Being queer during the holidays can be very stressful for some people. You might not have come out yet. Or your family may have chosen to only partly accept you. Or maybe you have to deal with that one family member that is religious or a Republican and gives you a difficult time. Just know that you're not alone and you have some options.
In this episode, I talked a little bit about some of the stress queer people face during the holidays and offered some ideas that hopefully can help you make your holidays bright and gay.
Coming out is a personal choice
First, if you're not currently out, I want to stress that the decision to come out or not is a personal choice. You should not let anyone pressure you into coming out. I would also recommend that if you are thinking about coming out, the holidays may not be the best time to do so. There's so much going on and people that would normally embrace your coming out may not be at their best.
If you do choose to come out this holiday season, try to do so with your family and friends 1:1. Coming out to a group of people or even just making someone feel put on the spot can needlessly complicate coming out.
You do NOT have to hide who you are
If your family doesn't accept your queerness, they may want to see you at the holidays and "just not talk about it". I'd encourage you to really ask yourself if that's something you want to accept. Setting boundaries around the holidays is ok. And a boundary you can set is that you will not go back into the closet for Christmas. If your family cannot accept and love all of you, maybe you're better off finding other options for the holidays.
Being with chosen family
Which brings me to the idea of chosen family. Many LGBTQ+ people have friends that they consider family. Often these are the friends that accepted and supported them when their families chose not too. Many LGBTQ+ people spend the holidays with their chosen family. This is an option for you as well.
You needn't feel guilty about spending it with your chosen family either. If your real family doesn't support who you are, you may want to skip celebrating the holidays with them. Instead gather up your other LGBTQ+ friends and host your own holidays.
The holidays don't have to be stressful for LGBTQ+ people and you don't need to feel like the black sheep. You can celebrate the holidays your own way. Happy Holidays however you end up celebrating.
The holiday season can be really stressful if you're LGBTQ+ and not out to your family.
Scenario: You're queer and you're spending holiday time with your family. Do you come out? Do you spend the holidays alone? How do you navigate the potential impending ‘drama’?
Today we're talking about how to find community during the holidays if your family and your friends aren't all accepting, or don't accept all parts of you.