I came out a bit late in life. That is, in comparison to those around me: gay or straight or bi. It wasn't until about 26 or so that I finally announced that I was not straight. Most friends declared their sexuality from 16 to 20, and some a few months after. Luckily for them, many didn't need to declare their sexuality... they were straight, and rarely does one need to declare they are straight.
I am avoiding a certain word, as I don't believe that any one person is one thing: black or white, gay or straight, smart or stupid, aggressive or passive. These dichotomies seem dangerous to me, and so I choose to think in circumstance, in situation, in moments...
As far as my sexuality goes, I have slept with both men and women, and I enjoy aspects of both. As far as my life goes, well, yeah: I am gay. I am in a wonderfully committed relationship with the man of my dreams.
My name is Nathan, and I can categorically tell you from a wide range of personal histories that "homo/hetero/bi/questioning" labels have little to do with your future. That is such a simple little piece of the pie, nearly irrelevant to the world around you.
The question of sexuality is not one that can define You , but instead, it allows You to define your happiness. If you think, or know, that you have a certain sexuality, then embrace it. Love it. Revel in it. It will bring you happiness.
I tell you this because I have lived, as an adult, through so many phases. I have had numerous "careers" (and plan on having numerous more). I have lived in different realms, and I have enjoyed many lifestyles.
In retail, as a Cashier/CSR, Assistant Manager, and Manager, I never really ran into problems. I have always been a hard worker, and over achiever, while always showing up 10 minutes late (gay time). Ha. The only times I ever ran in to problems in a corporation was when I was teamed with a jackass: someone that simply hated anything but himself (and it is always a him. guys are stupid when it comes to sexuality or individuality. well, I guess girls are too. yeah. we are all stupid. ha.).
The son of a Contractor & Carpenter, I was raised with tools, dirt & sweat. So, when I was a Contractor's Apprentice, or working for a major Car Audio company as a Mobile Electronic Installer or Fiberglass Specialist, or for a private company as a Marine Fiberglass Construction Manager, I definitely had a different experience.
I would have to lie if I said that I didn't "stay in the closet" with a few co-workers. I had some scary days, and a few harassment issues, but overall, the Construction Industry takes all kinds. Exactly how every other industry takes all kinds. Working in the Construction Industry has definitely caused some hard times, but it thickened my skin a bit, and I wouldn't take the time spent there back, if I could.
As you age, and mature, and grow to become the amazing person we have yet to meet, you will realize something: life is a series of situations, good and bad, happy and sad, positive and negative, and everything in between. These moments and situations define us, but our reactions to them can define us even further...
Though you may be in a world of hurt at the moment, or somewhere down the road from now, you have to realize that (as another wonderful LGBT Project says) It Gets Better, and (as this project gleefully expresses) You Can Be Anything. Your sexuality does not define who you are or what you can do. There are no limits; no restraints.
Personally, I have run through all of the (potential) careers above, and then some. Currently however, I got bored with working for someone else, and am now running my own company. I went from sweating in the heat to stretched out on the couch. Now, instead of designing fiberglass layups for reconstructing a 120+ foot yacht, I am a Web Designer (hoping to move slightly into Development) and am enjoying life in the AC, under a fan, and staring out through the window during our numerous hot summer days.
As you may have guessed, I am also the proud designer for the You Can Be Anything Project, and I would like you to know, You Can Be Anything.
And then some.