I’m From Battle Creek, MI.

by ethan pierson

Most of the LGBT people today are hidden in fear. Yes, it is a scary thing–the fear of rejection, how people will handle it, worried if you’ll get beaten up over it. I have faced these thoughts, but when I came out, none of these things happened. My family is also more understanding than others, so I did have it a little easy, but coming out to everyone? That was no easy task! And even though I haven’t been out for very long, my life has been much easier and I now feel free. I can actually live my life and not a lie.

Most people tell their really good friends first that they are gay, but not me. I jumped right to my sister, the one I trusted most. I cried my eyes out, and it was so hard to get it out to her, but she was very comforting. This was in December 2008, the weekend before Christmas. In January of 2009, I told a small portion of my friends, but not my close friends. I was so scared of denial or rejection, so I waited. Soon after, one of my sisters and my mom found out by seeing my sexuality on MySpace. It’s hard to talk to them about it when they bring it up. I wanted to wait for the right moment, but I was forced into it on the spot, and that was extremely hard to overcome.

After that day, I came out to the last of my friends, the ones close to me, and they were all fine with it, still love me, and now we are even closer. But I wasn’t finished yet. I have a big family and still had two brothers and a sister to tell, not including in-laws. And my dad, well, he left when I was two, so I didn’t have to worry about telling him since I’ll never see him again. The rest of the family was pretty easy to tell, but I was put on the spot several times, so it still wasn’t easy to come out to someone when you’re forced to. It’s not fun and it’s not easy. I am just thankful everyone handled it well and everyone loves me all the same.

I’m glad I came out, though. I have never been happier and am now closer to a lot of people, especially my mom.


  1. You’re right…probably most fears about coming out are unfounded. For a lot of gay people the only regret is that they didn’t come out sooner.

  2. You are never done coming out, honestly.

    I came out ten years ago this September, when I was 16. It was a long time coming. And in those ten years I’ve told friends, family, co-workers, disembodied voices on the internet, and strangers. And I continue to, every day. Sometimes it is hilarious – someone with absolutely no gaydar who just thinks I’m really the sensitive type who likes classic movie actresses and cooking. That’s easy to handle. And sometimes it is difficult – someone who has an agenda, and who wants me to be closeted so that they can pretend that my life is deviant, unhealthy and a personal failing. Those are harder to deal with, but probably more important.

    You’ll keep coming out the rest of your life. Sometimes spectacularly, with fireworks and three snaps in z formation. And sometimes in quiet ways, a casual mention of a boyfriend, or a Facebook relationship status update. But however you continue to come out, cultivate self-respect and that will be what is truly conveyed to those you are coming out to.

    Congratulations – and good luck.

  3. Lilianna Angel Reyes

    I would like to invite you to a monthly meeting that we have at Planned Parenthood in Battle Creek. It is called the Calhoun County Coalition for Inclusion (3CI). It is a Coalition comprised of LGBTQQAAI people from across Calhoun County. We work to achieve a safe place for our LGBTQQAAI teens in the County through trainings, education, fun, advocacy, and awareness.

    We need people to get involved, so that they can avoid situations such as yours. That fear that forces all of us “deviants” back into the closet in fear of being rejected or hurt needs to end. Please stop by on the first Tuesday of every month at 4:30pm-6:00pm.

    We need your heartfelt ideas!!!

    Thank you

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