The holidays are quickly approaching and more than likely, you are looking forward to them. You are completely out to your family as a lesbian or gay man and they love you for it.
Here’s the catch, your girlfriend or newest boyfriend is totally in the closet. How do you handle this?
Advice on dating someone in the closet during the holidays can be useful, especially when tackling nosey family members or coworkers.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you decide to take your closeted partner to the holiday parties or around your family this year:
Be patient. If your partner is still in the closet, chances are they are anxious about being themselves around others. If you are ok with their being in the closet for the time being, give them some space. In time, they may feel comfortable enough to come out to others in time.
Offer support. Think back to when you first came to friends and loved ones. If you were nervous about doing so, they probably are too. Coming out is a personal experience for each person. Dating someone who is in the closet can be both fun and scary at the same time, both for you and your closeted partner.
Let them know what you think of dating someone who is in the closet. Are you ok with it? Does it bother you? Sharing your feelings might open up the lines of communication with them. If they know they can talk to you about things, even if you might not be ok with it, at least they have an outlet for their fears related to coming out to others.
How have you dealt with dating a closeted lesbian or gay man? What did you learn from the relationship? What advice can you offer others who may be spending with holidays this year with someone who is still in the closet?