Pride Month: Coming Out Is Exhausting- Here's WhyJun 01, 2023
I'm a data scientist and a career coach and I'm a gay. During pride month I'm showing my pride by sharing a bit about my coming out stories.
It's been about twenty-four years since I came out to almost everyone in my life. That summer I was a nineteen-year-old nearly fresh out of high school, preparing for college, and hadn't yet come. The hardest part about coming out was admitting that I hadn't been honest with everyone. I felt a sense of comfort about being different, but the thought of having been dishonest (not out in the past) haunted me.
Now I know that society denies gay people the privilege of being out from the start of our lives.
One thing I hadn't counted on was how emotionally and physically exhausting coming out can be. Here's why:
Society is to blame for the emotional exhaustion that comes with coming out. We are not given the privilege of being open about our sexuality from the start of our lives. This leads to years of hiding who we are, which takes an incredible amount of emotional energy. And when we finally do come out, we have to relive those years of hiding and dishonesty, which can be incredibly draining.
It's not just emotionally exhausting, either- it can be physically tiring as well. Night after night of not being able to sleep because you're worrying about what will happen if you come out take a toll on your body. The lack of rest can lead to physical exhaustion, which only adds to the emotional fatigue you're already feeling.
Coming out is tough- there's no doubt about it. But it's important to remember that you're not alone in this. Millions of people have gone through (and are going through) the same thing. Lean on your support system, take some time for yourself, and be patient. These ten years have taught me that coming out is a process, one that doesn't happen overnight. And that's okay.