How I Came Out And Was Rejected By My Parents — And Pushed Through

Let’s start at the beginning: one cold, winter night of my sophomore year of high school, I was sitting on my bed, faced with the biggest decision of my life thus far. I had already asked to speak to my mother about something, and I planned to come out to her, but it wasn’t my choice.

A few months prior, I started a fling with one of the only other gay guys in my small town, and word spread fast once our lack of subtlety caught up to us. I decided to come out, not for him, but because if I didn’t, my parents would’ve heard about it elsewhere.

Alas, the nightmares of knowing everyone in town.

Anyway, when my mother came into my room that night, I was thrust into a real-life nightmare of my own. Suddenly, my existence was wrong and I had done something to upset my parents. To the point where my father almost kicked me out of the car, after forcing me to go on a drive with him, in the middle of the woods at midnight. Sometimes, I still wish they had just kicked me out.

Anything is better than the week following.

I came out on a Saturday night (because as a kid, I didn’t think things through, clearly) and after a phone-less Sunday (my parents took away my phone), I thought I would have the sweet relief of going back to school on Monday. Ah, I wish.

Instead, in Washington State where it rarely snows instead of rains, we received not one, not two, but six inches of snow, making leaving the house, much less going to school, impossible.

The snow lasted for about a week, which meant no school for a week and no seeing or speaking to my friends, nothing. My week was spent in my bedroom pretending I didn’t exist because my parents didn’t want to see me or acknowledge me; self-loathing and hating myself for being gay, for telling them, for even existing; and throwing myself into television to try to distract myself for just a minute.

And thankfully, at the time, I was obsessed with 90210 on The CW, and I watched season 3 specifically, which saw tennis star Teddy Montgomery (Trevor Donovan) dealing with his coming out.

Seeing his friends support him, and the possibility of a life free of my parents and the town I was in. That’s what got me through that week. Not just 90210, but Pretty Little Liars and how Emily’s friends supported her. There are so many examples on television today of friends supporting their LGBTQ friends, and without that, I don’t think I’d be here today as I was already dealing with intense depression from being locked in the closet for years before that night.

Perhaps that’s where my love for television grew to the point that I wanted to be a screenwriter. Perhaps that’s when I learned how to fight for myself and how to take action to prevent any further damage from being done. Because of the presence of the media focus on LGBTQ, the queer presence on my college campus within that same year, and local and nationwide LGBTQ programs, there are paths available for those who lack acceptance from their parents, peers, friends, or anyone.

I didn’t think I’d make it through my hell week, but I did, and flash-forward six years, and I’m still here, finished with college, and now looking to get out of the environment which has deemed my existence unacceptable.

While I, personally, still have much to do to place myself in a safe space overall, where I don’t have to worry about not getting acceptance, I wanted to write about my experience to show that, in time, it does get better. It’s such a clichéd phrase, and many paint it out to be one overall fix, but I want to do away with that unhealthy thought.

I spent so long getting down on myself for not placing myself in a better environment right away and for staying in a place where I’m unwelcome, but life often works out that way, but that doesn’t mean the only path is hiding yourself and being unhappy.

To this day, my parents still refuse to accept who I am and refuse to acknowledge my sexuality, but no longer am I ashamed of myself or do I believe my existence is shameful. That’s thanks to the many supportive friends I have and the resources that are available to all LGBTQ youth.

People are there for you, even if it’s just because you’re having a hard day and need a reminder that your existence means something to the world.

So, please, don’t give up, and if you’re having a hard time in the closet, or you came out to unaccepting parents/friends/peers, or you’ve forgotten that it can get better, reach out to someone, anyone, that can help get you to tomorrow.

It may seem like the end of the world if your parents, who should love you unconditionally, don’t accept you, but there are people that will accept you. There are people that do currently or will love you in the future for exactly who you are.

Giggle Twins Andy Cohen and Anderson Cooper Will Host New Year’s Eve

This year, Anderson Cooper will ring in the new year with his best gal pal but not Kathy Griffin.

CBS News reports that Andy Cohen is set to fill Kathy Griffin’s co-hosting duties after the comedian lost her annual gig due to her infamous photoshoot in which she held a bloody Trump mannequin head aloft. Griffin later revealed that after her infamous shoot, she and Cooper stopped speaking and are no longer friends.

Cohen is best known for creating the behemoth Real Housewives franchise at Bravo, hosting the reunions and asking the women about their accents in the middle of their arguments and hosting the game show-ridden Watch What Happens! Live.

Sure, it’s nice to see two gay men ringing in the new year, but any time Cooper and Cohen get together they basically work their hardest to reveal absolutely nothing about their sex lives, while knowing that if they do a million tweets will pour out about it.

Like that time Anderson spilled that Cohen is a top or the time Cooper blushed as Cohen revealed that he has a Latino fetish.

What kind of “ball dropping” innuendo will they giggle through? Catch CNN’s New Year’s Eve broadcast to find out what little tidbits about their sex lives Cohen and Cooper will slip past the censors.

Cara Delevingne Shares Her Harvey Weinstein Story: “I Felt Guilty”

Since the New York Times first broke the news, a veritable tidal wave of allegations of sexual harassment, assault and abuse of power against producer Harvey Weinstein has cascaded into the news. Actresses like Gwyneth Paltrow, Ashley Judd, Heather Graham, and more have shared their first-person accounts, each story as horrifying as the last.

Wednesday, actress and model Cara Delevingne added her voice to the chorus. She posted her tale on Instagram, accusing Weinstein of harassing her about dating women, attempting to force her to kiss him, and other harrowing details.

“When I first started to work as an actress, i was working on a film and I received a call from‎ Harvey Weinstein asking if I had slept with any of the women I was seen out with in the media,” she wrote. “It was a very odd and uncomfortable call. I answered none of his questions and hurried off the phone, but before I hung up, he said to me that If I was gay or decided to be with a woman especially in public that I’d never get the role of a straight woman or make it as an actress in Hollywood.”

When I first started to work as an actress, i was working on a film and I received a call from‎ Harvey Weinstein asking if I had slept with any of the women I was seen out with in the media. It was a very odd and uncomfortable call….i answered none of his questions and hurried off the phone but before I hung up, he said to me that If I was gay or decided to be with a woman especially in public that I’d never get the role of a straight woman or make it as an actress in Hollywood. A year or two later, I went to a meeting with him in the lobby of a hotel with a director about an upcoming film. The director left the meeting and Harvey asked me to stay and chat with him. As soon as we were alone he began to brag about all the actresses he had slept with and how he had made their careers and spoke about other inappropriate things of a sexual nature. He then invited me to his room. I quickly declined and asked his assistant if my car was outside. She said it wasn’t and wouldn’t be for a bit and I should go to his room. At that moment I felt very powerless and scared but didn’t want to act that way hoping that I was wrong about the situation. When I arrived I was relieved to find another woman in his room and thought immediately I was safe. He asked us to kiss and she began some sort of advances upon his direction. I swiftly got up and asked him if he knew that I could sing. And I began to sing….i thought it would make the situation better….more professional….like an audition….i was so nervous. After singing I said again that I had to leave. He walked me to the door and stood in front of it and tried to kiss me on the lips. I stopped him and managed to get out of the room. I still got the part for the film and always thought that he gave it to me because of what happened. Since then I felt awful that I did the movie. I felt like I didn’t deserve the part. I was so hesitant about speaking out….I didn’t want to hurt his family. I felt guilty as if I did something wrong. I was also terrified that this sort of thing had happened to so many women I know but no one had said anything because of fear.

A post shared by Cara Delevingne (@caradelevingne) on

That wasn’t the end of Weinstein’s alleged harassment, however. Over a year later, Delevingne was in talks to star in a Weinstein Company film. (Though she doesn’t name the movie, it was likely the 2017 release Tulip Fever.) After a chat with both Weinstein and the director of the film, Weinstein reportedly insisted that Delevingne come up to his hotel room with him.

“I quickly declined and asked his assistant if my car was outside,” she explained. “She said it wasn’t and wouldn’t be for a bit and I should go to his room. At that moment I felt very powerless and scared but didn’t want to act that way hoping that I was wrong about the situation.”

Upon arriving in Weinstein’s hotel room, Delevingne said she was comforted to see another woman there although only briefly, as the producer then allegedly asked the two to kiss. After insisting on leaving, Delevingne said Weinstein walked her to the door and tried to kiss her, which she evaded.

“Since then I felt awful that I did the movie,” she wrote. “I felt like I didn’t deserve the part. I was so hesitant about speaking out. I didn’t want to hurt his family. I felt guilty as if I did something wrong.”

Since the initial allegations against Weinstein surfaced, he has been fired from his position at his company, and has reportedly left the country to attend sex addiction rehab in Europe. Meanwhile, in the United States, more accusations of abuse continue to surface.

Freshman Class President Or Freshman Class Queen?

Keith Williams had come out to some family before going off to college, but when he arrived he found himself back in the closet until the door was ripped open.

One day he was shown a gossip website by a friend at the university that ran an article headlined: Freshman Class President or Freshman Class Queen? And immediately he knew he had been found out.

Williams shares his story today for National Coming Out Day with us in hopes of showing others who find themselves cyberbullied that there is a light at the end of the tunnel and to reach out to others for support.

Oh, and this one bit of advice: “If you’re experiencing any type of cyberbullying…it’s difficult, and you feel like the whole world is against you.”

“But it’s probably just a few folks behind a computer who have nothing better to do than talk about your life,” he continues.