Today is National Coming Out Day. Clara and I both feel this day is quite an important day and have both shared our coming out days over the years. You can read Clara’s here and Mine here. So we wanted to hear from someone else we respect in the LGBT community and asked K from Lesbemums to share her story.
For a member of the LGBT community, coming out isn’t just restricted to the day you come out to your family and friends, coworkers or class mates.
Every day can be a coming out Groundhog Day; whether it’s correcting someone that you have a WIFE at home when they’ve spotted the wedding ring, or that T has another MOTHER and not a father.
This goes the same for when you move house, change jobs, or go on holiday. A new environment means that you often have to “come out” all over again.
When we went on holiday last month we had to come out several times during the week. Some we knowingly did when we had to correct people, other times we “came out” without even realising it when people were clearly trying to work us out.
Now that we’re mums, “coming out” happens a lot more than when we were just a couple, and on holiday it happened daily. Before, whilst on holiday, we’d get a quick double take (especially after our new haircuts) and that was it. Now, we get a double take and then a long drawn out stare where eyes are going from me, to T, to S, and then back to me. We saw the looks, the staring, it was hard not to. We heard the cogs in people’s brains churning as they tried hard to work us out and whether what they were seeing, what they assumed, was indeed true.
Nothing was said, there wasn’t even any whispering, but the staring still bothered me… At first. We felt like a rare breed of bird no one had seen before, when really we were just two women with their son getting some coffee. What’s so strange about it? We looked like any other couple. Or did we?
Because I have alwaysbeen part of the LGBT community I often forget that me and S are still part of a minority group, and part of an even smaller group now that we’re parents. In addition, if we hadn’t joined the blogging and Twitter world, we would be the only (young) same sex family we’d know which, I imagine, is the same for others.
So instead of turning the looks into something negative, I’m going to turn them into something positive. By coming out every day, even if we don’t realise it’s happening, even if it’s just to one person, I will remind myself that for every person we “come out” to we’ve just changed the definition of “family” for them and in turn normalised same sex families, and I couldn’t be prouder to be a part of that.