"Come out, come out wherever you are..."
- The Wizard Of Oz, lyrics by E.Y. Harburg & Music by Harold Arlen
Not everyone is lucky enough to have their own TV show to come out on...
Or a stadium full of adoring fans to sing your Sapphic epiphany to...
Or an editor to spell-check it before you publish it in your column...
In fact most people aren't lucky enough to have safe and supportive family environments to come out into, and it's those of you I hope to reach in some way.
As for me, I'm very lucky to have an editor[;-)] and a supportive family, although they ain't thrilled that my big break into the writing world is on the subject of LESBIANISM (ooo, big word!). For me, the most incredible part of writing Girls' Night Out is the exchange of e-mail with women from all over the world who are, sometimes for the first time, declaring their sexual orientation to someone other than themselves. Young women from Hawaii, old women from Denmark, closeted middle-aged New York City businesswomen... all of them looking for a friendly word or two to help them feel less alone and not so different. The internet is so beautiful for the coming out process - you can anonymously tell someone you've never met about your deepest held secrets, fears and desires, and transcend geography to receive affirmation and a welcome into a community of people just like yourself.
New York is an easy place to be gay. You just need to take that first step and admit who you are and who you love to YOURSELF; walking into a PFLAG meeting or a youth support group at the Community Services Center isn't so scary then. Coming out to strangers is strangely easier than coming out to your parents, friends, teachers and co-workers, and there are plenty of people out there who want to help you to love yourself and your choices so that one day, maybe on a day like October 11th, National Coming Out Day, you'll be proud to tell everyone who you really are.
For more hands-on and face-to-face help in dealing with the coming out process there are thousands of support groups worldwide waiting to help you. For the local angle, Girls' Night Out is proud to debut its New York Coming Out resources in Gaytabase to help you become who you are safely and positively.
Have a great Coming Out Day and a Happy Gay and Lesbian History Month!
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