• Afterglow

My Coming Out Story

By Oliver

Trigger warning: Bullying and implied sexual assault.

This year would have been the first year I would have celebrated pride with my friends. Why did I not celebrate it before? Well, there are two reasons: one, I didn’t know about my sexuality, two, I wasn’t comfortable and proud enough to march. Due to obvious reasons I won’t be marching this year but instead, I’m here to talk about my coming-out journey, which is still ongoing. This is my coming out story and how I came to terms with my sexuality and things which I wish someone had told me. Enjoy!

My coming out journey wasn’t too great, as is for most people. I’m bisexual. I’ve known I was since I was about 17. Before then I genuinely thought I was straight, even though I was bullied and called ‘gay’ and other gay/homophobic slurs in school. I don’t want to go into specifics into the day when I found out I was bisexual, lets just say it was an uncomfortable situation and I did not have the most supportive people around me. This clearly wasn’t the best way to find out so if anyone has been in a very uncomfortable situation like me, I first want to say I’m sorry. I am so sorry you had to find out this way, but now you know and trust me it will get better once you find the right people who will love you. My advice would be to tell someone, someone who will respect you and not judge you. Do not keep it to yourself like I did. Tell a close friend, another LGBT person, a counsellor. If you have none of these avenues, know that there are a lot of charities specifically for this, it might be hard to call them, but please do it.

It took me a year to come out to my friends, I say friends but looking back now they were not friends. I would have taken longer but one evening we were having dinner and I thought they were talking about me so I confronted them. They did not seem to care about me and were not really supportive which wasn’t too great, but… moving on…

My luck just got better when someone spread a rumour about my sexuality, a secret that was not theirs to tell. I was never confronted about it until one afternoon I was in a common room with the other ‘lad’ like guys in my year. They confronted me about it, asking me why I had to be closeted and that no one cared. I felt uncomfortable and that I could not leave the room, so I said it: 'I'm bisexual'. They responded with 'slash gay slash straight' - They essentially dismissed my bisexuality and had no idea what it meant to be bi. What have I learnt from this? Do not let anyone pressure you to come out, it is your choice, when it is right for you. And despite what they said, being bi is ok and valid. I used to let other’s words affect me and still do a bit but talking to others really helped me. So once again talk to someone, don’t keep it to yourself and don’t suffer in silence.

Finally, I finished my sixth form and stressful a-levels which definitely made my journey harder. I was accepted at an amazing uni, a top drama school. My drama school is very accepting as many artists who are queer can express themselves through art and people are just genuinely open minded so it is a very accepting place. It’s great to have people around you that literally don’t care and accept you for who you are. I think about my sexuality almost daily, debating whether I’m bisexual or not. I sometimes feel that (not everyone but) some of the LGBTQ+ community, which prides itself on being so accepting, forces you into categories. You do not have to fit in one binary, sexuality is fluid and do not let anyone tell you otherwise, if you feel that you are bisexual, like me, or any other gender or sexuality, then that should be valid enough.

I am still learning from all the things I’ve mentioned, the journey might be hard, long and frustrating but do not give up. Check below for a list of resources and contacts. I completely understand that calling these organisations can be scary, I didn’t make contact with them at the time I most needed help, I wish I did. But trust me when I say it will get better. I am still confused at times and that is ok. I hope whoever reads this has learnt something. Stay safe and love yourself for who you are (cheesy I know but I didn’t know how else to end this). Stonewall

FREEPHONE 0800 0502020 Lines are open 9:30 - 4:30 Monday to Friday.

MindOut Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans & Queer Mental Health Service Email: Phone: 01273 234 839

LGBT Foundation Advice Support & Information: 03453303030

LGBT Switchboard

LGBT+ helpline where all conversations are 100% confidential. Phone: 0300 330 0630 (10am-10pm daily). This article was written by Oliver as part of Afterglow's blog writing opportunities. For more information about blogging for Afterglow visit