Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Bracing For A Horrible Night


This month T's parents will have been married for 60 years.  T and his family threw them a big party.  They rented a hall, hired a band, and cooked lots of food.  T invited me months ago and, of course, I told him I would go.  

The event was last Sunday.  I want to write about lead up to this event and the event itself.  It will take several posts to go through it all and might take me a week to write it all, but I feel the need to get it out.

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Over the past several months T has been telling me about this party.  It was almost like planning a wedding.  Guest lists.  Invitations.  Food.  Entertainment.  A few times I went with him to stores to buy things for the party.  There was a lot of stuff to buy because his family decided to make all the food themselves.  There is a restaurant that usually caters events for the Vietnamese church where he attends and where the party will be.  But T's family does not like the food.  Since they have a large family, with a lot of good cooks, doing it themselves seemed like the right thing to do.   

People attending would include his immediate and extended family,  family friends and even the employees at his clinic and his sisters pharmacy. There would be well over 100 people.  That sounds great to everyone but me.

Remember the gay thing?  That is going to be a problem.

I have written before about T's fears and his family fears about more and more people knowing he is gay.  And worse, knowing he has a boyfriend (and a white one, no less).  They worry about the gossip that will go on.  It gives them stress.  It gives his mother stress.  T is worried about his business and that it might be uncomfortable for his employees.  I have made it clear that I think it's total crap, but there really is nothing I can do about it.  I just have to live with it.  

Last year around Thanksgiving T took his whole staff out for dinner.  He invited me, but told me I could not sit with him.  He didn't want in the office anyone to talk.  When the big group picture was taken I put my arm around his sister and smiled for the camera.  It was very hard for me to deal with that.

So fast-forward to last Sunday.  The morning of the party for his parents.  My blood pressure is already rising.  I wonder what I will say if someone asks me how I know the family.

"Tell them you met me and my sisters through a friend." he tells me.  My blood pressure goes up more.

I know that most of his family will ignore me.  That's usually what happens.  I will get a polite nod or a "hello" but not much beyond that.  To be fair, lately his mother has been much more open with me, but I expect with a lot of other people around that will not be as much the case.  

I tell him today will be very uncomfortable for me.  History has taught me that, while T and I will both be there, it will not feel like we are together.  I will be sat a table with his lawyer,  CPA and other American guests for the duration of the party.  He will check in on me but not much more than any of the other guests so as not to raise suspicion.  I will see him around, but I will not be with him.

He stared to get defensive, but I cut him off.  This was not the time to talk about it.  Today is not about me, it's about his parents.  I tell him I am going because I love him.  I will help him as much as I can.  I ask that he keep me busy as much as possible so I can get through it.  

My first assignment...  go get the cake.

Over the next several days I will write about what happened.  

It did not unfold in the way I expected.   Stay Tuned.

6 comments:

RB said...

I'm just curious -- how is this party at all fun for you? Why do you even want to go? It sounds like it's awkward for T to have you there, but you seem to have this need to be there. My impression.

If you didn't go would T care?

Biki said...

It sounds as if T needs to decide on just how important you are to him. Coming out would ease a great deal of these issues. If his employees dont like it they can find a new job! Plenty of others out there looking for work would take a job with a gay boss.

I hope the rest of this story is happier....

Not Alone said...

Now I have to know............... I can't believe you are going to make me wait days for this...

Sunne said...

Oh my....you are leaving us here, worrying and anxious. I really hope it turned out better than you expected...

tuls said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tuls said...

"Today is not about me, it's about his parents. I tell him I am going because I love him."

awww........... i got goosebumps all over ... :) cant wait for the next post!! :)