Coming out can be really scary for the person doing it and takes a lot of courage because you might not know how others will react. You might be wondering what to do if someone comes out to you… I found this awesome quick video that gives 3 tips about what to do when a friend comes out to you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sw3shRMFSdw
I also wrote out some tips below:
1. The first things you can say are that you love them, you care about them and your friendship with them, and that’s not going to change!
2. Ask what you can do to help them or show your support.
3. Tell them you’re there to talk if/when they’re ready.
4. Thank them for telling you.
5. Respect their privacy. Remember that coming out requires a lot of courage, and you may be one of the few people they’ve trusted with this information!
6. Call or text them frequently after they came out to you so they know you’re still their friend.
Here are some resources:
Coming out is when a person decides to share a piece of their identity with others, usually involving their sexual orientation or gender identity. Coming out can be very scary! It is a very personal decision with no right or wrong answer – you and your identity are valid no matter who you choose to share it with.
I summarized these tips for coming out from The Trevor Project’s guide:
1. Reflect on who in your life supports and encourages you no matter what.
2. Plan it out ahead of time – think of what you’re going to say and maybe even practice it.
3. Be prepared for how other people may react, both good and bad.
4. Test the waters to give you an idea of how someone may react. For example, you could ask them how they feel about an LGTBQ+ celebrity or marriage equality.
5. Think about your environment – timing and location.
7. If coming out doesn’t go the way you expected, remember that it is not your fault. You and your identity are valid and deserve to be supported and accepted.
8. Be aware of resources available to you that you can access throughout the process (included in the guide below).
Here is the link to the full guide, which includes so much helpful information about coming out, healthy relationships, and resources to access: https://www.thetrevorproject.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/Coming-Out-Handbook.pdf