I feel forced to lie again, about an obvious truth, or lose the friends I love and the community I spent years finding
As a child I was sexually abused by an adult for many years. He told me to lie to everyone around me, to keep 'our' secret, that I'd be blamed if I told the truth. I believed him, and I struggled for years to recover from that. Not only the abuse, but the lying.
Now, as an adult in a very progressive city, I am being aggressively told by an obviously male, straight man in my circle to refer to him as not only female, but a lesbian. My friends support him, even those who privately acknowledge it's absurd, and expect me to do the same.
I feel forced to lie again, about an obvious truth, or lose the friends I love and the community I spent years finding. It feels dangerous to speak, though I'm ashamed of my cowardice. The cognitive dissonance is painful, and it has damaged my relationships. I feel like I'm right back to that childhood trauma: lie, or lose everything. Be complicit in your own abuse. How is that ok?
I don't understand how we got here.