Ever heard of a day dedicated to letting your authentic self shine brighter than the morning star? Well, mark your calendars for National Coming Out Day! Bet you didn't realize you had such a sparkling appointment, did you?
It's national comin out day on the 11th October.
Mentioned a whopping 40,004 times online, the most instances were on the 11th of October 2017 - the powerhouse that is National Coming Out Day is stronger than your morning coffee. Yet surprisingly, this day has been veiled beneath the rainbow umbrella of history longer than some of our favorite '90s fashion trends.
National Coming Out Day, celebrated worldwide on October 11, is a day dedicated to raising awareness of civil rights for the LGBT+ community. It's all about promoting a safer world where every individual can live honestly and openly, essentially a giant trust fall into the open arms of society.
The day was first observed in 1988, by activists Robert Eichberg and Jean O'Leary, symbolising an affirmative stance against discrimination. It was chosen to fall on the anniversary of the National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights. So, boiled down, it's a giant birthday party for courage.
The idea behind the day is not just to come out of the closet, but to break it down board by board, making the world a warmer, cozier place for everyone. It's like greeting card to the world, saying, 'Hey world, this is me; let's be friends.'
While the heroes of the LGBT+ community deserve applause every day, National Coming Out Day is the standing ovation, a reminder of how far we’ve come and the distance yet to cover. In essence, it’s like a rainbow, a little bit of everything in recognition and celebration of diversity.
During the 1960s, the LGBT community in the United States began to develop a more coherent and organized activist movement. This was a time when people who identified as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender faced significant challenges and widespread social stigma. Activists and organizations began working toward advocating for the rights and recognition of LGBT individuals.
In the early 1970s, the phrase 'coming out' became popularized within the LGBT community as a way to describe the process of revealing one's true sexual orientation or gender identity to others, often starting with friends and family. The phrase served as a metaphor for stepping out of the closet, shedding secrecy, and embracing one's authentic self.
The 1980s marked a pivotal turning point in the LGBT rights movement. The onset of the AIDS crisis not only brought devastation but also propelled LGBT individuals and organizations to demand recognition, support, and improved healthcare. As a result, 'coming out' gained further significance during this time, as many individuals felt increased urgency to be open and honest about their identity and experiences.
In the 1990s, there was a growing visibility of LGBT characters and storylines in mainstream media. Television shows like 'Ellen' and 'Will & Grace' played pivotal roles in showcasing characters who navigated the process of 'coming out' in their respective narratives. This increased representation not only helped to further normalize the concept of 'coming out,' but also provided more relatable stories for individuals grappling with their own identity.
The 2000s witnessed a heightened level of acceptance and support for the LGBT community. With advancements in legal recognition, anti-discrimination laws, and the spread of intersectional activism, 'coming out' took on new meanings of authenticity, pride, and self-affirmation. The concept shifted from solely being associated with personal disclosure to becoming an act of empowerment, solidarity, and celebration.
Today, 'coming out' continues to hold immense significance for individuals across the globe. It is seen as a deeply personal journey that varies in complexity and magnitude depending on cultural, social, and familial contexts. Moreover, the phrase itself has expanded beyond its initial meaning, with people 'coming out' about various aspects of their identity, including gender identity, non-binary identification, and more.
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