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Community Rainbow Waves

I’ve know I was different from such a young age, but I couldn’t put a finger on what it was.I thought looking at girls and thinking they were so cool and so beautiful was normal. I idealised my friends and would do anything for them. Till I was 13. I met someone at school and thought she was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. Oh shit. Am I gay? No I can’t be that’s wrong and perverse. No she’s just a friend. I like boys right….

And there started and 8 year long battle with my sexuality. It was and is the hardest battle of my life. In high school I couldn’t tell anyone for fear I would be judged, disliked, stared at or maybe even assaulted, so I kept my silence. As the years went by slowly fading into darkness and depression over something as simple as being who I was. Having to act a certain way so my friends wouldn’t find out and pretending to like boys just tore me up inside. I didn’t think I was going to survive.

But I did.

Fast forward into 2020 I’ve come out to most of my friends who all except me, who love me and say I deserve happiness. Saying those words “im gay” was so hard. My body would physically shake and my throat would choke up. I remember the first time I come out. I drove to my friends house because I was just bursting at the seems and had to get it out. She took me on a walk and I was just completely silent the whole time. Till she turned to me and asked if I was gay and I just nodded. I bursted into tears then she hugged me and said it was going to be alright, and I will be alright. I’m not out to my parents because I’m quite certain they will not except me and kick me out of my house which gives me so much pain. So at the moment I feel I have to choose between them and my happiness. I hope over time I will be strong enough to be who I am and have the support I need to get through it when the time comes for me to tell them.

My sexuality has been the hardest thing in my life. It has come with sadness, anger, guilt, depression and a suicide attempt, but I am still here, fighting everyday for my life, and I’m winning. I hope that our world will change. Where we don’t see black and white, we see colour. A rainbow. Love, everyone loving who they want and being who you want to be.

I think I knew that I was a part of the LGBT2QIA+ community when I got overexcited after discovering that a character on one of my favorite TV Shows was bisexual. When I realized that I was a lesbian, after weeks trying to accept that myself, I instantly told my mom, who got a hard time accepting it. But now she completely supports me and I couldn’t be more grateful.
On school, I basically came out to one person at a time ’till all of the class knew. Everyone that I told my sexuality to was happy for me and that gave me enough courage to tell my dad and then my stepmom. I still haven’t come out to my grandparents and I’m not sure if I plan on it.
But if there’s something that I’m actually sure is that talking to other Earpers helped a lot. Simply sharing experiences and hearing their stories was something that brightened up my darkest days and helped me get through my internalized homophobia. I wouldn’t have been able to survive without my friends that offered me all of the support that I needed.

 

Hi guys my name is Gaby, I have 23 years old and I from Venezuela but I live in Argentina.

so here goes:
I started to feel strange when I was very young, when I have 10 I started to realize that I was attracted to one girl in my school something that not happened to me with boys, it was a stange felling it scared me a lot I studied in a religious school and my family were very traditional So what they had instilled in me since I was little was that those feelings I was having were VERY BAD because of that I made my feelings go aside I grew up trying to ignore what I felt, I knew that something was different in me and that kept scaring me a lot, I did not talk to anyone, many nights I cried and told myself that it could not be like this, God going to punish me and that My mom would suffer a lot, so I kept ignoring that feeling and hid it pretty well until I fell in love. I fell in love with a girl without realizing how it happened, but it was what I felt, I do not know what happened to me, but one day I woke up and told myself that I could not continue deceiving myself, that I could not let go of my happiness because of people think bad about me, so I dared to be myself, it was not easy to accept me but when I decided to talk to my friends they supported me 100%, gave me strength, I started to read and see lgbt characters on tv what made me inspire me more and more and make me feel great, YES I am different and what? being different is AWASOME.

Time passed and I decided to come out the closet with my mom, I can swear that it has been the most hard and sad moment for me, she cried a lot, got angry to the point of calling the who was my girlfriend at that time and demand her that she move away from me I was a minor (16 years to be exact), that night I felt extremely bad I came to feel very guilty for all the pain my mom was feeling, for my mom, being a lesbian was the same as being a drug addict, coming out with my mom it was not nice, but I must say that it is the best thing that I could do, After several visits to the psychiatrist, many conversations, and all the information my mother sought about homosexuality, today my mother has become my greatest support. hearing from my mother “You are my daughter, I love and accept you as and as you are “is the most gratifying and beautiful thing that has happened to me, she supports me, she loves me as well as she also loves my girlfriend (The love of my life), little by little I was telling my cousins and aunts my truth and I The only thing I have received is love and support, now and after several years (I am 23 years old) I can say that I am a free woman to love whoever I wantand with all the confidence to shout it out to the world, thank you To my mother who despite being from another era and being a traditionalist, put love for her daughter before everything, thanks to my friends for always supporting me, thanks to the fact that we now have good and incredible LGBTQ representation on TV, I must thank the universe for putting such amazing people in my life. I really hope that if you are reading this it will help you, that you understand you are not alone, that the world is a beautiful place, love always win because LOVE IS LOVE and love is what moves the world.
Be BRAVE, be STRONG, be HAPPY and FREE.

This was my story, thanks for letting me share it with you

I was bullied all through school even before I 100% knew what I was or felt. I thought I’d keep trying to be “normal” by dating lads but it just didn’t feel right to me. I finally started dating a girl and I just felt like this was who I was. I came out to some of my family at the beginning and they were great especially my nan. But when my parents found out they weren’t 100%supportive of me. They insisted this was a phase or that I was atleast bisexual. I’m now 24 turning 25 in July and only recently got my parents to understand that I am a lesbian and just because I am a lesbian doesn’t mean I won’t get married or have a family. I’m happier in myself, I’ve been through a journey of up and downs with it all and having 0 confidence but I’ve met great people and have family that are in my corner 😁.

When i was 13, i played truth or dare with some friends, and i had to kiss a girl. And then i knew it, because i feel it inside of me. I feel like … a big strenght inside me. And two years after, I had my first girlfriend, but we were hidding ourselves. And when i arrived to high school i discovered new peoples, some where gays, most of them were straight. But i wasn’t alone anymore. And today i’m still confused about who i’m attracted. My family doesn’t know about my sexuality, i’m just not ready to be out. My friends know that i love girls, and they’re fine with it.
But i had some period where being lost was very hard to live. Now i’m cool with it, i just took the time to accept the fact that i’m confused.
Clara (a french girl)

I knew I was lesbian at a ripe age of 4.
But I was in a school full of homophobic kids so the only way to fit in was to “act straight”. Did that for eleven years but through those tough times, I got sexually abused by males my age (groped, used as a sex iconand even blackmailed). It has left me scarred – mentally, physically and socially.

I have always been an anxious person but I needed to break out of this shell.
Imagine I am a cattipillar (or however you spell it) stuck in a cocoon: it wants to open up and reveal its true beauty but it can’t because of the walls in its way.

I did identify as pansexual, but that was when I was in a relationship with a boy. I feared my parents would tell him that I was lesbian so I had to come up with something to hide away that thought.

It was until I went to Snowdonia, Wales (a VERY odd place to debate on your sexuality), I started having spontaneous crushes on women. I couldn’t help but think about them non-stop.
Even the word “women” made my heart flutter.

Edging to June 2019, I was slowly getting confident. My boyfriend split up with me as he thought I seemed “different”. But the thing was, he was right.
I was different.
How could a 16 year old autistic female fall in love with another women despite being in a relationship with a male?

It came to my last full day at my secondary school and I came out.
The cocoon disappeared.
My wings had grown.
I felt blissful. I felt complete.

It was my last words at that school too, and I always look back at that and think as to how far I have become.

Back to when I used to “act straight”, all fell for it.
Does that mean I deserve an Oscar? I betta.

These following people helped me come out with all my might:
Daisy Ridley
Kat Barrell
Dominique Provost-Chalkley
Cara Delevingne
Ruby Rose
My family
Some fictional characters like Nicole Haught, Waverly Earp, Rey, Viola Eade, Thirteenth Doctor, Jyn Erso
You

So when someone says: “how have you come so far?”
I will tell them this story.

Just you wait for me to appear on the big screen, portraying a character who has gone through the same things as me.
I will credit all of you when I walk on the red carpet.

There’s a million things I haven’t done.
But just you wait…

Just you wait.

– H.L Good, a proud lesbian 🏳️‍🌈

#OutIsTheNewIn

I always knew something was a little different about me since I was a kid. It always felt like people just didn’t get me. It wasn’t until I was 13, when I realised I liked girls. At first I was happy I had finally figured out what was different about me, I could put a name to it. But then I started to notice how others responded to my identity, with judgement, confusion and often disbelieve, I become scared and decided to hide who I am. It wasn’t until I turned 16 that I decided I couldn’t hide such a key part of myself any longer and began to accept myself by unlearning the negative perception I had gained. After a lot of introspection, I embraced my queerness and started to tell friends and even family. To my surprise everyone I’ve told so far has been accepting and celebrates who I am. I want to spread this message to others who may not be out yet. Never let a few unaccepting people stop you from being who you are, because you are enough.

I had a feeling I was different many years ago but I did not realize what was different or how I was different form the rest of the people in my class. In 2010, I started develop feelings for a girl and the whole thing made me confused, scared and I had no idea who to open up to about this. At the time I was living in a very conservative country and it was taboo to talk about anything related to the LGBTQ+ (times have changed and the country is a little more understanding now). Since I had no one, I tried opening up to someone I considered my best friend. However, nothing prepared me for happened on March 23rd 2010.

At the time I was still figuring out myself and trying to navigate the feelings I was having but on that day I was outed to my entire class. It was scary because I was not ready to admit to a group of people that I am gay, I was not yet ready to accept it myself. It was all new to me and possibly my biggest secret was out there in the open now. That day I locked away my emotions, built my walls up high and distanced myself from a lot of people. 5 years later I was joining university and leaving the bad memories of high school behind. I desperately needed it as I knew I needed to start fresh and discover myself in a different environment where I wasn’t going to be judged for who I am.

I made new friends but it took me nearly a year to open up to them and show them what kind of person I am. With their unconditional support and patience with me, I started breaking down my walls, showing my emotions, communicating more and most of all, accepting myself for who I am. When I first came out to one of my friends, I was beyond scared because I only had memories of March 23rd but her response was different and she valued my privacy knowing I was still building myself back up again.

10 years on, I have made peace with the events that happened that day but it will always stick with me. Reflecting back I know it made be become more confident in my own skin as well as overall. It made me learn to understand different people and how they cope with different things. It helped me help close friends who are questioning themselves and ask me what my story is.

No one should ever be outed or forced to out themselves when they aren’t ready. It is a journey of discovering yourself and I am still on that journey learning new things about myself. I am proud of where I have reached so far from 2010 and I am proud of who I am.

I can’t wait until we’re living in a world where it is safe for everyone to be who they truly are without fear of judgment or persecution. I was raised by two loving but homophobic parents; so while they’ve made me feel like I could be myself in most regards, there’s one place they’ve made me feel like I have to continue living a lie. But even if I have to stay closeted in my everyday life for the time being, I don’t wish to stay fully closeted anymore.

I am a bisexual woman; and honestly, I’m proud of that.

When I was in high school, I started questioning my sexuality. I found myself starting to feel attracted to girls at my school and not just guys. But because of the home I was raised in, I did everything in my power to push such feelings aside, telling myself they didn’t mean anything. I refused to acknowledge them. And eventually, I was able to convince myself they never existed in the first place… Fastforward to college; and the feelings came back again, this time stronger. I found myself attracted to other women; and I knew it was something I couldn’t fully deny. I think deep down I admitted to myself that I wasn’t entirely straight; but I wasn’t ready to admit what that meant.

Over the past year or so, I started discovering myself more and more. It actually started when a friend suggested I check out this show called Wynonna Earp. This friend knew I preferred supernatural sorts of shows with powerful female leads (like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Lost Girl, etc.); so of course I was fully on board with checking out this show. Little did I know, it would change my life for the better. Becoming an Earper, I now found myself part of one of the most accepting and supportive fandoms I’ve ever been a part of. Between that and being introduced to one of the most kickass casts ever, I started feeling more comfortable in my own skin with everything from my anxiety to my sexuality. Even though I still never admitted anything aloud, I started to feel more and more comfortable admitting to myself that I was, in fact, bisexual.

I hope to one day be able to share this fact with those closest to me, to one day feel as if I am safe enough and truly ready to do so. But for now, having a platform like this to announce who I truly am, it’s a blessing. Thank you to Dominique and everyone at Start the Wave for all the constant love and positivity. It means so much; and I am proud to be part of this community.

And one day, I will be proud to come back on here to say I am 100% out…

I think I kinda always knew, the signs were all there, but I just never really realized until December of 2017 (at that year I was 16 years old) that’s when it hit me that I may be Bisexual.

Every since then I’ve been trying to understand and learn more about the LGBTQ+ Community also I have been watching way more gay movies and TV shows, and I’m pretty sure my parents knows that I’m “hiding” something from them – I haven’t come out…. yet – I plan on doing it when I feel comfortable and when it is the right time to do it.

On November of 2018 I had my first kiss with a woman at a friend’s party, now I understand what they say about “woman’s lips being incredible soft and once you tasted it you will definitely get addicted”, because that’s exactly how I feel.

If I’m being completely honest I’m a firm believer that sexuality is fluid. Meaning that right now I identify as bisexual but in a few months or even years that can change and I’ll be whatever sexual orientation it feels right for me at the moment – doesn’t matter if it is lesbian, pansexual, demisexual, assexual, etc.

#OutIsTheNewIn

Since I was Young I’ve always felt like the term female never suited me and that is was weird that people would reffer to me that way. I remember that when I first learned from my teacher about the genders she would point to me and call me a girl, I looked at her with a face painted with hurt and said “I’m a boy” She laughed and said no you’re not sweetheart. Through the years that little moment always has been there in my mind, it was the moment I already knew that the body I was born with wasn’t the body that was actually meant for me, just looking in mirrors just made me wanna puke, seeing a too feminine body just didn’t fit with the gender and person in my head.

Around 7/10 years old I kept saying to other people that is as a boy just born in the wrong body, they would laugh at me and say that something like that just doesn’t exist, but yet I stayed strong and kept living with the idea that I knew who I was and that something about my body was wrong. It stayed like that until high school, people started to bully me way more than before, saying I looked weird and that if I didn’t change into a normal ‘girl’ my life would get worse and worse, I didn’t want that I was done with all the bullying and pushing around, so I changed into the person I wasn’t, a girl, wearing skirts and dresses cause others expected me to wear those. While pushing the thoughts of me being a boy aside I found myself having anxiety and depression.

The depression lasted for years and my friends kept telling me it will be alright and everything will change when I just find out who I rlly was,
So I did just that I went online and began my research with transitioning and being a transgender once again but this time I didn’t let anyone hold me back(I was 14/15 here).

Even though my hair was still long and my body pretty feminine I went back to the all boy-ish clothes and found my self getting happier but not happy enough, my 16th birthday came around and I wanted to have one thing, a binder, my parents were confused but still bought one for me, when I got it I Immediately put is on and I cried, I cried for at least an hour or so, not because something was wrong but because I was so happy. A week after my birthday I came out as transgender to my parents and sister, my mom hugged me and said she already had a feeling that I’ve always been a boy, and she was happy I finally found the person I was (I’m currently crying as well🤦‍♂️).

After I came out as transgender🏳🌈 I cut my hair and bought more boy clothes and threw the girly ones away my friends at school helped me change my name and gender in the school system, and that was a year ago, I’m currently 17 years old a happy trans boy (as far as my happiness now can get) and I can’t wait to begin my next chapter in life, which is going to be testosterone shot.

It helped that a lot a people around me also just accept and support me.(btw my whole family accepts me❤)

So here is me a trans guy who’s still pre everything but happy and excited to see what else is about to happen In life😊

-JaeJae-

 I was born in Russia, adopted and living in France. I never knew my biological parents and so never got answers to my many questions. And it caused a lot of problems in the future, as I’m going to explain you there :
As soon as I remember, I knew I was feeling different. First I thought I was just a lesbian, a woman attracted to other women. But with the years, I was feeling unconfortable with my name… People were all saying “Justine” “she” “cutie” and my mind was feeling in another way…
In France there are genders for EVERYTHING, and so I was feeling weird ALL THE TIME…
I felt bad, always feeling like something was missing in my life.
I suffered for years from mutilation impulses and now all the scars remind me what I went throught, at the begining I was ashamed, but now I’m proud of it, it shows that my life hadn’t always been easy, but I survived, I won against depression.
When I clearly got what was happening to me, I decided to don’t hide myself anymore, I had a name on what I felt. I wanted to continue being proud of me and who I was ( I was already an assumed lesbian ).
I told it to my parents and my siblings last summer, and my siblings don’t care at all about it, but my parents don’t accept it, at all…
I told my friends as soon as I came back to school in September, they call me Thomas as if I’ve always been this man, and it feels soooo good !
I feel like I have a new life, truly me, Thomas, a random guy, finally loving other people because he learnt to move himself
My last relationships were better than all the others because I was myself, and I could love someone without fighting inside for who I was.
I’m a man, in a women body ( for the moment ), but I really love my life now, I’m ready to confront life and all its problems because myself isn’t one anymore.
Be who you are, whatever people think, because you have to love yourself before wanting to love other people
And, be fucking proud.
You’re an human, special, incredible, unique, wonderful.
And I am this kind of human
I’m a transgender
And, finally
#I’m out !! ❤

I knew at a young age that I was different. Different as in I wore basketball jerseys of my favorite NBA players when my friends were wearing dresses and makeup. I think I was around 11 years old when I had my first girl crush, I knew from that moment I was gay. At 11 it wasn’t that easy to understand, especially when you’re from a small town in Kentucky..being gay was foreign, disobedient and wrong. I didn’t have the guidance and the acceptance in myself until I was 19 years old to come out to my mother. It was hard, the relationship drifted apart for about 2 years, but she finally came to terms with me and realized that me being a lesbian didn’t change who I was as a person. I’m here to tell you that if you are scared and fearful of disapproval, I understand. You will say what you need to say when you are ready. Please do not forget you are not alone we are all here for you just reach out 🏳️‍🌈

~All Love,💞
Brittany B.

Looking back on my childhood I now ask myself “how did I not realise it sooner”. I am a 16 year old cis white girl from Berlin, Germany. Troughout my childhood I always wanted to “be friends” with sertain girls becuase I thought that they were pretty and kind. I had a huge crush on Emma Watson because “she was so cool”. My “bisexual awakening” was popably in 4th grade while watching “Pirates of the Caribbean” I had a crush on both Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley.
I was always a little wilder and “boyish” in my behaviour although I wore dresses. In 5th grade I stopped wearing them and started wearing hand me downs form my older brothers. because of my outer appereance mixed with my boyish behavior I was called names by some mean kids but hey I either ignored them or challenged them fo a fist fight (I won…most times).
So the name calling stopped and I lived in peace until 8th grade came along. One of my close friends outed herself as “bisexual”. I was like “wait a minute…I can like both? Boys AND girls?”. It took me a half a year to accept the Idea of me liking both girls and boys. In 9th grade I wa certain that one could classify myself as a bisexual. But then my “bisexual” friend came out as a lesbian and explained that she only outed herself as bisexual because she wasn’t 100% shure she only liked girls. But now she was.
So my inner struggle began…I thought that I maybe was lying to myself because being bisexual was “easyer” than being a lesbian. on other days I thought that I must be a lesbian because not every boy seems attractive to me.
My wohle friendgroup is pretty gay…like LGBTQ..yep we have every damn letter represented. Don’t get me wrong I love my friends but sometimes they overdid it a bit with things like: “You totally look like a lesbian today”. They didn’t know that their “encourageing” words confused me even more.
On some days I just wanted to be a lesbian just to stop that ongoing confusion in my head. But I still liked boys and had to deal with that.
I am not confused and therefore a “bisexual” I am just a confused bisexual.
Now 2 years later I am out in school, to my famely and friends and am currently dating a girl. The confusion stopped and I accepted myself.

My coming out:
The first time I came out to someone other than myself was in 9th grade when I told my friends that I was “bisexual”. They weren’t suprised and freaking high fived me. So a very positive experience.
Half a year later I came out to my dad(my mom and dad are married for 33 years now) he promised not to say anything to my mom. We were driving back from the ski-lift. My father was telling me fun facts to the song we were currently listening to. One of these facts was that the female singer was married to a woman. I said:”why marry a man if you could have a wife”. He just looked at me and agreed “true”. A few minutes later he turned to me and asked “are you a lesbian now?” I sayed: “No, bisexual”. He nodded. No questions asked.

so 2 positive reactions to my coming out. I also have had negative ones but I already wrote a little bit too much XD sooo
I wish you all the best and hope that you are living in a save environment that allows you to be yourself.
-Alina

My journey of finding my true self started at the age of 14, I knew that the way I felt about one of my friends at school was slightly different and couldn’t quite grasp why I seem to connect so well with other girls. As this was the mid 1980’s there was no way I could even explore this as an option so I decided not do anything about it. I drifted through my teens and early 20s not even entertaining a relationship with anyone much less a woman. It was around the age of 28 when I was under pressure from people around me that I should really get married and settle down to have a family. In my heart I knew what I wanted but my head over ruled it so I met my husband and had a beautiful baby boy and was living the life others wanted for me. For six years I lived my life day to day doing all I could for my husband and son working hard and just getting on with life. I had always been close to my dad and out of the blue he rang to say let’s meet for lunch we need to talk which was very out of character as it’s not what we did. At lunch he asked me out of the blue………Sue why don’t you do something that will make you truly happy in your heart and make you the happy girl you grew up as. It will be scary but so worth it. I kept going over in my head what my dad had said…………….10 days after our lunch meeting my dad died in an accident at work but what he had said had woken something in me that I thought I had buried so deep I’d never find it again. Within in 3 months of his death I had sat my husband down and told him that I could not
be with him as I was lying to myself. I explained how I’d felt and been feeling most of my life and as much as it hurt he did understand. I wanted to be honest with him and my son as I didn’t want to go behind their back and live a double life. I didn’t rush into relationships but I knew now what I wanted. This was the first time in my life that the weight of the world had been lifted, I could breath and for that reason I bloomed…………..I was out shopping with my son and the most beautiful woman I had ever seen walked past me and I thought to myself I’m going to spend the rest of my life with her. I’m happy to say that 10 years later I live with this lady, my soul mate, my best friend and the love of my life. It wasn’t all plain sailing as I had to wait for her for 5 years as she was married……………but it was worth the wait. I have a beautiful 16 year old son who is caring and incredibly grounded, I had always been honest and open with him and he knows that whatever path he takes in life I will back him 100% as he did me from a very young age. I guess I didn’t really come out I just told my family this is who I love and I am very proud of loving this beautiful woman.

Be true to yourself and the rest will take care of itself x

I’m older than a lot of you but still thought I’d share. When I was in 3rd grade I had a crush on my best friend a girl and also a boy in my class. Well I soon figured out I just liked him as a friend. Then 4th grade we had this gorgeous student helper. I continued to have these feelings as I grew but I hid them throughout high school. I came from a very religious family and you couldn’t do anything worse than being homosexual. It was right up there with murder….! So I dated boys and even married but it only lasted a year we had plenty of issues. It was only after I was divorced at the age of 21 that I met this incredible woman and she was everything that I’d ever I wanted. I allowed myself to feel the things I had hidden deep down and I was flooded with something I’d never known….happiness! We have been married for 5 years now and I’m so happy I was finally able to be me. So coming out is a process that I still do after all these years. My family found me disgusting for many years. They slowly let me back into their life’s. When I work with someone new the question always comes up, so are you married and do you have kids? I tell them the truth which I feel is coming out again and again. At least it’s easier now and most don’t say anything even if they are against it.

I came out when I was 16. I was so afraid to tell my mom who are born in the 1940’s but she took it really well and said as long as I’m happy and loved that’s all that matters.

My brother took it good as well and said all he wants for me is a girl that loves me the same way I love her.

My friends at the time is a whole other story. They rejected me started to bully me and hang me out for the whole school. Waited for me after school ended just to beat me down.

It took me a lot of years to finally find some good friends that supported me for who I am. And when you find them don’t let them go. They mean everything for me and we’ve been friends now for over 20 years.

I am 32 years old and have been wanting to come out for a very long time but I still have yet to find the courage to do so. I live in a very small country (Malta) where everybody knows everyone and this makes it even harder for me because I know that not everyone is accepting. Looking back, I have been more drawn to girls from a very young age. My first memory is when I was about 8 years old and I had my first crush. It was all so very confusing for me because I was always taught that a woman should be with a man and vice versa. As I grew older I started learning more about what I was feeling but I could never share it with anyone. This made and still makes me feel very much alone. It also brings a lot of guilt with it because I am lying to everyone about who I really am.

Seeing what Dominique did on her birthday brought out so many emotions. Even though she is younger than me, she is such an inspiration and I wish I could have an ounce of the courage that she does.

I will keep trying to find the courage. I just wanted to share my story and show others that they are not alone if, like me, still have not managed to find their voice.

Hello,
Sorry for my bad english, I’m french.

I always felt different.
On many aspects, same for love and even more in my sexuality.

I started to have my first confused feelings for a woman when I was in middle school.
I was only 12 and it was a period that represent for me so much pain.

During a certain time, I was sexually abused from a male of my family, I was even more disoriented and lost.
I talked about it to my family many years later and about the fact that I was attracted by women.

There was a teacher I was intrigued about. She had something that made me feel like a moth in love with light and who can’t help but be around her.
I even remember going to a refresher course (well I needed it haha) in volunteer because she was teaching.
It’s fun to remember the path I have taken with acceptance.

Simply, I was a young teenager unaware and hurted. I didn’t realised the impact that it would represent in my life.
Deciding that I had already enough to manage (hiding that I have been raped to my family to protect them from suffer, my studies, all the hazards we find when we enter teenage years) I decided to put aside my attraction.

What a mistake because I soon realised that a part of me was missing. And while I was struggling to face my destroyed feelings with a big decline of self-esteem, I met this girl.

I met her in a video game, I arrived at a stage where my reality was hurting so much that the virtual was becoming my everyday.
When I could finally met her for the first time, I felt a big waves of emotions and a voice inside me was telling me that she was going to change my life.
And it was true. I loved her deeply, in secret, I was 16 nearly 17.
We were not ready to have a relationship, both of us because of our past… So it was a disaster.
However, she helped me to open myself up.
I was so happy that I started to talk about it to my friends, 2 or 3 members of my family…. They quickly accepted it.
When we broke up, I was so devastated that my mom found out that something was wrong so I told her everything.
I was so stressed because my family is religious and I will always remember my mom’s words : ” Every act done out of love is loving is the eyes of God”.

Now that I’m 22, I’m thankful. Because she (the girl I loved) broke me when she left but she helped me to accept myself.
In this grief we are forced to face the reality.
By destroying me on a short term she gave me the opportunity to rebuild myself, I searched for all the strengh I had left for it.

When we start to open up, it’s a path to acceptance. Now I’m considering myself as being Me.
I’m not in a box, a label, I don’t share this point of view to absolutely want to be dertimined.
For me, even in our similarities, we are no less different.
I will be in love of who my heart will choose, no matter the gender.
I’m into love.
I love being different.
I love my inner self and the one I aspire to become.

I have known as this community and knew I was a lesbian since I was a teenager at 16 years old, but I was still scared to come out and talk about it because I grew as a catholic from my dad’s side of the family since I was born and feel more different than besides being normal like them. 3 years later, I was in college and decided to come out 5 people months before I came out to the media. This coming april 2020 will be 8 year anniversary and through my ups/downs after coming out never gives me up to love what I want to be and my message to Dominique is to congratulate for finding a better path of what you want to be and always be yourself! #loveislove 🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈

I always knew I was a little different. I was the off athlete, the friend left out, the person who could always make everyone else laugh and happy however it was the biggest mission to get me to laugh, enjoy what I was doing. I found an environment at work where I just become friends with people because I felt alright to be around. Than one year, one day, one person came and joined our work. Straight away we were the same!, same interests, same think a like, same almost everything, It was just someone I felt it was not hard to talk to. We instantly became friends time passed and we were best friends but little things started to change. I’d want to tell her everything, I wanted her oppion, we couldn’t not talk to each everyday, I wanted to be around her. Small part of the good thing we had developed started to explode from types of family matters. But we chose to stick around for each other. This lead to a moment that I can never forgot. This girl kissed me, she’s kissed me. And from than on we’ve had family issues on her side, But my families accepted us together and she is part of my family. But we always stick together. we have had each other for almost 4ish year. Been Together for 2years. But it’s made me realise when you find 1 person who your able to be vulnerable, happy, sad, angry, loved, in 1 person than it doesn’t matter what’s stated on a birth certificate what matters is what they are to you. So at the age of 21 – I am out.

I came out when I turned 18 and finished high school. I posted this on my blog for the whole world to see:

I like girls. It seems very easy to say, but it wasn’t for me. Just like many people will say it isn’t. But I’m ready now, ready to be who I really am. No more hiding.

I’m 18 now, but I’ve known for a few years. There are a few reasons why I haven’t told anyone yet and I am still unsure wether this is the best way to do so, but here it goes.

I wanted to resist that I should have to stand up for it. It came so normal for me and I didn’t think it was fair that I would have to justify myself for who I love. I might have hoped that it would become clear by itself.

Another reason was school; I was in a not very accepting school and I was already not accepted by the other students. I didn’t feel safe enough to open myself up. So I waited until I graduated and gave myself this summer to finally be honest with myself and all my friends, family and acquaintances.

The idea to go to Pride was a natural choice, because I think it is so important and I really could use it. I have felt so accepted this weekend, by everyone around me on Pride and it really helped me. The self-confidence of others radiated to me and through that energy I eventually found the courage to express myself. I will always be grateful for that. It were not only strangers who helped me, but also my closest friends who supported me enormously and gave me a lot of love, so that I now dare to be truly proud of myself and who I really am.

OK and wow… I first came out in 1974…a long, long time ago, in a world so unregonizable and foreign. After this teenage romance died I scurried back into the closet. I tried so hard to make it in the straight world. Now please remember in the 1970s there was no positive role model. There was no Melissa Etheridge, no Ellen. Representation of our community was nil. If we were represented on TV or film we were either killed off violently or we were freaking physcotic. At the lowest point I did consider harm to myself. I was alone and frigjtened
As hard as I tried I could not fit in with my straight friends. There was no positive space in universitys. Then… Ta da… Life threw me a life line. 1978 I met a woman who saved, who changed my life. She taught me gay was good. Being a. Lesbian was just fine. I was free. I was exhilarated. I was finally happy with me. I was going to be OK. With a lighter heart I embraced who I was. I came out to family–go figure, they weren’t surprised. My parents, etc were and have been extremely supportive. 1980…i met my sweetheart and this year we celebrate our 40th anniversary. Whew. Each day, each year has been an exciting adventure. Watching the LGBTQ grow, flourish. So… Moral of the story… Be, true to yourself, be true to your heart. Most of all be kind to yourself… Support one another and celebrate our pride.

So, here I am. It took a while to write because english is not my mother language, i’m italian. My name is Giulia and I came out many years ago when was not so easy. I mean, is not easy at all, but in a small city of a Catholic country, believe me, it’s hard, most of all if your father is a public officer known in the city.
At that time I was living my dream with the only girl, till now, I really loved with all my heart and my senses. I was young, 24, thinking that I was living was really special; I never thought that something was wrong till the first and dramatic fight I had with my relatives.
That reaction scared me a lot because my thought was : if my father and my mother react in this way, what can I expect from strangers ? So I totally close in my self. I was still sure that what was going on was not wrong, but I was not able to talk with anyone and when the story ended I was totally alone. I could not show my pain because I did not know how to justify it.
I spend many years alone but during these years I started to open my self with friend. At the beginning was a total state of anxiety talking about being gay, but as soon as I talked with my dear friends, I noticed that for them it was normal, no problems at all. I was shocked about that!
Many years later I took again the argument with my relatives, they love me, they always have, but they were unprepared at that time, they were scared for me and was hard for them to manage it.
I told my father only one thing, when he apologized (btw he didn’t need to do it) : I was happy and you didn’t notice that.
Ya, that’s the point, being happy , being happy of what you are and who you love. I truly think that if we all together show our happiness, our consciousness, our strenght, that day in which you do not need to say Yep, I’m gay, is near. I’m a human being, a precious one, like all of us, I’m a lover and I don’t need to be identify in a scheme.
That’s me, Giulia, from Italy!

 I was 12-13 years old

I started to really notice that I was not like my female friends ( talking about boys they liked, how they dressed, how they presented themselves). I always just attributed it to being a “tomboy”. I mean, I didn’t even really know what being a lesbian was at that time. So then their was 13 year old me, finding out that the real reason I would always develop feelings for all my female friends and never feeling that same way towards any of my guy friends was because I was in fact gay.

At the time of that realization, being gay was alway talked about in a negative light; that it was something to be teased and made fun of for. Even my closest friends and family were always making “gay jokes”. Not necessarily at someone else’s expense, but definitely in a way that would scare me more and more into the closet. And to make matters worse, during this time was also when I learned about Mathew Shepard.

I distinctly remember watching an episode of the Ellen degeneres show. On the show that day, she was talking to Mathew’s mother. She talked about her son and the horrible things that were done to him because he was gay. I remember weeping and shaking in fear. Fear that if I ever came out that I might be faced with the same cruelty. So I kept it a secret.

Cue the many years of anxiety and depression.

Being a 13 year old girl was hard enough. So now add in my crippling fear of what might happen if someone found out I was gay. I tried so hard to convince myself that I was actually attracted to men. but it seemed that every time I would tell myself that being with a man wouldn’t be so bad, I would get so sad. Like all the color in the world was obliterated and I was left with this dark, cold world that I felt I didn’t belong too. And unfortunately those dark feelings lead to dark thoughts. I remember always telling myself that I would kill my self before I’d tell anyone. I hated myself for who I was and I hated myself even more for not being able to change who I was.

I couldn’t understand why I felt so scared for so long. Times were changing and I could see all of the progress that was being made at the time. Granted, their was still some work to be done, but progress nonetheless. Looking back on it now, I was actually one of the lucky ones. I had amazing parents. My dad who was ever open minded to all walks of life and a mom who would do anything just to see me happy and safe. Neither one of them would turn their back on me for being gay. Instead, they love me unconditionally. But I still always had that “what if” in the back of my mind. What if I’m wrong about them. What if this is the one thing that breaks the camels back. What if.

These thoughts and feelings went on for years. They got so bad that I began feeling physical pain. I could handle it anymore. So at 15 I attended suicide.

I won’t get to far into the details of it, but afterwards I remember just looking at myself in the mirror. I looked for so long. Looking for the reason I was still here.

It dawned on me that I was still here for my mom and dad. But I was also still here for my little brothers and all the people who truly care about me. I was also here for the chance that maybe one day their will be someone who is in the same place I was and the only thing standing in the way them and the same bad choice I made was proof that light will shine on them through the cracks of the dark room they are in for now. Was I ready to come out yet? No! But I was ready to start loving myself.

It took a lot of work, but eventually I got to a place where I was feeling ready to step out of the closet. I had it all planned out too. I was about to graduate from high school and it was going to be my graduation gift to myself.

However.

Two days before graduation, my mother passed away unexpectedly. I was more lost than I was ever before. I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t breathe; even getting out of bed was an impossible task. Revealing my truth way put on the back burner for the time being. But time just went on and on and I still just hadn’t told anyone that I was gay. Not because I was ashamed of it or anything but because I just didn’t see the point in it anymore. I grieved for years, shit I still do. My mom was my hero. Out of every one in the world, I was more excited to share this part of myself with her the most. I missed my chance though and I will regret that for the rest of my life.

Now. The day I finally decided to come out to someone, I had not planned it out at all. The opportunity was there and I just fuck it, nothing could be more painful than what I’ve been going through with the loss of my mom. So essentially I really have nothing to lose.

The first person I told was my best friend. This guy really knows everything about me. He always had his suspicions, but he alway wanted me to feel comfortable enough with myself to say anything. But when I finally did tell him, he almost didn’t believe me. When I finally convinced him he said, ” well shit! What the hell took you so long!” He followed it up by saying ” I’m proud of you and I love you no matter what.”

For the first time since I was 13, I felt like I could really breathe again. That first breath I took after telling him brought me to tears. Not to sound cheesy or anything, but I felt alive! Little by little I started telling more people. Once I told just about everyone, the only one left to tell was my dad. I started to feel a little bit of that old familiar fear when I thought about telling him. I just couldn’t get the words out. But on June 26,2015 ( the same day the marriage equality act was passed in Congress) it was like the universe was telling me that now was a better time than any.

I waited all day for him to come home from work. The whole time I was giving myself pep talks. When he finally got home, I instantly started shaking. I was so nervous. He could tell that their was something wrong with me. He asked if I was okay. With tear filled eyes and a shaky voice, I said it, ” dad, I’m gay.”
He rapped his arms around me and said, “I know! And mom knew too.” That was the most comforting feeling I’ve ever felt in my life. He went on to tell me that they could both tell that I was gay, even when I was little. Jokingly I said I wish they would have made me aware of that. He told me that they wanted me to be comfortable and ready enough for myself to say something.

Ever since I have come out, life in itself, has been a million times better. I no longer fear the world knowing my truth. The air is sweeter and the world has color again. My life didn’t end because I came out of the closet. Instead I got a happy beginning to a life I am so eager to live.

 I’d always known I wasn’t into boys. I appreciated them, got along with them, played sports with them, but I didn’t like being in a relationship with them. I spent a lot of my time watching old classic movies as a kid and watched how gentlemen treated women, and knew that the only way I or any other woman was to experience that in this day and age was to treat a girl like that myself. I had come out to my friends when I finished school at about 18. I didn’t get the opportunity to be with a woman till I was 22, and all it was was a drunken kiss, but after that, I knew for sure there was no going back. I had started a friendship with a girl I was working with at my local horse stables and after a few months of giving her chocolates and flowers, she came to stay at my place. During the week she stayed with me, she and I both opened up and told each other things we had never told anyone else. Our dreams, our hopes, our pasts. Nothing was off limits. The day before she went back to her place we spent the day just lounging around in bed, and for a brief moment, I thought she might kiss me, and as quickly as I thought it, she quickly moved away. I should point out at this stage that this woman had never even thought about being with a woman.
That night I went to stay with my ex, a guy, and told him of my feelings for this woman. He told me I was being ridiculous and no one would ever love me. The next night I went to stay at her place while her parents were overseas.
She taught her horse riding lesson, and we went home. We had showers, then went and laid in her bed. She had been quiet all day and I had started to worry I had scared her the day before, but suddenly in the darkness, she turned to me and told me she was confused, she didn’t know why she felt the way she did or what was happening, but she told me all she wanted to do was kiss me, and asked if I would be ok with her doing that. She kissed me, and the rest is history. Two weeks ago we celebrated out two year wedding anniversary.
My mother didn’t and still doesn’t accept our marriage, but the rest of my family love my wife to pieces. And why? Because she makes me happy. And at the end of the day, that’s all that matters, is happiness and love.

I have always felt “out of place.” Dressing like a “tomboy” from the age I was finally able to dress myself everyday. I wanted to hang out with the boys on the playground and play video games with my uncles. Then much later on, in the 7th grade, I started coming across the LGBTQ+ community. It was in brief passing, but slowly and surely I started doing research into the vast world of gender and sexual orientations. I tried to tell my family this over that summer…it didn’t go well. The first person I told was my cousin. He was my best friend at the time. However, he ended up telling his parents who would then tell mine. My parents tried to accept me, but ultimately they just didn’t understand. They didn’t understand how this “change” could just come out of nowhere. Why I wanted to cut my hair and start dressing differently. Most importantly, they were worried that once I came out how it would reflect on them. They were scared. So I hid my identity. I was only true to my close group of friends, who would later on abandon me as well. This lack of support caused me to fall into a deep depression and struggle with mental health for over 4 years now. But, in the midst of all the darkness, I found people who accepted me. I found my best friend. I found my first girlfriend. We dated for several months, however my mom eventually forced me to stop seeing her. Now I live relatively closeted. Waiting for a place I know is safe, free from judgment. But I know who I am. I am queer. I am 16. I am a female. I am a survivor. And I will remain true to myself no matter what because the bravest thing you can do is be yourself <3

I’m queer (bi). I madly love my girlfriend, with whom I live. We are raising her son. We love, we are happy. But, our parents (both her and mine) do not recognize our feelings and deny them. We want our parents to know that their children are happy. 

Since I was a kid. It all started during my elementary days. I am avoiding one of my classmate because I am ashamed of her. Like she’s so beautiful and everyone likes her. Then one time our teacher assigned our permanent seating arrangement and I was shocked because she is my seatmate! We are awkward to each other then. So that was the time that I know to myself that I like girls and boys. 

I guess I’ve always known, I’ve always hung out with the dudes, never really had a crush on them or anything. That was until junior high. I knew I needed to date somebody, but who? Well, that was the part I didn’t know. Those 3 years I dated some boys, but never felt a real connection. I associated that with being young and not knowing what love was about.
My freshman year in high school, I met this girl I instantly fell in love with her. We clicked, and soon we were a thing.
But then the rumors started. Nasty, mean things were being said about me, and as I knew they were true, I too just wanted to fit in. To be normal, to not be the person others looked at. So I pushed my sexuality out of the way and pretended it was “just a phase”.
However, my sophomore year in high school I met this girl during the summer. She was beautiful, stunning even, and I knew then it wasn’t just a phase.
Soon however, word got around to my parents. And things weren’t so accepting. I was kicked out of my house for 3 months, luckily I had two very supporting sisters who took me in.
In the middle of my sophomore year is when things changed. I decided I wasn’t going to let the ideas or beliefs of other people affect who I was. So I officially came out as a lesbian woman. I knew what I was doing, and I didn’t care what others thought. I had no fear of the harsh things they would say, because in the end the only thing that matters is me.
After weeks of reconnecting and talking, my parents finally invited me back to live with them. We had a sit down conversation, with tears and yelling, but in the end I think my parents finally realized that I’m still their daughter, and nothing is going to change that.
Now, I’m 18, and things are awesome for me. I have a girlfriend who I love, a family who loves me and supports me for who I am, and friends who will always have my back.
It wasn’t easy, it never will be. But the thing that I will always remember, is that at the end of the day. I am me. Words don’t matter, what other people believe don’t matter, in the end it is me, my life, and who I am. And I am me.

Hello, my name is Sarah and Im just about to turn 30 and this is my coming out story.
Ever since high school I had always had the thought that I wasn’t straight. Things that I would think and my actions around girls. But, I always pushed it away. I thought that I had just not found the right guy yet. In college I still had those thing feelings towards girls. But again, I pushed it deep down and ignored it. In 2010 when I was 20 I joined the United States Air Force. When I joined, you couldn’t serve if you were out. So again I pushed all these thoughts about girls deep down. Don’t ask, Don’t tell was repealed in September of 2011. However by that time I had been dating this nice man for almost a year and I thought I was happy. He was nice, charming and seemed to really love me. So in December of 2012 we got married. I thought it was the right thing to do. I really did think that I loved him in a more than friends way. Even while married, sometimes the whole “but am I gay?” thoughts would pop in my head. I was scared of them so I ignored them. In 2014 my son was born. There, I thought, I have it all. I’m married, have a house and a kid. What more could I want? But idk, the marriage just never seemed enough or seemed right? We moved to a new base in Summer 2016. It was really hard. Then in the fall of 2016, I met one of my best friends)we will call him “M”. He had almost the same story as me. At the time, he had been married to his wife for many years. In 2017 him and his wife separated. He came out as gay. And I thought, wow, okay, so you can come out as an adult? I honestly didn’t think that it was a thing. I had thought it was something I would have figured out as a teenager and I just had weird thoughts sometimes. fast forward to June 2018. Me and my now ex-husband got in another stupid fight, we decided we just weren’t meant to be. (disclaimer: he is a great guy and a great dad and we still have a very good relationship). For the first time in almost 6 years I allowed myself to actually have thoughts about my sexuality. Am I bi? Am I gay? What is happening? One day me and “M” were having a conversation, I couldn’t even tell you what it was about exactly. But he said to me, Sarah, I think you are gay. And just something in that moment made all the tumblers fall into place. Yes, I am. I am absolutely a lesbian. At that moment, everything just felt right. It was okay. It was okay for me to be 28 and just realizing that I was a lesbian. So I started living my life as out, as I actually was. I told my sister and my college best friend. They were happy and very supportive. My other best friends at work now knew, they didn’t care. They accepted me for me. The only people left to tell were my parents. I dreaded it. I was scared. What if they were disappointed? What if they didn’t want anything to do with me? But I had to do it. To me, I couldn’t live my life fully like I was intended to until they knew. So in the fall of 2019 I faced time them both in the same afternoon (they are divorced). I consider myself incredibly blessed with my parents. Both of them 100% support me even if they were shocked. They still both continue to support me. And it is amazing. So here I am, turning 30 yrs old April 6th. I am now fully out, Im about to live my best life with my kiddo (when its my week) and my 4 cats. Coming out was one of the hardest things I have ever done. But it is amazing to be able to be who I actually was intended to be. So here’s to turning 30. It’s going to be a great decade!

I’d always been a tomboy. I grew up with 5 brothers and 1 sister (I’m also the youngest), and my dad was all about ‘the sports’ so we’d often be playing football, rugby, and quite a bit of cricket.

When I reached secondary school I really started to notice my feelings towards girls. I’d experienced these feelings before but I hadn’t known what they were, how to identify them.

I grew up in a really dodgy part of Yorkshire in England. It wasn’t a place one would ever identify as a ‘safe space’. It always felt like the whole town was… stuck. There wasn’t any art or culture, no diversity, and there certainly weren’t any (out) gay people. At least none that I can remember.

There wasn’t much to do in my town so as teenagers, me and my friends would end up drinking on the streets. I would only ever talk about my feelings when I was drunk and NEVER with anyone else, only ever to myself. I’d sit there and say “you’re not a lesbian. You’re not a lesbian!”

I did NOT want to stand out, I didn’t want to be different. When I was 14, a girl in the year below me had been outed and her life was made a living hell. No way was I going to do that to myself. So I kept telling myself that I wasn’t gay, that I’d meet the perfect boy and all those feelings would melt away thanks to his chiselled jaw and amazing magical penis.

Anyways, eventually I got out of that town and at 18 went to University. On my very first day, the very first person I spoke to was a super smiley friendly girl named Rachel. We immediately clicked and became instant best friends. But uh-oh, those pesky feelings were bubbling up again!

I ramped up my efforts to find the magical penis that drives off any lesbian tendencies. Personally, I found it pretty gross. And rather boring.

After about 4 months mine and Rachel’s friendship blossomed into something else. And it was MIND BLOWING! The first time we were together it was like my whole body was suddenly awake. Every touch, every sensation was just utterly amazing (I’m being super gushy, sorry). I was DEFINITELY a lesbian.

It wasn’t easy sailing though. Rachel and I had quite a few ups and downs in the beginning. I’d finally accepted my feelings to myself and to Rachel, but my fear of people finding out I was gay was still firmly in place. That fear meant that I, at times, ended up hurting Rach. She wasn’t out either but she handled everything with a great deal more grace and elegance than I ever did.

Over time, as our fledgling romance deepened, we found the courage to come out to our friends. They were very loving and supportive which was a huge relief. I was terrified my best friend from home would be horrified and disown me, but her reaction was so far from it! Which is also silly because I’d known her since we were 6 years old, she was never going to push me away! But I suppose that’s why the fear intensifies when having to tell the most important people in your life – the idea of losing someone you love that much is a hard thing to shake off.

Rachel came out to her parents after about 6 months. Again, they were very accepting and welcomed me with open arms. When Rach was back home and I’d go to stay with them, not having to hide our relationship was such a weight off. We were even allowed to sleep in the same bed… Get in!! 😀

My coming out to my mum took just a little bit longer. Rach and I had been together almost a year. It was Christmas in the second year of uni and Rach was going back to her parents and I to mine. My brother came to pick me up and saw me saying a very soppy goodbye to my ‘best friend’. Over the 20 minute car journey he finally asked me “are you two a couple?”. The word “yes” sat in my throat for what felt like a lifetime. I eventually managed to push it out and then waited for the repercussions…

The smile on my brother’s face was the most relieving thing in the whole wide world. We talked, we laughed, I *nearly* cried (I’m not very good with emotions). Problem was, now my brother knew, it meant I had to tell my mum.

My mum is a very intelligent woman with some interesting views, shall we say. She had gay friends when I was in my teens, but she always called them ‘queers’ and not in the positive way. In a nutshell, I was sh*tting it.

I spent the whole of the two week Christmas break hovering, trying to blurt out “I’m a giant lesbian!”. I almost said it after watching ‘Bend Is Like Beckham’ after the whole confusion where Keira Knightley’s mum thinks she’s a lesbian. I took a deep breath, had the words ready, and said “right, I’m off to bed then”. Fail.

The last morning before going home I went and sat on my mum’s bed to talk to her. I still couldn’t do it. My mum threw me a lifeline though – “is there something you want to tell me? I feel like you’ve been hovering”. I got under her duvet, covered my face, heart pounding through my chest, lump in my throat, “me and Rach are an item”. Head between legs, fingers in ears, wait for the eruption…

“I know. I heard you call her ‘sweetheart’ on the phone. I didn’t ask because I wanted you to tell me in your own time”. And just like that, my mum knew I was gay and my world didn’t end. I even got a call from my gran telling me I was still the same person, and “we talk to ’em (gay people) don’t we!” She was trying to be sweet so I let that go.

My mum took it well initially but still had her own struggles with me coming out, mainly because she had plans for me to have a strapping young husband to do her DIY. She got there in the end though.

Rachel and I have now been together for 16 years and our 12th Wedding anniversary is in May. We have a 6 year old son and live a very happy ‘out’ existence. That smiley girl, the very first person a shy me spoke to at Uni, became the love of my life.

Apologies for the huge essay.

Final note though – if I’ve learned anything in my 34 years, it’s love who you love and live your best life for you.

Stay kind beautiful people.

I didn’t come to terms with my sexuality until I tried to be everything else but myself first. Even today, I shy away from receiving love. I remember feeling myself let out a breath I didn’t know I was holding at Electric Forest on June 26th, 2015. I remember the day before not being as colorful. It was in Nashville years prior that I took my first big step to come out. It was midnight and sleep was impossible those days. I slipped out through the back door of the second story entrance down a long staircase past the window of my sleeping roommates, and I would get into the car and drive down the rocks of Battlefield Drive. I drove alone on the streets of Nashville past Sevier park, past Belmont University, and I would hear the clash of live bands outside of the bars off Broadway. This was the only way I could quiet my anxieties. Sometimes, Abigail and William would pick me up in their wagon and take me to East Nashville. We would walk into their bare house and go to the back yard and start the fire pit. William would turn on Delta Spirit, and they would let me talk about whatever it was that was keeping me up at night. It was always the same thing, but I wasn’t brave enough to talk about it. So I talked around it, and they let me. They gave me the space I needed to talk circles around my sexuality until I felt safe enough to talk about it directly. After I did, I was able to come out to my friends one by one. I flew to NYC to have dinner with a friend and to tell her I loved her when we were in high school. At JFK, I called my mom and started crying as I told her what I confessed to my friend. I asked her if that was okay and if she stilled loved me (which she said of course). Coming out wasn’t hard just the first time. It was hard every time, and even after coming out and moving to Los Angeles, I still found myself hiding behind terms that didn’t fit me, like bisexuality. I spent the first couple years in Los Angeles testing the waters, but still feeling like I wasn’t confident enough to be myself. Even today, I have to remind myself to let out the breath I didn’t know I was holding. And this isn’t always the same breath. We are constantly restricting ourselves in different ways, oftentimes unnoticed. The times that I am the happiest are the times I didn’t even realize I was letting go. I was just being me at that moment, not for anyone else, and not for any other purpose but to be.

If you had me write this several years ago this would have been a very different story. Come to think of it I did write that one.
But today is today and today I’m more myself then I have ever been.

You see in some ways I’ve been “tailoring” myself for years and not even just towards my sexuality. I have high functioning autism. As result I have a hard time connecting with others or come off more abrasive than others or not understanding social cues. For years I wore a mask pretending that wasn’t me. Pretending I wasn’t hurt by things and most of all pretending I fit in.

With that said. I was in college when I was first introduced to the idea that woman could like woman. And I say that because I was a super naive kid, never had boyfriend, never had the sex talk, never new what liking someone was. If I looked back today, like everyone I’d see the signs.

There was this woman, till this day she’s makes my head spin. She was gorgeous but didn’t exactly treat me right. But she was first one who told me what I was or might be a lesbian or bisexual. And that was first times I heard those words. And I knew I thought she was all that but also wasnt sure I didn’t like men.

It was around this time that two things happened that. I won’t go into great detail but I was sexual assualted and my mother told me that bisexuality didn’t exist. Needless to say I was probably at my lowest. And it would take me along time to finally accept two things. a. my mother was wrong and b. being assualted didn’t turn me gay.

I went thru living struggling and being a shadow of my true self for years. I had boyfriend. I didn’t feel comfortable. I liked another woman who again didn’t treat me right (you see the other pattern developing). Anyways, I graduated and came back home. Home to a life where I had to live with someone who didn’t believe in what I thought was my true self.

During this I really struggled keeping friendships, fitting in and not being hurt. I found a character on the tv and her actresses real life husbands band that started to turn things around for me. The day Alex Danvers came out was day I finally got myself. At least I thought I did. But in world where things are constantly changing that would change too. At that time, things like I never felt comfortable with being intimate (toward guys) and others as well.

The actress husband has a song about unmasking yourself. Written about their son with autism. And between these two things I was becoming ok with my reality. I had autism and I liked woman.

They were what held me together for a couple years there. Then there was the TimesUp movement which challenged my reality. I broke for first time since that challenging first year after. I had never delt with it. Deep down I still thought it was why I like woman (and why I forced myself to go dates with guys).

I found people and this actress who helped me realize the truth. And today if I think about I know it too. Man might make me uncomfortable but I liked that woman before this happened and it doesn’t mean I won’t like a man who understands.

It was around this time I found Wynonna Earp, At Clexacon. And I found a group of people willing to accept me for me. And tho it took couple more years to make into the Earper famdom I’m here and I stay (despite not always feeling like I fit in). Regardless thru Alex Danvers (and Maggie Sawyer and her actress who helps me be ok with my parents not accepting me) I met the wayhaught story and eventually the wynonna story.

And here we come to last year. The year where I really started to be my authentic queer self.
It was year of finding people who were ok without using a label. For awhile I thought had to fit in a box had to have label. Considering my hidden disability, being different was always how I was. We also live in a world where we are constantly told to be one way or the other. And I sill had a mother who didn’t quite understand.

However, when the actress who talked about not using a label at Clexacon on ComingOutPodcast was the moment I decided I could come out as pansexual, at the time I still wanted to fit in to box for my mother sake. And I came home from that I told my mother this was it was. Love is love. I’m going to like who I like.

It was until Kat came out and I had small conversation with her about it, that I really truly felt not using pansexual was the way to go for me. In her words, “let’s just love who we love cuz the world has bigger problems. “

And now with Dom coming out, being in love with “All humans” I’m even more sure of myself. Despite my mother telling me im only into girls to fit in. – see Maggie Sawyer’s line “I’m Already Good. “

Its been a rocky road. It’s been a long time coming, remember I said looking back I saw things. I always almost drawn to the woman I’m TV shows. Watching shows for woman. Yeah sure there was few man thrown in there. I remember a girl from high school, I’d always give her the jobro posters and looking back I had crush I wasn’t able comprehend. And that’s ok, I wasn’t ready. It would take abundance of factors and I wouldn’t change a part of it (I wish somethings didn’t happen but I wouldn’t be who I am today).

Just remember, as someone once told me, it’s ok not to know who you are.

Here goes one more time
Fuck Labels.
I love who I love.
Woman, Man.
White Black or Purple.
Gay, Straight.
Trans or Non Binary.
Be every color of the rainbow.
I too love ALL humans. ❤🌈

 I would have to say I knew I was queer when I was about 12. I found my self having a crush on my teacher. I’ve always found my self attracted to women and men, not just one gender.
Growing up in a time where it was told to be wrong. The it is ingrained in to you that you are breaking the law or that your going to hell for who you really are. Makes you afraid of what may happen if the world knows. Weather or not your going to be judged and disowned by the people you love and mean the most to you.
I went what feels like a life time lying to myself and others of who I really am. But one day I came to the point that I was done lying to myself. I don’t want to be who everyone else wants me to be I wanted to be me the true and real me. I wanted to live who ever the he’ll I wanted and not care about what others thought about me.

I came out when I was a senior in high school when I got my first girl friend. I told my dad and he was ok, he did really have a reaction at all. I was worried about telling my mother because she is my best friend and the person I looked up to the most. I feared that she would hate me and not understand me. Ao little did I know she was proud of me. She said she just wanted me to be happy and be me. I built up all this fear for who I really am when I had nothing to fear. I am grateful that I have two parents that love me and except me for me.

I know now that you can’t live in fear. Be who you are and what you want to be with everything thing that you have. Never let anyone bring you down or tell you that you can’t be you. Love who you want no matter the gender, identity, race or what ever it maybe. Be and do what make your heart sparkle. 💙💚💛💜❤ out and proud love is love!

Ive known since i was young (around the age of 12) that i wasn’t straight, however it created an inner conflict because i was not yet ready to face it or accept it. This conflict and struggle of acceptance was something i used write about, in a ‘diary’ and through poems. Slowly, by the age of 17, i had got the courage to come out to my nephew (hes a year younger than me and my is like a best friend to me), and that feeling i got after telling him was so incredibly freeing, not to sound cliché it felt as though a huge weight had been lifted, though he remained the only person i was out to for a few months. Not long after coming out to him i started getting closer to a girl at school, we had me that october (i had came out to my nephew a few weeks prior) and by december we were officially dating! (yay!) but the situation isnt that simple, less than a month after meeting this girl, my best friend at the time admitted to having feelings for me (she was also a girl) but i just didnt feel the same way about her, she was my best friend and i’d never thought of her as anything more (it’s also worth mentioning she identified & continues to identify as straight, so perhaps she’s going through/went through her own journey of sexual identity?). After a long conversation with this friend we attempted to go back to normal despite her telling me she had a crush on me & me not liking her back. I didn’t tell her about the girl & i talking or getting together because i didnt want to hurt her feelings (i realise this was absolutely not the right thing to do, had i told my best friend about it then maybe what happened next wouldnt have happened at all). During sixth form (i think this is college for americans) my best friend somehow found out from literally the only other person we told that this girl & i had been together for around a week…i dont know if this next part came out of jealousy or spite or just pure hatred but my best friend went & outed me to all of my peers in the common room…only 1 or 2 of my friends new & i hadn’t even told them, my girlfriend did. people i had been friends with for 6 years didnt even know yet because it was something i was still finding my way through & feeling out…yet i was forced to be okay with what my ‘best friend’ did. i feel guilty in this situation for being a rubbish friend and not yet telling her about the girl & i but it was all so fresh and the news about my best friend liking me had come as a shock to me so i was having to deal with so many feelings at once. not an excuse, but i dont feel as though i deserved to be outed….as someone that had struggled with being gay and coming to terms with it for YEARS (just like so, so many other lgbtqia people) being outed was the worst experience of my life but something i have to live with & move on from. On a more positive note, this happened in january of 2018 (just over 2 years ago) and i am still with the girl in this story!!! We’re moving in together in September because we’re both heading to university (she’s studying to be a midwife, what an absolutely angel!).

My story takes place in Texas, commonly known as one of the least open-minded states in the United States. My story is a long one, as my identity evolved drastically through time. I am blessed, however, to have grown up in a very loving and accepting family. I’ve known members of the LGBTQ2IA+ community my whole life, yet I never really considered it for myself until I was around 16. As a kid everyone would ask what we wanted to be when we grew up and I would stay silent because there’s only one thing I’ve ever wanted to be. Happy. At 16 I had no idea who I was and how could I be happy when I didn’t even know what or who I wanted in life. I honestly didn’t have much to go off of, I’d never had so much as a crush on anyone, regardless of gender. I credit much of my realization to the love I have for television. At 16 I would watch pairings like Clarke and Lexa from the 100 and it helped me to accept the fact that maybe I was gay. I say that like I was just like “Yep, I’m gay” but honestly I just felt like I needed to put a label on myself and although “gay” didn’t really feel like it fit who I was completely, I didn’t really know what else I could be. I could imagine myself in a relationship with a woman in a way that, to this day, I cannot imagine with a man. And honestly, the thought terrified me. Society can be cruel, as can my mind. I began to ask myself if the “unconditional” love my parents had for me was truly that, or if I would lose everything and everyone I love in one fell swoop by coming out. I mentally weighed the options countless times and basically began to prepare for the worst. Family and friends have always been the most important thing in my life and therefore, I decided that I if I could save my relationships by waiting for the “perfect moment” then that’s what I would do. Fear cost me a year of my life and I quickly learned that the perfect moment does not exist. So I decided to do what I do best, and write it down. See I’ve tried the in person coming out thing and call me a coward, but I am not built for the extra level of stress and anxiety it gave me. So a week after my 17th birthday, I came out to my parents as gay via college application. I don’t think I’ll ever forget holding my breath as they read over my shoulder, nor will I forget the silence that seemed to last forever before my mother sat next to me, turned towards me, and asked…”so you really never want to see men naked????” I laughed and the anxiety began to fade, even if the label wasn’t a perfect fit. I knew it was just the first step to coming out, but I had at least gotten through it alive. Though the inaccuracy of the label I had given myself still bothered me. That’s when I turned to research. So. Much. Research. Why didn’t I experience crushes the same way that other people did? Why did I not care at all about sex in a society that was seemingly obsessed with it? That same week I came across AVEN, the Asexuality Visibility and Education Network, and began to read. I cried. They were describing me. Until that moment I had never heard of asexuality, it was so far off my radar and I quickly learned just how far off everyone else’s radar it was too. Cut to 18 year old me entering college for the first time. At this point I had come out to my immediate family. Again. And a select few of my friends. I had also been told by various people that people like me “shouldn’t exist” or that it was just a phase I would grow out of. I learned how common it was for asexual people to feel broken or even inhuman. People often assume that due to our sexuality, we don’t have emotions or the capacity to love or be loved. A cruel assumption but one that still occasionally plagues my feeling of self-worth. Despite these social pressures however, I entered college wanting nothing more than to be out and proud in this new place with all these new people. For the most part I was, though I knew that for every acquaintance I told, there was a family member that should’ve heard it from me first. So once again, I wrote it down. At 19, I came out on instagram and the same week I mailed 7 coming out letters and just like that, I was out to the world. The most stressful week of my life freed me. I was able to finally live my life as the emotional burden began to lift. Never have I been prouder of myself than in that moment. The 3 year journey led me to finally feeling seen and comfortable with who I am. Flashing forward to my life now as a 20 year old, my journey continues towards self-love. And although the state of the world worries me, I can honestly say that sitting down with my parents during this quarantine and watching Wynonna Earp, I really feel, for the first time in a very long time, happy. #OutIsTheNewIn

I’ve always had a strong physical connection with other human beings. Intimate energy draws me to people, especially in a romantic sense. Because of this, I grew up in many relationships with different boys. It wasn’t until after 10 months with my last boyfriend at 15 years old (I’m now 21) when I realised that something wasn’t quite right. I had never truly been intimate with any of my partners, and at this point I hadn’t yet done ‘the deed’ with him. The moment came and it didn’t feel special, I didn’t feel ‘in love’ is what I realised. So we didn’t do it, and I made the decision to end the relationship with him the week after. As cruel as it may seem, I was being more cruel to myself by keeping it going after the realisation.
5 months had passed and YouTube became my best friend. I discovered Ally Hills and Stevie Boebi, Shannon Beveridge and Cammie Scott, I watched them for months in pure denial that I was attracted to women. This was during Summer, when I wasn’t at school – most of my time was spent watching these YouTubers and doing ‘Am I gay?’ tests because I very extremely confused and simply didn’t want to admit the truth. I had a lot of internalised homophobia.
By the end of Summer, I had become so paranoid and depressed by internalising it, I had to tell someone. First, it was my best friend at the time. Then she told her mum, who was supportive of me. That same day I told my sister (who had been jokingly calling me a lesbian my whole life) and she gave me the courage to tell my mum. We weren’t a family who spoke about our emotions much, so me saying this to their faces was completely out of the picture. My sister told my mum for me, then my mum told my dad. It seems strange however, I’m not one to open up easily and for me, this was the best option. My mum smiled and welcomed me with open arms, I cried at the relief of her acceptance. I never spoke to my dad about it, but I knew he’d be okay with it.
It took a few months for my parents to stop mentioning boyfriends and realise it wasn’t a phase – I’m lucky that now I can openly talk to them about my relationships with girls and the future I have with my family, adopting or surrogacy in regards to my future children.
As I lived in a more conservative town, I came out to a heteronormative society. Because of this, it was hard to explain the decisions I made as a gay woman – explaining why I was a-romantic towards men however still very much gay. I was repeatedly told I was bisexual, which I knew wasn’t right and caused many arguments with my friends. After leaving my hometown to embark of university life, I was much more accepted and as I discovered more of my own confidence and identity, I realised that I am much more fluid in my choice of partners whilst still mainly preferring women. This was whilst also becoming more educated in gender and sexuality as I realised that I was also interested in non-binary people.
So, I am a fluid, gay woman. I am a proud fluid, gay woman. No one can tell me otherwise and I now don’t ever feel the need to explain myself. I know who I am, and that’s all that matters. If you know who you are, then nothing else matters. If you don’t know who you are, then that’s okay. You need to experience a journey before you get to your destination. Your destination may change, it may stay the same, but what matters is that your are happy and that you allow yourself to explore and enjoy the journey you face. – Scarlett (England, UK)

I came out as bisexual when I was 12 because my knowledge of things like pansexuality was really limited. It wasnt till I was 13 that I realized I was pan. I knew that I would be accepted by my family but I was still scared. Like, once I told everyone it would be a reality. I knew I liked girls when I would look more at girls in movies and I would desperately try to find a boy to tell my friends I liked. I fell in love with my best friend which is such a trope but moving on, it was watching TV shows that I really found my home (if that makes sense). It was watching shows like Glee, Wynonna Earp, and One Day at a Time that I found my confidence. I think the hardest part of it all was learning to accept myself and dealing with hiding a part of myself. Now I’m 15 though, I spend time working on ways to make other people feel accepted and safe. I think the main thing that is really helped me is seeing lgbtq+ people on TV and normalizing it.

I’m a 30 year old female and I grew up in a small village in the north of Sweden and I can’t remember ever thinking I was straight so I guess I always knew I was into women.
I always knew who I was and I liked that I liked women and I wouldn’t want it any other way.
But the thought of anyone else knowing that would bring embarrassment to myself. As this was something that was made fun of by people around me.
Growing up I would have a couple of boyfriends but only so people wouldn’t suspect anything else.
I always knew if I came out to my family and friends they would be very supportive. But for some reason I just felt embarrassed to be gay and I grew up hoping no one would find out.
When I turned 19 years old I had met a woman and I fell in love and became a relationship. I knew it was time to come out.
I’ve never been so scared in my life, I was crying and shaking and finally told my mom, brother and sister I be fallen in love with a woman and I’m gay.
My mother responded with: why yes we know darling, we have always known.
My sister laughted as it was old news.
My brother just didn’t care what and who I did.
I went in to my room as my mother went outside and told my father and he came in and hugged me and said “I love you”. That’s all I needed.
My grandmother said “good! Men are arseholes”
My other grandmother said she wanted me to be happy and days after she had a necklace made with a heart that said” follow your heart”
Everyone else in my family were of course also accepting as well as my friends.
I was very lucky, not everyone are as lucky as I was.
I’m today a proud queer woman and there is no embarrassment left in me. Thanks to my beautiful friends and family. ❤🧡💛💚💙💜 take care of each other!
Xoxo Carro

I’ve had crushes on girls for as long as I can remember. Never made much of it, figured it was “normal”. Thought maybe it was just because I admired them and wanted to be them, or that it was a typical part of growing up.


In high school, I had crushes on boys and girls. I didn’t know much about anything back then, so I figured it was just a phase and one side would fade and disappear over time. That I was just figuring myself out and, one day, one side would win.
Since all I knew that existed was either gay or straight, it had to be one or the other, right?

I always hoped I would end up being only into boys, so that I could be “normal”. I wanted to be normal more than anything in this world.
My whole life, I had never fit in at all. With anyone, or anywhere. So I needed to at least be “normal” for one freaking thing, you know what I mean?


But then in college… I mean, classic story I guess, I fell for my straight female best friend. It didn’t go anywhere, but because at the time the only representation of bisexuality was the toxic version I had seen in the media, as well as the horrible things people would say about bisexuals, I decided to bury my attraction to guys.
I could NOT be bi… I’d rather be gay than bi. The examples I had seen were evil and toxic, and I just couldn’t be like them. There was no way. Absolutely no way. Never. Nope.

So I did everything I could to bury that side of me.
I would be so mean to myself.
…Fear and shame can make you think terrible words and do terrible things.


After a while, still in college, I ended up coming out as a lesbian. I hoped that by saying it, it would make it real. That it would erase the other part I didn’t want to think about.
I came out online to my classmates, after testing the waters for a while, trying to see if they would be accepting or not.

It was mostly fine. The more religious ones would often remind me that I would be going to hell for it, but apart from that it was great and the guys invited me to hang out with them. That was fun 🙂


Some time later, I came out to my parents through a letter I left in a place I knew they’d see it.

I was absolutely terrified they would kick me out.

The thing is… I come from a really judgmental family. My mum is very religious, but I’ve also heard a lot of racist and homophobic things growing up. And that’s just a tiny part of the range of judging comments I’ve heard all my life.

I’ve never been close to my family.
Discussions have never been a thing.
Disagreements mean either silence or terrible fights. Or both.

So I had no idea how that would turn out, but I felt like I needed to do it, if only to stop hearing “when are you gonna get a boyfriend?” that always tore me up inside.

I couldn’t breathe. I had been holding my breath for so long, and I needed to exhale at one point or another, or I would explode from holding it in.


Fortunately, in the end it was okay. I mean, at least they didn’t kick me out.

The “conversation” lasted for about 2 minutes, max, and then we never spoke about it again. (Except for the “maybe it’s just a phase” that I got a few times over the early years.)

That was around… 2004 I think?

Then once, in a birthday message a few years ago, my mum mentioned that she hoped I would find a woman I could be happy with. But that’s pretty much it. (And even today, I still hear homophobic things sometimes when I visit, if there’s something on TV about our beautiful community.)


Some time after I came out to my parents, I came out by email to most of my extended family. Again, I’ve never been close to anyone, and it’s always been easier for me to write than speak, so that’s how I chose to do it.
As far as I know, they’re all accepting. The ones I’ve told, anyway. But for other reasons, I stopped seeing them around that time, so who knows, really.

But to this day, except my godmother who I told recently when the topic came up, they all still think I’m gay.
Since emotionally I’ve only fallen for women, I didn’t want my parents to start hoping I would end up with a man when I don’t see it ever happening.

I mean, I’m pansexual, so I could end up with anyone I connect with no matter their gender, but… I’ve fallen for 3 women so far. No one else.

When I find “the one”, I want to finally feel safe using my chosen label. But until then, I feel safer just not talking about it around my parents.


But speaking of pansexuality… At some point I decided that no matter what society thought about bisexuality, I was only hurting myself by trying to fight who I was.
And then I heard about pansexuality, and it was the first label that I really connected with. The definition made so much sense to me, and it just felt right.

The puzzle pieces finally clicked into place. Falling for someone’s soul, regardless of their gender, regardless of their genitalia, made all the sense in the world to me.
And by learning about the different labels, by finding great people who identified as them, I started to really accept myself and eventually started to love this part of me.

I mean… I’m just me, you know? 🙂


I’m also out in my workplace now. Took me years and for an openly gay man to be hired for me to feel safe enough to do it, but it’s done. Haven’t had any problems so far.

And I want to believe that I would also be open if I ever got a different job.

I can’t go back to hiding. I need to breathe.
Now that I know how great and freeing it feels to have air moving through my lungs, I don’t want to hide this huge part of who I am.


And today, well… I’m just fighting for better representation. And for bisexuality and pansexuality to be seen in a better light (and to be seen, period), so that the next generations don’t have to feel all the shame I’ve felt back when I was still figuring it out.

Labels or no labels, people should have access to amazing examples of every shade of our beautiful and colourful rainbow, so they can find a place to fit in somewhere along the way.

I’m convinced that love is stronger than everything else, so… I do believe that one day love will truly win.

And what a world this will be. x

This is going to be a long story. Sorry in advance. This is my story and this is who I am.

Growing up in a small (3 stoplight kind of small) town in Southern California wasn’t always the easiest. This was the kind of town where everyone knew someone, who knew you. Everyone ended up knowing your business whether you wanted them to know or not.

As a kid and preteen, I always knew I was different. While other girls were concentrated on boys and learning how to put on makeup, here I was more concerned about not having enough daylight to climb rocks, ride bikes, or play outside. The only thing I wanted from a boy was to have someone to play catch with. I was always shy around girls, which is probably why the majority of my friends were boys.

As the years passed, this blonde haired, blue eyed, knobby knees kid didn’t really change.

Come high school (1999-2003 in case anyone was curious), I was still the athletic girl who hung out with all the boys. At age 16 I had my first kiss. My first kiss was with my best friend (he and I are still friends to this day). Nothing ever really ever came from that kiss. It wasn’t long after senior year started did I find out my old neighbor had a crush on me. Apparently he had a crush on me since 6th grade. We had many classes together that year. We would even walk to class together. I always saw us as just friends. One day he asked me to one of the dances at school. I had always wanted to go to the dances at school, but never thought I would have someone to take me. I agreed to go with him as long as he understood we were going as friends. The big night came and went. All the fun was had that evening and after that, life went back to normal. I was still shy and quiet.

Fast forward six months. MYSPACE and Yahoo! Messenger came into my life.
My eyes were opened to a whole new world. It was life changing!

I met so many new people outside of my tiny country town. I never really asked myself why I never wanted to date anyone. The time came when I met this girl online, we’ll just call her Mary, from the other side of my state. We would chat EVERY SINGLE DAY. Some days were just in a chat room and other days on video chat. I had NEVER spent this much time talking to anyone before. I was completely head over heels and didn’t even realize it. One day, one of my sisters asked me why I was spending so much time talking to this girl. She straight up asked me if I was a lesbian. I was scared and didn’t quite know how to answer her at the time partly because I myself didn’t really know. I ended up telling her NO. Going back to Mary, neither one of us ever told the other how we obviously felt about one another. We both graduated and moved on with the next chapter in our lives.

Summer after high school, I had already started taking summer classes for college. I was over at a friends house and he was chatting with his buddy who lived out of state. This buddy had recently gone through a rough divorce and needed a friend to talk to. My friend introduced us and we started becoming friends. That’s all we were for a while. The more we talked the more we liked each other. Long story short, I moved up to AK. We got married, this unfortunately didn’t last very long. I realized it wasn’t fair to either one of us for me to stay and try to work things out if I couldn’t be 100% honest with myself. I still felt like something was missing. Looking back I realize that I was running away when I moved to AK. Running away because I was scared of how my family, my friends, and my community would react to me telling them I was queer. I told my family I was moving back to CA. I told them I was queer. My parents are very open minded and love all of us no matter what. But with that being said, it took some time for my mom to warm up to the idea.

Not quite ready to look everyone face to face, I moved back to CA but not to the part where I grew up. I moved in with a friend I had known for a while. We went out to the Gayborhood fairly often and I really learned who I was and who I’ve always been. This friend of mine and I ended up dating for almost 3 years. I owe her the world for helping me at that time. Due to many differences this relationship wasn’t meant to be. I finally moved back “home” to be close to family.

It took 5 years of me being gone to realize home was where I was meant to be. I was able to get close to my family again. You know what, it was the best decision I ever made. I absolutely love my family and I’m very lucky to have them. They welcomed me back with open arms. I was able to reconnect with old friends and make some new friends. One of those new friends became my wife about 7 years ago. We have been together for almost 12 years now. Although we are no longer living in CA, we have made a home and are now a family of 👩‍👩‍👦.

No matter what life throws at you, you will rise back up and shine. 🌈 come at the end of a storm.

For the curious minds out there, “Mary” and I are still great friends. We have been there for each other through all of the ups and downs life has thrown at us over the years.

I started by telling my twin and it turned out she was pansexual as well which was a funny coincidence. My family was open and accepting which was really fantastic. When I realized I was pan when I was about 11 and came out when I was 12. I knew that I wanted to create a place where other people could feel safe and accepted because I realized not everyone had that. My friends and I teamed up with guidance conselors and had endless meetings with the principle and other administrators to create a GAS in the school. We were successful and now 2 year later we still have that club running even after we left. I knew that I would be accepted when I came out and I just wanted to make sure that that kind of feeling was felt by the other LGBTQ+ kids in my school that felt alienated

I first acknowledged I was into women in the 5th grade. As a kid I was pretty sheltered so I didn’t actually know what gay/lesbian was, but I did hear about the word bi – so that’s what I called myself. When I told my mom she explained that all women know that other women are beautiful, but that it didn’t necessarily mean I “liked” them. Now, I can acknowledge a good looking dude, don’t get me wrong, but I knew I could never love a man the way I could love a woman. By the time I hit middle school I came out to a few friends who were incredibly supportive. And when high school rolled around, I finally accepted myself enough to openly live as a lesbian. I got very little flack about it thankfully (IMO it’s because of how much larger I was than my peers) but I never truly accepted the part of myself that could be attracted to men. As confusing as this sounds, I still identify as a lesbian because of my previous statement about falling in love. I am lucky enough to love a woman who understands what this means and accepts me for who I am. Unfortunately, our wedding was postponed because of COVID-19, so although I can’t quite call her my wife, we have proudly and affectionately adopted the title of “almost-wife” for each other. Because of my family (who is extremely supportive btw), friends, and the love of my life I am enthusiastically proud to be a part of this wonderfully supportive and kind community. And I am so friggin excited that Start the Wave has joined with the LGBTQ+ community so we can grow and learn and love one another the way that we all deserve!

I haven’t come out yet and I don’t think I will ever have that courage to actually tell my parents on who I really am inside.

It’s really kind of hard, for I’m part of a household that doesn’t exactly completely accept people like me (Maybe in the part where boys like boys, they have already accepted and welcomed that part but not wholeheartedly yet). So what if I ended up liking girls, would they be ashamed of me and force me to be someone I’m not? It’s scares the shit out of me.

Yes, my parents and aunts and uncles have friends who are part of the LGBTQ+ community and they accept them. But having one in the family is different for them, are they ashamed of having one in the family? I guess they are because if they aren’t, then why am I so nervous like this? just the thought of actually finally coming out really scares me.

I’m afraid of the thought of seeing them looking at me differently and weirdly. Being judge, nobody wants that. I don’t want that.

I know what my family are like. Both households doesn’t accept people like me. I accepted that. So I told myself “Alright, if coming out means they’ll be ashamed of me and will look at me differently, then I shouldn’t just come out. It’s for the best. No awkward situations. I don’t have to deal with those judgy eyes. All is well.”

I’ve had that mindset since forever. Then one day while I was cleaning up, I ended up finding and reading my elder sister’s diary. When I read it, I found out that she’s a lesbian and she has girlfriend and they’ve been together for ten years now. Still, they couldn’t shout and tell the world that they deeply love each other and I pity them.

It made me realized more how scary and judgmental the community can be. It made it even harder for me to come out. In this community I live in who believes that women should be with men and never women with women and men with men is a scary community.

So I did a little observation and experimentation on my friends. I found out that most of them accept gays just like my family but not lesbians like my family again. So now my next question is, “why?” Why don’t they like lesbians?

I searched and searched for the answer to my question. And the only answer I got was because “they’re disgusting” What kind of answer is that!? Why are they disgusting?

They’re only humans who chose to love. Just luck would have it, they fell in love with the same sex as them, they didn’t force themselves to be lesbians, it just happened because their heart chose to beat for that person and now they’re in love.

After discovering that fact, I pitied my sister and her girlfriend even more. Now I know why they’re hiding, it’s because the community is way too toxic. It might destroy them and eat them alive.

Now, I’m trying my best everyday not to fall in love with anyone. Not even with boys and if I ever ended up liking someone be it a boy or a girl, I keep it all to myself. I’m good at hiding my emotions anyway but I’m not confident enough that I can keep holding up and can keep fighting love.

It’s a difficult enemy. I don’t know how long I can keep holding up. It’s pure torture but I chose this path and it’s stupid and I’m a coward, I know all of that.

So I’m very proud to those who have chosen truth about themselves. Toast to those courageous people, toast to everyone who has finally come out of the closet and our now living the life they want with the people they want.

When I was little, my mom always put me in a variety of dresses, which, let’s face it, was never practical for the sporty girl I was.
I was about 10 years old when I ran down the hallway and jumped in my Stepmom’s arms at the end of The TIME OF MY LIFE (Dirty Dancing). And, because I trusted her with all my heart, because I think she picked me blushing when Jennifer Grey would appear on the screen,
The next day, she casually came out as bisexual as if she had just announced the weather. I blushed, chocked on my dinner and avoided my family’s eye contact.
I felt shame. I felt ashamed of the spectrum she had put words upon in such an easy way in front of my wide (queer) eyes open. Because it is what we are taught to avoid: Looking at it in the bright light.
But soon, I felt love. When she taught us about this intimate journey, smoothing the path under my footsteps as if in a look, she knew, that I just started my wild ride towards my inner self.
As I grew up, I started putting on loose clothing, for the easy purpose of being comfortable until it wasn’t a choice anymore. Due to back issues, I wore a corset, 24/7 for 5 years, the exact time of my puberty. I had to shop exclusively in the man section which means, I quickly met judgment, hate and violence from my said friends.
But I had this beautiful light of strength still burning somewhere in me. So, because I had no control over my body or the pain, I decided to cut my hair. I took control and I looked at society, with no woman form, short hair, and surely no confidence and what you can imagine happened. I became a little boy to the eyes of the world. And for a second, it felt simple, I was finally allowed to be attracted to girls too.
Quickly, it felt wrong, I was proud to be a Woman. I wanted everyone to see me as one. I hated that to be myself, I had to be seen as “different”. Still, I was week, young ad broken. So, I grew my hair back an in a way, I gave up. I ran away from every crowd, I feared people noticing me.
Until someone made me realized that I would never shine brighter to MYSELF, being THEIR idea of a woman, if I just disappeared.
She was the first girl of my age with short hair. Unless, she wasn’t staring at the crowd, frightened to be seen differently. So, I asked her, an easy question: “How did you do it?”
And she answered: “Well, I loved it. And if it’s what you love. If you feel yourself when doing it, then screw everybody’s opinion, you’re the one who can write your story.”
The wild journey towards happiness began at this point. Of course, I did cut my hair. And eventually, discovered the power of dressing as you want. Far away from anyone’s expectations, full of colours and patterns, I became the gendered fashion’s tightrope walker. One step in every section, a style in all.
I came out to my family, who were obviously expecting it (especially my stepmom and slowly the rest of them).
I managed to seduce for the past two years, a wonderful, brave and smart woman to stand by my side.
And, Yes,
It is still incredibly frightening, and hard, every day, not to be able to put myself out in the world, without earrings and be misgendered.
But I’m kind to myself. I think I’m pretty great and really, I’m only 18. My whole life is ahead of me, and I don’t know more than 1 per cent of my future self.
What I know is,
I’ll make sure that this 1 big per cent is kind and loving and brings light to other people’s eyes and hearts.
So that one day, I get to sit down at a dinner table and open a new colourful and safe world to a dreamy, blushing, beautiful human being.

 I was 17 when I realized that I was into more than just guys I guess it was always in my mind but I never truly accepted it until my junior year of high. It was easy coming out to my friends since they had been suspecting for a while but it was difficult to tell my family my dad accepted me as I was but my mother never acknowledged or spoke to me about but I’ve never been happier since the day I came out

Growing up in a household where homosexuality was never discussed, I never realized that I in fact was a lesbian. I started to fantasize about women at a young age (5 y/o), but it was not until high school that it really started to hit me. I realize that I was not flirting with guys who were trying to hook up because I was too distracted by the beautiful girl near me. During the day I was busy with theatre, dealing with my father’s death, shitty math classes that I could barely pass, and other things; however, during the night it was just me and my thoughts. It came to the point where I could not take it anymore and was miserable. I knew that I had to do something right then and there. Of course I would muster up the courage to come out in the early AM while everyone was asleep except for my sister. I decided that the best thing I could do is type out an e-mail and send it to those who I valued opinions from the most, so I did and it was the most terrifying e-mail I have ever sent. Since my sister was still out and about with her boyfriend, I decided I would text her. Her response was almost immediate. I was shocked to see that all she wrote was “it’s about time”. That helped me relax a bit that night, but the nagging thoughts of me losing my best friends and family members made it a restless sleep. I was so worried my female best friends would think I intentionally wanted to share a bed during sleepovers because I wanted to sleep with them. I was terrified to be woken up in the middle of the night to my mum dragging me out of the house by my hair and disowning me. Would the man who promised my dad he would take care of us disown me so I am completely out of a father figure? When morning came I managed to get out of bed and right when I opened my door the universe made sure it was at the same time my mum was walking out of her room. We stood there staring at each other and the look she gave me I have never seen before. Thankfully after what felt like hundreds of hours she asked, “are you sure?”. I said yes and b-lined for the bathroom. Nothing else was said after that until I caught her watching a documentary on homosexuality a few days later. This time the looks were reversed! Thankfully most of my loved ones were accepting. I was set free on Monday, October 6th, 2008 at 12:30AM. <3

To be honest the whole idea of “coming out” is both sad that it is a thing, and also frightening because it puts a type of spotlight onto you and makes you feel singled out. I am just turning 20, and really discovering who I am and who I want to be. I do consider myself religious and because of that I am afraid to say let alone write that there is a part of me that would not be considered “normal”. Through the few years I have been on this earth, I have found that I am attracted to both genders and because of preconceived ideas and norms I never really realized it. For years I had been drawn to shows with families that had two moms and I thought I just liked it because it was different. But from watching Wynonna Earp, and especially the cons on YouTube I realized it might be more than that. I have heard from several people that after you come out you will feel free in the end and those that don’t love you after never really loved you. But as someone who depends on my family and close friends that is extremely hard. I hope that I might one day have the courage to speak my truth.

I was born almost 18 years ago in Germany, a country that nowadays strongly supports members of the LGBTQ+ community. I never saw that, though; I never really realized that gay people even existed. Sure, I knew it, I have heard about it, but never once in my life have I seen a gay person in real life.
Which is why I was frightened when I first looked after a girl. I was frightened because of my friends. They were by no means homophobic, but they always dreamed about boys, always talked about how they wanted their first kiss to be, some of them even were in relationships.
And then there was me, the girl who already felt like she didn’t belong anywhere before and it drove me even more insane that I did not want these things- or rather: I wanted them to be with a girl.
Whenever I saw an attractive woman on TV, I felt this weird, tingly feeling in my stomach. For a second it felt like home, or at least it felt right.
Not a single person around me showed any sign of homophobia, but I was scared, scared to admit the truth and I tried to push it away as far as possible. After, I fell into a hole. A deep, bottomless hole. My grades dropped, I stopped taking proper care of myself, I fell and it didn’t seem to stop. All because of these thoughts that kept recurring in my mind.

Years passed by and in 2015, I decided to share my thoughts with a friend of mine. She was okay with it, but it wasn’t a big deal to her. Being the shy child I was, I immediately regretted telling her and I started to think that she didn’t care about me.
A year later I told a few more friends about my sexuality, back then I labeled myself as bisexual, and all of them were more than just okay with it. I slowly became comfortable with it as well and started to watch LGBTQ+ related TV-shows and movies, I started reading more books and manga that dealt with women loving other women and slowly but steadily, I became comfortable in my skin.
2017 was a year filled with love, acceptance, and recovery. I started taking care of myself again, I got even more involved in the LGBTQ+ community, joined group chats and at some point, I even started making jokes about my sexuality. I was comfortable, but there were still two people missing in that equation: my parents.

I told them three times that I am not (only) into boys. The first time was in 2017, we were at a birthday celebration and at some point, I decided to tell my father that I’m bi. He didn’t believe me.
Coming-Out number two took place in 2018 when I was studying abroad in the United States. He never responded to that specific text message.
Number three, 2019, I told him when we visited Egypt. At that time, I already figured out that I was gay, not bi as I thought I was. He once again said that it isn’t true, that I am confused.

But I will not let that define me.
Because years later, I am here and I am an openly gay woman. I am proud of myself and even if I haven’t escaped the bottomless hole entirely, I’m almost there.
I have a lot of friends that belong to the LGBTQ+ community, the others strongly support it. I make jokes about being gay, on special occasions (Pride for instance) I dress up as a rainbow. If anyone asks me where I want to be in twenty years, I have no problem to admit that I want to live in an apartment in my hometown, a dog, wife and maybe a child by my side. I know who I am now and I am proud.

I am about to graduate from High School and I will go to college to study film. I want to write and produce TV-shows in the future because to me, they are not just entertainment, they are therapy. Shows/series like ‘The 100’, ‘Orange is The New Black’, ‘Wynonna Earp’ and ‘Carmilla’ have helped me to find myself and even friends who support me no matter what I do.

I want to change something in the future and I want to help people feel things they thought they could never feel before.
I want to #startthewave and give a voice to all the colours of the rainbow!

Much much love, respect, appreciation and gratitude from Germany!

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