Outing and the Glass Closet

(This is just a personal rant.  I’ll hopefully have a more interesting post up for this month’s Carnival of Aces shortly.)

I haven’t posted anything new here in two months.  It’s not because I don’t have anything which I’d like to say though.  Instead, it has to do with a reluctance brought about by a funny thing that happened to me recently.  Simply put, last month I was outed to my family as asexual.  (It was a simple matter of an indiscretion of mine being caught by a relation online.  The details aren’t important here.)  That’s not really such a funny thing of course.  Outing people, in this case finding that they have a secret which they’re keeping for some unknown reason and then deciding that whatever the reason might be it cannot possibly be important enough not to make their secret common knowledge, is hardly proper.  I would have thought that such a thing should go without saying, but apparently in so thinking I was neglecting to think about reality.

Of course, I did realize that such a thing could happen to me.  After all, I’ve been giving workshops and interviews on asexuality recently, using my legal name to boot.  I haven’t really been hiding it so much as simply not talking about it when I go back home to visit, that is, if there’s really such a difference.  Nonetheless, knowing that anything I say here might effectively be said to everyone back home, I decided not to say anything for the time being, until I’d have a chance to talk about it all when I’d be over for the holiday.

However, for the entire three weeks of my stay, neither I nor my parents raised the matter.  Perhaps they’re no more keen to talk about it than I am.  Perhaps they simply respect my choice not to talk about it and won’t bring it up themselves.  I obviously don’t really know the reason, seeing as how we haven’t spoken about it.  However, it was kind of awkward because I know not only that they know but also that they know that I know they know.  It’s sort of like I’m in the ‘glass closet’, but only that here other people don’t just see me in the closet but they can also see me looking out at them and carrying on as though I weren’t in a closet at all while clearly knowing otherwise.  Fun.

It’s really quite silly.  I’ll probably raise the issue sooner rather than later, but for the same basic reasons which held me back from talking about it earlier.  “In case of emergency, break glass”, as they say, and so δοίη τις ἀνδροκμῆτα πέλεκυν ὡς τάχος.  Meanwhile, I’ll continue to carry on here as usual.

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