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TABLE OF CONTENTS


COMING OUT
-
Coming Out At Work
- Coming Out To Doctor's
- Coming Out To Parent's

COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS
- Organizations List

COUNSELLING

DISCRIMINATION

LGBT HEALTH
HIV / AIDS
  - HIV/AIDS Basics
  - HIV Fast Facts / Charts
  - HIV Testing Locations
Mental Health
  - Health Care Implications
  - LGBTQ At Higher Risk
  - Supportive Environments
Sexual Health

LGBTQ IN SCHOOLS
-
Bullying
- Gay Staight Alliances
- Preventing Violence
- Educators Information

PROGRAMS
- Social / Education

TERMS & DEFINITIONS

 

Coming OUT

 
THINKING OF COMING OUT?
Coming out is a process of understanding, accepting, and valuing your sexual orientation/identity. It involves both exploring your identity and sharing your identity with others. Coming out can be a gradual process or one that is very sudden. The first step usually involves coming out to yourself, often with a realization that feelings you’ve had for some time make sense if you can define them as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender or queer.
 
Coming out can be a very difficult process. Our society strongly enforces codes of behavior regarding sexual orientation and gender identity, and most people receive the message that they must be heterosexual and act according to society’s definition of their gender. For gay, lesbian, and bisexual persons, there may be a sense of being different or of not fitting in to the roles expected of you by your family, friends, workplace or greater society. Coming out involves facing societal responses and attitudes toward LGBTQ people. You may feel ashamed, isolated, and afraid.
 
Although coming out can be difficult, it can also be a very liberating and freeing process. You may feel like you can finally be authentic and true to who you are. You may find a whole community of people like you and feel supported and inspired. Even if it’s scary to think about coming out to others, sometimes the reward can be worth the challenge that coming out entails.
 
Individuals do not move through the coming out process at the same speed. The process is very personal. It happens in different ways and occurs at different ages for different people. Some people are aware of their sexual identity at an early age, and others arrive at this awareness after many years. Coming out is a continuing, sometimes lifelong, process.
 
Once you accept that you’re lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer, you can decide to be out to others or to stay “in the closet.” You are the only person who can decide when and how it is safe to come out. You may decide to come out in one part of your life and not in another. For example, some people are out to their families but in the closet at work; some people are out at school but in the closet with their families.

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