Happy Holidays! This time last year due to unresolved family issues I decided to stop talking to my parents. I didn't talk to them for 10 months. I learned a lot about myself during the time we didn't talk, although for many months I felt sad and isolated. Taking the time away to process things gave me a new perspective on our issues and confidence in myself as a adult navigating the world. I realize this time of the year is tough for a lot of people. Families fight, drink too much, and dysfunctional family dynamics abound. However in the case with my family, problems have and continue to still be swept under the rug, as they would rather distract themselves with happy things than face them. However I won't hold it against them anymore, it's clearly a coping mechanism and they just want to be happy.
This past summer I went through a breakup with some narcissist who threatened to out me to my family. Given the fact that I hadn't talked to them in almost a year, I felt scared that this he could do this at any point to me. Many months went by and I felt afraid, until one day I realized all he wanted to do by the threats was give himself a sense of power and make me fear him. So I decided to not allow him to have that control, and to reach out to my family myself and tell them what I've been up to all this time. And guess what? Nobody was suprised. But I was shown by the people around me acceptance, and it honestly surprised me. My family didn't necessarily agree, but they still supported me. And things are back to normal again.
The fact that I had to live a double life had always been the hardest thing for me in this industry. When I first started I didn't tell any of my friends. I slowly started telling them, and I found that everyone supported me (save a few, which I've managed to repair things with since). The fact that I could still be accepted by my friends, and ultimately by my family, made me feel so much better and not like I was living a lie. It has made me feel a lot happier to not have to hide anything. I've never been someone who lives a double life and I'm an honest person to a fault most of the time, and being able to rid this from my life was a huge weight off my shoulders.
I know that not everyone has had such a happy ending with outing themselves (or being outed) to their families and friends. I know that this time of the year is hard for a lot of people. But just know that even if you don't have a relationship with your family, there are still likeminded people around that care and can be there for you this Holiday Season.