A Christmas Coming Out Story? Not With My Conservative Relatives

This post originally appeared in 2014 as part of our outLoud round up of queer teens’ stories about going home for the winter holidays. The contributor has used first-name only to protect their family’s privacy.

I’m a pansexual sixteen-year-old. I’ve only recently come to terms with and embraced my sexuality. It’s been a difficult thing to do, given my conservative Christian upbringing. Although I’ve come out to my parents and sisters, I don’t usually discuss my sexuality, as it makes my homophobic parents extremely uncomfortable.

Every year around the holidays, we visit my father’s side of the family. I have not come out to any of them. This is the first year that I’m going to be really aware of the fact that if I did come out, they would probably be horrified. When I brought up the issue briefly with my parents, my mother asked if I could just wait until my grandparents are dead first, jokingly saying it “might give my grandfather a heart attack.”

Needless to say, I’m very nervous. I don’t want to make my sexuality a big deal (since it isn’t a big deal), but it makes me uncomfortable knowing that everyone assumes I’m straight unless I make a point of saying I’m not. I don’t know if the subject will come up or how I’ll react if it does. I just know that I’m sick of hiding.

— Commentary submitted by Grace F.

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