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!

If you are feeling suicidal, or need to talk to someone right away, please call the Trevor Lifeline at 1-866-488-7386. It’s available 24/7, 365 days a year. You can also chat with a Trevor counselor at Trvr.org/Chat from 12:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. PT / 3:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. ET.

Please note: If you live outside of the United States and need to talk to someone, please seek help at the nearest emergency room or check out the following international hotlines: http://www.suicide.org/international-suicide-hotlines.html

You are never alone. Thank you for reaching out to The Trevor Project for support!

waiting to come out to my parents

Question:

I’m gay. All of my friends know, all of my coworkers know, everyone knows. Except my parents and sister. I’ve known that I’m gay for almost my entire life. I was bullied about it from 3rd grade until about 9th grade, and both my parents know that, but shrugged it off by saying, when I was young that “it just means happy”, and when I was older that “everyone thinks that about boys in theatre.” I’m not ashamed of who I am, but I just don’t want to actually come out to them. Even though I know they’ll accept me, I just think they’ll make a huge deal out of it. Anyone who’s had to come out to someone can probably agree that the most annoying thing is when people think it’s such a HUMONGOUS part of one’s life. I really don’t like being the center of attention, I’m much more content to let other people shine. My parents would want to talk about it all the time, and I honestly just don’t want to talk about it with them at all.

I came to the conclusion that I would wait until I am living on my own to come out to them, so that they can’t corner me at home to talk about it. I’m happy with my decision, but I’ve received a lot of criticism from both my straight and LGBT* friends that I have no reason to wait, that I’m ashamed of myself, etc. I’m content with my decision, but with all the criticism coming at me from the people I trust the most, I don’t know what to do anymore. Sorry if the point was unclear, I had a hard time figuring out how to word this!

Thanks in advance!

Answer:

Hi Matthew,

Thank you for your well-written letter. You seem very confident and happy with your sexuality, and congratulations on that. The issue is coming out to your family, and minimizing drama.

It’s true that different people react differently, and nobody knows your family as well as you do. If things are working for you, and you’d rather come out after you are living on your own, that seems like a perfectly sensible decision. And it’s completely a decision for you to make, not your friends or other onlookers. I wouldn’t recommend putting it off forever, but if you have a specific plan, like you do, that’s your business. You can always re-evaluate telling them sooner if it ceases to become a sensible plan.

Good luck, and don’t hesitate to contact us for any issues!