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Unsure of coming out

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2021 2:14 am
by Melamyl
I have always known that I was lesbian, especially from a very young age. When I was growing up in the very late '90s and early 2000's I often heard people say derogatory things about LGBTQ+ people, however, for the last 15 years I have pretty much been housebound due to my autism and anxiety disorders so I haven't had much interaction with other people. I'm now in my twenties but I'm too embarrassed to come out to people. I fear that if I do people are going to judge me or think that there is something seriously wrong with me (I won't go into detail about what I think people would say about me). I have been told by some of my relatives that people's views have changed a lot compared to 15 years ago, but I don't believe it. I still think that I should be keeping my head down and saying nothing or trying to 'hide' my sexuality. I feel like I will never be accepted and will always be a judged outcast. I know that this is a common issue for a lot of people who are part of the LGBTQ+ community, which in turn feeds into my fears even more. Anyway, I just felt like letting this off my chest, thank you for taking the time to read this :)

Re: Unsure of coming out

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2021 9:42 am
by Sam W
Hi Melamyl,

Whether to come out, and to who, is a really personal decision. So if ever feel like coming out wouldn't be safe for you, emotionally or physically, then you get to keep your sexual orientation to yourself. Your relatives are right in that the culture in the U.S is shifting towards greater acceptance of LGBT folks. But, that doesn't mean every LGBT person is in a home or community where it's safe for them to be out, or that folks who ARE out won't face discrimination or hate from some people. That's part of why we treat each individual person as the expert on whether or not it's safe for them to come out. Does that all make sense?

In terms of coming out to people outside of your family (it sounds like you're out to them, but if that's wrong please let me know), are there people you want to be out to? If you could find more LGBT or LGBT-friendly spaces like Scarleteen, would you want to participate in them?

I do need to check: your user profile lists your age as 54. If that's not accurate, can you change it to reflect your actual age?