Sing it, Sistah: Why being out makes you happier

Study released on National Coming Out Day finds positive benefits of being out

Soul sistah Diana Ross sang it loud and proud―and so should you. Today’s the day to let the world know “I’m Coming Out!”

Across America, October 11th is commemorated each year as National Coming Out Day. NCOD is a special day for all members of the LGBT community to celebrate their individuality, support each other in coming out and raising awareness for our civil rights movement. October 11, 2012 also marks the 25th anniversary of the National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights, which is why October 11 has been chosen as the day of observation.

This day is unique for those who have come out, those who are working toward coming out in their own ways, and for LGBT youth. NCOD serves as one more asset that asserts the LGBT community’s presence today, in America as well as in other countries around the world. The more we are seen and heard, the more we can hope people will understand and accept diversity.

Some studies have shown being out makes you happier. The Human Rights Campaign released a report today that found LGBT youth who are out to those closest to them, whether it is family members or schoolmates, show “higher levels of happiness, optimism, acceptance and support.”  More than 10,000 LGBT young people were surveyed in the study, which also showed that nine out of 10 LGBT youth are out to their closest friends, but fewer were out to their families and at school.

The good news is that unlike previous generations, many of today’s LGBT youth have someone in their life with whom they can be themselves,” said HRC President Chad Griffin.

So celebrate today with your peers and loved ones, and continue be supportive of those who still struggle with coming out. Remember, we were all there at one point too.


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