10 Things I’ve learnt with coming out.
Coming out is a scary arse thing that most people try and avoid doing for as long as possible. I came out at sixteen and at the time it was terrifying but I felt relieved. More relieved than you’ll ever feel, even when you need a pee really really bad and you finally get to go. Even more relived than that. And in the last six years I have learnt a few things I thought I would share with your lovely lesbian faces.
You don’t change as a person. Just saying the words out loud doesn’t change your personality. If you’re the type of girl who likes to do ice fishing, drink skittle shots, tie bows on puppies, collect life-size storm troopers, play with furbies, fight with conkers or do the whole planking thing, then being gay isn’t going to change any of that. I mean you may get a girlfriend who forces you to curb your weird ways but apart from that, everything you do and love will stay the same.
People saying “so?” is the best thing you will ever hear. So doesn’t mean that they don’t care, so means that they are ok with you and that it’s not a bit deal. “Cool” also works here too. Or “I know I saw you grinding on that lesbian vet last night.”
You don’t have to dress like someone you’re not. Yes chinos, toms and some sort of superdry top might be some lesbians’ choice of dress but it doesn’t have to be yours. You can don the green dresses, the tiaras, the fluffy ponchos and the pink eye shadow all you want. Fight the annoying fashion bubble that people try and put you in. Blow your own bubbles. Or something like that.
Telling everyone at once is not something you have to do. There is no need to gather all your friends and family and do it in one swift motion by jumping out of a cake covered in glitter. Just telling one person is a big step so choose someone you trust. Don’t pick someone who will adorn the place with banners and wear a shirt that says “Put your boobs away, it’s Effi’s coming out day”. Trust me.
Talking to people who have already come out is amaze balls. These are the people who stride out the closet and jump straight on the rainbow without looking back. If they can give you just one percent of their cheery annoyingly happy confidence then grab it.
The stuff that people say out of shock will stop bothering you. Eventually. Folks can get really surprised by the news especially your nearest and dearest. Some would probably be more surprised if you turned into a meercat and started selling car insurance. A lot won’t believe you or they’ll brush it off saying it’s a faze. Or some lads you know might do that wink thing and say they can fix you. Just take a deep breath, scream into a pillow or have a tub of icecream with tequila poured into it.
Coming out to your mother while she’s driving her car will make her drive over the grass on a roundabout.
Answering questions helps. “Were you born a lez?” “When did you realize?” “Do you fancy me?” “How do you actually know?” and my personal favourite “Have you never had any cock?” As annoying and frustrating as they can be at the time, talking about these things really does help you to understand yourself a bit better. Obviously it goes without saying that with the question “Can I watch?” you should point to the nearest boy and say you want to watch first and that fair’s fair.
You’ll be surprised at the amount of people who have already guessed. If you’ve never had a boyfriend, you the underwear pages from catalogues under your mattress, your favourite band is Tegan and Sara and when someone deleted the recording of Lipservice you had a bitch fit and threw the goldfish at them, then people might have had an incline. Also if you arrive home at 4am after shagging your lesbian boss in her car, this can also be a giveaway. Just saying.
You survive. Probably the most important. Telling everyone can seem like the most daunting task in the world. Even worse than drinking a dirty pint. But just like everyone else, you do get through it and you’ll be so surprised by the number of people waving the rainbow flags and supporting you.