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I dont know how to tell my mom

Question:

I have been bi for 4 years and my mom still doesn’t know, but I have a girlfriend. She and I have been off and on for 3 years, and I’m tired of hiding my feelings. My mom makes fun of bisexual people, and it hurts. I just wish she knew.

Letter submitted by:

Answer:

Trevor Staff

Hello,

First and foremost, I want to acknowledge your courage in being honest about your romantic feelings for both guys and girls. Being bisexual is as natural as being heterosexual, and many people have those feelings, but it still takes a lot of courage to acknowledge and deal with them–even if it’s only to yourself. Good for you!

Deciding whether to come out to the people close to you, especially your mom, can be really complicated. Everyone must figure out for themselves if, when, and how to come out based on what’s right for them. What does it feel like hiding this part of yourself? If you do choose to come out, there are definite positives: people close to you now know you better, you feel less alone, and you don’t carry the burden of keeping a secret. But there are important questions to ask on the other side. Is there a possibility that you’d be physically or emotionally at risk if you come out to a certain person? Do you think there’s a chance that your parents might kick you out of the house? If that happens, do you have a backup plan for a place to live and keep going to school until you graduate and can support yourself? Some people decide to wait until they leave home to come out to their family. Only you can honestly answer these questions for yourself. Maybe you know that your mom and other people close to you wouldn’t have that kind of negative reaction, and it’s okay to tell them now. Of course, that’s great. Alternatively, you could speak in confidence with a trusted counselor or teacher for the time being. What really matters is that you are safe and secure during this part of your life.

If you want further information on the subject of coming out, you can find a couple of great resources at http://www.hrc.org/files/documents/ComingOut_ResourceGuide.pdf (“A Resource Guide to Coming Out”) and http://www.affirmation.org/youth/coming_out.pdf (“Coming Out to Your Parents: Questions to Think About”). The second link in particular can help you consider the potential pros and cons of telling your mom, either now or at some point in the future. If you want to learn more about being bisexual, http://www.bisexual.org is another good information source. Finally, you can continue reaching out to us at the Trevor Project. Besides Ask Trevor, there’s also TrevorSpace, our safe online social networking site for young LGBTQ people and their friends and allies, at www.trevorspace.org. And of course, you can call the Trevor Lifeline at 1-866-4-U-TREVOR (1-866-488-7386) 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to talk to a Lifeline counselor whenever you need to. We’re always here for you!

Sincerely,
The Trevor Project