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Happy National Coming Out Day, To One And All

Coming_out_day Today, October 11, is not only Columbus Day, it's also National Coming Out Day, 24 blessed hours in which the nation, particularly LGBT communities and their pals, discuss the importance of coming out.

In light of recent suicides and horrific hate crimes in one of the States' most gay-friendly cities, this year's "National Coming Out Day," the 22nd annual, carries even more significance, so share your story, if you will, in the comments section.

My story: age 18, spring break of freshman year, while my mother was recovering from surgery, I blurted it out, after being inspired by my "straight" hair dresser. My mother's response: "I know, and I love you anyway."

Warms the cockles of my heart...

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Comments

  1. Thanks for sharing your story with us. Sounds like you have a cool Mom.

    Posted by: A.G. | Oct 11, 2010 9:57:02 AM


  2. I was the very first person in my family's entire history to come out as openly gay. This was in 1975, and I had no homosexual role-models except for Liberace, Charles Nelson Reilly and Paul Lynde.
    I had always been my super-Catholic mother's favorite out of ten children, which sounds great, except that she was putting a lot of pressure on me to supply her with lots of grandsons and to be with her forever, taking care of her as she got older.
    My way of coming out and cutting those apron strings was to arrive on Christmas morning with my boyfriend on his motorcycle, both of us in full leather. We walked in, handed Mom her presents, and I said "Merry Christmas, Mom - This is my boyfriend Michael. He'll be sleeping with me tonight."
    It didn't take ling for us to be chased out of the house and "banished forever". This sounds terrible, but it really wasn't. It was my liberation from an enormous amount of pressure that I didn't want, now that I was out of the nest.
    My siblings have never forgotten that day, but they all admire me greatly for having to balls to do it. The family came around, and I'm proud to have started the precedent for being yourself in our family.

    Posted by: Papa Tony | Oct 11, 2010 10:02:57 AM


  3. Lets see, I was 16 or 17 and I just walked into my mom's room and said, "So I've got something to say" and she wondered if it was drugs like 4 times and I said "Remember that magazine you found 2 years ago?"

    She didn't care, she already knew.

    Posted by: Fenrox | Oct 11, 2010 10:43:57 AM


  4. During a recent Glee marathon everyone shed a tear in Kurt's coming out scene. Does it mean they all had a "bad" coming out to their parents like me ?

    Posted by: BaoPhac Do | Oct 11, 2010 12:17:04 PM


  5. Early 1985. I was a few weeks shy of my 18th birthday. In a moment of emotional distress, I blurted out to my grandmother: "I am a homosexual." (Yes, I said the H word).

    My grandmother, in typically direct fashion, replied, "Well, thank you for that newsflash. I've suspected it for sometime. Based on the way I've seen you looking at your male friends, you have good taste."

    Years later, she confessed to me that she suspected that one of her husbands had been secretly gay.

    Posted by: Hank | Oct 11, 2010 12:30:23 PM


  6. It was 2005, I was 29 years old, sitting in my backyard, my then wife of 4 years asked me if I was attracted to men, and for the first time in my life I was honest with her about my sexuality. I said yes. Today I am out, proud, partnered, and happy. Unfortunately, I also have not spoken with my parents since my divorce. The rejection I feared came true.

    Posted by: beckhard | Oct 11, 2010 12:34:43 PM


  7. I believe 4 out of 5 moms know intuitively if they have a gay son.

    Posted by: Dillon | Oct 11, 2010 12:36:58 PM


  8. The first person I "came out" to was my best friend when I was 17 or 18. It didn't feel like a grand, revelatory moment. Instead, it just seemed to me to be a normal part of the conversation, which then continued on to other subjects. He remains my best friend today.

    I didn't come out to my parents. My parents outed me when I was 19, after my mom discovered a, uh... explicitly gay-themed story I had written and inadvertently left lying around. I had been in a habit all my life of sharing the stories I wrote with them, so this wasn't a gross invasion of my privacy or anything, and indeed, leaving THAT lying around, perhaps a part of me wanted to be found out.

    I was called downstairs to speak to my dad one afternoon; he explained what my mom had found and asked me if I was gay, or perhaps bisexual, or just uncertain. I told him I was gay. He was accepting and clearly wanted to understand. My mother was, at least for a time, a little more awkward about it (this is a reversal of how things typically go, I know!), but now, almost 5 years later, the whole thing is a non-issue, and I have a great relationship with my parents. I'm certainly lucky in this regard.

    Posted by: Jordan | Oct 11, 2010 1:02:34 PM


  9. Not too long after Ellen, I came out to my mom. In an airport. Apparently my voice was louder than I intended when I said I thought I might maybe be bisexual. *ahem* Never was too good at being closeted.

    I didn't have much to worry about, seeing as how she was (informally) married to a lesbian...

    Posted by: Mana | Oct 11, 2010 1:11:01 PM


  10. I was 27 when I came out to my dad. I am mormon-born & raised.

    I flew home one weekend toward the end of the summer. (I particularly chose a non-holiday to do this. Highly recommend this folks.) I arranged to have lunch with my dad and meet in his office.

    He knew something was up, but he thought it was legal or financial troubles. Through my tears, I told him I was gay.

    He told me he loved me, and even though he's extremely religious, he admitted he doesn't have all the answers in this life. That we'd get through this and that god loved me too.

    Whew! But after a few days, as most parents do, they start to internalize things, and maybe aren't as "cool with it" as you initially thought. We've had our spats, but nothing major.

    I've brought boyfriends home and on family trips (including two very large, extended family reunions.)

    Let's continue to be examples to our peers. Be a positive influence for those deciding to come out. Happy Coming Out Day Everyone!

    Posted by: Brig | Oct 11, 2010 1:19:36 PM


  11. I came out when I was fifteen... well, I had invited one of my friends home to "study"... and my mom saw us kissing each other instead. Yeah, it was awkward. But after my "friend" left, she talked to me about it, and I told her that I am bisexual. She said "I don't think being bisexual is reall that uncommon... people just don't like to admit it to themselves because their scared. But that's not being true to who you are." She told me she's proud of me and she loves me no mater what. So I've been out and proud since then.

    Posted by: Brooke | Oct 11, 2010 3:28:44 PM


  12. I'm 43 and have now lived just over half of my life "out". I don't have children of my own, but I do have nephews and children of cousins and friends, and I'm saddened that so much remains to be done for gay kids in 2010. I survived high school, but it wasn't easy... apparently it still isn't. Homophobia is taught; and, if we're not actively fighting against this, we're helping it along.

    Gaylings. Make way for them.

    http://www.dranespout.com/2010/10/gaylings.html

    Posted by: DraneSpout | Oct 11, 2010 4:43:22 PM


  13. I told my female friends when I was 13 (in 1985), my male friends when I was 14, and my mother when I was 17. She and I agreed that I should tell my father, but I was nervous and waited a couple days, and she ended up telling him. Pretty dull. The only interesting part was my four older brothers, who were the last to know, but they gradually found out, figured it out, or told each other.

    Then upon retiring in 1993, my parents became super religious. But I dated someone from 1992 to 2008 and they were always nice to him, included him on family trips, etc. It's a complete non-issue now, and I talk to my mother about dating without hesitation. Their church is totally opposed to it, so she probably doesn't tell many of her friends, but I can see why she'd prefer to make her life simpler. She has a lot to deal with anyway.

    I had been terrified of being disowned, so I taught myself typing and other office skills in case I needed to support myself at an early age, and graduated high school and moved out at 16 just to be safe. (Also hated high school.) But I had nothing to fear.

    Posted by: Paul R | Oct 11, 2010 6:30:03 PM


  14. My birthday is today. How nice these last years to be able to say "My birthday is National Coming Out Day" instead of "My birthday is Columbus Day" (tho' I was born in Columbus OH, this is much cooler). And at 37 I heard my Mother say, "Why do you guys come out on your birthday?" My older brother came out on his(in February), I came out on mine. I had the better line as you could imagine.

    Posted by: Jeff S | Oct 11, 2010 8:39:12 PM


  15. I came out to everyone when I was 16. I didn't have it rough at all. Everyone was very accepting of me and my lifestyle. I expected much a much worse reaction, But I guess if you have a lot of love around you, You'll always come out on top.

    Posted by: Burton S. | Oct 11, 2010 9:27:40 PM


  16. Merry COMING OUT DAY, EVERYONE!

    I came out to my sister today. I called her up and said I'm into dudes. She was...well, she said, "yeah...you brought your then boyfriend to my wedding...seven years ago...and before that, you came out at fourteen, and before that I knew because you told everyone." I called her a homophobe and hung up. What kinda total bitch rubs it in MY FACE that I can't get married legally by inviting me to her BREEDER wedding?

    Now I just need to wait until two am and give papa a ring, wake him up, and explain what gay sex is like in vivid detail (sound effects vivid)...again...and if he is even mildly annoyed or uncomfortable, I'm cutting him right out of my life. I don't need that kind of hate from the old man.

    Seriously, this is a good day to mark. Hopefully, a lot of people have taken advantage of it by coming out to their friends, family, and coworkers--because that's one of the best ways to make a real difference.

    Posted by: TANK | Oct 11, 2010 10:10:31 PM


  17. I was 18 year old when i came out after coming from church i couldn't hear anymore about that gay people where evil and where going to hell i just did not want to hear it anymore so i told my dad and mom after church there are pastors of a pencostal church so when i told them they just threw me out and told me that they did not want to be part of my life its really sad but im happy that i can be who i am never be ashamed of being gay its a gift we are who we are we where born this way

    Posted by: Miguel Garcia | Oct 11, 2011 7:50:56 AM


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