My BFFs Supported Me When I First Came Out And It Meant More Than They'll Ever Know

My BFFs Supported Me When I First Came Out And It Meant More Than They'll Ever Know

I never got to thank you or tell you how much you helped me, but I think about your love and support every day.

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Growing up, graduating college, and becoming my own person has given me a lot of time to self-reflect. I've been able to think about who I was, who I became, and who I want to be. Recently, I've been thinking a lot about the people, good and bad, who have made me who I am. So much of what makes me me is a result of the love I've received from the important people in my life. Two of those people being my best friends from the ages of 15-basically now.

I met Brittney and Danielle my freshman year of high school. We clicked instantly and formed a bond that not even college (and now grad school, a new state, a new marriage, and a new job) could break. We went to every football game together, had sleep overs, went shopping, drank countless amounts of Starbucks and Wakezone (shout of to my Apex, NC peeps!), and shared so much about our lives with each other. We talked about school, ex-friends, our parents, the future, and of course: boys. Lucky for me, I was able to participate in all of these conversations. But towards the end of my junior year of high school, I had a new topic of conversation that I desperately needed to talk about but was so nervous to even bring it up.

I started coming to terms with my sexuality during the summer between my junior and senior year of high school. Although I didn't have everything figured out, I knew I liked girls and I knew I wanted to share this with my best friends. As I was talking to a girl that would soon become my girlfriend, I knew I couldn't keep hiding this part of my life. I eventually came out to my parents and then I knew that the second most important people that should know would be Britt and Dani.

All three of us were involved in YoungLife during high school. If you're not familiar with YL, its basically a nondenominational Christian organization. There were club meetings all through out the week and me and my friends went religiously (ha-ha, see what I did there?). The week after my first girlfriend and I started officially dating, I knew it was time. Brittney, Danielle, and I got to club early to help set up and then we had a little bit of free time until others started showing up. I told them I wanted to go outside and talk to them about something. Judging by the looks on their faces, I think they thought I was about to tell them I had cancer or something. In that moment, cancer seemed a little better than coming out. But nonetheless, the words "I like girls" blurted out of my mouth shortly followed by "and I have a girlfriend now."

I remember looking at the pavement and refusing to make eye contact with them. It felt like my heart was beating out of my chest and that I was going to vomit, shit my pants, or both. But before I knew it, I heard one of them say, "C! We still love you and we don't care who you're dating as long as they treat you right!" I looked up and saw my two best friends smiling at me. They reassured me that they loved and supported me no matter what. They asked me questions about how my family reacted and about my new girlfriend. They said they wanted to meet her and that they were happy that I was happy.

It was such a small moment and looking back, the whole conversation probably only lasted about 10 minutes, but it was such an impactful 10 minutes for me. My best friends were still my best friends. My best friends still loved me, they were happy for me, and they wanted to meet my new girlfriend. They probably have no idea how much it meant to me that they accepted me. But for 16 year old me, it meant the entire world.

Brittney and Danielle, thank you. Thank you for loving me regardless of my sexuality and who I dated, thank you for sticking by my side as I had to brave high school with a new identity, thank you for showing an interest in who I was dating even if it might have been hard for you, and thank you for not leaving my side since. Your friendship is one that I cherish so much and I am so lucky to have your support. BCD forever!

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.
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Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.


7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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'The Perfect Date' Is The Perfect Example Of A Movie That Just Doesn't Get It

We don't need another romcom written by white old men who don't understand teenagers.

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Let me preface this by saying that "The Perfect Date" was not a bad movie, nor am I saying that it was written poorly in general or because men were at the helm of this film. But something about it left me feeling dissatisfied.

It had all the qualities to make a great teen romcom- a notable cast, teenage angst and awkwardness, and even techy affixation. It was all there. The social media context, the stardom that has become Noah Centineo and Camila Mendes, the highly relatable and quirky girl who just doesn't fit in. But it still felt like it didn't live up to its potential.

The film lacked depth and understanding of the reality of teenage-dom. It felt as though someone was trying desperately to grasp at the fun ease of a 1980s Hughes movie but without the perception or compassion of what a young adult is actually going through.

True, I'm a 22-year-old female in college, so I am a few years removed from actually being a teenager. But to me, the movie still seemed a little too forced and a little too presumptuous about being a 17-year-old kid in high school.

With Brooks (Noah Centineo) trying to raise enough money to go to the Ivy League college of, you guessed it, Yale, his incentives are lackluster and more importantly his relationship with his dad is offensive. He is continually putting his father down and acting as though he hasn't done enough for him but they both end up shrugging it off and joking about it. Like real men do, right? Brooks' storyline faulters on the 'good' guy with a heart of gold who falls in love with the girl from the other side of the tracks, complete with angst and combat boots.

Celia (Laura Marano) is a tough character to dissolve on her own. While I've heard many people talk about unlikable she is, I actually found myself relating to her blunt behavior and gracelessness. However, her character was driven to a point of exhaustion that never allowed her to actually show any genuine emotion or humanness. I know this is a crazy concept, but maybe give a female character something other than the love interest plot. Tell me about her family, show me what her interests are, give her depth instead of just telling us she's deep. We get it.

And of course, the complete disservice that was Murph (Odiseas Georgiadis). Another "sidekick" character that had all the fun, quirky minorities shoved into one. An app maker by day and coder by night, who just so happens to be in love with "Tuna Melt on Seven Grain" boy. We also never get to see anything personal about him or his sexuality. Sure, it's totally cool not to have an overdone coming out story mixed in, but why not throw in a talk between Brooks and Murph about their relationships and getting more of an insight to why Murph was so freaked out about sandwich boy.

The storyline was there, everything was set up for another wonderful Netflix teen movie of the ages. But it failed to convey understanding and emotion through the characters. I hope we can get more diverse stories as time goes on. I want teens and kids to be able to relate and learn from the people they see on their screens, to find a little piece of themselves in what they watch and make them feel something good.

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