I’m fourteen years old. I am a lesbian, but I don’t know how to tell my parents. I have felt this way since I was eleven years old. I also have a crush, but I don’t know how to tell her either. I think my parents will accept me, but I don’t know what to do. Can you help me?

lesbiansThank you so much for reaching out to us. For some people coming out as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans* and/or queer (LGBTQ+) to parents is casual and accepting, while for others it can be more complex. There is no right way to tell your parents about your sexual identity but there can be ways to prepare for the conversation that will help you feel more supported while sharing:

  • Plan for what you want to say: write yourself a script, role-play coming out with a friend (if you feel comfortable) and anticipate different types of reactions from your parents.
  • Test the waters: ask your parents how they feel about an LGBTQI+ celebrity or notice how they talk about LGBTQ+ topics- having an idea of how they feel may give you insight on how they may react (but not always).
  • Choose a good time: ​talk with your parents when your relationship feels positive and in an environment that feels safe, calm and supportive.
  • Lean into your support systems: identify people in your life that support and love you no matter what- whether that is friends, siblings or other family members, teachers, mentors or neighbors- and let them know that you have or are planning to come out so that you feel connected and cared for before and after your conversation with your parents.

In many ways, some of the above is applicable to sharing that you have a crush on someone as well! There is no perfect way to do it but preparing what you want to say, choosing the right moment, and anticipating that your crush may or may not reciprocate can be helpful ways to share your feelings in a safe and authentic way. Regardless of how either conversation goes- we hope that you always feel loved and supported just as you are.