COMING OUT DAY
Sunday, October 11
Every year since 1987, we celebrate Coming Out Day on October 11th, the anniversary of National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights. Coming out can be a powerful and important moment for members of the LGBTQ+ community. It’s also a personal choice that individuals should be able to make when they’re ready to do so.
Coming out isn’t always easy. It can be a hard decision to make, especially if it could lead to disapproval or rejection from friends or family members. On Coming Out Day, we celebrate the courage of those who have found a way to live openly and honestly. and the allies that support them. And we offer our support to those who are at different points in their coming out journey.
Sometimes, the process of deciding whether or when to come out, or the reactions of others after we come out, can cause stress, anxiety, depression or hopelessness. Below we’ve shard some resources from our friends at other organizations that can help with the decision to come out and navigating life after you are out.
If you or someone you know need to talk to someone immediately, you can call contact the Trevor Project at 1-866-488-7386 or text START to 678-678 for a free, confidential conversation anytime. More resources for finding support are at the bottom of this page.
The Trevor Project’s Coming Out: A Handbook for LGBTQ Young People, is a resource that covers a wide range of topics to support LGBTQ young people in exploring what coming out safely can mean for them. The handbook includes:
- Basics of gender: gender identity, gender expression, and transitioning
- Basics of sexual orientation: physical attraction, romantic attraction, and emotional attraction
- Coming out: planning ahead, testing the waters, environment, support systems, and safety
- Healthy relationships, self-care, mental health, and warning signs of negative mental health outcomes such as seriously considering suicide
We all deserve the right to live our lives genuinely, completely and honestly. Race, ethnicity, language, religion, culture, gender expression, sexual orientation and gender identity should never be barriers to us living our full lives. For LGBTQ people, coming out is often a significant part of reclaiming this right and living in our identity publicly.
Coming Out: Living Authentically as Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual+ was designed to help you and your loved ones through the coming out process in realistic and practical terms. It acknowledges that the experience of coming out and living openly covers the full spectrum of human emotion — from paralyzing fear to unbounded euphoria.
As a young person, learning about your own LGBTQ identity and coming out in a heteronormative and cisnormative world can be challenging. To help with the coming out process, we’ve compiled some key things for you to think about and consider as you begin to share your identities around sexuality and gender. This is not prescriptive, and your coming out journey(s) may skip around or return to other parts of the list. No two coming out stories are exactly the same; your coming out will be shaped by the supports that you have in school, at home, or in your community, and the privileges you hold in other aspects of your identity.
HAVE A FREE, CONFIDENTIAL CHAT WITH A TRAINED COUNSELOR 24/7
- The trained team at Crisis Text Line are there if you or someone you know are struggling with anxiety, depression, concerns about overuse of drugs or alcohol, hopelessness, abuse or thoughts of suicide. Simply text START to 741-741 anytime to start your live, confidential chat.
- Need to talk to someone now? The Lifeline has trained counselors available 24/7 if you’re worried about yourself or a friend. Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) anytime to get started.
- The Trevor Project offers a national 24-hour, toll free, confidential support line for LGBTQ youth. If you’re feeling hopeless or struggling because of issues related to your sexuality, discrimination or note being accepted by friends or family members, you can connect with a counselor via phone, chat or text. Learn more.
SCHEDULE A TELE-THERAPY SESSION WITH A COUNSELOR
- If you are currently working with a therapist or counselor, many are offering to do sessions via phone or video chat. Reach out to your mental health professional to learn more. Here are some tips for getting the most out of teletherapy.
There are Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) across the country that provide mental health services and many are now offering tele-counseling. They will help you, even if you have no health insurance. You pay what you can afford, based on your income. Use the health center locator tool to search for a health center by address, state, or county.
- There are a number of established online therapy platforms where you can pay a weekly or monthly fee for access to a therapist via phone, messaging or video chat. Talk Space offers packages starting at $65 a week (Get $65 off with code APPLY65) and BetterHelp offers packages from $40 to $70 per week.