nyc_to_japan wrote:though honestly, as I write this, I'm wearing a plaid shirt and docs and reinforcing many stereotypes, LOL
omnom wrote:To be completely honest, I just sort of expect to be lonely and single and closeted while I'm there.
omnom - oh heeey, another NYC consulate LGBT person! yay! I kind of have the same expectations, to be honest, about being lonely and single and closeted. I can picture myself in a relatively inaka place secretly going to lesbian bars in Shinjuku on weekends and coming back and saying I went sight-seeing to straight-ville or something, LOL. I mean, like I said in the first post, I'm not very "obvious," and so it's very easy to assume, even here in NYC where you can be tree-sexual and accepted, that I'm straight. So, in Japan, where I think out people are a lot less prevalent, I'm sure the straight assumptions will be made even more. I'll have to check out the ITIL thread. I've read it a bit, and that's why I'm not terrified and it seems JET is pretty accepting overall, but I'm really interested in individual experiences and possible LGBT hangouts! It seems like it won't be a problem at all, but being closeted can be so taxing, even when it's just an omission sort of thing where you just avoid all sexuality-related topics as opposed to outright lying and claiming you're straight. They both suck big time. I would hate for sexuality to somehow jeopardize the job, too - although, of course, this is again dependent on the situations that we get placed into!
Trudi - thanks for the link - he brings up some good points, one that I've thought of a lot myself. I don't want my time there to be "tainted" by my sexuality, in that I don't want the school to think of me as the gay foreigner, ha. But it also sucks to be closeted. I guess it's about being discrete at school but finding ways to have an open personal life or something, I don't know! It's a tricky situation!
Heather - I agree! That seems like the best option. I mean, it seems almost backwards because I've fought a long time to be openly gay now, but I know that going to a different country is a totally different ballpark. It's not about my own personal struggles - I've gotten past those - so now it's about acclimating to a new culture and environment, I guess. Though, from this INDIVIDUALS ARE AWESOME American viewpoint, it feels as if I am compromising myself by not being out - but in a way, I am actually empowering myself because I know that the climate I'm going into is not the same as my climate at home, and that I am already judged as a foreigner, etc, so adding that into the mix from the beginning will put me into a box that will be difficult to get out of, whereas if I am discrete at work and out amongst friends, assuming I make some when I can't speak Japanese (LOL), that will work better. And then eventually, when I'm a reliable JET/school and community member, if word gets out that I'm gay, they will already know me as something beyond my sexuality. Hmmmmmmmmm. Lots to think about with this topic!
nyc_to_japan wrote:I love the NJ Mom's hair/general style in that video...so New Jersey, LOL.
Yes, Japan will definitely be a gayventure...and even if I'm in a 500-person village in the middle of nowhere, hopefully I will find my gay fun somewhere! Seriously, though, after reading your first response, I feel a lot better about the whole thing, and a lot less like I will become the village leper if anyone finds out I'm a lesbian. So, thanks! ESID, of course, but I think, in general, it will be fine.
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