June is Pride month. For all the good things in my life, I had a dream about an old friend who, to the best of my knowledge, stopped communication when I came out to him and his wife.
He stayed in the Navy after I left at the end of my enlistment. After I came out to him, he said all the right things about friendship and not letting my confession change things.
About a year afterward, he and his wife welcomed their first child, a son, into the world. Hal and I bought the baby a present, a hanging mobile for his crib. We drive to my friend’s house to give them the gift. Their cars were there, but they didn’t answer the door. We figured that the new parents were exhausted, so we left the present on their doorstep.
So far, nothing to indicate a problem. However, over the next few weeks, every attempt to contact my friend and his wife met with silence. Voicemails went unanswered until I gave up. The feeling of rejection really hurt.
Without any contact from my friend, Hal and I were left to figure out what happened on our own. We settled on two possible scenarios.
The first scenario was that my friend was working on getting his commission as an officer (I found out he got it through sources years later), so he decided that having a gay couple as friends would negatively impact his career.
The second scenario is the one that really hurts to think about. That is when their son was born that they suddenly became concerned that somehow Hal or I was a threat to their son. Nothing could be further from the truth, but I can’t control what people choose to believe.
In the long run, none of this matters. I hope he and his family are all doing well. I would rather be forgotten than be remembered as a career impediment or a threat to his family. After 20 years, it is time to stop referring to him as my friend.
Hal and I are still together and better than ever. I hope I never dream about that part of my past again. It isn’t worth it.
I’m proud of who I am. I don’t need to spend time worrying about those who don’t care about me.