Welcome to Ask Trevor

Ask Trevor is an online question and answer resource for young people who have questions surrounding sexual orientation and gender identity.

On September 1st, Ask Trevor will be transitioning to become a broader more effective resource for LGBTQ young people and their allies. This means we will no longer be accepting incoming letters starting on Tuesday, September 2nd. However, if you send us a letter before September 2nd, you will receive a response. Please note that your wait time may be longer than usual. In the meantime, please continue to browse through our extensive library of previously answered letters, and stay tuned for what’s coming next!

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Coming out

Question:

I am 13 and I’m trying to come fully out of the closet. I clearly know that I am gay and fully accept it.

The only people who know are my best friend, my grandma, my aunt, and my mom. My mom and grandma keep on saying that they want grandchildren, thinking its a phase, asking if I have a girlfriend, and they already know! They all support me (my mom, not so much) and will love me no matter what lifestyle I choose, but on the other-hand I’m afraid to tell my dad because he is quite homophobic and I really don’t know what his response would be, he loves me but I think he might kick me out of the house!

I’m starting high school and want to come out but I don’t know how, or if its the right time or if I should make more friends before? I really don’t know many people there, and I’m thinking I should get some support before doing this publicly.

Lots of people say it gets better, but I really don’t want it to be bad, I just want to come out, get it done, and be who I really am, but I’m afraid of what might happen(bullying, my dad not accepting me etc)
Please help!

—Jordan

Letter submitted by:

Answer:

Dear Jordan

You have taken a good step in writing to Ask Trevor for advice on coming out. It’s courageous to have accepted yourself and figure out that you’re ready to be open with other people. Although each person’s process is different and there’s no specific list of things to do in the coming out process, accepting yourself and seeking help is a positive way to get you started. There are many people in a situation similar to yours with the same thoughts and feelings, and just as many allies; people who hope you stay safe and healthy.

As you begin the process, you may encounter a little resistance and frustration. Just like it may take a while to come out to ourselves, it may take some time for family and friends to understand and accept the news too. Even the most open-minded person may need help in accepting and adjusting to this new information. From your letter, it sounds like your Mom and Grandma are at that stage.

There are some valuable resources available to you to help with the “how to” of coming out to friends and relatives.

The Human Rights Campaign has a wonderful page dedicated to helping people come out. Go to http://www.hrc.org/resources/category/coming-out to check out their resources and information.

And PFLAG: Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays has some helpful information on the subject as well. At http://community.pflag.org/page.aspx?pid=268 you’ll be able to access their resources.

From your letter it sounds like what you want to know most is how best to come out in your new high school.  There may be a counselor at your school with whom you can discuss issues of coming out in your specific school.  Also, your high school may have a GSA (gay straight alliance) that could provide you with contacts and support. One great resource is talking and sharing with others who have gone through similar situations. At TrevorSpace.org, you can chat with other young LGBTQ people and exchange thoughts and experience. I encourage you to take advantage of this. If you’d like to chat online live with a Trevor Project volunteer, http://www.thetrevorproject.org/chat is available as well. We’re always here for you.

 

Trevor Staff