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The Lie: A Memoir of Two Marriages, Catfishing & Coming Out

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3.97  ·  Rating details ·  4,665 ratings  ·  476 reviews
A candid memoir of denial, stolen identities, betrayal, faking it, and coming out.

Do you know me?, the email began, sparking tremors of fear that turned into a full quake of panic when William Dameron discovered that his selfie had been stolen by strangers. On social networks and dating sites, his image and identity—a forty-year-old straight white male—had been used to hoo
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Hardcover, 286 pages
Published July 1st 2019 by Little A
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Average rating 3.97  · 
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 ·  4,665 ratings  ·  476 reviews


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Barbara
Jul 25, 2019 rated it really liked it



William Dameron

Fortysomething William Dameron (Bill) had been married to his wife Katherine for twenty years when she confronted him in a Walmart parking lot. "Just park the car now Bill," she said. "I have to ask you this, or I'm afraid I never will. Are you gay?"

"I don't want to be", Bill replied. And his deeply held secret was finally out in the open.

In this memoir, Dameron shares the experience of coming out as a married father of two, a man who was devoted to his family, but unable to go o
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Megan Collins
May 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book explores William Dameron’s struggle to come out as gay—both to himself and his wife and children—and his attempt to wade through the wreckage created by his decades-long lie and find a clear path forward as a father, son, and husband once again. There are so many words I could use to describe this memoir (exquisite, heartbreaking, heartwarming, funny, inspiring, gorgeous, riveting), but none of them do it justice. Even if you can’t identify with Dameron’s exact struggle, his story is d ...more
Julia Phillips
Feb 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A beautiful, compassionate, and achingly honest memoir about coming out later in life. Just gorgeous.
Lisa G.
Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Incredible!

It's always hard for me to choose between the monthly Kindle 'first read' pre-release book selections. It's my monthly "gift" from prime, so I carefully peruse each description, weigh the number of pages (I do love a long book), and try to guess which one I should read. This despite the fact that I get multiple free books every day and have an unread Kindle "stack" in the tens of thousands...but I digress.

Anyway! Rarely does a book just jump out and make the choice for me- but this m
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Paul M
Nov 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: gay
This book was so well written, so compelling that I read it in a single reading on a cross country flight. The writing is so clear and beautiful that I never had to stop and re-read or try to figure out what the author was trying to say. The struggle is heartbreaking and the love that the author feels for his family comes shining through. This is a book for anyone who wants to know if it is ever too late to become your true self, if the risk is worth the pain. At least in this author’s case, it ...more
Christy
Jul 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved everything about this memoir. A story about the author coming out in later life after a very long marriage and two teenage daughters. You shift back in forth throughout different time periods in his life, but I never felt lost or confused. I was completely enthralled throughout the entire book. Even though it's a topic I don't know very much about, it felt so real. Just like a great memoir should be! William Dameron definitely knows how to write well and has a knack for details.

**Book w
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Glenda Ricord
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
This was a beautifully written book. I felt very close to all the characters and could feel their emotions. Bill Dameron is a middle-aged man, who finally comes “out of the closet”. He has a wife and 2 beautiful children which he adores. Try as he might, he cannot suppress his true feelings. This book takes us on Bill’s journey to finally face his true self and then the revelation of the truth to his family and friends.

Bill knew at a young age that he was gay, but society was not accepting of
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Stacy
Jun 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beautifully heartbreaking

I generally hate any type of memoir, or really anything other than fiction. I chose this book because I am a divorce attorney and have been involved in cases much like Mr. Dameron’s divorce, where one spouse came out years into a marriage. I have always thought it was selfish of the spouse - not the divorce so much but that they married the other person in the first place, then went on to have children. He had to have known! Why “use” the other person in this way? Mr. D
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Kat Brownell
Jun 23, 2019 rated it liked it
I did not think thos book was particularly well written nor ground breaking. If you are going to write your life story, you had better make sure you are an excellent story teller. Oh, and having someone explain the difference between coordinate and cumulative adjectives, and which ones need commas and which don't, would also help.

However, I thought Katherine's story was incredibly poignant. People who still believe (or ever believed) that being gay is a choice should hear stories about spouses w
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SpareTheBS
Jun 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Took me FOREVER to finish this book! Don't you hate when life gets in the way of things that are most important to you. Loved this book!! Not a fan of books that make me cry and this book made me cry TWICE. Might have to look into other books I've passed up in lieu of a stuffy nose. If you haven't come out yet or know someone who hasn't, read or recommend this book. If you have come out and are having difficulties adjusting especially when you have children, read this book. ...more
Pavellit
Jul 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
I stayed up until 4 am to read this book and instead of feeling exhausted when I finished, I wanted more.....This memoir was so touching, sincere, compassionate and uplifting. And even humorous in spots. I can just imagine how hard it had to be to come out as a gay man, to your wife and children, the world, but also to yourself after you've been living a lie for so long. The writing is wonderful, and while some of the inner sentimental thoughts go on too long, and become a bit heavy handed, it's ...more
Steve Moskowitz
Excellent writing and a compelling story.
Goth Gone Grey
The lie begets the truth and the light.

What a beautiful, emotional book. The author unpacked his soul, his experiences, and those of his family and lays the cards frankly down in front of the reader. It's written eloquently, whether in the darkness or light.

While sharing the experiences of his family and loved ones, he's honest to the point of pain, but respectful. He knows enough to say when he can't imagine what they're thinking or going through, which places needed limits on what he shares
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stephanie magid
Jun 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So well written. Loved the author's honesty and depth of understanding about how difficult his life and coming out was and is. Thank you William Dameron

for sharing your story and your life. There are many other people who will learn how to be their true selves because of you.
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Vicky D.
Jul 11, 2019 rated it liked it
The Author waited to long to pull in the prologue to the story, after all it's part of the title. I realize this is a personal story and some privacy has to be respected, but if you are putting it out there, I would have liked to heard more about the daughters coming to accept their father's coming out. They were mentioned 2 maybe 3 times after he came out. You may consider this big spoilers.....but really "coming out" is in the title. ...more
BookChampions
Jun 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
For as much as I read (and queer lit especially), it has been curiously difficult to find stories about individuals who come out later in life. Maybe it isn't curious since there are layers of shame--both age-old and newly birthed--such individuals must contend with. I know even years after coming out myself, I still reckon almost daily with Imposter Syndrome. A thread (s)nags at me: What right do I have to tell my story if it took me this long to write myself fully into the world?

William Damero
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Becky
Jun 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An honest, life-affirming book

Bill's book is an honest portrayal of the power of living who we are and who we are meant to be. A healthy tale of love, life, family, forgiveness and love. Powerful! It is a great read.
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Sasha
Jun 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the one you should pick!

Beautiful writing, important and engaging memoir that helps me understand a situation that always baffled me. Couldn't out it down.
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Bonnie L Marincek
Such an inspirational insight.....

What a beautiful, poignant memoir! Bill's story was one of love, heartbreak, deception and challenge as to the man he was and the true man he finally allows to come forth through years of soul searching . I highly recommend this book!
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Pat & Dave Brandt
Wow! I really didn't expect to love this book, but I had bronchitis and had nothing else to do. This is a raw, clear thinking, emotionally honest book about living with a secret so suppressed that the author's whole life was in many ways a lie.

Or was it? Bill loved his wife and adored his girls. That much is absolutely true, but he had sacrificed his true self while building a life that was essentially a lie.

The author's willingness to be totally honest about the pain he caused in ending his l
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Andrew
Jun 09, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Acquired through Kindle First Reads.

Interesting to learn about the struggles of coming out late in life & accepting who you are. Also, the difficulty & hardship on a family coming to terms with a big change in their lives as well. The author, along with family, all have to learn to love and trust again.

The key takeaway is to be truthful with yourself and others. It's a lot easier to start with trust than rebuild a foundation based on lies.

Author: Why did you feel the need to take a shot at Trump
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Tabitha
Jun 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
"People often ask why I waited so long to come out. What they’re really asking is how I lied for so long. How I survived."

I chose this book as part of Amazons First Reads program and what I discovered was a beautiful story about forgiveness and honesty. There are times when I listen to the uneducated diatribes of homophobic people and marvel at how much hate there still is in the world against people who cannot change their sexuality any more than we can change the color of our skin. William Dam
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Susan
Jun 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
So many layers to unpack in this searing and emotional read. Dameron tells the story of a marriage and family based on the lie that he'd been living--that he was straight when, in truth, he'd known since adolescence that he was gay. I was so moved by the way he was able to tell his story--ultimately of how he betrayed himself and his family--with such compassion and honesty. It's easy to imagine how a person could lay blame at the feet of others or take on a crushing burden of guilt. But somehow ...more
Marc
Jan 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a powerful and moving memoir about coming out. Highly recommended.
Laurie
Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Painfully honest

This is an extraordinarily well-written memoir of the struggles and angst of a gay man coming out later in life. It is not a story I would have any inkling about were it not for this gutsy book. Part of my head kept protesting “Stay in the marriage for your kids’ sake until they are older!!” But everyone’s priorities and choices are different and I learned a lot from this authentic journey. However, I couldn’t help but be relieved when he disclosed that his former wife had found
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Cheryl Schibley
Jul 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Loved this book. Bill, a long time married man comes out after several years in a traditional marriage. In doing so, he hurt a lot of people including his wife and kids. He wrote this book with the hope that in the future as the gay community gains more rights and acceptance they will not have to hide in the shadows and can live their true lives. He's from North Carolina and says it is the most homophobic state and that growing up he witnessed a lot of gay bashing including murder. ...more
Maureen O'Hare
Jun 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. It is honest, heartfelt and touching. The love the author has for his family is at the heart of the story. His journey to become the man he is meant to be while not wanting to hurt the ones he loves the most is heart-wrenching. I highly recommend this book to anyone that has struggled with the choices we make to become our authentic self.
Inkish Kingdoms
Visit me at: Book Blog / Instagram

Short story, I started reading this while at the post office... and I just got it from my app as it sounded interesting. I struggled raring it as I would say 3.4 rounding to 3.

This is a story that I enjoyed a lot! I found so many emotions in me from anger to happy and shock to relieve. I questioned so many things in life, took sides, changed sides, finaly understood the message. Forgiveness, love, true love, loneliness, and embracing ourselves for the worst to c
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Jill Meyer
Jul 03, 2019 rated it liked it
As I read William Dameron’s memoir, “The Lie”, I tried to guess to whom he was writing it for. Himself? His first family of birth; his mother and three brothers? His ex-wife and two daughters? The wider world? I can’t decide, but feel it was primarily to try to understand his journey in life.

Bill Dameron was sort of an every gay man stuck in a closet, afraid to come out for fear of the damage he could do. Born in the mid-1960’s, Bill pretended his feelings for other men were not real and and he
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William Dameron is an award winning blogger, memoirist, and essayist. His work has appeared in O, The Oprah Magazine, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Times (UK),The Boston Globe, Salon, Literary Hub, The Huffington post, and in the book, Fashionably Late: Gay, Bi and Trans Men Who Came Out Later in Life. He is an IT Director for a global economic consulting firm, where he educates use ...more

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