Coming out of the (Agnostic) Closet
When I started this blog, I was concerned about what the reaction would be. Obviously this is a subject that people have a lot of emotional ties to and I had no desire to be inflammatory or divisive. That said, I had come to the point where my need to live authentically far outweighed my need to avoid conflict or my fear of others’ disapproval, so there wasn’t much of a debate to be had. It was time for me to come out of the closet.
I think any time someone comes out of the closet, regardless of the closet, they are risking losing some relationships. This is never the intention, but its always a possibility. I know that some might find this to be an impossible hurdle to overcome and that saddens me. But if the result of me being honest about who I am is that you reject me, then what have I lost? And those that stand by me are my true friends because they know and love who I really am, not what they want me to be.
I know that there are those of you that are still searching for a way to respond because you wholeheartedly disagree with me. This might take a while for you to sort out, but I’m okay with that. In the end, it isn’t a requirement that you agree with me. I just hope that you don’t equate accepting me as a person with endorsing all of what I believe. We can respectfully disagree and it doesn’t have to restrict our relationship. Sure things might look a little different then they used to, depending on the context of our relationship, but authenticity is the life blood of all healthy relationships.
Overall the response has been amazing. I really appreciate all of you that have commented, emailed, called, or found other ways to engage with me. The feedback and conversations have been so great, much more so then I had hoped for. I’m excited to continue the conversation. Either way, there’s certainly no stuffing me back in the closet now.
***Update: In my final edit of this post, I didn’t catch that I missed one very important word in the title. I knew something was going on when I saw that I had more hits in the first three hours then ever before in a full day. Sorry for the confusion, but hopefully most of you understood that I was referencing the agnostic closet. I must say though, that this is my favorite typo of all time!***
Ok, so let’s be clear, if I’m your aunt am I still “engaged” with you? Seems kinda weird, but I definitively want to stay in touch. My first question is why WEREN’T you living authentically before? That seems to me to be someone else’s quote, “To thine own self be true.”. Keep the main relationship open…seek and you WILL find. PS: I am emotionally attached to you not your blog. 🙂
Excellent question! Yes, for better or worse, you are stuck with me. 😉
As far as your other question, I would say that I wasn’t fully authentic initially because my feelings and thoughts were in transition and I wasn’t really sure where I stood. Once I had some clarity on the issue for myself, there were several reasons that I wasn’t more publically open about things. The main one, however, was that I didn’t want to hurt the people closest to me. Eventually, I just decided to pull the Band-Aid off quickly rather than delay any longer. Now I wish I had done it sooner, but such is life.
Thanks for always being there for me! Love you!
How long have you been in the closet? Or shall I say how long ago did you put yourself in the closet? Because I don’t think you were forced in there (according to your posts). I think you’ve been thinking about this a long time, but when we first became friends and I sat on your foot at the soccer game, were you feeling this way?
No, I wasn’t really forced into the closet, but by virtue of allowing people to believe something about me that wasn’t true, that’s where I found myself. I would say that I’ve been in the closet for about 2-3 years, with about a year before that spent questioning and processing. Before that I was fully committed to my Christian faith.
Glad you willing to share you process with us. Hugs, Jesse
This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man
Thanks Jesse! Hit me up next time you are in the area!