1st Edition

Acts of Disclosure The Coming-Out Process of Contemporary Gay Men

By Marc E. Vargo Copyright 1998
    182 Pages
    by Routledge

    182 Pages
    by Routledge

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    Confronting the psychological, social, sexual, legal, and political issues at stake in the coming-out process, Acts of Disclosure: The Coming-Out Process of Contemporary Gay Men uses research findings and first-hand accounts to help gay adolescents and men accept and embrace their sexual identity as an integral part of their being. Offering helpful advice and specific suggestions that will guide you through the coming-out process, this text also teaches family, friends, and colleagues how they can support and encourage you in this challenge.

    A roadmap through the confusing process of coming to terms with your sexuality both privately and publicly, Acts of Disclosure walks you step-by-step through the stages of coming out, the emotions involved, the potential pitfalls, and the kinds of receptions you may meet. It points out both healthy and self-destructive coping strategies and teaches you how to take responsibility for your sexuality. You will find its discussions straightforward, honest, and direct, as it broaches the following topics:

    • coming out in American schools
    • expressing your sexual identity on the job
    • the harmful effects of involuntary public exposure
    • why some parents adjust better than others to the fact that they have a gay child
    • the damaging effects of social myths attached to homosexuality
    • the emotional and behavioral reactions wives have after discovering that their husbands are gay
    • how to anticipate a possible “outing” against oneself and the advantages of coming out to prevent such an act
    • compulsory social programming that may be deeply injurious to gay adolescents
    • disclosing your sexual identity after the onset of AIDS

      Gay males of all ages, parents, friends, children, therapists, psychologists, social workers, and educators who read Acts of Disclosure will realize their error in treating gay sexual identity as undesirable, shameful, or second-rate. As you turn the last page of this comprehensive and enlightening book, you will likely find yourself with an appreciation of gay male sexuality as well as with a better understanding of the complexities of human nature.

    Contents Foreword
    • Introduction
    • Chapter 1. The Coming-Out Process
    • The Origins of Homosexuality
    • Stage 1: The Pre-Coming-Out Years
    • Stage 2: Coming Out to Oneself
    • Stage 3: Exploration and Experimentation
    • Stage 4: Coming Out to Others
    • Stage 5: Commitment and Integration
    • Suggestions
    • Chapter 2. The Family Sphere: Gay Sons, Husbands, and Fathers
    • Reasons for Not Telling the Family
    • Telling One’s Parents
    • Telling One’s Wife
    • Telling One’s Children
    • Suggestions
    • Chapter 3. The Professional Sphere: Coming Out in the Workplace
    • Elementary and Secondary Education
    • The Sciences
    • Business and Industry
    • The Military
    • Current Trends
    • Suggestions
    • Chapter 4. The Public Sphere: Managing Widespread Exposure
    • The Public Crucible
    • Outing and its Effects
    • The Decisions to Go Public
    • Suggestions
    • Appendix. Coming-Out Resources
    • The Family
    • The Workplace
    • HIV Prevention and Treatment
    • Legal Concerns
    • Religious Issues
    • Notes
    • Bibliography
    • Index


    Marc E. Vargo