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Coming out

Hi my name is E***, I am 13 years old and I am bisexual. My parents are very supportive of gay people, most of their friends are gay. When I was younger I knew if I turned out gay, it would be easy to tell them. However it isn't. I just don't know how to tell them, nobody knows, I haven't told my friends because I don't know how they will take it. I have thought about telling them on National Coming Out day, but the idea still seems to scare me. How should I come out?
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Sam

Hi E***,

It can be difficult to tell family and friends about things that are private and personal. Having a good relationship with someone you want to tell something ‘big’ or personal to can help. But it can still be hard.

It may be scary if we’re not sure about how that person is going to react. It might help to practise what you want to say, and write down how you want to say it. Sometimes it might not go how you plan, but telling personal things can leave us feeling exposed. We know that once it's out people can sometimes react in a way that is different to what we had hoped for.

It can help to think about the benefits of telling someone. For example, how it can help us to feel like we don't have to keep it a secret. It could also feel good to be honest with the people who are close to us. Even if you feel comfortable about telling someone, you could still struggle to find the right words.

Choosing a significant day to start a particular conversation can be a good idea. For some people dropping hints, like commenting on TV programs about gay people, can also be a wayof showing an interest in a topic.

A good idea might be to talk to one of the ChildLine counsellors about how to come out and practise what you could say. Have a look at our message boards too where other young people who have been in similar situations can help you. You may also find it useful to check out our page about sexuality, which has tips on coming out.

Take care,
Sam

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