12 People Who Should Know You’re Gay

By Rick Clemons for YourTango.com.

On the scale of “cake walk” to “real drag”, my coming out was a cupcake in need of some icing on the cake. It wasn’t horrendous and it wasn’t blissful; a common state that I find most of my clients experience as well. Of course, unfortunately, not everyone has a good coming out experience… or a fabulous one, either. What I do know now that I’ve stepped fully into my gay bear self, is that you don’t just come out once. There’s a lifetime of coming out experiences.

I was slightly blinded by this light prior to coming out of the closet. In my naďve thinking, I was just going to say, “I’m gay” and that would be about all I had to do with family, friends and co-workers. Silly me. There were, have been, and will continue to be numerous people, places and situations that require me in some way to come out of the closet — whether I like it or not. For the most part, I don’t mind coming out, provided I’m the one who gets to decide how and when I reveal that I’m gay. Of course, now that I’ve been on national TV, write for YourTango and have articles published on Huffington Post, I’m pretty exposed. I’m just thankful that exposure isn’t literal. No one needs to see me shirtless.

More from YourTango: Top 10 Misconceptions About Gay People

So what about you? Have you considered how many times you’ll have to come out? Here are 12 situations you might not have previously considered.

  1. Your doctor: This may seem obvious to some, but a lot of people don’t think about this one. Make it a priority! You might also consider telling your dentist.
  2. Hotels: It can be awkward the first time you check in to a hotel as a same-sex couple getting a room with one king-sized bed. It’s not like you have to say anything. However, be prepared that some desk clerks will be thrown for a loop and still ask you, “Are you sure you want one bed?” Yes. You do.
  3. New neighbors: Whether you’re moving in or they are, depending on how you typically interact with neighbors, there’s a high possibility of outing yourself to the new neighbors — intentionally or accidently.
  4. Schools, teachers and day care providers: If you have kids, or are planning on having kids, you won’t be able to avoid coming out in the school and day care environments. While it could be easier to stay in the closet, in many more of these situations it helps those taking care of your children to know the whole story.
  5. Accountant or tax preparer: If you’re coupled or married, your tax accountant will figure out your sexual orientation if you decide to file joint returns. Of course, you could just hire a LGBT accountant or tax preparer who “gets” you without even trying.
  6. Financial institutions: Similar to your accountant or tax preparer, the people that you interact with for setting up bank accounts and getting loans will be privy to your sexual orientation when you apply for joint loans, accounts, or even when you assign your beloved as a beneficiary.
  7. Employer: This outing comes in stages and is 99 percent of the time up to you and how “out” at work you choose to be. However, there will be certain things that arise as a signal of your sexual orientation. For example, applying for health benefits if they are offered for your domestic partner, or as a married same-sex couple. And, of course, there’s the assumption that most people in a company will make when you don’t ever come to the holiday party with a date. But that’s their assumption — until you prove it to be so!
  8. Insurance company: Not that it really matters if your insurance carrier for your home, car, life, or even health insurance knows your sexual orientation, but it could mean dollars in or out of your pocket. Often times it means money in your pocket because there are benefits for domestic partners or same-sex married couples.
  9. Financial planner: Similar to accountants, financial institutions, and insurance companies, you may find yourself disclosing your sexual orientation in order to ensure your honey bunny is the beneficiary and co-signatory on the accounts.
  10. Kids’ social circles: Again, if you have kids, not all of their friends will have LGBT parents. Duh! Like you didn’t know that. However, it is an interesting situation you will find yourself in every year, no matter the age of your kids. Sleepovers, birthday parties, school functions… they’re all potential opportunities to introduce others to the fact you’re an LGBT family!
  11. In an emergency: Not that any of us likes being in an accident or in harm’s way! However, it is in these moments that there’s a likelihood you may have to disclose your sexual orientation — partnered or not. For example, if asked who you would like to have notified, it may be your same-sex boyfriend/girlfriend, partner, husband/wife. Set the tone in the emergency as best you can so that when they arrive, it doesn’t cause more chaos. It shouldn’t be an issue, but there still is a high likelihood it will be uncomfortable, given the state of LGBT rights in our country and around the world.
  12. Service providers: Did you ever think your gardener, pool guy, electrician, plumber, or housekeeper would need to know your orientation? They don’t. However, a lot of these people come into your home and will observe personal things that will give them hints. Especially if you and your honey are both there to make decisions about the remodel!

More from YourTango: How Coming Out Strengthened My Nonromantic Relationships

While seas of change are occurring, there’s still a huge road ahead until equality and acceptance makes coming out a non-issue. In the words of Maya Angelou, “Until we’re all free, no one’s free!” A part of being free is never having to hide who we are or question, “Should I say something or not about my sexual orientation?”

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This article originally appeared on YourTango.com: Coming Out: 12 People Who Should Know You’re Gay.

More from YourTango: How Coming Out Of The Closet Can Change Your Life


Mrs Shakespeare
Mrs Shakespeare4 years ago

I think everyone should know you are gay.
I'm sick of people assuming that in order to fight discrimination of any kind, like racism/homophobia/sexism etc, then these issues must never be addressed. Details about you, like your religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, etc, must be hidden forever to avoid any trouble, and hopefully with time, discrimination will just...I dont know, disappear, I guess!!
Sure, you can live your whole life without anyone knowing your sexual orientation and thus never have to confront a homophobe, but what about people who were born black? Or asian? Should they hide their faces from the world until racism just "fades away"?

I dont get it :/

Deborah J.
Deborah J4 years ago

For those who feel comfortable about talking openly - demystifying one's minority status is a positive move for all concerned. In Southern Calfornia, 1983, a coworker from a small town in Colorado confided that she'd never spoken with a Jew before and proceeded to ask me some questions that made me realize: I'd never before spoken with someone so sheltered!

B J.
BJ J4 years ago

Dear Abby, I had an out of body experience when I was in college. Do you think I should tell my mechanic?

Karen Martinez
Karen Martinez4 years ago

I've always thought that if you make a big deal of it, then others will too. My best friend since 3rd grade told me one afternoon that she had been diagnosed with MS, and that she was in love, and showed me a picture of a woman. I was surprised and relieved about the MS (now we knew what the problem was, and could deal with it), and glad about the in love part. She and her partner came to my wedding 20 years ago, and they are godmothers to my daughter. All of our families accepted Terri and Becky because they are both such wonderful, kind,loving people. The 'same sex' thing wasn't an issue just because they are both such great women. I've raised my children to look at the person, and not at the sexual orientation. Seems to have worked so far.

JL A4 years ago

useful list

Kanako I.
Kanako I4 years ago


Patricia H.
Patricia H.4 years ago

thanks for sharing

Elena T.
Elena Poensgen4 years ago

Thank you :)

Natasha Salgado
Past Member 4 years ago


Summerannie Moon
Summerannie M4 years ago

hmm, thats a crazy list. Guess you could run up to the highest mountain top and get a loud speaker and just get it over and done with by telling everyone your orientation.
Heterosexuals dont do that so why would it be so vastly different if you were gay.
Most people ' get it ' anyway. If I was gay I wouldnt be going around telling everyone from the Accountant to the Zoologist as I dont go around shouting Im a heterosexual. We should respect everyone whoever they are.