Is It Safe for You to Come Out of the Closet?
This is something only to do when you're ready to do it. No one else can force you to come out. It is a choice that requires a lot of confidence and self esteem to do, and it may change how people regard you in certain ways. It can bring on both positive and negative comments or interactions with people you may know.
Another important thing that quite a few people seem to overlook is that you can come out at any age. Coming out has no age restriction and the LGBT+ community accepts all who identify with us, and those who don't!
For Those Who Read This and Identify With LGBT+
When did you come out?
When Should I Come Out?
As stated in the summary, this may depend on quite a few things. The most important thing to remember is that your safety is what matters. If you are already having a hard time at home, it wouldn't be logical to come out seeing as it may worsen your living conditions. If you know your parents are blantantly homophobic or transphobic, coming out to them might not be the best option for you. If your parents are radicals when it comes to religion or extremely right wing, it's okay to wait. This doesn't just have to do with your home situation. This also may have to do with your schooling environment or where you live, seeing as some places may have a higher hate crime rate.
Notice how all of these start with 'if', because they're all hypothetical. Coming out is your choice. It's always okay, but is it safe? See statistics below.
According to the FBI
There were 5,818 single-bias incidents involving 7,121 victims. Of those victims, 59.2 percent were targeted because of a race/ethnicity/ancestry bias; 19.7 percent because of a religious bias; 17.7 percent because of a sexual orientation bias; 1.7 percent because of a gender identity bias; 1.2 percent because of a disability bias; and 0.4 percent because of a gender bias.
Race, gender, religion, sexuality, we are all people and that's it. We're all people. We're all equal.— Connor Franta
A Visual to the Statistics
Slow Down . . . More Statistics
That percentage of 19.8 might not seen like a very large number, but out of 7,121 victims? That's about 360 victims from the LGBT+ community, which is almost a hate crime a day.
It's Okay to Be Afraid
- It's okay to not want to be another one of those horrifying statistics, so these are somethings you can do to prevent that:
- If you know that your town happens to fall on the more dangerous side of things, avoid traveling alone. This will reduce your chances of having a dangerous encounter.
- Try to avoid those who make you feel uneasy. Trust that gut feeling, most of the time, it happens to be right.
- To expand on the second bulletin, the buddy system is another thing to look into.
- Support groups!
- Reach out to loved ones that you can trust about your concerns and if you happen to be feeling unsafe.
A Queer Conclusion
Remember, safety should be on your mind when making these life choices, but it is understandable if you cannot withstand being 'closeted'. Remember the valid points of how to stay safe and have a gay time.