Wednesday, August 02, 2006

An E-mail Unsent

Dear Papa

I know that you and I have always have had different ideas about the way I should live my life. I know that you have never approved of my lifestyle. I know that you have tried time and time again to find young women for me to marry. I do appreciate that effort, honestly. But it is not what I want in my life.

I have always felt as though I was always failing in your eyes. [older brother 1] and [older brother 2] went on to become priests and I can tell how proud you are of them. [older sister 1] and [older sister 2] got married before they were 25 and I can see when your grandchildren are sitting on your lap that you could not ask more from them. Even [older brother 3] has married and he has a family to carry on the family name.

That is a fine lifestyle for someone who wants it. I do not want it. I have never wanted it. I have never wanted to get married. Even the girlfriends that I did bring home, you never approved of them.

You spoiled me. You spoiled the rest of the family, but with me it was different. You spoiled me because it was your way of taking care of me after Mama died. But your spoiling me did not make up for not being there for me. But that is another matter entirely.

What I am trying to say is that I am not like the rest of the family, I never have been, I never will be. I do not fit in. I have always accepted that.

What I did not know was the deepest reason why I did not fit in with all of you.

I have come to accept over the past month or so that I am gay.

I know that that is something you have no desire to hear any son of yours say. But I cannot change it, I cannot be "cured", and I would not want to be.

This is who I am. I am still your son, and I still have every bit as much love and respect for you as I have always had. You are still my father.

To me, that is all that matters.

Your son,


At 10:50 PM, Blogger Steve said...

I too have many e-mails written up, but unsent.. And they are for all types of reasons, not just the gay thing.. I think it is a good way to voice out your frustrations, and it feels more definitive on paper, e-mail - whatever. But - I have been advised, and do advise to you, that as hard and impossible as it may seem, you would probably want to come out to your father face to face. It will show that you are being a man about the situation, are not afraid, accept yourself for who you are, and that you are taking control of your life.

E-mail is terribly impersonal, I do not advise telling your immediate family in this fashion.

Believe me - I have nightmares about the day I have to do this as well to my father - it is going to be incredibly uncomfortable for me, as for you.

Wait and see what happens with the job interview before you cross that bridge. You may not want to make this leap yet.

good luck man...

At 11:06 PM, Blogger Jay said...


There are times I can see sending a letter. Not ideal, but I think it might be the way for some. Especially if you think he is going to get violent.

But not an email. If you are going to send a letter, at least write it out.

Personally, I wouldn't include the bit about him spoiling you. You don't want to blame him. It is not his fault. It just is. If you have other issues, take it up with him at another time.

I would skip the whole bit about your girlfriends. Again, it sounds like your blaming him.

If he disowns you, are you secure enough that you don't have to go out on the streets? I know you have a job, but I am guessing that you might depend on him for money. I could be wrong. I know you're a rich kid, but it doesn't mean you have your own money.

I like the way the letter ends. It shows that you are still the same kid that you were before he read it. It shows you still love him, and almost urges him to express the same feelings toward you.

At 11:18 PM, Blogger alessandro said...

I am not sure if my father would get violent. He might. I am likely too much of a coward to say it to his face anyway. He has always scared me a little.

And yes, I have a well-paying job. I stopped depending on my father for money when I moved to Rimini. He sends me money at my birthday and at Christmas, but I make enough to support myself.

It is just the isolation of being disowned that I would rather not face.

At 11:59 PM, Blogger john said...

I think that family are the most important people one can surround themselves with--I love that you ended this letter with "To me, that is all that matters".

At 12:30 AM, Blogger Not so Single Guy said...


I think I have written the same letter to my father. I have other brothers who are not priests but they are married and doing things that make my father proud. I worry about his reaction and whether he will be disappointed. I do not want to hurt him but I need to live my life and find love in my own way. I have accepted the way I am and I am happy the way I I hope he will love me enough to accept me.

At 3:21 AM, Blogger Gray said...

Good comments from everyone. I've never thought about writing a letter to my family. I would definitely rather be face-to-face with them when the news breaks. But, I can see that it would possibly open some areas for discussion that I might not consider talking about (if and when the time comes). Thanks, Alessandro, for the idea.

At 10:22 AM, Blogger Ward Cleaver said...

A great personal exercise of the heart to help organize thoughts and feelings but please don't use it for real.

Great blog!

At 3:06 PM, Blogger The Brian said...

Good luck A whatever you decide to do. : )

At 3:35 PM, Anonymous dan said...

same here, I just wouldnt want to lose my family, although inside I know their love would coninue and they'd have to accept eventually anyway.

I agree it's a good way just to get the ideas down, prepares you for whenever the time may come.

have a good week, later.

At 10:06 PM, Blogger Gumby said...

That is a very touching letter. It pains me so to see anyone have to go through this crap just because we love someone of the same gender. I wish you peace...

At 1:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good for you, I am an Canadian Italian and I understand the culture and traditions that you must have had to contend with, let alone your family. My cousin is gay and it took him a long time to tell his family. I'm proud of you. Enjoy your free life. Be happy.


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