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For the First Time

With my little sister on Galiano Island in Canada (yesterday).

I’m so excited that tomorrow morning I will be sharing the last of the six posts that I wrote during the dark weeks and months leading up to coming out.

I’m not excited for the post itself. It’s a difficult look at my fears about dating as someone who is something other than straight. I am excited that when the post is over I get to focus on so much more of the wonderful things that have happened since I came out last Tuesday. I get to put a lot more funny into my blog. And, I get to officially move forward into the future.

This past week has been tough for a lot of reasons, but mostly because I wrote these six posts some time ago, and I feel like the present was out of line with the past. It has been difficult knowing that you all are reading things written at a time (albeit recent) when my heart and soul were so much more burdened than they are now. They were written at a time when I saw no silver lining to the storm I was certain was coming. They were written at a time when I was absolutely certain that my truth really would be the end of me.

I was very much a different person when I wrote that first post than I was when I finally found the courage to publish it. And even in just the 8 days since I posted it, things have changed for me by leaps and bounds.

I remember the morning after I posted it, I woke up, looked up at my ceiling and smiled. I felt perfectly happy for the first time in my life. I was authentically happy. I think I honestly loved myself for the first time, ever. And as someone who has struggled to love himself his entire life, that was the most amazing feeling.

The next night my best friends threw me a little coming-out party. I remember walking into the room just feeling like the world couldn’t beat me. Concerned that I was having a hard time, one of my friends asked me how I was doing with everything. I just smiled and said, “for the first time in my life, I don’t give a crap what anybody thinks about me.” And I meant it. And as someone who has struggled trying to be accepted by others his entire life, that was the most fantastic feeling.

And while I plan to write some of the stories of the amazing love that have been shown to me, just know that as far as I know I haven’t lost a single person that I really feared losing.  In fact, some of the people that I feared losing most have been the most incredible of all. I’ve gotten dear friends back that I had lost. I have even grown closer in some ways to my parents on this trip to Canada that we’re all on (I’ve shared about the trip over on my personal Facebook page).

And, I just feel loved.

As for all of you, I owe you so much. There has been an unending barrage of love and support coming from you. Even in my darkest thoughts you have rallied around me to lift me above them. I don’t know if you will ever know what you have done for me.

Continued on next page.

265 comments
Megs23
Megs23

You totes gained a follower because of these posts, and what you wrote will go a long way in helping the people who need it. Kudos to you, SDL.

pinuptommy
pinuptommy

You just described to a T the day I left my ex-wife and truly admitted to myself that I liked men and that was ok.  I gave myself permission to love myself completely that day.  It was almost an 18 month process to get to that day and I wish I had journaled it as you have here.  You will look back in 10 years and wonder what the fuss was all about.  You have already inspired me with many of your posts and I hope this process helps others along their journey.  Oh, and while you will have ups and downs your in for the best years of your life.  Self joy carries over to EVERY area of your life.  Namaste.

jessTX
jessTX

Ok.  I have never posted before, but as a 27 year old woman living in the Bible belt (Ok, I am a liberal) I would have no qualms about dating someone I was attracted to that was aso bisexual.  I know some who wouldn't, and I find it silly.  You are a very attractive man who will find someone who will love you..all of you, not "in spite" of your sexuality, but including your sexuality.  You are an introspective person, and as one as well I can tell you thin=s can be a blessing and a curse.  You understand your own behavior better and are able to change it, but  know that I often overanalyze my own behavior trying to find the "reason" he didn't like me.  Sometimes we have to get out of our own way.

Good luck! 

Mari A
Mari A

CONGRATS!!!!! :D

CrystalWilson
CrystalWilson

I have been reading your post on and off over the past few months and i recently saw your coming out post a friend pinned on pinterest so i had to look he isn't gay i thought....but this is great you are more of a man today than you were before you came out the world is changing and i hope more men are able to come out after they see all of the support and love you are getting.....Love is defiantly louder! 

Rowena C. Lusby
Rowena C. Lusby

I am very proud and humbled by your journey. Such strength.

abrandname
abrandname

Love is so much louder. Keep making noise!

alanjpearce
alanjpearce

I'm one of your new readers, from Oz, to replace those who have left. You are truly an amazing person (and a great surname to boot! Lol). But seriously, you deserve to be truly happy and I think you are well on the way. It does get better.

Matt Leal
Matt Leal

I've been out for years, but I've never been happy.

PFeldmann
PFeldmann

Where's the "Like to Infinity" button??

Cannot wait for my daily email now more than ever.

knightndaze
knightndaze

I remember commenting (you likely won't remember because it was probably about a hundred million comments ago :) ) on one of your "things I'm going to do to be a better blogger," or words to that effect, posts that anything you did to help you be your authentic self would always be a good thing.

Just wanted to say "I told ya so" :D Here's to things getting better and better for you *raises coffee cup*

LizzieRodden
LizzieRodden

I dont read all the time but sometimes a title will jump out at me. Im glad you came out it can maybe inspire others who need to be honest about who they are. Good luck I love reading your blog. as long as you love yourself it doesnt matter what anyone else thinks. Congraduations on being able to do this. I wish you the best.

Tina Harper Chris
Tina Harper Chris

I can't imagine how liberated you must feel to live in this truth! xoxo

MarthaAtkins
MarthaAtkins

8k people left? Holy cow. How sad for them. And how great for you. More room for your people. I'm glad to be one of them. 

Teresa
Teresa

I am happy to see you love yourself. I don't read this blog all the time since I have two kids to chase after, but have been reading lately your posts. I am proud of you.

hlarimore
hlarimore

I love this picture of you and your sister! You look so happy! Keep it up. It's a great look on you Dan.

Jason T Auge
Jason T Auge

Good post. To your brother (((hugs))). My wish would be that he could get out of there and move someplace safer and more accepting..

SuddenGravity
SuddenGravity

So incredibly happy to 'hear' you say that you are happy to your core. True happiness is too rare a commodity to squander! Enjoy the ride :)

anniekate76
anniekate76

I can't wait to read what's next for you :)

KatherineKyte
KatherineKyte

Change is good! I don't care what you blog about, it always seems to be amazing. Funny, thought provoking...everything is always real, and ultimately, that's what I love about your blog! 

You have a dedicated reader in me, that's for sure! 

<3

Gratefully Changed
Gratefully Changed

How sad that upwards of 8,000 people have dropped this blog. How powerful those 3 little words can be - I Am Gay. How narrow-minded 8,000 people were. The writer of this blog is so talented. The world is a far better place for every word Dan has written. These words have no doubt positively touched many struggling people - gay or not. I know they have for me. Human beings are such a complicated life source. It's difficult for me to understand how someone can be bisexual - how someone could fall in love with someone just for who they are, and not because their name happens to be John or Mary. But, that's not me. I'm only attracted to people of my own gender. I'm not straight. I'm not bisexual. And, that's okay. Dan's writings are so incredibly from the heart, from his soul. The comments after his gut-wrenching, soul-searching feelings-on-paper are also so incredible. The world is a better place because of Dan and his gift to us by way of these blogs. We are honored and blessed to be a part of this experience. 

XS143
XS143

So lovely to see you up beat and comfortable with yourself and really enjoying your life - there is such freedom in being who we are regardless of what others may think of us. My mam always used to tell me 'you, is always good enough, just be the best you that you can be' and she was right. Took me a long time to feel that, but what freedom now I have! I look forward to seeing even more of the amazing you on your journey :)

Peggy
Peggy

I don't follow blogs, but when someone posted your ways you messed up your marriage, I read it and signed on. You are a sensitive, loving and funny guy. Your sexual orientation doesn't change that. I love the idea that you now get to be the person you ARE. The people in your life are lucky to have you and we readers are lucky that you share your life with us. You may have some hard times ahead, but it will be worth it. (Check out your local Unitarian Universalist Church if you want to find an inclusive spiritual community that will embrace you and your son and any other significant person in your life.) Hang in there. Authenticity ROCKS!

elizabethallbright
elizabethallbright

It really does just come down to being Authentic. Having the courage to show up AS YOU ARE, WHERE YOU ARE in THIS moment, and now, and now and now...It's hard to get there, and then you do and wonder why it was so hard. I am still working on finding my authentic self, and for me it's not about sexuality or gender identity. But I truly am not clear on "WHO" I am. Thanks for reminding me to keep looking, with courage and determination.

steeldrago
steeldrago

we have so many questions now, im sure im not the only one. and, as always, do as you do and keep private that that you wish to. 

we wanna know about your first boyfriend. i can say, not really knowing you, that its a different thing for dudes.  and what kinds of men are you attracted to? 

how do you plan to handle the whole thing with noah, understanding that your plans are those of a mouse, especially if you do get a boyfriend. hes already seen you with girlfriends, i assume.      

Brydie Baker
Brydie Baker

wasnt aware that u came out as i have missed a few posts. hope u can feel free and happy within urself free from the pressures to fight off the way u really feel. my brother has a male partner and i see him no differently. he is the same masculine and loving brother i grew up making mud pies with. the world is slowly becoming more accepting and previous posts of yours for example the christian unless gay post have surely done their part to help the process along. stay true to yourself we love u and noah loves u

Jenni H
Jenni H

I am so very glad you changed your blog for the better by coming out and writing all the posts that you have this week... I can honestly say that, unexpectedly, you have helped me on my journey towards living a more authentic life... unfortunately that includes some really hard (but necessary) changes in my own life - but I'm so thankful.

Michelle
Michelle

Another reader gained. Good for you, beinng authetic is showing the courage that others can learn and grow from. Those 8000 readers who left could have stuck around to learn a lesson in love. Good riddance to them. Congrats to you!

Woobie21
Woobie21

I'm so very happy that you've found peace and freedom within yourself, Dan.  So very, VERY happy for you.  <3

kimberleyshepherd
kimberleyshepherd

You have gained at least one new reader. It was very coincidental that I discovered your blog on November 27th. We are trying to be the best parents possible to our fourteen year old daughter who has recently identified that she is bisexual. Thank you for your honesty!

MarenMichelleSmith
MarenMichelleSmith

Hell yes! You! KEEP BEING AWESOME! We love you Dan, and I'm so glad you feel the same way about yourself! I was in the same boat for years, when I finally said screw it! I LIKE ME! and that's what changed EVERYTHING! Love IS ALWAYS louder! Keep it up! :)

Mayim
Mayim

Very happy for you, Dan! 

TanithGarnerReans
TanithGarnerReans

I hope I pray I feel the same authentic happiness you write about so beautifully!  I just love reading your blog!!  Brings up so many different emotions

Arwenis7
Arwenis7

Beautifully said as always Dan.  Nice to know that your heart is happy.

Sara
Sara

Beautiful!! There's a pin on pinterest that has stood out to me and that I think you would really appreciate. It says, "At any given moment you have the power to say: This is not how my story is going to end." This quote has done so much to empower me, its amazing. Check out the board if you want. It has a lot of other great quotes that I think you'd appreciate.  http://pinterest.com/saraaaguilar/word/  I think I actually pined one of your blogs in there too.. Anyway, I think you're wonderful :)

Sam D Maloney
Sam D Maloney

Just keep doing what you've been doing over the past week-- tell the truth about your life, your personal and spiritual journey, your family.

Telling the truth-- the whole truth-- is the point of coming out.

Namaste!

KrisMacFeat
KrisMacFeat

You know I am at the same place in my life about not giving a damn.  Now for me that means dying my hair first purple and then blood red, and just expressing myself more through my look and doing what I feel makes me feel beautiful even if others think I look weird or ugly.  It means I am openly a pagan witch and follow the path my heart and soul feels is right, even if people say it means I'll go to hell.   Being bisexual or bicurious or whatever doesn't have a huge impact on my life.  My husband knows, my close friends know.  I actually did tell my mom when she asked me why I was so concerned about gay rights when I wasn't gay.  I'm sure she just refused to hear it though.  But it's not something I tell people right when we're introduced.  Not that I'm ashamed of it, just that it doesn't really matter to me. 

Ryley
Ryley

"It really does get better" ... my favorite line ever! It DOES! And there will be SO many more people who show even more love for you... You got this! :)

borah54
borah54

Dan, I was hooked at I'm Christian Unless You're Gay.  I have a son who is gay; not a gay son, but a son who is gay.  I was angry at first....angry because his father and I were the last to be told.  That hurt; not the fact that he is gay.  Do I wish it wasn't so? Yes, I do. Because of what society says about those who are anything other than straight. Would I change it if I could?  Absolutely not.  Because then he wouldn't be the man he is.  So there you go, Dan.  I rejoice for my son, you, and the others who have declared who they are, and I rejoice in the freedom of being exactly who you are!  All it takes it love.  All we need to do is love.

Mahesh G
Mahesh G

Hold on, Dan. We still want to hear about your first date with a man-- or the first  time you tell a woman you're dating that you're anything other than straight. And not the details, but your reactions to the first time you're with a man. And if there's a time where you're dating men, does dating seem different with men, or the same? Your perspective will be different being bi, than hearing those same stories from a man who comes out who dated women but wasn't actually attracted to them. You might have to create a new section, "Single Dad Dating."

hols
hols

I stumbled on your blog thanks to your 16 (+) Ways I Blew My Marriage and have been hooked ever since!!  You are a tremendous author and have a foward-thinking perspective on things.  I applaud your articulate and honest account of the events and emotions that have transpired over the past few (fill in the appropriate time frame here).  

Hope you are enjoying your time in canada with your family - I can't imagine feeling of freedom and rush of energy that must surge your veins on a daily basis when you realize that you are free.  Not free in the way you initially thought, when you thought your option for freedom was suicide.  Free in a way where you aren't charged with the burden of carrying the stress that comes with not being honest with yourself about yourself (...might have to read that one again to fully grip what I'm saying...).

As for the subscribing...I wouldn't care.  I think if you continue to treat this blog as if it's your diary, you will find a tremendous amount of success because people are craving the feeling that they are a part of something bigger.  They are looking for something more from their authors - something personal - something real & tangible.  You offer that.

rallen
rallen

@Matt Leal  Your post makes me so sad. I just want to say this: How I feel about others, how I feel about myself, has nothing to do with my sexuality or theirs. I am a straight Christian and I have friends who are not straight. We love one another, not because of or in spite of our sexuality, but because of who we are as people; our depth, our compassion, our senses of humor, things we have in common...or just because the Lord only calls us to LOVE one another. That's all. He loves us. Whether I am happy or sad has nothing to do with my sexuality either. I find joy in the most unlikely places sometimes, & sometimes I have to seek it out!  I hope, Matt, that you can find something to love about yourself EVERY day..something to celebrate...  and then share it with somebody! Don't isolate yourself! We are all unique. We are all wonderful. We are each a masterpiece. And, by the way, there is as much beauty in our struggles as in our triumphs. Much love to you, Matt. I promise you deserve it. Merry Christmas.

Gratefully Changed
Gratefully Changed

@steeldrago This has been quite an uplifting and life-changing time for Dan, for us all. Dan's writing is so unique and so genuine. This blog, this endeavor of Dan's has touched so, so many lives. I first found out about Dan when he wrote I'm Christian, Unless You're Gay. Incredible to say the least. The comments on all the individual posts are from people from all walks of life. Each person who wrote were touched in some incredible way. Dan has opened his heart and soul in his writing. But, some things do need to stay private.  

JoanieC
JoanieC

@borah54 maybe your son knew you would be the hardest person to tell that he was gay and that was why he told you last. There are so many horror stories out there about teens who end up homeless because parents have kicked them out when they came out to them. To a child, no matter what age they are, they want their parents approval. Your son had the most to lose by telling his parents, so maybe he wanted to make sure he was accepted by others before he came out to you. I am sure the thought in his mind was that even if there was a small, very small tiny chance at all that his parents would not accept him for who he is - that had to be one of the hardest things in his life that he ever had to do. I am so glad you chose to accept him for who he is. Good job to you and all other parents who do the right thing.