Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Big news

For the purposes of this post my delinquent brother will be Bob and my youngest brother will be Tom. The thing I hate the most about having so many siblings is that there is ALWAYS going to be some kind of earth shattering problem between the 6 of us. I guess since my brother got his 15 minutes of drama it would only be fair that my other brother got his too. I am approaching this topic all wrong so I am going to try this again.

I went over to my mom’s house Sunday to check on Bob and spend some time with him to make sure he’s being a good boy and staying out of trouble; good news, HE IS! We hung out all afternoon going for a jog around the peninsula, grabbing lunch, and then heading over to the driving range to hit a couple of buckets. We got home around 4 and I felt really good about how we were leaving things and for the first time in a long time I could tell Bob and I were finally repairing our relationship.

Right as I pulled into the driveway to drop Bob off Tom ran out to my car and asked if we could go for a ride. Tom and I have always been close, even when my whole family wasn’t speaking with me, Tom and I talked everyday. I know parents aren’t allowed to have favorite children, but siblings are allowed to have favorites and Tom is mine. From the day he was born it was always the two of us. He is my brother, I am his godfather, and we are as close as two siblings could be, so I was very shocked when we stopped at the switchbacks and he told me he was gay.

My first reaction was to go completely blank. There were absolutely no thoughts in my head I was very thankful we pulled over because I surely would have driven off a cliff had I been driving. Once I finally was able to gain some composure I asked if we could go for a hike down Ocean Trails and talk about this more. I remember feeling sooo proud of my brother as we walked down to the trail in silence. He was a man about the whole situation and he wasn’t going to waste all that time in denial like I did. He wasn’t going to have to spend all those years hating himself because here he was already admitting this about himself for no other reason than he wanted to.

When we got to the beach we sat down on the rocks and I had finally recovered enough from my initial shock and awe to continue or conversation. He told me he knew he was gay way before I had come out and when I did the first thing he wanted to do was tell me he was gay too. What stopped him was our mother’s reaction, which was just south of love and acceptance. He told me that every time we spoke on the phone all he wanted to do was tell me he was gay, and after we hung up he would sit in bed crying for hours because he didn’t say anything.

I felt sick thinking about all the shit I went through with my mom all over again because now I know all that shit fucked with him as much as it did me. Because everything she said and did to me would be exactly what she would do to him. I was paralyzed with all these thoughts racing through my head, at that moment I hated myself for not being there more for my brother this year and not being able to see what he was going through, I hated my mom for being such a bitch and making my brother feel like I did, and above all that I was just so proud of my brother and honored that he chose me to tell first.

I guess he saw I was a little overwhelmed and totally at a loss for words so he continued talking. He told me he was finally ready to stop lying and be who he is. He knows my mom isn’t going to change, but his dad will be a lot more accepting and he wanted me to drive him to his dad’s house so we could tell him together. He wanted to do it right then because he didn’t want to lose his nerve, so we went back to my car and drove to his dad’s house.

Out of all the dads my mother has given me, and trust me there have been A LOT! My brother’s dad is by far one of my top 2 dads of all time. I wasn’t worried about what he would say at all because he’s a good man with a good heart and I KNEW this was going to work out. Still before we walked into the house I told Tom no matter what happened here I was going to stay by his side and I loved him more than anything else on this planet. Then we walked in and he told his dad that he is gay in much more eloquent speech than I am capable of and after some time to get over the shock his dad was mostly okay with it.

Then Tom dropped the bomb and he asked for a favor. Tom never asks for anything! I am the Jock brother that played all the sports and threw all the parties, Bob is the spoiled rotten brother that gets all the attention and spends all the money, and Tom is the quiet studious one that helps out around the house and cooks dinner. So when he makes a request it’s never taken lightly. Basically he told us that living in mom’s house having to listen to all the hateful things our sisters and mom say makes him really depressed. Sometimes they say something about me and it affects him so much he has to run to his room and just cry. He no longer feels safe in her home and he wants to move in with his dad.

Hearing my brother saying these things about living in his own home I was furious because it was how I spent my entire life feeling also. It is the worst feeling in the world and I worked my ass off and gave my mother everything I could just so I could protect them from feeling how I felt. But here it was happening all over again! Same shit different day.

Of course Tom’s dad said it was okay he moves in with him, but there was still the issue of what we were going to tell mom. We all decided it would be best to wait until winter break in about two weeks. We would use this time to start planning the move and getting the logistics taken care of. There aren’t any custody issues because my mom never took Tom’s dad to court for any formal agreements because my mother has always felt strongly that her children get to decide who they live with. Also we are going to use this time to figure out if coming out to mom is something that he wants to do. In this instance I am all for hiding the truth and making up some stupid lie like catching the bird flu or small pox. But Tom is feeling strongly about biting the bullet and telling mom the truth.

All I know is if he comes out to mom and she has something to say about it, which she will, I’ll fucking lose it! It was fine when she was only doing this to me, I could totally deal with that. But now she’s bringing my brother into this and he’s a completely different story. FUCK! Just thinking about this makes me want to put my fist through the wall. I am pretty sure that deep down I still love my mother, I just can’t remember why I do anymore…


Xico de Cadoro said...

Dear RGB,
to pick up from your last sentence, about you not remembering if you love your mother, allow me to suggest that you may love her because she made you...and she gave you your brother Tom, whom you love and protect, and, thru this recent revelation, will have the opportunity to develop another level of brotherly intimacy. I have a somewhat similar situation in my family with my, same age as me, cousin with whom I grew up, bestest of buddies in the world as kids, turned out to remain that way as adults as we are both openly gay in very conservative catholic surroundings...good luck to you and to those you love.


Mike said...

Hugs to you and your brother, Tom.

Jason said...

You and Tom are like the same person, only he's way prettier than you are! You are a good brother and I know things will eventually work out with your mother. If she doesn't change she is going to lose the two best men to have ever been in her life. When she finally does come around it's going to be up to you and your brother to welcome her back into your lives because holding a grudge isn't something you or your brother are very good at.