My parents are high-key homophobes, and I feel like if I came out as bi/pans to them, they would disown me or reprimand me trying to “pray the gay away.” I just want to come out in a way that would end up in them accepting me for who I am.
- Coming out to anyone can be very scary. It was brave of you to reach out to TeenCentral to share such a personal story with us. You should be proud of using your voice.
- TeenCentral has an entire page dedicated to LGBTQ+ issues, particularly “coming out”. If you haven’t already you should check it out. A lot of teens are struggling with the very decision that you are. Click here to check it out. Remember, your choice to identify as LGBTQ+ is your story to tell, no one else’s.
- If you are hesitant with coming out to your parents, is there someone else in your life that you feel safe talking to? This doesn’t have to be a family member, it can be a friend at school, a neighbor, or even a teacher. Having a positive support system is key when making these challenging decisions in your life. It may also feel like a weight lifted off your shoulders once you are living your true self with others. This is a decision that only you can make, when and if you are ready.
WHEN YOU ARE READY:
- Remember- your parents (when and if you decide to tell them) may not have the reaction you are hoping for. How they react is not something that you can control and the fear of rejection can be very emotional. It may be helpful to put some thought into what coping skills you can use and what support systems you can rely on if things get tough. Challenge yourself to come up with five positive coping skills you can utilize for some of these really hard conversations. These can be simple things like focusing on your breathing or objects around you to stay grounded, or holding onto something small in your hard if you get scared.
- There may also be some other things to consider when coming out to anyone. Grab a pen and paper and answers some of these questions. Do you want that person(s) to keep this private or is it ok to talk about? You can ask people to honor your privacy. What are some ways that they can support you? In what environments will you be “out” in? This could be a few safe places or everywhere. Think about some other aspects that are important to you.
- Don’t forget to take time for yourself. Find a safe space in nature to take a walk and decompress. You are doing a great job, remind yourself of that every day! You got this.