When I tell my coming out story it is always a positive one. And my experience really was positive and quite easy and uncomplicated compared to other’s. My family and friends were supportive and most importantly they didn’t make a big deal about it or questioned it. They never expressed concerns or distance to my sexuality. It might have made it easier that I was 22 and living an independent life when I first came out to anybody. But isn’t there always a ‘but’? To my story too.
It wasn’t until that age I had matured enough to be honest to myself. Something I many times after wish I had been earlier on. Looking back now, I knew I was attracted to guys for years, but at that time I was too insecure to admit it to myself and even more to act on it. I didn’t feel safe at that time. I grew up in a small city. I was bullied for being different from most other boys for years and I did everything in my power to try to fit in. Friends and family had over the years made comments on homosexuality which made me fear another and less acceptable reaction than the one I actually got when I finally came out. The only guy coming out during my high school years ended up killing himself soon after. That experience alone was a setback to my curiosity.
The whole experience gives me a feeling of having missed out on so much. Sex, love and sexuality wasn’t really a part of my youth in a scale I wish it had been. I can’t tell tales of experimenting with e.g. a cousin or a peer friend – neither girl or boy. My fear of my own sexuality made me fear sexuality in general.
So when I finally started dating and sleeping with guys around the same time I came out it was a huge redemption. So many frustrations were lifted. But it also left me with a feeling of lacking the experience and experimenting. This day I can still envy the stories others can tell from their youth. I didn’t grow with my sexuality. My journey started in my twenties and I felt I had so much to catch up on. To some extend I still feel that.
The experience gives me a fear of missing out once again. It makes me very much aware of not holding back or missing out on opportunities when it comes to sexuality, sex and fantasies. Sometimes it might even push me to do things that are not always thought through. But hiding for all those years also taught me to stop living on other’s expectations or norms, as it didn’t give me any satisfaction. For the same reason I refuse to hide or be ashamed of who I am – a guy who enjoys sex and isn’t afraid of expressing sexuality.
Coming out was the best move in my life. I find it easy to be open and honest about my sexuality. The freedom I experience now I just wish the younger Mikael had experienced too.