There are all kinds of coming out scenarios in this world, but I don’t know anyone as calm and forgiving as my family.
When my mom heard it, her lips quivered and tears streamed down her face. My dad’s eyes had also turned red, and he squatted in the corner by the fish tank, watching the fish.
He fumbled around and pulled out a cigarette. He was just about to light it as it hung from his lips when my mom turned and said, “Who gave you permission to smoke in the house? You dare fish in troubled waters1?”
My dad paused for a few seconds then surreptitiously stuffed the cigarette back into its box.
My mom then turned back around and continued to hold me remorsefully as she rubbed my hair and said, “It’s all our fault, it’s all our fault.”
Although I was an adult man and didn’t like these types of intimate caresses, I wouldn’t refuse them. My parents were getting older after all, so I had to attend to their emotional needs.
Contrary to my expectations, after my mom finished shedding her tears, she asked me if I had any psychological burdens and told me there was nothing I had to be afraid of, that they supported me unconditionally, and so on.
This was because I was molested when I was younger. When I would play by the doorway, the female college student who rented the apartment next door would carry me back into the house, and this continued for a month before being discovered. For this reason, my parents had always felt guilty and blamed themselves, thinking they did not do a good job of protecting me. They always spoiled me and took anything improper upon themselves. After many years, it had nearly become a habit.
However, I didn’t think my parents were at fault. That female college student seemed kind, gentle, shy, and nonaggressive. Who could have imagined that she was secretly a pedophile?
At the time, I was unable to understand what was going on, and I couldn’t remember exactly what happened. I only thought that she was very frightening when she threatened that I couldn’t tell my parents. As I grew up, this caused me to be unable to develop intimate feelings with girls beyond friendship, and I naturally grew to be a homosexual2.
I chose to confess this unfortunate news to my parents when I was in college. Instead of lashing out, they fell into self-blame for the umpteenth time, and no matter how I tried to console them, it was no use.
Apart from being shaken and guilt-ridden, I feared they would become even more heartbroken so I was forced to hold back other unfortunate news.
I was also asexual3.
Many people definitely have misconceptions about asexuality.
I really don’t have erectile dysfunction!
I didn’t have any obstructions in regards to sexual function, and I could get up in the morning and masturbate while watching gay films. I just didn’t want to have sex with people.
I just didn’t want to, okay? Why are there so many “whys”? It’s none of your business.
When I was in college, I dated a junior. On the emotional discussion section of the school forum, there was always a world-shaking battle over whether our attributes were “hooligan gong x cold and elegant shou” or “loyal dog gong x tsundere shou.” But “younger gong4” was indisputable because he was tall and I was thin.
At the time I wanted to say, what was the point of standing this kind of gong-shou stuff? We didn’t sleep together anyway.
It was him that very persistently and aggressively pursued me first. Although his tricks were old, he was so high-profile about it he nearly got the whole school to know (otherwise, why do you think there were so many posts about us in the forum?).
Later on, I truly was moved, so I agreed to date to see how it was.
It’s not true that I’d never had sex before. Every Qixi Festival, Christmas, and Valentine’s Day he would try to drag me to a hotel off campus. Most of the time I would find an excuse to turn him down, but there was really no way to avoid it so I agreed a few times. I was willing to jerk each other off during foreplay and willing to give him head. I just didn’t want to properly join and do the real thing.
During the World Cup in my third-year, my junior used staying up to watch the game as an excuse to drag me to a hotel once again. We brought beer and snacks, eating and drinking as we watched TV. The atmosphere was very nice during the first half of the night so we naturally came together. For a moment, I was aroused so I agreed to go all the way. He was obviously very happy, and we did foreplay for a long time. But we really ended up wasting too much time. When he was about to put on the condom, I glanced at the time and hurriedly pushed him away. “The finals are starting!”
I didn’t understand why he was unhappy even though Spain, who we were both rooting for, won in the end.
Pull aside any man on the street and ask, isn’t the final more important?!
But in the end, my junior implicitly used my “lack of desire” as a reason to break up.
I understood and felt guilty about it. I went to the hospital and came out with a completely normal andrology health report, but I didn’t show it to him and secretly ripped it up and threw it away.
The news of our breakup spread like wildfire. For a while, many girls lamented on the forum, “I don’t believe in love anymore.”
My junior happened to be rather unlucky because just when we had broken up, he went to a hotel with a pretty boy that had been pursuing him for a long time. Unfortunately, a mutual friend of ours ran into them and thought he was the mistress that had stepped between us.
This misdeed spread a thousand miles, and soon the entire emotional discussion section of the forum began to condemn the scum gong, asking him how that pretty boy could compare to me.
In fact, I knew that he didn’t really think anything of that person. Perhaps when he went to the hotel there were elements of anger and frustration, but it was probably just a fleeting one-night stand between the two of them.
So, regarding that pretty boy, he really was quite scummy. I thought that for the sake of that innocent boy, I should at least come forward to clarify things. As a result, some people began to feel bitter, sighing that I lost myself for love and that I fell from cold and elegant male god to lowly shou.
Forget it. Together with the scum gong and his mistress, we were all labeled lowly shou, and I didn’t feel sorry for them.
From then on to graduation, I didn’t fall in love again. The gay community had always been a mess, and most relationships were sustained by sex, yet I didn’t even have the foundation to sustain a relationship with someone.
It wasn’t because I was lovesick, but when I looked back on that relationship, I did feel a bit disinterested. Then again, why did I have to be in a relationship? I couldn’t get married, I couldn’t have kids, and I didn’t want to have sex.
Minds filled with love all day, could people think of anything else?
Young people, why couldn’t they be more dedicated to their work?
It was probably this initiative that allowed me to rise rapidly after I entered the workforce and after a few years, I was promoted to editor-in-chief.
Although there were only four people altogether in the editorial department.
But this work was actually was ideal. It was a monthly literature magazine, so the work was light, and the hours were flexible. Although the income was moderate, I could write my own articles to earn extra money and over time, I’d have a bit of fame and savings.
The only thing left for my parents to worry about was my love life.
Sigh, why have I gone back to where I started?
But as soon as my parents started to repeat, “it’s all our fault,” I compromised. It was just a blind date, so I’d have a look.
As for how they could magically find one gay man after another who was willing to accept a blind date, I wasn’t sure. I couldn’t even find any myself!
But to tell the truth, and I’m not trying to stereotype, all my blind dates had something wrong with them.
Myself? Right, there’s something wrong with me too. Didn’t I say so at the beginning?
Many men truly, to put it nicely, mature late mentally and to be frank, have a low EQ.
The most terrible thing is that with a low EQ, I’d be forced to leave them.
For example, there was someone who took me to a gym on a date. His chest muscles filled his skin-tight tank top as his testosterone raged. As he bench pressed, he looked at me as if he was trying to showing off.
I understood. It’s male instinct, and male peacocks were like this too.
But if you want to go to the gym, at least say something beforehand so I can bring suitable clothes to change into.
He said bashfully, “Dear, I wanted to give you a surprise.”
Oh. A surprise.
I was forced to wear my white shirt and black trousers as I stood next to a group of sweaty men, watching him lift all night.
There was also another one, and he was the type to want to send selfies once adding each other on WeChat.
It was expected of a blind date to want photos, so I sent him a casual one and specially chose a half-length photo my friend took of me in a cafe. The lighting was soft and it was at a flattering angle, so it was the one I looked the most photogenic in.
Normally speaking, according to the principle of reciprocating courtesy, he should send a photo of himself next.
However, he didn’t.
Long Sword In Hand: Not this kind, I want that kind of selfie[/grin][/grin][/grin]5
Normcore: What’s the difference
Long Sword In Hand: I want the kind with your clothes off[/shy]
Normcore: I don’t have any.
Long Sword In Hand: Take one right now, I want to see
Long Sword In Hand: Come on, take one so I can see. You’re so attractive and you have such a nice body, if you take it off there’ll definitely be more to work with
Long Sword In Hand: Don’t be shy, come on baby
Long Sword In Hand: Let me see yours (blurred out) [/shy]
Long Sword In Hand: Are you there, where are you[/pig head]
Big brother, is this straight-male method of flirting worthy of your identity as a gay man?
I turned off my phone and ignored it. There was no reply, and it finally stopped.
He must have known what I meant and didn’t want to make things too unpleasant. I would wait until tomorrow to quietly delete his contact.
As a result, after a long time had passed, my phone suddenly vibrated and I picked it up to check with my guard down.
Long Sword In Hand: Baby, I’m jerking off to your picture.
Why didn’t I blacklist him the moment he said something inappropriate?
Where did this psycho come from?!
Were all gay guys so scheming nowadays?!
Are you a blind date or a fuckboy?! Are you a blind date or a fuckboy?! Are you a blind date or a fuckboy?!
Afterwards, I made a serious protest to my mom.
I knew that gays were a hidden group, and people who were willing to come out for a blind date were few and far between, so it was hard to find any. But we couldn’t be so uncritical, could we? Who were these people? Was it not good for everyone to go along with fate?
My mom reflected deeply on her behavior.
Afterwards, she promoted with her life that the next blind date was truly exceptional, absolutely exceptional.
However, when I first glanced at the contact information on the slip of paper, there was a faint and ominous premonition in my heart.
Obviously, I didn’t know him.
But this name.
Put it in a Qing Dynasty drama, and he would be a eunuch. Put it in an anti-Japanese drama, and he would be cannon fodder. His name was like one of a character who wouldn’t live past five episodes.
And mom, are you sure he wasn’t born in the sixties or seventies?
No, this wasn’t okay. It wasn’t good to speculate about others so easily and rudely. It would be better to get to know him first, so I found out his WeChat.
… Actually, how about forget it. I couldn’t generate even a little desire to “add to contacts”.
He used his real name, the two neat and tidy words “Wang Dequan”. Not one word more, not one word less. His profile picture was a plain human silhouette with dark corners.
—The kind that comes with the system.
That’s right, he didn’t even upload a profile picture.
You could even take a tourist photo with the name of the scenic spot written in the background and use it as a profile picture!
It wasn’t that I was shallow. I just thought that if everyone was already aware there was a generation gap beforehand, why did we still have to waste energy “chatting”?
But in order to give my mom an explanation, I still sent a friend request, and he quickly accepted it.
However, facing that empty profile picture, I began to find myself feeling socially anxious.
What should I say?
If he used his own photo, you could find out his appearance and age. If he used Hatsune Miku, you could assume he was an otaku. If he used Iker Casillas, you could talk about soccer with him. If he used an animal, he was probably a bit younger and more cultured at heart…
But with nothing, you couldn’t sense that he was a person with real feelings.
But I didn’t have to worry for too long because he spoke first.
Wang Dequan: Hello6.
I couldn’t help but sit up straight.
Normcore: Ah… Hello.
What should I do? How should I respond next? I always felt a bit awkward being so polite. Although I often use honorifics when I go out to eat, those are for the servers, not a blind date…
Wait a minute. Right, perhaps he didn’t know it was me and thought he was talking to someone from work.
Normcore: Do you know who I am?
Wang Dequan: Yes, we were introduced to each other for a blind date. Your name is Du Qing, right?
Normcore: Yes, that’s me orz… Then, I think there’s no need for us to use honorifics, you are too polite.
Fuck, I was also starting to use “you”!
Wang Dequan: Okay.
- Idiom that means taking advantage of a crisis for personal gain.
- Please note that in relation to sexual abuse being the “reason” for MC’s homosexuality, there is no reliable evidence that sexual abuse can “make” someone gay and it can be a harmful stereotype because being gay is not a choice! (I do want to add though that if trauma may be a factor in your orientation, you are perfectly valid!)
- I changed the translation for this term from “sexual apathy” to “asexual.” The original Chinese term (性冷淡) translates more directly into “sexual apathy,” but I believe “asexual” more properly reflects the character’s identity and the author’s intent (if anyone believes this is inaccurate, please feel free to tell me).
- The word used is 年下 which refers to a gong (seme) who is younger than the shou (uke). It usually has to do with height/size differences.
- Things in brackets indicate emojis.
- Uses the formal version of you (您) as opposed to the informal version (你). The protagonist responds using the formal version then switches to informal in the next message, then back to formal.