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MarkJB

Coming Out Matters

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MarkJB
Posted (edited)

As a 39 year-old out gay man I don't often think about when I came out at 17; how it felt, what I was scared of, or why it was ever a big deal in the first place. I came out over 20 years ago, it all seems like a distant grey memory.

As National Coming Out day approaches this Saturday 11 October, I suddenly felt the urge to find out about other people's coming out experiences and stumbled on a website called R U Coming Out. Its aim it says 'is to inspire, support and unite those who are living their lives either completely or partially in the closet'. Although I'm not in the closet, inspire it certainly did.

As well as some great resources, R U Coming Out presents many beautiful and moving stories by people from every walk of life, each recounting their own personal experience of the coming out process. On reading, I was instantly taken back to a very painful time in my teens when I suffered constant bullying and physical attacks on a regular basis just because of my queerness. But it wasn't the bullying or violence I spent too much time thinking about, it was what came after I came out, the sense of freedom to be me and of the love and acceptance from my parents, the rest of my family and friends at the time. Reading these stories made me feel grateful that I had my experience, even after 22 years. Unfortunately some experiences aren't always happy ones, but within these stories lies support to others through sharing.

Putting the past aside, the thing that struck me the most is the fact that coming out still matters - a lot. Just because I came out many years ago, there's many out there who haven't yet and there'll be many more to come. ​To quote a message from the Human Rights Campaign who coordinate NCO in the US, 'when people know someone who is LGBTQ, they are far more likely to support equality under the law. Beyond that, our stories can be powerful to each other.' I agree and think that our queer stories go untold all the time, we don't learn about our queer heritage in schools or from our families, only from each other. So, whether you're out or not take a look at R U Coming Out, maybe you'll be inspired to tell your story.

​For more on National Coming Out day visit the Human Rights Campaign website.




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Edited by MarkBryant

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Andy102
Posted

Great Post Mark,

Thanks for that info on R U Coming Out website. I've read some coming out stories and watched coming out videos before and some of them brought tears to my eyes that I had to stop and walk away for moment just so I could compose myself before going back to finish reading their stories or watching their videos.

Thanks again


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Ari_Shmary_Canada
Posted

I pray that everyone can come out of the closet of Hell. Thank you for sharing your story Enthusiastic post here Mark, it's inspiring. I posted my Questionnaire answer story to “Share your coming out story…” just today and it's long. I love this place, and I love the whole Gays.com team for being here for everyone who needs to work out themselves to come out to someone or everyone. Anyone who hasn’t come out to important people in their lives yet, should should come out on National Coming Out day, or maybe take this opportunity to discuss (or bring up) this day on the 17th: International Day Against Homophobia, and come out at the same time. That’s what I would do if I was still in the closet, but I’m not any longer, as you’ll read about in my story. It’s better for you to come out to everyone, and it’s better for everyone else as well. In perfect love and perfect trust, Coming out is a must, while it’s for the good of all, and harming none. Xoxoxo PS: When you tell someone that knows you and Truly Loves you, then they will now Truly Know You and Truly Love you. Coming out Still Matters.


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