Gay men are widely categorized into two, "Open" and "Closeted". But, there is a gray area in which many including me, fall into. When we say we are closeted, it isn't entirely true. I am known to like guys by other gay men, but not to the straight world, or may be to a few close ones. In fact, I feel like a chick not "Coming out", but "Peeking out" of the egg. Testing the waters. At times, I go back in, never wanting to come out again.
Peekers are typical "cat on the wall". They aren't fully out and proud to the society, nor are they hiding their feelings away from their closed ones. Would I want to be open? may be not, would I want to peek?, probably yes. Peeking is when you visit the gay bar, once in a blue moon, wishing to randomly find someone interesting, or when you join a LGBT potluck and ghost off. Where you join the apps boldly for a day, text random men and do nothing/ or may be something, and delete it "until further notice".
Peekers can be couples too. They are the classic "Best friends" to the outside world, who put up pictures on insta everyday #Closefriend #Bestie, only to be hang out with their gay friends at a pub in the weekend, snuggle together in the bed. They don't like to party or join in for a meet-up, with the rest of the crowd, but wish to have a close circle who knows them well. They aren't open, nor are they closeted.
May be we need this "Gray area" to realize that "coming out" isn't an event, but a process. Coming out need not be a grand gesture, but a series of baby steps. May be we need this term to acknowledge those of us, who prefer to stay in the canoe between the islands. The Peekers have their own issues. They are always afraid if they will be seen with the open crowd. They peek to see if anyone else they know are peeking, that they know of, and the chances of getting exposed. Peekers have the desire to find a man, but disinterested in being known to the crowd. Peekers have only occasional time, or liberty to be in the scene. May be Peekers just don't fit in. They have to be careful who they should add as friends, if they are texting too many men, if they are flirting with their colleague or if they are sleeping with their future brother in law.
The advantage of peeking is, that they can always go back in!, the shell is intact, the closet is half open, and they still can hide comfortably, either to open it all, when they feel like, close it up for good, or stay there as long as they want, peeking once in a while to get the best of both worlds!