It’s as the title says, guys, what is your coming out story?
We are asking because today marks the 32nd anniversary of the National Coming Out Day [NCOD] in the United States. For more information on the celebration, please check our previous post here.
For the past 32 years, LGBTQ Americans have celebrated sharing who they are with family, friends and colleagues on Oct. 11.— NPR (@NPR) October 11, 2020
Here are two @NPRLifeKit episodes about how to have those conversations — and how to better support the LGBTQ people in your life. https://t.co/PNwZr7SWJg
According to Human Rights Campaign (HRC), National Coming Out Day was first observed 32 years ago during the anniversary of the National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights, “as a reminder that one of our most basic tools is the power of coming out.”
Further, HRC added, “One out of every two Americans has someone close to them who is gay or lesbian. For transgender people, that number is only one in 10.”
For Adam4Adam users who are thinking of coming out today or in the near future, HRC has put together a resource guide that may be helpful for you, you can read it here. Or, if you’re thinking of coming out during this pandemic, CNN has written an article about how it is for others who had already done so this COVID-19 crisis, read it here.
Having said all that, are you out to your family, friends, and colleagues, guys? If you are, how did they take it and what is your coming out story?
We’ve scoured the social media for coming out stories and we saw this interview by BBC Sport with some out athletes including Laurie Williams—a 2.5 point Anglo-Irish wheelchair basketball player and Gus Kenworthy—a British-American freestyle skier, actor, and YouTuber.
🏳️🌈 "National Coming Out Day is about raising awareness and to let people know that LGBTQ+ people do exist in the world, and we do exist in sport and that it’s ok to be who you truly are and to do the things that you love." 🏳️🌈#NationalComingOutDay pic.twitter.com/g0fz5hF4Fo— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) October 11, 2020
Laurie Williams said, “Growing up for me there weren’t a lot of disabled athletes and there weren’t a lot of gay athletes out there and that’s something that could really stop people from pursuing their dreams.”
She explained that she “did go through a period of feeling a bit lost and, you know, ‘is anybody else going through this? Am I alone?'” But Williams said that in the end, “You come to realize that you are completely not alone. There is a massive community who embrace you with open arms and that was just wonderful for me.”
Gus Kenworthy on the other hand, said that he came out because, “It basically got to a point where the pain of holding onto this lie was actually greater than the fear of what might happen. So I kind of let my guard down and decided to open up and it ended up being the best decision I’ve ever made in my entire life.”
He added, “Anything that was bad would get referred to as ‘gay.’ It’s just liberating being yourself and it’s freeing and that freedom translates in performance.”
Gus ended his interview with BBC Sport by saying, “National Coming Out Day is an incredible thing to have for our community but by no way shape or form should it feel like people are burdened to come out.”
NATIONAL COMING OUT DAY: Straight friends, neighbors, & allies:— Brian Sims (@BrianSimsPA) October 11, 2020
Today is a very special day for those of us in LGBTQ+ communities. Today is National Coming Out Day & for some of us it’s a day of celebration, others a day of reflection, & for most all of us, a day of solidarity. pic.twitter.com/j90sTE9RhR
🌈| It's National Coming Out Day! Whoever you are, however you want to identify, whoever you choose to love, your voice and your story matters. You are VALID and you are LOVED. #NationalComingOutDay https://t.co/iFS5kY1tah— HL Daily (@UpdateHLD) October 11, 2020
You can read more coming out stories here.
Anyway, what about you, guys, how and at what age did you realize you were gay? Did you come out to your family, friends, and colleagues? If so, what is your coming out story?
Share with us your thoughts and stories in the comments section below.
Happy National Coming Out Day!