I have managed to lie myself into a corner. A few years ago, my flatmates realised I was gay and began asking all kinds of questions and trying to set me up with people, so I 'invented' a girlfriend to pacify them and make them leave me alone. An innocent enough lie, but when pushed to give details of abovementioned girlfriend, I knew I wouldn't remember them if I made them up at random, so I gave the details of a friend in the next nearest city, whom they haven't met, confident that I would remember them, they couldn't check and my friend wouldn't know. Time went on, and the geographical separation was enough that it was plausible that my flatmates never met her, but not too much to make a relationship hypothetically possible. Then an online friend of mine was diagnosed with cancer, and being very close to this person, I was incredibly upset. My flatmates wanted to know why and I knew they were distrustful of the Internet friendship concept, and would judge me to be a freak, but they knew all my other friends, so I transferred the cancer to my imaginary girlfriend (IG). They were suitably sympathetic and actually helped me to feel a lot better about things. Recently, my flatmates were both offered jobs in different places, and we moved out of our shared flat in different directions, but keep in touch and plan to live together again. Left with no flatmates, I moved back in with my family. But my flatmates naturally assumed I would be going to stay with my IG iin the next city. It would seem the thing to do, and anyone who moved miles away, back in with their parents, in such a situation would be truly heartless. So I said yes, I was staying with her for a while. Recently one of my flatmates was in my IG's hometown, and texted me seeing if me and my IG wanted to meet up for a drink. I was forced to make a feeble excuse about other plans, and she was teed off. The thing is, I know I'm going to be in touch with them and probably live with them again, but what am I now to do about my IG? If she should die from my online friend's cancer (she's gone into remission and will be fine now, thankfully), and they happen by reasonable chance to meet the friend I based my IG on, or see any post from her, or instant messages from her pop up on my laptop, or if we bump into her in town, everyone will be confused and angry. If she lives, then they will surely demand to meet her in time, curiosity being as it is and me running out of excuses for them not to meet (such as being in the wrong town or her not feeling well). I know that lying is bad and it's all my own fault, but small lies escalated into huge ones and now I'm stuck! I need to let my flatmates know I'm living with my parents at some point, which means my IG either has to die or move with me to a place near my parents house.. which would mean I wouldn't want to move back in with my flatmates in our Uni town as planned! Help?
I've just read your post, and I don't know whether I'm overlooking something here, but couldn't you just say that you have split up with your girlfriend, because she isn't capable of focussing on a relationship and she just wants to get through the cancer treatment with her close family and relatives?
If you are feeling a little more brave, then perhaps you could tell your old flatmates that whilst you are really upset about her having cancer, you weren't really sure how strong your feelings were towards her before you found out about the illness, and you have actually come to terms with your sexuality, and realised that you are interested in persuing a different type of relationship.
At some point, if you value these people as friends, and they recognise you as a good friend, then you will have to come clean on you being gay. Surely they will have a lot more respect for you if you don't keep bullshitting them, when they already suspect you of being gay anyway?
Thanks for your response - I thought I might only get a "you brought it on yourself" type answer, which as much as I deserve it, isn't too helpful! You're right, and you make some good points. Thanks for taking the time to respond.