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How do I come out to my parents?

267 Answers
Last Updated: 07/26/2020 at 9:24pm
How do I come out to my parents?
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
Moderated by

Terrence Sawyer, MS Counseling Psychology

Drug & Alcohol Counselor

Social disorders counseling social psychology, substance use disorder counsel

Top Rated Answers
July 27th, 2016 8:31pm
I can't really give advice telling you what to do or what not to do. Every person, situation and indeed every family is different. But I can tell you that no matter what you decide is best I am still here to talk to you and that it will be okay no matter what happens.
July 28th, 2016 3:59pm
Whenever you feel ready. You have plenty of time. And if you feel the need to come out with a letter, an email, or any other way that isn't face to face don't listen to anyone that says that's a cowardly way to come out. It's necessary for some people who are too anxious to speak openly about it.
July 29th, 2016 9:19pm
I know it'll be hard to come out to your parents fearing the outcome. Some people would like to do something fun like sending a letter or poster to their parents saying a cool pun like " By the way, I'm Bi", while others would rather take a serious note on how to come out like sitting down the whole family and straight up tell them who you are. It depends on how you want to but if you mean how to get the courage to tell your parents is practice accepting yourself for who you are. Like the saying " Love yourself before you can love others." Once you can love yourself you can then tell your parents.
July 31st, 2016 6:52pm
Your parents know you better thank you might think. Choose a moment where you feel they have some time to listen. Maybe start to talk to the parent you have a stronger connection to first. In the end it does not matter - just talk to them!
August 4th, 2016 7:33am
I know someone who sent a long email/text to their parents, I did after getting a new haircut (it gave me confidence and someone else made a cookie, wrote "Gay" on it and said "well, you are what you eat." in front of their parents and ate it
August 5th, 2016 3:35am
There is no single, sure-fire way of telling your parents that you are lesbian or gay. Just as no two families are exactly the same so the method, even the words, will vary from one family to the next. But many reactions are common to all families, and knowing this, it is often possible to work out the best method for your family. Very few parents imagine that their children could possibly be lesbian or gay. Even those who may have had suspicions still feel shocked, sad or angry when confronted with the fact. Try to understand this. You have had, perhaps, several years to gradually come to terms with the fact that you are lesbian or gay. Your parents, when you tell them will have had no time at all. Although teenagers sometimes find it difficult to accept that no one knows them as well as their parents there is no denying that they have watched you develop from birth to the present moment. So they will find it hard to accept that there is a side to you they never knew about. In the immediate reaction there are certain things that nearly all parents say. These include "How can you be sure at your age?" "I went through a phase like this, you'll grow out of it". "You haven't tried hard enough with the opposite sex", and, ominously, "What about this terrible AIDS?" These are difficult things to answer if you feel at all unsure of yourself. If you are young and under the age of consent legally, after a recent equalisation of the law in the United Kingdom, 16 for both homosexuals and heterosexuals (Age of consent in other countries) remember there are two aspects to your situation. The first one is your homosexual feelings, and the second one is your sexual experience, if any. You should therefore carefully consider to what extent you are going to reveal yourself to your parents. Be very careful in countries where homosexuality is illegal. Homophobia (hatred or prejudice against homosexuals) has many forms but it is based upon ignorance and can be dispelled by knowledge. Remember your parents will have to consider how they will deal with relatives, neighbours, friends, and perhaps their employers or the local church who may become aware that you are lesbian or gay. Try to understand this concern, perhaps point out that you too have to deal in greater measure with the hatred of others. Your parents' reaction may be to become overprotective. Remember that to balance all the homophobia, there exists a lot of positive and enlightened thought and attitudes.
August 5th, 2016 5:03am
Coming out to your parents can be different depending on how they already view gay/ other LGBTQA+ related topics. If they have never showed any hatred to the community, it's best to come out as soon as you feel ready, as it will make the rest of your life much easier. If they have showed they dislike LGBTQA+ topics, it'd be best to educate them on the topic and waive stereotypes while/before coming out. If your parents have showed violent reactions to LGBTQA+ topics, it'd be best to contact the Trevor Project LGBTQA+ hotline and seek help. Their number is found here: 866-488-7386. But above all remember: Coming out is not about how others see you, but accepting who you are. Once you do that you can live a happy and tranquil life, just like you deserve.
August 7th, 2016 5:03am
Sit them down, and break it them slowly, expect an reaction a first. But you'll feel better when you come out.
August 10th, 2016 5:16pm
How to come out to your parents depends on every persons situation. There are some who would just say it upfront because they know that their parents are very accepting. There are people who waits to be successful so they can prove themselves first. But at the end, its just up to you on how you will do it.
August 13th, 2016 5:44am
First you need to accept yourself. It's all about when you are ready. Once you accept who you are and are confident you can pretty much take it from there. Confidence is key in coming out.
August 14th, 2016 4:21am
Just come out and do it. Make it easy and simple or make it exaggerated. Write it on a freaking rainbow cake if you want. Just do it.. don't back out.
August 14th, 2016 11:16pm
When coming out your safety and health are your main priority, you honestly should wait until you feel ready, rushing things really don't help. Also, with coming out, there's no 'proper' way to do things. You can do it over text, a letter, in person, or you can even write it in a cake!
August 19th, 2016 10:48am
Just be honest with what you feel, parents notice a lot more than you think. Its no doubt that it is very scary.
August 21st, 2016 9:51am
There are many ways to come out to your parents. First step is being confident and knowing that your parents might want to talk about it with you. I would suggest sitting them down, and just simply saying the news. :)
August 21st, 2016 9:55pm
The best way to come out to your parents is when you feel the most comfortable, a possible way is to sit them down and explain to them how exactly it is that you feel and that you hope they support your decision.
August 27th, 2016 4:05am
With a lot of courage! I started with my dad, who I knew would be easier to approach and talk to. It's easier, sometimes, to have one ally in the family. I didn't really plan it, either, I just knew that it had to happen at some point and the opportunity just felt right. I hope this helps some; best of luck! We've got your back all the way!
August 27th, 2016 11:16pm
everyone has a different way to come out. come out on your own terms, and make sure you come out in a place where there are other people who can help you, if it doesnt go as planned, which it hopefully will
August 31st, 2016 6:11am
Well, firstly make sure you are ready. Think about how you think they might react. What is the best case and worst case scenario? If you live at home and you think there is a chance they could ask you to leave then maybe wait until you have somewhere else to live. Have a good support person, maybe a friend who you have already come out to, so you have a backup person you can talk to. Other than that, sit down with them, tell them you have something important to say, then go for it. I hope it goes well x
August 31st, 2016 6:39pm
Personally, I came out very nonchalantly about my sexuality. I simply asked my Mum if I could go out with my girlfriend that coming Saturday, just as I would if it were a boyfriend, as for my gender, I just asked my Mum to call me a boy and she complied, but wether its sexuality or gender I think it depends on the situation you are in.
September 2nd, 2016 10:41am
Talk to them and tell them you need to talk to them about something then sit them down, and have a discussion with them about it - but only if you are ready to :) You need to mentally prepare yourself first just in case their reaction isn't what you hope/hoped for. I really hope it goes well but it doesn't always turn out the way you want it to - and as I said you need to make sure you are going o be okay with that. You can try and gage their most likely reaction first before you tell them if you wish.
September 2nd, 2016 9:11pm
Honestly, you will probably never feel entirely ready to come out. But when you feel nearly ready, go for it. think about how you'll say it, or write it even. Do you know your parents views on the LGBTQ+ community? Consider this.
September 3rd, 2016 5:40am
Perhaps discussing your orientation with one of your parents first is a step forward. Then when you have discussed this, it should be easier to have a support system when you know at least one other member of your family is aware of your sexuality.
September 3rd, 2016 6:49am
It's a very difficult thing to do, I understand that. The best way is to be upfront, compassionate about your parents, and try to make yourself comfortable. Explain to them calmly and hope they understand.
September 3rd, 2016 12:38pm
Ooh that's a tough one. First you've got to to make sure that it's the right time. Make sure that your parents aren't going through any stressful situations. Then make sure you know what to say. Make sure you can approach them in a calm manner and explain it to them in the simplest terms so that they don't make any assumptions. Make sure you're serious so they know you aren't joking. Good luck! :) :)
September 3rd, 2016 3:39pm
You could write them a letter explaining how you feel and how they could support you. If it's easier you could also send a text, if you don't like speaking in person.
September 11th, 2016 12:08am
This is a hard thing to talk about, but if you need my advice i would advice you first of all find the right moment and the right place to talk with them about it. and then you first of all try to know what they do think about your sexuality and what would change in your relationship as a family if you told them your sexuality. Then stay calm during the discussion and don't be too much defensive. if they think you are wrong. Explain yourself, give your opinion and thank them later for not judging you . :) -Phoenix
September 11th, 2016 11:46am
Do it at your own pace. Start by telling them that who you like makes you happy. and that should be all that matters
September 11th, 2016 7:17pm
Talk to them about their opinions, your opinions, be honest with them and tell them how you feel. When/how you figured it out and that you love them. :) Honesty is the best way to go
September 22nd, 2016 5:16pm
Do like an awesome cake. Like make the cake a rainbow inside and then give them little gift boxes saying I'm proud to be a lesbian!
September 24th, 2016 3:54pm
Everyone's story is different, especially when it comes to how we are dealing with our own sexuality. My own personal experience was a positive one- almost insignificant to any other life events that were going on- I had been hanging around a girl who became my girlfriend slowly, and my mom just noticed how close we were. She one day just asked me if we were dating- and I said yes. That's all there was to it. Not everyone is so lucky, some people may have difficult situations/non-understanding parents. And for those of you suffering with this, I am truly sorry, but it gets better. #positivefocus