When is coming out as queer a good idea?

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Answered by: Leslie, An Expert in the Coming Out as Gay Category
Coming out can be hard. You wonder what everyone will think.Will everything be okay after you do? Sometimes, you even wonder if coming out as queer is even the right thing to do. Lots of people every day ask that same question. "What if my family kicks me out? What if people hate me? Is this the right thing to do?" Yes, it is. What does it matter if it does bother others? It's what's right for you. Studies all across America have shown that, mentally, people who were interviewed after coming out as queer were infinitely better off than those that hadn't. Believe it or not, coming out is good for you, even if those around you don't like it. It helps you to improve mentally, emotionally, and yes even physically. Why? Because being in the closet hurts. Imagine, for example, that the closet is a boa constrictor and you were a mouse. The longer that boa has you, the tighter it squeezes, crushing you ruthlessly until finally, you have to get out. When you come out, that boa can't touch you anymore. You're safe. Yes, there may be problems, some people might not understand, but that's what the queer community is here for. We don't let others down. We all know what it's like to be caught by the boa. We won't let you suffer alone. Now that you've decided to come out, it's time to figure out where to start. It's not as hard as it seems, honestly.

The first step is to come out to someone you trust: a friend, a parent, a relative, someone you know won't leave. After that, you can start easing into it. You don't have to tell anyone at a specific time, your coming out should be on your terms. When you're ready, you can start telling others. Maybe try telling friends or family that you're not completely sure about. Put yourself out there. Trust them. If you lose some people on the way, remind yourself that it's not your fault. You are okay the way you are. You have every right to be happy just the way you are, and if they can't accept your happiness, do they really deserve you.

Finally, tell everyone. This is the fun part. Go outside. Scream it to the sky. Yell it out your window. Shout it at the top of your lungs to the mailman. You're queer, and that's okay- that's good. You're finally out and proud. You worked hard to get here, but you did it. You found your truth, now you wear it like a badge of honor. Wear it on your wrist, your shirt- wear it on your face. Anywhere that people can see it. You're proud, as you should be. You worked hard to get here. You struggled, fought, and yes, sometimes even cried. You earned your truth. If people don't like that, then fine. It's not their truth. It's not their pride. It's yours. So be proud of it, because we're all proud of you. Welcome home. We love you.

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