To The 15-Year Old Me Who Is Scared To Come Out of the Closet

To The 15-Year Old Me Who Is Scared To Come Out of the Closet

I know it's nerve wracking, but coming out was SUCH a relief. Trust me on this.

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Every year on June 1st, it marks the beginning of Pride Month in the United States. It is meant to celebrate LGBT pride and spread awareness. As a bisexual man in college, this is an important time for me. I've been lucky to grow up in an accepting community with friends who welcomed me with open arms. Going off to college, I was met with even more love and acceptance. However, the journey to where I am now wasn't always easy. In honor of Pride Month, I'd like to look back and share my experience. Hopefully, someone who reads this story will be able to relate.

Looking back, I don't know why I was worried about telling my small group of high school friends. Many were part of the community themselves and were fairly open-minded on most issues. However, I was still quite nervous. My sexuality was a constant battle within my mind. I'd felt different since late elementary school, and within the past year, I'd determined what the difference was exactly. I remember sitting at the cafeteria table in late March of 2016. I remember taking a breath as I announced to my friends that I was bisexual. As I had hoped, they accepted me.

As the months passed, I got more comfortable with myself. I expanded my circle of trust and came out to more people. Over my remaining two years of high school, most of my friends knew about my sexuality. While it did feel great, there was still one small hindrance: I wasn't out to my parents. I was nearly done with high school, and still not a word to either of them. I'd heard the horror stories of parents kicking their kids to the curb just because of who they loved. Even though my parents repeatedly said they'd accept me no matter what, I was still scared. I know it may sound silly, but when if you were ever in this position, you'd understand.

Once I went off to college, I gained a new perspective on life. I met two guys whose names I won't say. They are both members of the LGBT community, and like me, weren't out of the closet at home. Neither planned on doing so because of how their families would likely react. Over the course of my freshman year, I learned from these two boys. I learned their stories, I learned about their families, I learned about their lives. When I came home in May, I knew that I was ready. I was only going to be home for a few weeks, so it had to happen soon.

And it did happen. On May 16th, 2019 I was in the car with my father. For the hundredth time, I asked him if he would be OK with me being gay or bi. After he said yes (yet again), I took another deep breath. I was transported back to the high school cafeteria table. More than three years after that moment, I was able to come out to my father. He was supportive, and honestly not that surprised. He apologized that I'd had to hide my feelings for so long. Once my mother got home from work, I took her aside and came out to her. She was understanding as well. At that moment, the weight of so many years was lifted off of my chest. I was free in a sense.

I'd like to round out this article by calling out to my 15-year-old self. Dear Alex, it's going to be OK. You can come out of the closet and be yourself, and you'll be safe. You don't have to worry about Mom and Dad, either. There's a good chance they're already catching on. As for anyone else who feels trapped in the closet, you'll find your way. Make sure you have at least one close friend that you can trust. If you think your parents will turn their backs, wait. I know it's difficult, but please wait until you can take care of yourself. After that, you can focus on being you.

Happy Pride Month, everyone!

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21 Things You Say To Your Roommate If You Two Are Practically A Married Couple

Until I made this list, I didn't realize how absurdly close my roommate and I were. #sorrynotsorry
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Let's be real: you and your roommate have said these things at least one to each other.

1. "Can you turn the light off?"

2. "We probably shouldn't go out for dinner again...right?"

*Complains about not having money* *Spends $8 on Chipotle three times a week*

3. "I always pick where we go"

This is a fight you have with your roommate almost every day when you're roommate is as indecisive as mine.

4. "Do you have my keys?"

5. "Can you pick me up?"

6. "Is it hot in here?"

7. "Does this outfit look stupid?"

The answer is usually yes. No offense.

8. "Can you throw this out for me?"

9. "Can we get ice cream?"

10. "I need coffee."

This text is usually sent when you know your roomie is out running errands... errands you know are near a Starbucks.

11. "Can you tell me what happened?"

12. "Are you asleep?"

There have been times where I couldn't tell if you were asleep or dead... and I had to say this out loud to check if you were alive.

13. "Check your DM's."

*Cracks up in the middle of nowhere* *Catches a weird stare from your roomie across the room*

14. "Can you plug this in for me?"

15. "Can you pick a movie?"

Another instance where "I always pick" happens.

16. "Look at this girl's Instagram."

*Chucks phone across the room at roommate*

17. "Can you call me?"

18. "Can we meet up?"

19. "Can you help me find my phone?"

*Tries to leave the house to do something* *Loses phone* Every. Time.

20. "What should we do tonight?"

*Tries to get ready to do something fun* *Ends up staying in for another girls' night*

21. "Why isn't everyone as great as us?"

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Cover Image Credit: Juliarose Genuardi

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People Need To Calm Down About Taylor Swift Being An LGBTQ+ Ally

She is trying to support her LGBTQ+ friends and fans, and people are still finding a reason to hate on her for it.

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Recently, Taylor Swift dropped her latest single, "You Need to Calm Down", and it wasn't what anyone expected. It's clearly a song about haters out there, whether they are her haters or just haters in general. Her whole message is about how it's a waste of time to hate on someone else for no reason.

Taylor decided to take the message of the song even further and apply it to the LGBTQ community, and a message to all of the homophobes out there who are wasting their time hating on people for simply being in love and being happy with who they are. One of the most memorable lines of the songs proves this, where she sings that "shade never made anybody less gay".

People loved many things about this single dropping, specifically the timing of it. Not only was it dropped during Pride Month, but it was also dropped on Donald Trump's birthday. Coincidence? I think not.

Taylor has made it very clear how much she supports the LGBTQ community, and she brought a lot of LGBTQ people into her music video, including Ellen DeGeneres, Hayley Kiyoko, and many more. She was even repping the colors of the bisexual flag with her wig in the majority of the song.

Not only that, but Taylor has been using her platform for a more political purpose. She posted on Instagram not too long ago a letter that she wrote to a senator explaining why the Equality Act should be passed when it goes before the Senate. She encouraged her followers to write to their senators, too.

At the end of her music video, she also included a link to her petition for Senate support of the Equality Act. She knows how many people watch her videos and follow her on Instagram, and she is using that platform to reach out to as many people as she can to support this great bill that affects the LGBTQ community, something that she obviously supports.

However, people are still managing to find a reason to hate on her. Some claim that she's trying to hard to be a part of the community somehow by singing about it. Some say that she is just trying to create a "gay anthem" to stay relevant or to look for attention.

To all those people: you need to calm down. Taylor is just showing her support for her friends and fans that are a part of the LGBTQ community.

She showed that not only by asking so many iconic and famous members of the community to be in this video, but also by encouraging her fans and followers to sign the petition for the Equality Act.

Therefore, she's not just another ally that claims their support for the LGBTQ community by posting about it online during Pride month, she's actually attempting to do something about it. She's sending a strong message, and she's also trying to make a difference in the political world as well.

Of course she's going to use her very large platform and her place in the music industry to express her beliefs on real-world issues. Why wouldn't she? She's trying to actually change things, so people need to stop hating on her for it.

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