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Coming out. It's something that virtually all gay men face at least once in their life. Well, at least we should hope that that's the case. Undoubtedly innumerable men have gone from cradle to grave without ever coming to terms with their sexuality, let alone being open and honest with the world (if you're this category, then it's never too late!). Even if you live somewhere in the world where homosexuality is still forbidden to the point of physical endangerment, then you can still live a fulfilling internal life as a gay man. Even if you cannot come out to anyone except yourself, it's still worth doing. Of course, the hardest person to come out to is often you.

Usually speaking, gay men will suspect that they may be a little queer sometime during their early adolescence. As we discover what types of people we're attracted to, we suddenly have to grapple with the fact that we are homosexuals in a world that's predominantly populated by heterosexuals. Despite how accepting and tolerant society may be becoming, the feelings of somehow being different, an outcast, or even sinful can be a lot handle for a young boy. Especially one who's just growing hair on his chest for the first time.

When you first realize that you're gay, you may be ecstatic at your good fortune, or you may have wished you weren't. Regardless, accepting that not only is sexuality immovable but it's also going to play a massively significant role in your life can be a lot to process. From here on out, you're going to be thinking about dudes... pretty often.

Even if you have the most supportive possible family and friends, the hardest part will always be coming out to yourself. It takes time for everyone to mature and step into their identity, and being gay is no exception. Because no matter what hate and bigotry you encounter, with self-love you will always prevail.

So to anyone reading this in the early stages of coming out, just know that the whole gay community is eagerly awaiting you with open arms. Being gay may pose some hardships, but your life will still be filled with joy, love, friends, family, and success. And once you've come out to yourself, you can move on to the next stage: realizing how LUCKY you are to be gay. We'd never wish it any other way. :)

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