Tomorrow, October 11th, is National Coming Out Day. This day is near and dear to much of the LGBTQIA+ community, because it marks so many of our own anniversaries for revealing our true selves. Please enjoy these 10 things to know about this holiday.
1: October 11th is National Coming Out Day.
This is a day where we, as a country, open our hearts (and ears) to hear the truth of who our friends and family may be. Whether someone is gay/lesbian/bisexual/asexual/etc. or trans/nonbinary/etc., this is a day to celebrate and include that person.
I came out on National Coming Out Day 2005. It was one of the hardest days in my life, but also one of the most joyous. This day is an anniversary for me, and it’s one I celebrate each year by inviting my friends and family to be exactly who they are, rather than what they think they should be.
2: You don’t have to come out!
This one is pretty self-explanatory. If the world isn’t ready for the full you, or you’re not sure you’re ready to share your whole self, wait until another time. If National Coming Out Day is too much pressure, just wait until the time feels right. I only came out on this day because I felt empowered to. That’s the whole idea — empowerment. It’s a day for liberation from silent oppression.
3: Coming out is both difficult and (usually) rewarding.
It’s never easy to learn someone isn’t who you thought they were. We have to adjust our perception, our assumptions, and (for good or ill) our relationships. Friendships can flourish or shatter when you come out. It’s the good times that we hope for. When they happen, it makes everything worthwhile.
When I came out, my social circle fractured. I lost “friends” I’d known since junior high. My work relationships became strained and awkward after news reached my job. On the other hand, my remaining friendships became stronger. I forged bonds that remain to this day because I trusted my friends with who I am, and they trusted me in…