Coming out to your family, friends, colleagues, and acquaintances can be an exciting yet utterly nerve-wracking moment. You can never be sure how everyone will react. Fortunately, if your loved ones truly care about you, they’ll accept you for who you are. And some might not even be surprised! A loved one’s intuition is a powerful thing.
Openly gay Reddit users have been sharing the very best reactions to them coming out in a thread that might inspire you to fully embrace who you are, as well as have more courage in life, as we continue to celebrate Pride Month. Have a read through some of the most positive and witty stories and remember to upvote the ones that made you smile. And if you want to, feel free to share your own coming-out stories in the comments, dear Pandas.
Bored Panda reached out to talk about Pride and some of the challenges that the LGBTQ+ community still faces to this very day with ‘Stonewall’ a UK-based organization that fights for a world where all LGBTQ+ people are free to be themselves and can live their lives to the fullest. You’ll find our interview with them below.
I came from a politically conservative, Christian, “religious right” type of household. At 26, I took my mother out to dinner and finally worked up the courage to tell her as she ate her salad.
“Mom, I’m gay.”
“Look, that’s between you and God, or whatever you believe in. We’re probably going to disagree on some of those things but that’s not my job. My job as your mother is to love you. And that’s that.” She kept eating her salad.
I was blown away. Definitely not the reaction I expected or had steeled myself for.
Two weeks later they invited my boyfriend at the time to a family cookout. I have a photo of him and my dad chatting in front of the grill with beers in their hands. The guy and I broke up some time after that, but the photo still means a lot to me to this day, just for what it represented.
My mom broke the news to my 16yo little sister, whose immediate reaction was to start crying and she said, “I can’t imagine how lonely that’s been for him for so long.”
nervously: I’m gay
mom: girl, you came out of a closet with no door
"Hey Dad... Umm, im Gay"
"Hi Gay, Im Dad, and i Support your choices"
Even though there has been significant progress made to protect LGBTQ+ people in recent decades (and as recently as the start of this year in the US), there is still much work to be done.
Robbie de Santos, the Director of Communications and External Affairs at ‘Stonewall,’ told Bored Panda that Pride Month allows all of us to show our support for the LGBTQ+ community, no matter what part of the world we live in.
“Pride is an opportunity for all of us to come together in celebration, protest, and solidarity with lesbian, gay, bi, and trans communities all over the world,” de Santos said.
My sister: Yay, I always wanted a gay brother!
Me: You realize that you always had one, right? I'm not suddenly going to change my personality and enjoy shopping with you.
I was sitting at the table, surrounded by my uncle, his pastor, my brothers, and the funeral director, arranging my father's service.
We were collaborating on the obituary. My family is incredibly southern; I did not grow up in contact with my father's side.
Around the table we go: survived by brother James, sister Phyllis, sons Charles and Matthew, daughter Erin... oh, what was your husband's name?
Now, my uncle had made a beautiful effort to get to know me as my father got sick and deteriorated. He asked after my family, my kids, my mom. When he made reference to my marriage, I let him make assumptions about gender just to avoid complications.
Everything crystallized in that moment over the obit.
"What's your husband's name?"
Pastor didn't miss a beat, neither did funeral director. My brothers tell me that my uncle's head shot up in complete shock.
Whatever he worked out for himself between that look and the time I was ready to check for a reaction, I will never know. But when I looked up for myself, he was smiling at me. He looked at me warmly and mouthed, "Not a problem."
I have a wonderful uncle.
“All lesbian, gay, bi, trans, and queer people should be able to thrive as themselves, but in 2021, LGBTQ+ people are still being held back because of who we are,” de Santos from ‘Stonewall’ noted that the fight is far from over despite some progress having been painstakingly made over the years.
“For some LGBTQ+ people, these harms are particularly acute, and we need to stand together against all discrimination that holds our communities back, from racism to ableism, misogyny to classism,” he said, highlighting the importance of Pride Month in all of our lives.
Me to grandma: gramma, you should probably hear from me first before blabbermouth aunt says it for me... I’m gay.
Gramma: Yeah, I figured, but I wanted you to tell me rather than ask... just like that interesting “vase” you keep on your patio which I know obviously isn’t a “vase.” (It was a bong and I lied.) Gramma was the best... I miss you gramma.)
Best- told my best friend. Cried. She stayed the night, we had pizza, drinks and watched a film. She slept in my bed, just like she did before. Nothing changed
Told my mom I was bisexual. Her reaction:
"Honey, you told me you were dating a guy months ago."
Completely forgot I did that.
“That’s why this Pride season, it’s important to come together—in our communities, in our schools, workplaces, online and on the streets—to celebrate who we are, celebrate how far we’ve come, and fight for the freedom, equity and potential of every single one of us. At Stonewall, we’ll continue to fight until every lesbian, gay, bi, trans, and queer person is free to be themselves, wherever they are,” de Santos reiterated ‘Stonewall’s’ unwavering support for the LGBTQ community.
Me to my mother: “Ma, I like this girl in school”
Mother: “You remember Theresa? We’re dating”
Best reaction was seeing my brother the day after I came out on Facebook. I asked him, carefully, if he'd seen the post.
"I did!" He said cheerfully. "That's okay, I like girls, too! Especially this one!" And kissed his wife.
My sister was the best, just because I was so worried on how she would respond. When I told her, her response was, "Cool. Do you know when mom is going to get more snacks?"
Late to the party, but the best was a friend of mine who I drunkenly told because in my head, it was a good idea to tell him simply because we played football together and got changed together. Honestly, I think I was just looking for acceptance from someone because I was nervous what the other guys might think in the locker room if they knew I was bi. I told him, then floundered a bit about not being attracted to him and whatever, at which point, he put his hand on my shoulder, looked me dead in the eye and said: "Tijo, don't worry mate, I'll still happily whip my cock out in front of you, doesn't bother me." We talked for a while after, but he was the most supportive person ever.
My mom was shocked and the first thing she said as she started bawling was “Oh no! And your father and I made you play rough sports!”
Me: sudden epiphany while drunkenly chattering with my bff Oh holy s**t. I think I might be gay
Bff: Well no shit sherlock. About damn time you figured it out. You owe me 50$. I bet on you figuring it out 8 years ago.
(Found out my friends had started a pool a decade earlier)
I nervously sent my sister a meme about being bisexual. Her response was "same". Funniest waste of adrenaline ever, ngl.
Best was my mother who replied with and I quote "I know. I knew since you were little. I just waited until you came to me after confirming it for yourself." She then proceeded to threaten my religious extended family that if they said a word to me about my sexuality that there would be hell. She is very protective and none of them say a word to this day.
My sister, she just laughed and went “cool! Why don’t you dress better?”
I don't remember a specific coming out moment with my family, but I remember talking to my brother and dad about liking girls when I was a teenager. And my brother asking if I remembered being like 9 years old and telling everyone I wanted to marry my friend Mia. That's when I realized my closet door had pretty much been wide open all along.
I hadn't told a few friends about my boyfriend and when i did... "dude i know you've been drooling over him for months" man that was hilarious
Upon telling my (pretty laddish, older bachelor) best mate I’m bi: “Truth be told I’m a little gay for you too.”
When I first started coming out to my friends, it was too difficult to say "I'm gay". First time, I said that "I'm like Edwin", who was another gay guy. Second time, I said "I'm not straight". I then joked about how it was starting to get easier to tell people, and that "not straight" was progress, to which my friend joked that next time I'll tell someone I'm "not not gay".
Well, fast forward a year with a new roommate, and the topic came up. Took the opportunity and I told him "Matt, I'm not not gay". He shrugged, looked sorta confused, then said, "soooo, you're bi?"
I just started telling people I was gay after that.
My dad didn't say much, but his neutral acceptance coincidentally broke down a lot of walls we had when I was growing up. We got to know one another a lot more once I felt free of my secret. Love him times a million.
Best reaction: My guy friend responding with "same", when I told him I felt attracted to girls. Then he asked me where I wanted to eat lunch. It was amazingly casual.
My sisters and I were in my apartments swimming pool and I came out as Bisexual to them (Now identify as Pansexual). They said (and I quote) "Cool, we should have pizza now". I love that they cared but it wasn't a huge deal.
The best I've ever gotten was a round of applause from every single member of my family after 2 years of telling me I'm gay and me denying it....thanks family, now I realize myself
My girlfriend told me she was bisexual, and my immediate response was, and I quote: “B***h, who do you think you’re talking to? Someone who gives a s**t?”
Her horror and relief, and the resulting laugh at this, absolutely made my day.
"Well that's 2 out of 4, and we all know your sister is going to turn out gay so there's only one hope of straightness in this house" Not exact phrasing but you get the point.
Bi dude here.
Came out to a bunch of friends on a bus trip. They were all totally cool with it, gave me a couple fist bumps and honestly didn't care which was pretty much just what I wanted