Today is National Coming Out Day, a time for LGBTQ+ people to come out, celebrate coming out, and honor those who have paved the way for them to come out. I was reminded today as I walked across campus toward my office of my own process of coming out. I remember being terrified of the prospects surrounding living a life that was open and affirming of who I was. Ultimately, I lost the right of coming out when a family friend outed me to my parents.
The aftermath was as awful as I had imagined and more. Nevertheless, I persisted.
The pain of losing my right to choose when and how I began my open and affirming life could have destroyed me. Instead, I used it to fuel my fight for equality and for the health and wellbeing of transgender, gender queer, gender nonconforming, and nonbinary individuals. The work that I do is the result of people seeking me out, because of my visibility as a trans woman in Alabama, and asking for advice. The emails and letters I answered would serve the basis for MyTransitionPartner.com.
If anyone ever tells you that we don’t need a Coming Out Day, then remind them of the importance of visibility.
I came out because I saw other transgender people around me living their truth, and I wanted the same joy and privilege of doing just that. In turn, I know of at least three people I have inspired to live their truth, and I have had the distinct honor of providing financial assistance, both from my own pocket and from this Foundation, that has enabled dozens of transgender people to start their journey toward a better version of themselves.
Visibility is a form of resistance, a way of standing up against those who want us to not exist.
Today, on National Coming Out Day, I have many different hopes for you:
Have a wonderful day of visibility, reflection, and support!
Darcy Jeda Corbitt Foundation is a 501(c)(3) public charity promoting the health and global wellbeing of transgender, queer, and gender nonconforming individuals. All donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by US Federal Tax Code.
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