OMG!: Coming Out In Los Angeles

Coming out isn’t easy – This town is famous for fostering the kind of environment where other people’s perceptions of you can make or break your chances for success. If it’s success you’re after, or simply acceptance (or, maybe you just don’t care), it’s still never fun to be judged – to get “the look” from someone when they find out, or to hear a friend mocking someone like you in the street or on the television because they don’t know.

For a long time, I thought my only choice was to keep my “other life” a secret from everyone else – friends, co-workers, even lovers. It’s easier to leave certain things unspoken, lest they be brought to light over the natural course of life. I’ll deal with them then, I’ll say.

But then I found myself doing things and saying things, and even thinking things, that I soon realized weren’t representative of the kind of person I want to be – the person who I believe I am. I’ve never identifeed myself by anything other than my beliefs, but I do agree that what a person says or does can give others an incorrect perception. Lacking the ability to objectively view oneself, the first reaction is that you begin to believe yourself to be someone you’re not. You buy into the lie that you have to act a certain way in order identify with who you are. On that note, I find it particularly strange that even in a city of four million, I tend to meet the same kinds of people over and over again – hipsters, yuppies, industry-types, bohemians, burnouts, and the like.

Social stereotypes are like clothes and can be shed or swapped on a whim. It’s harder to change who you are inside. I know that’s last week’s news and I’ve heard it myself a million times, but when it becomes applicable to your own life it takes on a whole new meaning.

So while I haven’t been living a lie my whole life, I still haven’t exactly been forthcoming with certain truths. But what’s in the past is in the past, and once I start getting honest with myself and the rest of the world – which at the moment, for me is Los Angeles – I can get on with a future where I feel a whole lot better about being me.*

Okay…

Here I go…

I’m a Christian.**

*which is probably a lot different than most people’s opinions or preconceptions about how i should act.
**whew!

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22 Replies to “OMG!: Coming Out In Los Angeles”

  1. I totally understand your plight. At my last job, when I told my coworkers that I was getting married that week because I’d found a place with my then-boyfriend, they couldn’t wrap their minds around the fact that we were getting married quick because we didn’t want to live together as an unmarried couple.

  2. I pretty much think the whole “hating Christians” just because they are Christians, is passe.

    If you want to be Christian cool.

    If you want to be atheist, agnostic, Buddhist, don’t care. As long as you don’t try to convert me.

    But some people do have a really bad reaction to people talking about their religion, especially if it’s an “uncool” one.

    Rock on Christian dude.

    Browne the agnostic, though if I think I’m going to die I sometimes go Catholic ;)

    Just in case you know…

  3. Ya know I had a inkling you were all your life!
    You are a very together dude in the city of 100 mile hour people.

    Your peeps down in SD

    jds / has & BigGuy S

  4. Ah yes, it sure is fun coming out. Sigh. People certainly do look at you weird. But it’s true:

    we’re here, we’re Christian, get used to it! Eh, doesn’t have quite the same ring to it.

    You’re not single, by any chance, are you? Heh.

  5. Your chosen lifestyle sickens me but I will accept you for who you are… even though I don’t approve. Just keep it to yourself – for the love of Barbra think of the children!

    Oh and one other thing: I don’t want any looks from you, my palm tree doesn’t sway to that side of the beach.

  6. Seriously? Comparing coming out as a Christian vs. coming out as gay/lesbian is in poor taste and certainly not a fair comparison. Only in Los Angeles would Christians feel chastised. Your post is so ridiculously ironic I could puke.

  7. Oh god, Kelly, get a sense of humor.

    But you’re right that in Los Angeles, some Christians do feel chastized. They tend to be very sensitive here about being open about their religious views. Whether this is for the better is up for argument.

    But I don’t think many people take issue with what a person’s religion is (unless they’re a Scientologist – people are VERY judgemental about those folks). Actually, I think LA is more open to different religions than anywhere else in the US – perhaps the world.

  8. Oh come on now Kelley.. wish I oould say more but.. (hand covering mouth as I want to scream) Do you feel bad about something as your post is so ridiculously sad. And yes Christains have been chastised for thousands of years for their beliefs theirs & mine. Lighten up alittle this is LA Southern California! RELAX

  9. You must run with a super limited cliquish crowd because it seems this city is suffocated by Christians and Jesus! Everywhere: Jesus murals on walls, Christian stickers on cars, lighted crosses on high points around the city, storefront hallelujah shops, Christian processions in the streets, Christian carnival & fairs, Victory Outreach amplified preaching from back of trucks, and crosses hanging from the necks of millions of Los Angeles citizens.
    Almost every person in my workplace (I work for a government agency) is an evangelist or protestant Christian. Dude, you need to get out more and then you’ll get over this perceived persecution.
    Try being an atheist in a city like Los Angeles and then you’ll know what it means to feel ostracized.

  10. i, for one, appreciated the post. most people have parts of themselves that they feel they have to hide or defend or flaunt, sure. so why hassle one person for their particular albatross?

    and to ex-catholic, yes, this town is covered in christian paraphernalia. but i wouldn’t say it’s hard to be a christian here. i’d say it’s hard to be a middle-class, culturally aware, metropolitan, progressive christian. if you come out with that, the response is generally a raised eyebrow and a, “that’s great but please don’t ever talk to me about that part of your life again.”

    congrats on coming out, cutter!

  11. I get where you’re going with this, and I do think there’s room for discussion about tolerance and it’s many incarnations, but I have to be honest and agree with Kelly that find this somewhat distasteful. I know that self identifying as Christian in a very few parts of this country might be less comfortable it would be elsewhere, but let’s face it: you still still live in a culture where more than 80% of your fellow citizens share your belief system as do nearly all of your elected officials. 43 of our last 43 presidents were Christians. Drawing a parallel between your experiences and those of people who risk religious excommunication, familial exile and potential violence as a part of their day-to-day lives seems inappropriately lighthearted at the least, and purposefully disingenuous at best. Not to mention that the whole Christians-as-victims BS started as a calculated vote getting strategy employed by the religious right and was perpetuated by demagogues like O’Reilly, Limbaugh and Savage (“War on Christmas” anyone?). Maybe I need to get a better sense of humor, but I have a hard time taking the issue lightly when openly admitting other things about yourself can still get you killed in some parts of this country.

    Appropriateness of your analogy aside, congratulations on finding both the courage to recognize things in yourself that you feel are important and the conviction to stand by them. It’s an admirable thing to do and it definitely takes a certain amount of personal fortitude.

    Of course, you’re still writing this under an alias. :p I kid, I kid!

  12. Yes, everyone needs to stop being “inappropriately lighthearted.”

    Sweet Jesus, some of you guys are so easily offended.

  13. Honabonana,my comment was directed toward Cutter, not you. Once again, the eternal problem that “Christians” think they face,”its either all about you, or it isn’t about you”. Give it up.

    The rest of the world isn’t out trying to convert others. When have you gone to Fairfax , had lunch and been accosted by a Jew,begging for your conversion? Never. A rabbai won’t even shake your female hand. (unless he is married to you). Thank G^d.

  14. Yes, everyone needs to stop being “inappropriately lighthearted.”
    Sweet Jesus, some of you guys are so easily offended.

    I know. Every time I tell my black co-workers about how this mandatory overtime totally makes me sympathize with how hard it must’ve been for their ancestors to endure slavery they get all bent out of shape. What a bunch of sticks in the mud!

  15. Coming out as christian will not get your ass beat, kicked out of your home, kicked out of the military or denied the same rights as everyone else enjoys in the USA.

    To compare being gay to being christians is in poor taste.

  16. Coming out as gay is an act of bravery, one that could get you killed in many parts of this City. Coming out as Christian is… what, exactly? Claiming a place among oppressed? Not in America, honey.

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