To be completely honest, I don’t really like to call this a “coming out” story because I didn’t come out as gay.

I just opened up my fragile heart to someone close for the first time.

I was around 15 or 16 and with my best friend in my bedroom. We had just come back from a dance or party of some sort. Neither of us had driver licenses, so we were hanging out at my house waiting for someone to pick him up since he lived in the next town over.

I had a lot on my mind that night and hadn’t ever told anyone my full story.

I had recently come to terms with my same-sex attraction that summer and was still trying to process everything. I thought I was crazy or some sort of mutated freak.

But I knew in my heart I wasn’t gay. That wasn’t who I was or what I wanted to be.

But when I looked at my best friend, hormones rushed to places I hadn’t intended them to. Thoughts jumped into my head I had never imagined being there.

I sat there with palms sweating, trying to think of how to tell him without his freaking out. I can’t even remember what we were talking about. But I couldn’t keep sitting there without telling him what was going on inside.

So, I spun my desk chair away from his direction and started welling up with tears. I don’t remember exactly what I said to him, but it was painful.

I told my best friend I was attracted to guys — sexually. And even further, that I had feelings for him.

I was sobbing by this point, and my face was red and sweaty. I clenched my fists and braced myself for what my best friend might say.

I had hoped he would say something magical to make it all better, but he didn’t. He was taken aback for a few seconds and sat there silently while I tried not to look like an idiot crying.

He told me my same-sex attraction was probably just a “phase” and would be over soon.

But I didn’t believe that. I knew he was trying to make me feel better, but it didn’t help.

He said, “Maybe it’s like when you get boners at random times or in gym class when everyone is changing.” He said that kind of thing happened to him and would eventually go away.

I knew that was somewhat true (because hormones), but not in this situation.

Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending how you look at it), our conversation was cut short when someone opened my bedroom door and it was time for him to leave. I quickly dried my tears and tried to look normal as he got up to leave.

I don’t remember much else of the conversation, but I know it was crucial to much of my progress through my struggles. It wasn’t ideal, but it wasn’t terrible. I don’t know if I would’ve done/said anything differently at this point.

If you’re struggling with SSA, I highly recommend that you talk it out with someone. Even if it’s not amazing, it’s really helpful and relieving to share the burden with others no matter their reaction.

What was your first “coming out” experience like? Heartwarming? Heart-shattering? Do you struggle to open up with others because of a less-than-ideal coming out?

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