Coming out of the closet is without a doubt one of the most exciting (and nerve-wracking) things a gay man will ever do over the course of his lifetime. On the one hand, it’s such a relief to finally be able to live one’s truth instead of perpetually living a lie instead. On the other, it can be terrifying to risk rejection from friends and family, not to mention the rest of the world. In other words, life as you’ve always known it changes forever when you finally step out of the closet, often in ways you don’t expect and can’t predict.
It’s an overwhelmingly positive experience for sure, but a stressful one as well. Naturally, that means newly out people usually come with their share of baggage, something you’ll need to be aware of if you’re thinking about dating one. This hardly means dating someone fresh out of the closet isn’t worth it – just that it’s important to be prepared and to know what to expect. The following are just a few of the most important pros and cons to keep in mind.
- PRO: They’re not completely jaded yet.
Even straight people begin their adult love lives full of hope and optimism. Whether they’re only interested in gay sex for the moment or ultimately want to find “happily ever after” with a soulmate, they simply take it for granted that things will go their way sooner or later. Then they date for a while. They have a few great relationships go south. They have horrible experiences with people that lie, cheat, or have serious personal issues as well and eventually become jaded as a result.
A newly out gay man is actually starting this process for the very first time in many ways. He may be experiencing what it’s like to date and sleep with people he’s truly into sexually and romantically for the very first time. As a result, he’s still full of that same optimism those that have been around the block a time or two don’t even remember having themselves. That can be pretty refreshing for the guy that gets to date him.
- CON: They may still be figuring things out emotionally.
While it’s great that a newly out man hasn’t had enough negative gay dating experiences to be jaded yet, it’s important to keep in mind that experiences are an important part of what shapes us as lovers and partners. Dating around horny dudes and everything that comes with it is how we learn what we do and don’t want in a relationship. It’s an important part of discovering ourselves sexually too.
Not every guy that’s fresh out of the closet is actually emotionally ready for a relationship or to get involved with anyone sexually. He’s likely still in the process of getting to know himself as a person and figuring out where and how he fits into the grand scheme of things in general as well.
- PRO: They may have learned a lot from any heterosexual relationships they’ve had.
While there are definitely plenty of gay guys out there that have never dated, slept with, or had relationships with women, this isn’t usually the case for newly out guys that have spent their entire lives in the closet. They may be brand new to having bona fide relationships with other men, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re new to relationships in general. Plenty of newly out guys are coming out of marriages and many even have kids. You can’t help but learn a lot from any marriage or long-term relationship – all knowledge that will still be valuable in the future.
Previously closeted men that are coming out of marriages are more likely to be relationship and family oriented as well, which is a definite plus if you’re looking to find the one. They know how to compromise, how to function as part of a team, and how to manage a life shared with another person. Now they’re ready to bring those benefits into a loving relationship with another man.
- CON: Alternatively, they may not be ready to settle down yet.
Naturally, a lot depends on the individual as far as what they’re going to be looking for now that they’re finally out of the closet. While it’s true lots of guys might still be relationship-oriented at heart, there are others that are going to be very aware of the bright, colorful new world that’s now fully open to them. They’ll feel like kids let loose in a candy store and they’ll probably act like it.
Again, whether or not this is truly a con depends entirely on what you’re looking for from the newly out gay guy in your life. If you’re just looking to have one heck of a good time with someone eager and willing, it probably won’t be a problem. If you’re ready to find someone to settle down with though, you might want to proceed with caution. There’s a good chance he’ll want to sow his wild oats for a while before committing to just one guy.
- PRO: They’re open to lots of new experiences, sexual and otherwise.
When you first step out of the closet, the world suddenly seems full of all sorts of possibilities again – especially the sexual kind. Newly out guys generally can’t wait to fully explore their new identity to the fullest both in and out of the bedroom. They’re hungry for everything the gay lifestyle has to offer and they’re excited about finally finding out first hand what it means to be out and proud.
In other words, you’d be hard-pressed to find a lover more eager and willing than a gay guy that’s recently come out of the closet. Most can’t wait to explore how it feels to give and receive oral, to learn the difference between a bottom and a top, and so much more. They’ll probably be excited about other aspects of gay life as well (e.g. the gay bar scene, pride parades, and so forth).
- CON: You might wind up being more of a mentor than a lover or a boyfriend.
Being eager and excited about “learning how” to be gay is only part of the equation. Naturally, someone has to be the one to teach them and if they don’t already have close gay friends, that someone is likely to be the guy they start dating or hooking up with the right gay off the bat. Again, that might not be a problem for some guys, but for others, it can seem like a total drag.
Even if you truly enjoy the process of teaching young or newly out gay people the ropes on some level, being that for a steady boyfriend can eventually feel like a burden. At times, you may feel more like teacher and student than you do lovers. There are definitely likely to be times when the relationship feels one-sided or when you feel like your newly out guy doesn’t meet your needs to the same extent you probably meet his.
- PRO: Their attitude can be infectious to be around.
If you’ve been out for a while, it’s likely that you’ve become a little jaded over the years. You’ve had your share of break-ups, bad hook-ups, and negative experiences. While you love being gay, the novelty probably wore off a long time ago and you probably have days where you almost want to swear off men altogether… (almost). This is what our gay hookup tips blog is what can help you with!
Newly out gay men are incredibly optimistic and very committed to living the most authentic lives possible. It’s impossible to overstate how inspiring that is to be around. Dating someone fresh out of the closet can remind you of everything there is to love about life and relationships. If you let it, it can be a reminder to recommit yourself to living your best life as a gay man too.
- CON: If they’re not as “out” as you are, there can be problems.
Not every gay man that’s out of the closet is actually “out” to the same degree. Some may have told their close friends, but not their families or coworkers. Others may technically be all the way out, but still have a long way to go before they’re comfortable being “out and proud”. Don’t expect a guy like that to be comfortable holding hands, kissing, or showing affection in public for a long while to come.
At times, it can feel like your newly out lover is ashamed of you. At others, it can feel like they’re trying to take away your gay card and tell you how to live your life. That said, go into things with the understanding that he may not be ready to bring you home to meet mom or invite you to the company Christmas party as his date.
At the end of the day, how your own gay dating experience will go honestly depends on the guy. Yes, newly out guys have a lot to learn and get used to, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they won’t make good lovers, boyfriends, or partners. Just approach the situation with care and understanding and go with the flow.