay student at Calvin, and fear of losing what I love the most is why I’m choosing to remain anonymous.
I’m also worried that I would be stereotyped as the token gay guy, instead of people actually getting to know me. So to help you get to know me, I’m going to tell you part of my story.
Before I told anyone that I was gay, I was terrified that my perfect life would fall apart if anyone knew. After so many years of repressing everything, I finally worked up the courage to talk to a friend.
It felt like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. This secret that I had been carrying for most of my life wasn’t just mine anymore.
I finally had someone who could bear the weight of this secret with me. Having someone I could process and be open with has helped me with my thoughts toward faith and sexuality, my feelings, my frustrations and my questions.
Over time, I’ve also realized that I find my identity in Christ and not in being gay. And while it’s easy for people who are gay to find their identity in their sexual orientation, it’s important to realize that first and foremost, you are a child of God.
Having someone you can talk to is also incredibly helpful for that person. I am the first gay person that my confidante is close with, and because of that, her views on people who are LGBT have changed drastically.
Our friendship has also given her space to process and form educated opinions on this topic with some knowledge of what it is like to be gay.
While I’ve shared my sexuality with my friend, I don’t want to take the risk of sharing my orientation with everyone.
I love what I do and the people I work with at Calvin, but I’m only a sophomore, and I would have to deal with the consequences of coming out for two and a half more years.
I worry that my chances of holding more leadership positions in the future might be smaller, and I don’t want to risk that.
I’m also a leader at my church and most church leaders and parents would be pretty upset to find out that a gay man is a youth group leader.
I love my church, and the people there are the reason why I am who I am today. I can’t risk giving up serving at my church in order to come out to everyone.
I honestly haven’t even had an actual conversation with my family about this. They do know that I’m gay, but when they found out two years ago, my dad told me that I was f——d up in the head, and my mom told me that I would never see my family again.
Nothing has been mentioned since, and while I know that they’re more understanding now, I couldn’t put them through the pain of seeing me share this with everyone I know.
I would encourage anyone who is scared to come out to gather the courage to tell someone. It takes away so much of the shame and guilt that comes with holding a secret this big and relieves the burden of carrying something this heavy alone.
It may seem like your world will come crashing down, but it won’t. And I’ve found that the personal relationship you have with your friend will hugely outweigh any stereotypes he or she may have about gay people.