This past Friday was National Coming Out Day, held on October 11. On this day, I saw several posts asking why we need this day, why does it matter. Well, I’ll tell you why. We, the Queer community, still need this day because there is still homophobia and people that are afraid to come out of the “closet” and live their life. When a celebrity or sports figures comes out as either gay or straight, it is always a bit win in my opinion. Them coming out to say they are different because they love the same sex shows any teenager or adult that it can be okay to come out, that you will be accepted.
National Coming Out Day gives people hope, hope that one day the words “I’m gay” or “I’m lesbian” won’t be met with a backlash of homophobia, that they won’t be kicked out of their family. It is always scary to out yourself. I have outed myself in two classes while here at UNT. I was afraid of what would happen after I said the words I was a lesbian or gay. I have yet to experience Homophobia and I am thankful for that but I know that I am just one of a lucky handful. I know that people face discrimination everyday in the workplace or school, that they are bullied. Until homophobia is gone and acceptance is something practiced globably just the idea of coming out on this day will mean something. UNT Glad had a “door” that people could step through. There is definitely something validating walking through the door around a bunch of people. The response that people give you is positive and encouraing and everyone needs that.
One day, this day will just be a fun experience for people to step out of the closet for fun, to rejoice in the fact that they found love with someone of the same gender. But until then, to those struggling with their identity, discover who you are and embrace it then step out with pride and be fabulous!