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To Sam

Still in the closet

I'm 16, and still in the closet about me being gay. This is not what I want, I want people to know who I am, want them to know the real me..... but this seems impossible. My parents don't agree with gay people, sometimes they say it's ok but other times they act as if it's not. Those small ideas they give me sometimes are the ones that hurt the most.

I am still in the closet because I am afraid I will lose my family and friends if I tell them I am gay.

I am also at the age where I want to find love, find someone special. This is also impossible for me because of my situation. I can't even carry on as if everything's fine because my mum thinks I should be out with a girl. Finding someone special but my mum doesn't seem to realise I have no interest in a relationship with a girl, so everyday the pressure builds and it's getting increasingly harder. I have also gone through my exams and my results day is coming up, all these problems are messing with my head. Now it's really starting to show, I am getting really moody all the time, I keep nearly arguing with everyone I speak to. All I feel like doing is sitting in a dark room on my own away from all the problems.

Sorry for the long letter and thanks for your time. I just want some help/advice, anything to help please!!!

Ask Sam


Hi there,

Thanks for your letter. “Coming out” about your sexuality is a personal journey that a lot of young people and adults struggle with. There’s no right or wrong time to do it, and it can feel even more difficult when you don’t feel like people will accept you.

It sounds a lot like being in the closet feels  - like a massive hurdle stopping you from taking the next step. It’s natural for young people to start wanting to think about relationships at all different ages and it’s not easy having barriers stopping you from doing that.

When you’re in the closet it can be good to remember that you don’t need to come out to everybody at once. It’s really normal to want to come out to different people at different times. Some young people find it safer to find someone they trust to tell before anyone else.

Thinking about friends and how they might react can be a really good first step, or when they don’t feel like the right people you can also talk to an adult you trust. The important thing is that you feel comfortable with them. Sometimes it can help to think what it might be like once you get past that first reaction and if they could see you as you.

Telling your family is something you only have to do when you’re ready. You can’t control how other people might react, but you can only do what you think is best for you. ChildLine is here to support you through that no matter what you decide. You can talk to a counsellor any time about how you’re feeling and what’s happening without ever being judged or told what to do.

Take care,

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