Nashville + New York + NYC + Tennessee + USA

Coming Out In The American South

Gay / 17 and Under + 18-22 + 23-29 / White / Athiest + Christian

I grew up in a southern, conservative, Presbyterian environment for 18 years. My Church owned my K-12 school, and my family was active in both. My parents led Bible studies in our home and founded several churches. I was no stranger to the Bible, and certainly not to what it said about LGB people.

To avoid repeating myself, I won’t get into too much detail that’s explained in the video. What I will say is this:

Do not wait until it’s “convenient” or “the right time” to come out to a disapproving family. It’s never the right time. It’s never convenient. I planned on waiting until after college when my tuition was paid, but life never happens according to plan. My first ex-boyfriend ended up outing me to my entire family and social circle at 19.

Being outed was horrible. A deeply personal moment was taken from me that I’ll never get back. That said, I’m glad it happened. The bandage was ripped off early, and now my family’s had more time to heal. They don’t approve, but almost 10 years have softened the shock of having a gay son. I do believe they love me. My advice to you: trust that the people who say they love you mean it. If they don’t, they shouldn’t be in your life. Love yourself before anyone else. And that means learning to not care what others’ perceptions are of you.