Hit or Miss

In which Matt tries to move on.

NBC’s First Years. Yet another lawyer show. Yet another generation-X show. Yet another show I probably would have passed by if it weren’t for the inclusion of a gay character.

But this character is a little different. Warren is a 30-something first year lawyer, struggling with feelings of being ignored by his friends. Struggling with the conception of himself as an useless appendage to their hetereosexual couplings. Struggling with trying to come out to his parents, who have always known he was gay but not willing to articulate the fact outloud.

I’m finding amazing parallels to my own life — I’m in the first year of my post-graduate life, trying hard to come into my own as a fully-realized adult personality, and failing miserably. I still haven’t come out to my parents, even though I am no longer financially dependent on them. I haven’t forced the conversation when they haven’t picked up on the bait.

But the difference between me and Warren is that Warren sees an analyst.

I’m spooked by David Levy’s current entry, which also reads like the story of my life.

    “I know a lot of people say they see their lives as movies, where they themselves are either the protagonist (if they’re centered) or (if they have self-image problems, or if they suffer from “Gay-Best-Friend-itis”) a supporting character weaving through the background. Neither analogy has ever felt right for me. I see my life as a book. Rather, I hear my life as a book. I am constantly imagining my personal narration; whenever I have a moment’s quiet, it seems that the little voice in my head must verbalize my thoughts on the subject. If only it were that simple. Apparently, my little narrating leprechaun shares my own obsession with the sound of words, so he will repeat the same bits of narration over and over again, rephrasing the story ever so slightly until he gets it right. And then he moves on to the next sentence. And so on.”

I think the reason I have my own little obsessive-compulsive novelist in my head is because I feel like I’m the only person that I can talk to about what ails me. I don’t think any of my friends would be up to the task of sitting through the minute deconstructions of my existence that I’m bursting at the seems to pick apart.

What does that leave me with but the thought that maybe I should go into therapy?

But putting aside any feelings that paying someone to listen to me would be a little like paying for a whore, I don’t know that I’d even be able to find a psychiatrist out here in rural Missouri who would have experience working with gay clients. Again I question why I made the decision to move here in the first place, let alone sign on to stay for the next academic year. I’m just going to end up drawing even deeper into myself, cutting myself off further from the few friends I’ve made.

There’s no doubt that I’ve got a sado-masochistic streak running through myself. I derive comfort from beating up on myself and internalizing all this frustration and sadness. I’m way too self-critical and analytic about every single thing I do. The problem is that the fictional “other” in the imaginary dialogues in my head who give me advice is too close to be impartial about the situations I continually mull over. I’ve got to find someone else to unburden myself to.

I’ve talked about some of these issues before in private correspondance to fellow gay bloggers. But I don’t think the Internet is the answer. There’s only so much you can express though an email, an instant message, or a journal entry. Face to face contact is the only way the complexity and depth of my issues will see the light of day.

It all comes down to my doing SOMETHING to break out of the momentum of my life. I’ve got to stop being such a homebody. I’ve got to get out and meet new people. I’ve got to expose more of my true self to others. I’ve got to come out to my parents. I’ve got to find all the things that are holding me back in life and just take care of them.

There’s a lot of different directions this journal entry could have gone in and I’ve already spent far too long working on it and polishing it. I’ve got to learn to just write something and then post it. I’ve got to learn to stop rehearsing and instead start living my life. In the words of Stephen Sondheim, I have to learn to just “move on.”

1 response so far (Respond)

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Matt,
I know how you feel. Yes, occasionally, SAs read your site too… 🙂 If you want to talk or want to know about some people you could talk to here on campus, let me know — seriously.

Bob | 4 Apr 2001