The core gay experience throughout history has been displacement, a sense of belonging and yet not belonging. Gays are born mostly into heterosexual families and discover as they grow up that, for some reason, they will never be able to have a marriage like their parents’ or their siblings’. They know this before they can tell anyone else, even their parents. This sense of subtle alienation—of loving your own family while feeling excluded from it—is something all gay children learn. They sense something inchoate, a separateness from their peers, a subtle estrangement from their families, the first sharp pangs of shame. And then, at some point, they find out what it all means. In the past, they often would retreat and withdraw, holding a secret they couldn’t even share with their parents—living as an insider outsider.
Andrew Sullivan, “Barack Obama: The First Gay President,” Newsweek, May 13, 2012
I don’t know how true this is for every gay person (here, for instance, is someone for whom it’s not true), but it’s true for at least one, so: interesting.
disappointed to see sullivan walk back his “we already had a gay president: lincoln” stance