Coming out is both a personal milestone and a political act. It is not a one-time event, but a lifelong process. There is the first time you come out, often haltingly, to yourself. I’ve done that both as an adolescent and an adult. There are the intimate family comings out, and the big world-wide comings out. There are the awkward daily comings out (choosing pronouns to describe your partner, deciding whether to correct someone’s gendering of you).
And then there are the missed comings out. The family members who passed away, the friends from your youth you suspect would have had their own coming out to share, the bigot on the street you didn’t have the guts to say something to. Finally, there are the ones who choose never to come out – maybe not to themselves, or maybe just not to anyone else.
What I like most, though are the bonding sessions with other queer people over their coming out stories. Feel free to post yours in the comments. Happy Coming Out Day!