Not sure how to start talking to people about your sexuality? Check out these tips for getting started
For some people coming out is never an issue, but for others it can be a pretty big deal. At Fumble we think there’s nothing better than celebrating your sexuality, but if you’re sharing it with someone else for the first time, it can feel pretty daunting. So, if you want to start talking with other people about your sexuality, here are some hints and suggestions for people who want to come out, but are feeling a bit uncertain about how to do it.
1) Think about who you want to come out to first. Instead of a mass text or Facebook post it’s sometimes a good idea to start by talking to a trusted friend or family member, so you can experience how it feels to come out, find a way of phrasing it that you’re comfortable with, and get the chance to experience someone’s reaction and have a discussion about it afterwards.
2) Think carefully about what else you’ve got going on. We’d love it if everyone was supportive, informed and tolerant about people’s sexuality – but sometimes they’re not. Someone reacting badly to your coming out can be a horrible experience, and might make existing stresses even harder to deal with.
3) Choose a moment when you know you’ll have the time and opportunity to say what you want to say and to listen to what they have to say. Big family occasions like a wedding, an hour before you leave for university, or Christmas Day, are not always the best times to let your rainbow flag fly – they can often be distracting and emotional events, and people might not have the time to talk openly with you about your sexuality.
4) It’s a good idea to save coming out for when you have a clear head. Alcohol can be a serious social lubricant, but if you’re drunk or hungover you might end up saying something you didn’t plan to, and you may not be in the best state of mind to deal with the response you get.
5) If you’re able, talk to other people going through similar experiences! This can really help you to build your confidence in your sexuality, and if you know people who understand what you’re going through, you’ll be in a better position to tell others.
6) This is tough – but try to keep it in your mind that your coming out conversations may not always end with total acceptance. People may need time to adjust to the news. But remember that’s not your fault, so give them space and focus on yourself.
7) Finally, and MOST IMPORTANTLY – remember that coming out does not change who you are! Your sexuality is a really important part of who you are, but it’s not who you are. You’re the same awesome, unique person you have always been: and if your friends and family have the slightest bit of sense they’ll accept that and love you for who you are.