One Equal World

A Lifetime of Coming Out Experiences

Posted on: September 24, 2013

Coming out as gay

“Coming out” is a lifetime of experiences, not just one.
Image: Shutterstock

Those of you who have bravely come out to your friends, family, or coworkers know that each person you disclose this part of your identity to is going to react in a different, unique way.

Similarly, folks who have been on the receiving end of the coming out should keep in mind that your loved one has probably had to have this conversation a lot. It’s important to consider that there’s a chance they’ve disclosed this information more than a few dozen times, so bombarding them with questions or judgment is going to rank this coming out as one of the worst in their lifetime of coming out experiences.

Gay author and advice columnist Rick Clemons says that “on the scale of ‘cake walk’ to ‘real drag,’ my coming out was a cupcake in need of some icing on the cake,” of his first time coming out. Clemons quickly learned that this experience would be the first of many coming-outs in both his personal life and career. He says, “What I do know now that I’ve stepped fully into my gay bear self, is that you don’t just come out once. There’s a lifetime of coming out experiences.” In a recent article for the Huffington Post, the author discusses what you might expect when coming out to twelve people you might never have thought you needed to.

Maybe you’ve already come out to your closest family members and friends, or you’re still mustering the courage to do so. You’ve already disclosed your sexual orientation to your employer and coworkers, but what about your doctor, or your financial planner? Clemons talks about the interactions you might encounter while coming out to your financial institution, in the event of an emergency, or to hotel staff when checking in. He explains, “While seas of change are occurring, there’s still a huge road ahead until equality and acceptance makes coming out a non-issue.”

Until then, Clemons suggests getting comfortable with the idea of tactfully disclosing your sexual orientation to a lot of acquaintances during your lifetime of coming-outs. Read more about the 12 People Who Should Always Know You’re Gay, according to Clemons.

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2 Responses to "A Lifetime of Coming Out Experiences"

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