Monday, 31 January 2011

Coming Out- Wegan's Story

Hello dear readers!

We've been asked a few times for advice about coming out, so we thought we would make a post exactly about that. We'll give you a short summary of our personal experiences and then dish out some advice for those still in the closet.

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Wegan Coming Out
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We both came out at roughly the same age. Whitney was 15 and Megan was 16. Funnily enough due to our 1 year age gap, this pretty much means we came out the same year (meant to be or what?!) Not going to lie, we both had bit of a bumpy ride (Whitney sadly more so than Megan). At first it was mainly our mothers that did not react well, but after time they slowly came around to accepting that this is who we are and that we can be happy. We love being lipstick lesbians (femme) but it doesn't mean that we hide being gay. As lesbians we are very proud, and as a couple we are clearly very proud as well. We feel it's important to be visible because we didn't have any positive lesbian role models to look up to when growing up and discovering our sexual orientation. From a young age Megan has always been into gay rights, so despite never looking like a lesbian, how anyone wouldn't know is surprising! We've both always been very secure with our sexual orientation and therefore have been out at school, to friends, family and work.

We want you to believe us when we say, it really does get better. Want proof? This Christmas Megan's mother bought us cushions with each others faces on. I kid you not!

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Wegan's Advice:

Not Ready?

No-body's forcing you to come out of the closet, only do so when you genuinely feel ready. This doesn't mean that you will no longer feel worried/ scared but as long as you're sure about yourself then that's the main thing that counts. Even if you're not 100%, if you have a best friend you feel you can confide in to discuss things through then that will help. Or even look to the internet for the LGB community to help.

Worried about coming out to Friends?

Come out to your friends which ever way you feel is best for you, whether it be face to face, email, txt, facebook etc. It's probably best to tell a few you really feel you can trust to see how you feel with people knowing. Remember it's not a little secret to be ashamed of. Be proud of who you are! As far as coming out to friends goes, we truly believe that if they don't accept you for who you are, then they aren't worth having as friends in the first place. There's plenty more great friends out there! Trust us.

Worried about coming out to Family?

As for family, we know it's different for each individual because their family circumstances may be different, but we do believe that time heals all. At the end of the day it doesn't change who you are as their daughter/son and they'll realise that eventually if they do not at first. If you've come out to friend but not your parents yet, then let your friends know if you're going to do it so they can be there for support whichever way it goes.

Worried about coming out to Work Colleagues?

Being gay at work can be tough, especially when you're the only one (or so you presume anyways). Some people feel coming out may affect the way their work colleagues interact with them or getting a promotion etc. We've both so far always been out at work, though it can be daunting when first arriving being with a bunch of heterosexual people constantly talking about their husbands/wives and kids. Straight people don't realise how they are technically announcing their sexual orientation when they simply mention what they got up to with their partner at the weekend. For gay people even mentioning this simple fact can be rather scary, especially if you're not sure how they'll react. If you're worried, I would wait a little way to find your feet at work, establish some friends and come out over time. You don't have to walk around waving a rainbow flag, but coming out has proven to be beneficial to not only yourself at work and your relationships with work colleagues, but it also effects your productivity and in turn is beneficial to the company. (To read more visit Stonewall).

The Continuous Cycle of Coming Out:

As annoying as it is, as a LGB person you never really will stop coming out, so you may as well start practicing early! We both end up quite often most days coming out to new people you meet, whether it be in starbucks on the bus or at work. Of course we don't mean go around introducing yourself as gay to everyone, but if it naturally drops into conversation then we don't see any need to hide it. We always judge a situation and the person first though. To test the waters we often mention 'partner' first of & then when they ask what 'he' is doing in the UK/Hawaii we reply with 'well SHE is...'

Ultimately, coming out is a personal and different to each individual, but you need to keep in mind that you're not alone. & it does get better.

If you have any questions or just want to talk to someone. Contact us anytime!

Wegan X
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