30 Days of Pride Challenge - Day 5
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JocelynSamara's avatar
By JocelynSamara   |   
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Continuing the 30 Days of Pride Challenge.  #30DaysOfPride

5. Are you out? How did you come out?
It's kind of hard to be closeted when you write a comic revolving around queer and trans themes that you've repeatedly said are "based on experience".  And considering people from all over read it, I'm pretty sure I'm exceptionally out.  XD

It's funny because once upon a time, I was exceptionally closeted.

I have kind of a few good coming out stories though, depending on who it was to.  Be mindful that this is a long entry, and really only covers me coming out trans.  As I said another time, my orientation wasn't ever a huge issue.  My gender was the complicated one.

When I first came out to my parents - among the first people I came out to - I still wasn't quite sure how to express myself about this.  If I'm put on the spot, I have a tendency to stutter and stumble on my words, or lose what I'm trying to say which might cause me to say something that isn't quite what I meant.  So I heard online that some have come out through letter.  And that's what I did.  I typed up a lengthy thorough letter, and rewrote it by hand, and hesitated to send it for a while.  But then I finally did.  A few days later, my dad calls.  I took a deep breath and answered and the conversation went something like this:

Dad: "Hey. You sent us a letter."
Me: "Yeah...?"
Dad: "What's it say?"
Me: "Wh-what!?"
Dad: "Your mother won't let me open the mail anymore, and she won't be home for a few more hours. So what's it say?"
Me: "I... uh... um... I... wouldn't have written it if it was something I could just say...


Cue a few very LONG minutes of him trying to guess.

Dad: "So, are you gay?"
Me: "It's... more complicated than that."
Dad: "Bisexual?"
Me: "Transsexual."
Dad: "Transsexual! That's weird... er... I'm sorry!"


It was super stressful and awkward, but I laugh every time I think about it now. Incidentally, my dad just let my mom read the letter. And I will say I couldn't have asked for more supportive parents.  I'm very grateful to them for sticking with me. ^_^

On the other hand, there's coming out online, which was I think the last place for me.  On October 11th, 2010, I came out on DeviantArt.  Yes, I actually remember the date.  It's notable because I was going to be starting posts for Rain soon, and I was worried that not being out myself might look bad somehow.  But how could I do it?

That was the year I learned that Coming Out Day was a thing.  DeviantArt had this big meme project called "Count Me Out" going that year where people would announce themselves as either being out or an ally with a photograph of themselves covered in rainbow filter.  Before that day, I still presented as a female online, but never actually showed my face.  And I certainly didn't talk about being transgender.  But once I saw the multitude of rainbow faces on the front page of DeviantArt (there were literally hundreds), it gave me some confidence and I just had the sudden impulse to do it too.  I mean, I didn't know I was coming out when I woke up that morning, so it's wild that I actually did it.  But I was met with a great deal of support and acceptance from my watchers.  Certainly more than I expected.  And after that success, I went on to come out everywhere online, including several message boards and other sites.  It's not really a secret to anyone anymore.  


****

Also, our source of transportation for my SRS date bailed on us unexpectedly, leaving us with a short span of time to come up with fair bit more money than we anticipated needing. I'm stressed enough without this kind of garbage, but my superhero of a wife came to the rescue by setting up a YouCaring page for me. If you can spare a little bit to help out, we'd be eternally grateful. If not, just sharing the page and spreading it around would still mean the world to us.  Thank you so much.
www.youcaring.com/jocelyn-sama…

Comments12
anonymous's avatar
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CelticDragon38's avatar
I'm agender and "out" online in the sense that the information's publicly peppered around if anyone goes looking for it. But my family doesn't know (aside from my husband). Most of my blood relations wouldn't understand/believe me, and a couple had very poor reactions to the Supreme Court ruling and to HB2, so I have no desire to poke that hornet's nest unless it's necessary. Some of my friends know. I don't keep track of who. It's not something I bring up unless it comes up in conversation. No qualms about outing myself unless I think a particular person would have a very bad reaction; I just don't feel a need to shout it from the rooftops.
I'm in the position that it mostly doesn't bother me to be mistaken for cisgender so long as I don't hear someone call me a woman, which does make me feel ill and dysphoric (out of sight, out of mind thing; makes it easier to function), which means that if I'm having a conversation with someone and they're like "Yeah, all those weirdos making up words and being special snowflakes!", then I can say, "I assure you, I'm not a special snowflake." Which really takes them aback since they weren't expecting the perfectly rational person they've been talking to to be among that number. Which hopefully gets them reconsidering their position.
AshleyRex's avatar
Ok so I have a very long long coming out story. It was about 5 years ago that I had finally figured out I was trans and it was at a really bad time. My parents were in a hostile divorce and so that made it scary to come out, so eventually ate away at me and I first came out to an online friend. They kinda taught me how to size clothes and stuff for a few months and then started encouraging me to come out to my mom. After 9 months of being in the deep closet I couldn't take it anymore and told her very early in the morning. She took it well, and scheduled me for my first therapist visit for the next week. So I went and they told me not to come out fully until I was more sure (of course, being a 12 year old at the time, I didn't listen lol) and so within a week I came out to my brother Cameron. I had finally changed my character to female on a video game and he asked why and I said guess and his first guess was "because you want to be a woman" and he said it jokingly. Then I said yes very seriously and he was like "oh um.. uh.... okay". Later that day I came out to my other brother Chris and he tried to tell me I was just gay and I was not having any of that. So at that point everyone in my house knew so I asked if I could wear this skirt that I made out of a t-shirt just to relieve a little dysphoria one night, and I was given the ok. Then mom later took it from me because my religious psychiatrist of 10 years (for ADHD) told her that she was "damning me" and then after calling my psychologist she realized that by taking it she was doing me so much harm she actually gave me my first real outfit. Then, (this is why I took that long detour) my aunt came over and I had to wear mens clothes again. I came out to her that day, and she asked if i had any proper clothes and I said one outfit and she told me to go wear it and then the next day she brought me like 80 different outfits for me (I love my aunt, she reminds me of fara in a way lol) and so to save time ill go speedy from now forward. Through out the first year I slowly let all my mother's side of the family know and all of them accepted me. Then my 13th birthday came. My father, whom I hadn't seen for 6 months, came and asked what I wanted for my birthday. I told him I wanted him to give me a chance to tell him about something. So I told him, he just got up and drove off. He then fought for medical custody to prevent me from transitioning until Im 18...
Well, that's my long long coming out story.
Sorry for the length
MyThoughs's avatar
I'm so sorry for all the struggles you went through. That must be tough. I wish people were more accepting, like how they usually are when people come out as gay or bi. All the best of luck on the rest of your transition :)
AshleyRex's avatar
Honestly, for all the bad things that have happened to me, so many good things have happened in return. Plus, I think I'm on the lucky side regarding acceptance. Next year, I'm actually going full time too, because I only have been closeted at school for years and I'm finally coming out. Even without medical intervention, I'm rather androgynous physically so I pass rather well anyways.
But yeah, thanks for wishing me luck. I don't know if you identify as lgbt or not, but I wish you luck in any ventures you are in! :)
SailorDolly's avatar
Yay for your mom's family and boo for your dad.

I agree with your mom that any psychiatrist who "damns" you is NOT the right doctor for you--even if they succeed in forcing you back into the closet and make you act according to the way that they want, it does nothing to heal you beneath the surface.
MyThoughs's avatar
Hm, well lucky for me, I'm not transgender, but I am bisexual, and I guess I would consider myself "in the closet". Except I don't actually ever plan to come out because I don't ever plan on dating people so there's really no reason for me to bring it up, it'd just add more awkwardness to my already awkward self LOL. The benefits of being single for life, I suppose! No need to come out!
FenrirDarkWolfe's avatar
FenrirDarkWolfeStudent General Artist
I've been out since late 2012. I told my friends, then my grandmother, and then she just told everyone else.
I'm really glad I came out to her first, because she passed away the following March.
AshleyRex's avatar
Hey, we both came out at relatively the same time lol. :)
I wish I had had the chance to tell my grandmother, she died 6 months before I figured out I was trans :( ...but my family tells me that she loved everyone and everything unconditionally, she was what one calls a true Christian I suppose :)
SerraBritt's avatar
SerraBrittProfessional Digital Artist
I'm out to anyone who cares enough to know me that well.  Always been "female" even before transitioning just because of my looks.  So I'm not closeted, but I rarely talk about it.  Easier for people to just assume I'm female and be done with it.

Coming out was first done online, first to the transgirl I met which introduced me to doing research about it, then to my wife at the time (we divorced, but stayed friends), and finally to my parents and wife's parents.  Everyone has been super supportive of me, my parents weren't surprised that much to be honest since I've always exhibited non-masculine traits.  My extended family hasn't disowned me and I don't think they will, as they appear to be open enough to learn what's going on with me.

Kinda wish I had a funny coming out story...but I don't. :(
CaldoRosa's avatar
CaldoRosaHobbyist General Artist
Only online.
I do plan on coming out someday.

The closest thing to coming out is the half-assed implications to my psychologist.

Aside from him, I don't think I feel comfortable enough to come out to anyone else right now.
TheEasternEmpress's avatar
TheEasternEmpressHobbyist General Artist
I've been out three years. Came out to comrades via letter, came out to my parents the same way.
the-real-wolf-spider's avatar
Obviously I'm out on line but no one in my family knows nor am I really ready for them to know.  My dad and sister might be alright but my mom's position seems fairly close minded.  Even if I was to come out to them I don't know how I would describe myself to them.
anonymous's avatar
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