Coming out of the closet to friends and family has got to be a nightmare. Years of built up anxiety and the pressure to be someone else all leading up to the one moment when you’re finally able to build up enough courage and reveal who you truly are to the people closest to you sounds like a real headache. However, this pressure has surely inspired some truly hilarious ways to come out of the closet, giving the world and especially those who identify as LGBTQ something to smile about.
It seems lately people can’t live their own lives without being questioned or judged for their actions or choices. Nosey neighbors have transformed into internet trolls, and no one is safe from their ignorant and unjust wrath. Instead of letting other people tell their story, many choose to tell their own, and in the LGBTQ community, there’s no such thing as going over the top. Celebrities are no exception, and actually receive the most backlash regarding their sexual preferences. If they try to lead a private life, the media and tabloids will have no problem making up their own stories for the famous. This usually forces them to come out of the closet as it’s usually the only way to put an end to the speculation and rumors. Some, however, treat their coming out more like a performance.
These fifteen creative geniuses came out of the closet to their family, friends and fans in the most unique ways ever, leaving their loved ones either shocked or in a fit of giggles. The best part about it is that they’ve documented it all for our viewing pleasure.
15. Don’t Ask, Do Tell
Likely you’ve heard about the military’s view on homosexuality being described as “don’t ask, don’t tell,” a law that could cost someone their job and military ranking if not followed. Times have changed, however, and in 2011 President Obama put an end to this by sending the certification required by the Repeal Act to Congress. An anonymous serviceman took this historical moment as an opportunity to come out to his father, and he videoed his entire journey overseas for viewers to enjoy!
Labeled the Are You Surprised Soldier, his video blog would only show his chest, keeping his identity hidden. He finally showed his face when the repeal officially went into effect, creating the biggest impact on the internet alongside the news of the repeal. His father was very supportive, however he wouldn’t let him take the easy way out when the anonymous soldier asked his father if he’d fill mom in on the news. Looks like he was left with one more person to come out to!
14. A Piece of Cake
A teenager named Laurel used her baking skills to come out to her parents, making a delicious looking cake with “I’m Gay” written on it in frosting. She left it for her parents to find alongside a cheeky note full of adorable puns. “I’m gay. I’ve wanted to tell you for a long time. I thought doing it this way would be a piece of cake,” she wrote. “I hope you still love me. I mean, it’s hard not to love someone who baked you a cake… Your acceptance would be the icing on the cake.” She concludes her letter saying, “I hope we can look back on this and say ‘boy, this one really takes the cake.’ It gets batter.”
Laurel posted the photo on her Ellen DeGeneres Tumblr fan page, and was shocked by the support she received from the gay community. As for her parent’s response, Laurel later said, “We hugged and cried together. Then, we all ate the cake and talked.”
13. Joey Graceffa Makes A Music Video
YouTube personality, Joey Graceffa, has over six million subscribers and even appeared on the 22nd season of The Amazing Race a few years ago. About a year ago, he released a song called “Don’t Wait” along with a music video that depicts him kissing another man. He used his creativity and talent to come out to his fans in epic fashion. He later talked about how he was hesitant to come out because people in the small town of Marlborough, Massachusetts that he grew up in were not so accepting of those who identified as gay or homosexual.
Graceffa’s video has over fifteen million views, and has likely inspired many young teens not to fear coming out. He was quoted saying, “I definitely feel more open and free with who I am, and I think that’s inspired a lot of other people to also do the same and have come out to their friends and family.”
12. Draw My Life
There was a trend on YouTube where people would draw their life on a white board and post it with a voiceover, creating a cute Pictionary-like bio. Young YouTuber Ryan Waechter took this trend as an opportunity to come out to the public, drawing his coming out story in stick figures all while explaining how it affected him growing up.
Sometimes when it’s hard for people to say something out loud, writing it down makes communicating less painful. Ryan even discusses this in his video as he describes the first time he came out to a friend, he couldn’t get the words out. He ended up writing her a note, which is basically what he did with this amazing video! Writing about the struggle he had regarding his sexuality and the confusion he felt throughout his adolescence is a story many people of the LGBTQ community can relate to, and likely his experience coming out to his friends and family have inspired many.
11. Incorporate It Into Your Speech
In a speech given by Maria Carrillo High School senior Kayla Kearney at an assembly honoring Martin Luther King Jr., she spoke about what it was like discovering that she was gay and growing up as a lesbian. Originally asked to sing during the assembly, she instead chose to make a speech that was quick to go viral. With the intention of breaking the silence on the subject of homosexuality in her school, she followed Martin Luther King Jr.’s lead by standing up against those who persecute those who are different.
Whether talking about different races, different religious beliefs, or different sexual preferences, Kayla used this opportunity to not only come out of the closet but to also demonstrate her support for others who might also be struggling with their sexuality. While it’s likely she didn’t expect her video to go viral, it now has over a million views on YouTube, spreading her inspiration all over the world.
10. Athlete Comes Out With a Kiss
Defensive end Michael Sam played college football for the University of Missouri until the St. Louis Rams drafted him in 2014. He made waves in the media when he celebrated his NFL draft by planting a kiss on his boyfriend for all the cameras to capture. While he’s not the first athlete to come out as gay, Sam was the first to publicly make his sexual preferences known to the public immediately after joining a professional team. Reactions to the kiss were mixed, and speculation was later made over the consequences when he was cut from the team.
Michael’s name was all over the tabloids when this happened, as many speculated his sexual preference is what got him the axe. Others have argued that it was his playing and the fact that he didn’t hold the skills necessary to be on a pro team; the events stirred up enough controversy for the subject regarding sexuality in the sports world, especially among men’s teams, to be brought up again and again.
9. Coming Out With The Help Of Nev And Max
A woman named Hundra fell madly in love with Emily, and contacted the MTV show Catfish with the hopes of connecting with her. With guest-star Max taking a break, Machine Gun Kelly took his place, helping Nev with the investigation. It wasn’t long before the two realized that Emily wasn’t a real person, and not-so-feminine woman named Geralyn was whom Hundra had been talking to the whole time.
It was later revealed that the whole thing had been a ruse to give Hundra the platform to come out. Growing up Haitian, it wasn’t easy to come out, and when she was confronted about what she did, she wasn’t exactly apologetic. “…It was something that needed to be done, as far as me coming out. I wanted the world to know that I was gay. When you’re in a culture that hates what you have become, it’s not that easy.” Nev’s tries to put it all in perspective for her saying, “On paper, I think your crusade to liberate Haitian women across the name is, like, beautiful and, like, there are very real ways one could do that, and this is the worst way to do it. This is incredibly selfish.” This may not have been the most appropriate way to come out, but it sure was a creative one!
8. Coming Out In Pairs
Twin brothers Adam and Luke created a stir on social media when they came out to their parents simultaneously in a video using a hidden camera. Having the support of a brother likely made coming out much easier, and of course, their parents were beyond supportive. Further proving that homosexuality is not a choice, the two sharing the same DNA prove that being gay is something people are born with.
With this inspirational video going viral, it encouraged others to follow in their footsteps. The Rhodes brothers, another set of twins, came out in similar fashion. They video themselves on the phone with their father, and support each other while they simultaneously come out of the closet. These emotional videos both teach young members of the LGBTQ community how great it feels to finally be able to be yourself, as well as prove that homosexuality is not a matter of nature vs. nurture.
7. With A Little Help From Ellen
Ellen DeGeneres is a huge supporter of the LGBT community and an inspiration to people of all walks of life. Her ability to be herself and her public homosexual identity gives all of those still hiding in the closet hope for the future. One Reddit user explains how she told her mother she was gay, coincidentally while watching the Ellen Show.
She describes her coming out story as, “…My mom says ‘oh look, my favorite lesbian!’ and I said, ‘I thought I was your favorite lesbian?’ and she just stared at me for a moment and said ‘oh ok.’ And we just continued watching…” Using the queen of the lesbian community to come out to your mother has got to be one of the greatest coming out stories of all time. The Reddit user’s story went viral alongside a slew of other coming out stories, hopefully encouraging others not to fear coming out themselves.
6. Become An Activist
Becoming a gay rights activist may seem like the last thing you want to do in high school, especially if you’re more desperate to ride the shadows than to stand out, but one teenager felt differently. Elizabeth Koke talks about how she came out in high school by advocating LGBT and queer support groups. She hung up posters all around school holding adorable slogans that had an amazing message for her fellow classmates who chose to rip them down.
Elizabeth describes her high school experience in an interview saying, “Coming out was a political act for me in high school. I made posters with the gay straight alliance like, ‘Queer. Have No Fear!’ or ‘Gay? That’s OK!’ We would have layered posters, so when someone would rip one down, another poster would read, ‘You just committed an act of hate.'” If more people had the courage to come out at a younger age, the big reveal of coming out might become a thing of the past.
5. Using Comedy
You don’t need to be a comedian like Rosie O’Donnell was when she came out on stage in 2002 to use humor to come clean about your sexual preference. During one of her stand up acts at the Ovarian Cancer Research Benefit, Rosie announced, “I’m a dyke!” During her routine she went on to poke fun at other openly gay celebrities, eventually saying, “I don’t know why people make such a big deal about the gay thing. People are confused, they’re shocked, like this is a big revelation to somebody.”
Later during her performance she acknowledges that people will call her out for having a crush on Tom Cruise, calling them “the gay Nazis”. O’Donnell cracks a joke saying, “I said I wanted him to mow my lawn and bring me a lemonade. I never said I wanted (to perform a sex act on him).” Using humor seems to be a trend when coming out of the closet!
4. Prom Date
Teenagers are cruel, and coming out as gay, bisexual, and even transgender in high school tends to be something kids will avoid as long as possible. The fear of not being accepted and suffering the ridicule until graduation tends to be too overwhelming to accept. So instead, many teenagers wait until prom before coming out of the closet. And what best way to do that than by simply showing up with your date?
This is exactly what Odalis Gonzalez did. After coming out to her conservative family and not having her sexual preference fully accepted, she was hesitant to come out to her friends. It wasn’t until she showed up to prom with her girlfriend that any of them knew she was gay. “Every time you come out, you learn more about yourself and about other people. You find out who is in your circle and who shouldn’t be. And, you are being extremely brave. Sometimes it can be rough, but it might be beautiful, and something good always comes from it — whether it be a partner you love or just finding yourself.”
3. Using Social Media
Coming out on social media has become more than a trend, it has almost become common practice. While some still rely on their photos and relationship status to clue in anyone who is curious about their sexual preference, many others feel the need to make a public announcement. In all fairness, it’s the quickest and easiest way to fill people in on your big news.
People receive an outcry of support from friends and family when they do this, and even inspire others to do the same. One Facebook user even provided a link to his blog, where he further discussed his experience coming out, as a way to prove his account wasn’t hacked. In a way, using social media to come out to friends and family requires a serious amount of courage. With all of the internet trolls out there and how easy it is to be cruel when you aren’t looking a victim in the eye, stating you’re gay online is surely a bold option.
2. Waiting For The Right Audience
It seems with most members of the LGBT community, they’re forced to come out of the closet on more than one occasion. Likely they start with the people closest to them, like a friend or family member, before coming out to the public. Choosing not to make a statement to all of your friends and family on social media or a large gathering can result in people constantly questioning you, pressing you for answers, and even creating their own stories about who you are.
As a celebrity, it’s a hundred times worse. Tabloids and the media will do their best to push celebrities to their limits, hoping they’ll eventually break so they have a new story to publish. When Adam Lambert was the runner-up of American Idol season eight, he considered coming out then. However, he wisely chose to wait for Rolling Stone to tell his story. He came out in the magazine in 2009 saying, “I’m an entertainer, and who I am and what I do in my personal life is a separate thing. It shouldn’t matter.”
1. Dropping Hints
Instead of fully coming out, many choose to drop subtle hints. Whether it is a change in clothing or hairstyle, a new group of friends, or different interests, friends and family will start to pick up on this. It’s the simplest way for anyone to come out, simply say yes when being asked if you’re gay. When this happened to one New Jersey teen, her supportive parents helped her come out to the rest of her family in a big way.
Disguised as an early Fourth of July party, seventeen-year-old Kinsey Ratzman came home from the mall to a house covered in rainbow pride decorations. Even their meal was rainbow, which included a rainbow colored cake. The coming out surprise party allowed the rest of Kinsey’s family to verbalize their support and celebrate her choice to come out together. A few people questioned Kinsey’s parents decision to throw her this party, but her mother Allison knew better saying, “Lots of people were like, ‘Are you sure you want to do that, you sure she’s gonna enjoy that? You sure she’s not gonna be embarrassed, this is kind of a whole new thing for her. But I said, ‘No, I think she’ll really appreciate it. It’ll show how much we really support her and how much we’re behind her.'”