Coming Out

To those of you who know me, the fact that I’m gay is not a surprise.  Even a couple of weeks ago, Clay Aiken finally came out to all of America….again, no surprise.  However, today, October 11, is National Coming Out Day.  So I wanted to take a moment to address something very important.

A 2005 Massachusetts Department of Education survey of 3500 high school students found almost 11 percent have seriously considered suicide. And that percentage is almost four times as high for 10-24 year olds who identify with gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, transsexual, or questioning.

It is not easy for most of us to come out of the closet.  Our own welfare is usually on our minds and how the outside world will treat us.  Then it comes down to our family and friends. And for those of you who have followed along with me through the years even know of my rough patches.  So I’m hear to say that there is help out there.

It’s called The Trevor Project.  It began in 1998 and is named after the short film “Trevor” that won an Academy Award in 1994, and it is a 24-hour helpline for gay youth.  They have more than 500 volunteers that are trained for 40 hours and get at least 15,000 calls a year.

If you know someone that is going through a hard time with being gay, or maybe you yourself are, and might be contemplating suicide, please seek help.  You are not alone out there, despite what you might think.  Don’t worry about being mainstream or being different from everyone else. Consider yourself unique to the world….a world you have a lot to offer.  I can’t promise you an easy journey and there will be those bad times. But there will also be those good times and new friends.  So please stop and think logically for a moment.  You are important, and your contribution to our society is as well. Sometimes, life takes those unexpected detours, but that’s the adventure that awaits us all.  If life was a straight line, it would be fairly boring. Embrace yourself and your uniqueness….and always remember, you’re not alone.

But if you, or someone you know, does need some help getting through those tough times, then contact The Trevor Project, and please seek that help.  You, and those that love you, will be grateful in the end.  🙂  And never be afraid to be yourself.

PHONE: 1-866-488-7386  (1-866-4 U TREVOR)

LINK: www.thetrevorproject.org

OTHER INFORMATION:

Warning Signs:

-A tendency toward isolation and social withdrawal

-Increase substance abuse

-Expression of negative attitudes toward self

-Expression of hopelessness or helplessness

-Loss of interest in usual activities

-Giving away valued possessions

-Expression of a lack of future orientation: “It won’t matter soon anyway.”

-For someone who has been very depressed, when that depression begins to lift, the individual may be at INCREASED risk of suicide, as the individual will have the psychological energy to follow through on suicide ideation.

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