It is important to realize that queer lives are not defined by coming out of the closet. In many situations, it might not be safe for people to expose their identity and so they must lead a "double" life. However, this doesn't make these individuals any less queer. Not being able to openly fight for gay rights or not being able to come out to their family doesn't make them less queer. They still belong to our community.

We must fight for the rights of people in our community who cannot openly express their sexual identity for fear of discrimination and hate crimes. We must realize that the coming out narrative does not define all queer existence. There cannot be one single narrative that embodies what it means to be 'queer,' because there isn't one single way to be queer!

Coming out as bisexual was a terrifying experience because I didn't know how my family or friends would respond. My heart would skip a beat the first few times I told my friends and eventually, I called my parents and then made a Facebook post about it my sophomore year of college. But, my narrative is not the same as every other queer person and I respect that. I'm fortunate that I live in a state where I could come out without fear of discrimination. I was worried about how my family would respond (and a few family members did respond rather horribly), but I knew I would still be safe.

Other queer individuals do not have that same opportunity and so we must continue to fight for their rights. We must fight for a better, more accurate representation of the queer community on our favorite television shows and movies because we are more than just our sexualities or genders.

Please remember that there are multiple hotlines out there catering to specific members of our community and don't be afraid to reach out to them.