The term coming out is used to describe the process of understanding, embracing, and disclosing one's sexual and/or gender identity. The process is very personal and can happen in different ways for each person. Some people acknowledge their identity during their teenage years, while others come to understand their identity much later in life. For those who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, asexual, transgender/trans, queer, intersex, or gender non-conforming, Coming Out is an ongoing process that may involve mixed feelings, such as confusion, joy, relief, self-doubt, and stress. Even people who simply wonder about their sexuality or identity can be afraid to share their questions with others. One of the first steps in the process of Coming Out is acknowledging one's own identity. Regardless of the circumstances, the choices surrounding coming out to others require courage and deserves respect.
If you are in the coming out process, or if you are struggling with others' reactions to you, there are resources on and off campus to help.
150 Humanities Center
In, Out and In Between Support Group
A group for LGBTQIA+ students that engages in discussion with others who share similar experiences and identities on topics that include religion, coming out, relationships, and family in a confidential and safe space
Contact Aaron Barnes at firstname.lastname@example.org for details
LGBTQIA+ Club for students on Loyola’s campus
Cohn Hall 100
A student-run and student-focused Ignatian LGBTQIA+ conference. Campus Ministry and the Counseling Center lead an annual delegation of 10+ students to attend the conference. The 2017-2018 academic year conference will be hosted by Loyola University Maryland in February 2018.
Contact Elise Gower at email@example.com for details
Chase Brexton LGBT Health Resource Center
1111 N Charles Street, 2nd Floor, Baltimore, MD 21201
410-837-2050 ext. 1049
The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center of Baltimore
2530 N Charles Street, 3rd Floor, Baltimore, MD 21218
Help Line: 866-488-7386
How to Be an Ally
Remember how much courage is involved in coming out. If someone you care about is struggling, help them find support. In addition to being a caring friend you can also be supportive by challenging any forms of discrimination or bias that are disrespectful and harmful to persons who identify as LGBTQIA+. When you adopt the attitude that any form of bias is unacceptable and are vocal about this attitude, even by objecting to degrading jokes or statements made by others, your advocacy will help to create a respectful and inviting campus climate for everyone.
To learn more about how to be an advocate on campus, participate in Loyola’s Safe Zone training, open to faculty, staff and students.