Happy National Coming Out Day to you of the LGBTQIA community.
..seriously that acronym is getting long..
Firstly, I want to say congratulations to those who have come out as any one of the many LGBT identifiers. You’ve made it. You’ve hit the major milestone. Throw yourself a rainbow ice-cream party and celebrate. If you haven’t, don’t worry about it. National Coming Out day is a day to celebrate all the wonderful differences in the community and the process of opening up yourself. If you don’t feel comfortable being out yet, celebrate inside. Some people use this day as a little push to be open and reveal themselves. That’s cool too, but don’t feel pressured to do anything you are not comfortable in doing. Coming out is a personal process and it’s different for everyone. And it doesn’t have to be done today.
Be you, whoever you are..
Honestly this is a little bit personal for me, not because of myself, but because of what I’ve seen in life so far. I’ve worked mostly with kids and became that “cool accepting counselor” that could be confided in about anything. I’ve been honored to have been included in the personal journey of some kids struggling with their own sexuality and fear of no longer being accepted by their peers or family. I haven’t had to personally experience fear of rejection just for being who I felt I was, but I have witnessed the stress it can cause. The first, and most important person, that has to accept who you are, is yourself. Everyone after that is secondary. It can be very hard and maybe even frightening, but be your own support system first. Then, those that will truly accept you, will gravitate towards you too. Gather up the strength to step out into the light on your own. If you come out needing or expecting support and you don’t get it, that can be extremely devastating.
And depression is very dangerous and rampant in the LGBT community. Especially among the youth.
Last year’s seemingly unending amount of teen suicides was absolutely horrid. It resonated with me deeply because I have 3 younger brothers those ages and I just kept thinking I was relieved they know I’m available for anything they need to come to me with for any reason. There’s a lot of negativity out there, but society keeps steadily progressing toward more acceptance and that is always a positive.
Today is a good day. Be about love and acceptance. That sounded a bit hippy-ish, but I meant it. Embrace who you are. Enjoy who you are. Love who you are. Let the inner cavities of your soul be one continuous, big, gay party if you want. Build up the courage to stop holding back who you are and let it out for the whole world to enjoy.
In your own time.
Til next time. Stay frosty.
p.s. I am almost always available if you want a little encouragement, or some advice, or a non-judgmental friend to chat with, or just someone random to vent to once because you have been holding in so much for so long and you don’t feel comfortable going to anyone else. Shoot me an email through my “Contact Me” page if you’d like. My Skype name is also there.
Another great resource is The Trevor Project. They have a 24/7 hotline with counselors ready to talk, nice resources, and events to get you involved or learn more about the community. Check them out.