LGBTQIA+ individuals should be able to wear their sexuality proudly on their sleeves. They should be able to celebrate it. Coming out of the closet however, could turn out to be a pleasant experience or a scarring experience.
Coming out is an extremely emotional experience and the reactions of a person’s loved ones to their coming out of the closet could cause any scale of impact on them. They bare themselves to the people they come out to and are their most vulnerable selves when they put themselves out there in this manner. Acceptance from family and friends is a huge boost to them whereas a rejection could mean that they feel a sense of alienation from family. Not being able to fit in with their own family could send individuals down a spiral of sadness, anxiety, depression, and/or self hatred. Another reason why people choose to stay in the closet is because there is so much stigma attached to homosexuality. Heterosexuality is normalised and homosexuality is criminalised; heterosexuality is considered natural and homosexuality is considered sinful. Homosexuality is also seen as being against faith and against God. This might also be the reason why most people cannot come to terms with their sexuality in the first place. Understanding one’s own sexuality features higher on the priority list than coming out does. Being comfortable in their own skin makes a huge difference to the way a person approaches life and this confidence can also make it a lot easier to come out of the closet.
Also, understanding one’s sexuality does not necessarily entail having to label it but being able to make peace with it.
Young people who can come out to people they trust will have a steady support group to help them through tough times. Having people who can understand what they are going through takes pressure off of young minds. Most times, they just need reassurance that they will get the kind of closure or resolution they are looking for.
All things said and done, coming out is a process of preparing oneself and taking initiative to speak about it and it will take time. Some people take longer than others whereas other choose to not come out at all. For some other people, coming out comes easy. But no matter what one experiences during the process of coming out, we should try our best to keep our arms and our minds open to them and offer them the support they may need.