Annie Fox for Teens... Hey, Terra!

Annie (AKA Hey Terra!) has been around long enough to have experienced a lot of what Life can dish out. But, it hasn’t been so long that she's forgotten what it's like to be your age. Check out some of the thousands of email questions teens from around the world have sent to Terra. You may learn something useful from her answers:

Sexual orientation:
“I'm afraid to tell my parents that I'm gay.”

Hey Terra,

Ok... here's the deal. I'm a junior in high school and I'll turn 17 in about a month. I have been having feelings for the same sex for a long time and I really don't know how to handle it. I live in a small town and my parents are the type that are totally against stuff like that. I know people who have come out of the closet but I know I will never be able to take that step because I would lose my parents and majority of my friends. I know they are supposed to love you no matter what but these people are really different. I've never been w/ a girl or a guy for that matter. I'm attracted to both. I'm afraid that if I ever did mess around w/ a girl then everyone would find out. I'm really confused about it all. I've had both sexes hit on me before and I kinda liked it. PLEASE HELP!!!

Confused

Dear Confused,

I can totally understand why you feel scared to come out to your parents. Just the thought of losing their love is overwhelmingly frightening, I'm sure. But you really don't know how your parents will react to the news. You can't know that for sure. Right now, you are guessing and imagining the worst.

I don't know your parents and I can't predict how they will react to finding out that you are gay or bisexual, but as a mom, I do know this -- 99.99% of all parents love their kids. That kind of love isn't something you just "lose" or "turn off" when you hear that your child is gay.

The most important thing I can tell you is that you're not alone. Lots of teens are dealing with coming out issues. PFLAG is a wonderful organization that can give you and your parents the support you need. Check out their Website here. Also check out the Gay Student Center's site.

Also, read this interview I did with a teen named Gina DeVries. She shared her coming out story with me and how she talked to her parents. I think it may help you sort your feelings.

You will also find other coming out stories here. And information about sexual orientation here.

The sooner you can be honest about who you are with your parents and others who you care most about, the happier you will be.

In friendship,

Terra


Need some advice? Write to Terra. She'll give you a straight answer you can trust without any lectures.


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