I have read these coming out stories each Sunday and I have enjoyed so many of them. It is remarkable how often our individual stories become so relatable to so many people. I came out in high school and never looked back. I am married now and it seems like being an “out-gay” is the way I have always been. That is a milestone, I think.
As I have read these stories, I often wonder how often we can help others who are closeted, just by being out? Do you get what I mean? If more of us were visible would that give others the chance to bravely share their stories? I hope they would. Coming out has changed my life.
While attending college in Orem at UVSC (now Utah Valley University) I had an experience that changed my life.
I worked at a popular grocery store and after one of my shifts I walked to my car and saw a note under the windshield wiper. I figured it was just an ad, so I opened the door and fully intended on driving down the freeway, hoping to see the flyer blow away as I sped down the freeway. As I started to pull out of the parking lot, I noticed a heart shape appearing at the bottom of the paper that was jammed under my wiper. I pulled over and grabbed the note.
It read (and yes, I still have it):
“Dear person with the small pride rainbow sticker,
You have no clue how much seeing your window sticker changed my day. I have been struggling to come to grips with my sexuality and accept who I am. I spent the day literally crying for answers. I decided it was best to drown my pain in a pint of Ben and Jerry’s so I ran to the store to buy some. (Truth is, I have been contemplating leaving this life so the ice cream was a good distraction.)
Of all the cars I could have parked next to, I’m next to yours. Of all the stores I passed by to get a pint of ice cream, I am here, where you are. I don’t think this is a coincidence.
This note might seem dumb or random, but please accept it as a thank-you for saving my life. I needed to see your little sticker. I don’t know if you are an ally or gay like me, but the decision to put that sticker in your window changed me. I needed to know that I am not the only one who has these questions. Or the only one who had to face this path.
Thank you for being visible.
❤ The girl sobbing in her car, who is really struggling to find where she belongs.”
I wished I could have met this person and had the opportunity to give her the biggest gay hug I could give. She does have a place. She is exactly where she needs to be. She doesn’t need to be afraid of who she is.
There are so many reasons why I needed to come out. Being visible to this person was just one of those reasons. My life is so much better for allowing the world into my life. For giving people the chance to get to know such a special part of me, and best of all, allowing myself the opportunity to LOVE who I am.
We want to hear your story–here’s how to share it with us!
Each Sunday we feature a new Coming Out Story on the Latter Gay Stories blog. Coming out is an important process that is different for everyone; some experiences are difficult; while others are heart-warming and inspiring. Coming out is rarely easy–but your story will help others draw inspiration from your own experience. We rely on weekly submissions to keep the Coming Out Stories alive and invite you to share your story now.