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:

So I know I am bisexual, and I have been for a long time. I know I am young, but I have always liked girls, I am a female too. Females have always appealed to me, and I have done things with both men and women, and I like both. When I was younger, I used to talk dirty with my friend in a journal, and one day my mom found the journal. She freaked when she read what we were talking about. She told me I could never hang out with her again. And she told me she knew I did not like girls. But still to this day, I like girls. I don’t know how to tell her. She needs to know, so I can feel whole, I just don’t know how to tell her without her freaking at me. Help! And its hurting me deep inside. I want to hurt myself, cause she doesn’t know.

Letter submitted by:

Answer:

Dear Sammi,

Your situation sounds very challenging and painful. You are clear about who you are and you want to be yourself completely, but you don’t have the support that you need from your mother. That can be very stressful and painful and in situations like these, it is not unusual for people to want to hurt themselves, because the physical pain can temporarily take away the unbearable pain of rejection. The problem with self-harm is that it is a temporary alteration of feelings and does not solve the problem, but can only add more problems to the already painful situation. We would encourage you to reach out to another adult, perhaps a teacher or a neighbor or a pastor, or someone you trust to help you through this difficult time. What you are going through is very difficult, and we commend you for the enormous amount of courage that you are showing!

Affirmation and acceptance from your mother is very important to you, and it sounds like your mother might be having a very difficult time with the reality that she has a bisexual daughter. The good news is that many, many young people have been able to work with their parents who struggled when they came out, and have happy and healthy relationships today. Working through this with your mother might be a challenging process, so it is important to surround yourself with friends and family who are supportive and accepting of you.

There are good organizations that we can point you towards that can possibly help your mother in her process. Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) is a great organization, made up mostly of parents, which supports LGBTQ people and works to help parents and others to become more supportive and accepting of their loved one’s sexual orientation/gender identity. On their website at www.pflag.org click on “Get Support” then click on “For Families, Friends, and Allies” where you’ll find the pamphlets “Our Daughters and Sons: Questions and Answers for Parents of Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual People” and “Frequently Asked Questions about GLBT People,” which, if you’re comfortable, you can share with your parents to help them become more understanding and accepting of you. PFLAG also runs support groups where parents and others can discuss questions and concerns they have about a loved one’s sexual orientation and where LGBT people can discuss issues they’re having with people in their life. On their website, you can search for a chapter near you. If no chapter is near you or if your family members/friends won’t attend, you could still contact the nearest chapter and get support and learn ways to help them become more understanding of you.

Here is another link to the Human Rights Campaign’s resource on coming out that both you and your parents can use, http://www.hrc.org/files/documents/ComingOut_ResourceGuide.pdf.

If you ever feel so stressed out and discouraged that you want to hurt yourself, call us immediately at the Trevor lifeline at 1-866-4-U-Trevor, 24 hours 7 days a week, we are here to help you through this. We are here to continue to support you throughout this process, so please keep in touch as much as you need, we are always here for you!

Sincerely,

Trevor Staff