Open Thread: National Coming Out Day

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How old were you when you first came out?

Comments [22]

lionsgrove's picture

After lots of boyfriends.

I considered myself hopelessly straight growing up because I never knew any butch women. Feminine women don't do it for me, and those were the only women I knew, so I didn't know. My story is that simple. 

So: came out to myself when I met my first butch: 19.

Came out to other interested parties over the next few years. 

geek4grammar's picture

oops, another accidental post

just ignore this...was trying to reply to jules...

We're all born naked. The rest is drag.
--RuPaul (appropriating Judith Butler for the masses...)

slvbod's picture

gradually... still!

I've never had a general coming out, but everything as been gradual... and still is!

To myself, as far as I remember, I've always had the feeling that I was different, even when I did not know about couples, sexuality, etc... but it became very clear at college (13 years old)

To my friends, very gradually, when they saw me with a girlfirend, on when we talked about our love affairs; but not as a special event

To my professional environment, only when it happens that they know me more personally.

To part of my family (the ones of the same generation), it has been gradual since I know about myself. But not to the older ones (parents, uncles, etc.) as my unique brother (who's younger than me) has occupied the "allowed quota" and came out before me... It is like if it would be too much. I still feel I should tell to my parents, but also that they already know.  The deadline I have given myself is when I will really be partnering with somebody; but as far as I am single, I don't feel the need to tell them anything... a way to delay...

Despite the fears that I still have to be seen as an alien, I have to say that it has untill now always been very nice moments, with this feeling that I can be accepted for who I am, no more, no less

So, it's actually still in process!

Ashera's picture

I was 16

I unfortunately did not get the chance to out myself. The first time was my friend's mom told my mom because she was pissed that I didn't want to date her son (my friend). My mom didn't care about my being gay but she was royally pissed at my friend's mom. She and my mom were also friends, and my mom ended her friendship with that woman because she knew the only reason my friend's mom said anything was because she wasn't concerned about me, she was being vengeful and nosy. The second time was by some ass wipe jocks in high school. I had the misfortune of working with one, and a girl I worked with happened to find out that I had a girlfriend and she told the douche....and then the whole school knew. Nice.

minniesota's picture

To myself and others

To myself I was in elementary school. To others I think I was around age 24. It's a process.

Still searching for the right brainy quote.

NCSha25's picture

Still a work in progress

My bisexuality has truly prob been a reality since I was 14...even after my first "ladies' first" moment at 18 I was still in denial...only in the last 2 and a half years maybe I've fully come out to myself and to others completely without the "i'm open minded coverage. Just told my mom straight up with no chaser two weeks ago. She said she always knew. I'm 29 and somewhat still dealing with me and where I think I belong..

Steph's picture

23/24 to myself AND the

23/24 to myself AND the world!!

(I kinda had a girlfriend when I was 16 but it took me a loooooong time to join the dots up.......)

geek4grammar's picture

am I the only one w/ one date?

I know most people don't come out to "everyone" at the same time they come out to themselves; but maybe I'm the one exception? I was pretty young, though maybe not by today's standards (14); and at that age, I literally had no secrets from my mom. so the same day I had my lightbulb "oh fuck I'm gay" moment, I blurted it out to my mom when she picked me up (from play rehearsal...because of course my "aha" moment came while practicing the big dance number for our school's spring musical, watching my senior crush slink around in her sexy sexy leotard). mom was basically supportive; but she did sort of over-emphasize the "it's normal to question your sexuality at this age, but it doesn't mean you're gay" thing, which I know was meant to be reassuring-- but what it actually did was reinforce the message that it would be preferrable for me to not be gay. I'm not really complaining-- my parents are totally supportive. even when I came back a couple of months later and told her I was no longer questioning, but definitely, totally gay, her only negative reaction was the "you're my kid and I don't want you to have a hard life" thing. but once I pointed out that hiding who I am would actually be harder than directly confronting homophobia, she got over it.

So I didn't come out to the whole world right away; but within a week of this tale I was out to both my parents and my one older gay friend. I came out to the whole world 3 months later, in the fall of 10th grade, after having a big gay summer in nyc. now my whole LIFE is a big gay summer in nyc!!! woot woot Smile

We're all born naked. The rest is drag.
--RuPaul (appropriating Judith Butler for the masses...)

Rockets's picture

I like how everyone has two

I like how everyone has two dates!


To myself - 32

Began coming out to the world... ongoing.

Visit the FREE Lesbian Coloring pages at ~

Conlite's picture

About the same for me -

About the same for me - cheers!

Julia Watson's picture

To myself? 14. And 15 to

To myself? 14. And 15 to everybody else. As a dyke, that is. It took me another 10+ years to come out to myself and the rest of the world as a femme.

geek4grammar's picture

we are SO in the same cohort ;)

jules, I think you and I are in a little gay huddle together-- is this the '93-'94 school year you're talking about? if so, we can celebrate our homoversary together ;p

We're all born naked. The rest is drag.
--RuPaul (appropriating Judith Butler for the masses...)

Julia Watson's picture

Yes! Sophomore year, '93-'94.

Yes! Sophomore year, '93-'94. I found some support at a Gay Youth Alliance group in San Diego and threw open the closet door.

geek4grammar's picture


it was freshman year for me, but yeah; we are totally the same gay age Smile (and basically the same actual age). I realized today that this marks the first time in my life I can say that I've been out for more than half my life! cool beans for us, eh? ;p

We're all born naked. The rest is drag.
--RuPaul (appropriating Judith Butler for the masses...)

Grace Moon's picture

Late bloomer here

25 to myself, 29 to the world.

tweet tweet @gracemoon

SMBrown's picture

Even later bloomer here:  31,

Even later bloomer here:  31, to both myself and others.  The first other being (yikes!) my then-love-of-my-life boyfriend--while we were in bed together.  Which I know sounds utterly heartless, but it was completely un-premeditated on my part--I think I was as surprised as he was (especially since I'm generally rather cautious and deliberate) when I blurted it out. But it's also a testimony to how emotionally bonded I felt that I was so open with him.  And while it was incredibly confusing to be in love with two people at the same time, it didn't really seem that much more confusing that one was a man and one was a woman.  Ultimately I guess I discovered I was never all that invested in being straight and all those hetero expectations.

So I suppose I didn't really 'come out' because I was never exactly 'in.' I feel like I just EVOLVED.  I'd had intense attachments to a few women over the years, but never anything overtly sexual, very first day in grad school, after being up all night moving all my stuff (with the aid of said boyfriend) into my tiny Village apartment.  

Steph's picture

Do continue.......

Do continue.......

SMBrown's picture

Haha!  Well, sadly, it didn't

Haha!  Well, sadly, it didn't end happily.  Long (and somewhat sordid) story short: I left my boyfriend, 'she' didn't leave her girlfriend (until two years later) and broke my heart.  So I ended up very much alone to figure things out.  And such was my introduction to life as a lesbian!  Ah well, 'tis better to have loved and lost, right? 

Steph's picture

Oh no!  So sorry you had your

Oh no!  So sorry you had your heart broken - fortunately, they do seem to mend quite well, given time.

Oh yes, everything we go through in life makes us what we are!


Grace Moon's picture

*Dr Steph sits on her leather

*Dr Steph sits on her leather chair with a pen and note pad*

tweet tweet @gracemoon

Robin Rigby's picture

I was 23.  It was 1986 & I

I was 23.  It was 1986 & I was living in a small town in western PA.  I'd been having sexual dreams about this woman I knew who was bisexual.  I kept waking up in the mornings wondering why, considering that I knew I didn't want to sleep with her (she was a little freaky for my taste).  One day I woke up asking myself the same question and suddenly the light bulb went off.  

This all happened about the time I met the woman who would become my first girlfriend.  

Meffle's picture

Define "came out"

Came out to whom?

To myself, 21.

To my mother, before I came out to myself.

To the rest of the world, probably about 32.

Oh, and to my kids, we were outed by our oldest son's father. Our son was about 17 and he was very upset, especially with me. Being the more conservative of the 2, he'd assumed it was my idea not to tell them about us.  Not so. My wife worried about the legal/social ramifications of being an out couple with 2 kids. (In NYC... Yeah, right!)  We were never exactly "in" with the kids. We'd just never discussed it.

I reminded my son that when he was younger and my wife and I would argue, then give each other the silent treatment, he and his brother would ask us to make up, saying "We miss you and mom making out in the kitchen."  I asked him what, exactly, he thought the making out was about.  He said it never occurred to him that there was anything unusual about it, but in retrospect he really should have noticed something.  I howled and everything has been alright ever since.

Then, of course, there was the time a few years ago that I came out to Jennifer Beals as the Times Talk seminar.  Wow, that felt good!

There's a thin line...still...