Tuesday, October 11, 2011

National Coming Out Day

October 11 is observed internationally as a day to celebrate and raise awareness of coming out and other GLBT (gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender) issues. 

Support is critical for out and questioning youth. They often experience bullying and worse in their daily lives, as most recently evidenced from the tragic story of Jamie Rodemeyer

But fortunately there are many resources available for GLBT youth. The young adult collection at  at Arlington Public Library offers a great selection of fiction and nonfiction books for GLBT youth. Try some of our GLBT suggestions from the What's Next Booklists. We also offer a GLBT  10 Worth Trying List with annotations.

 The Safe Schools Coalition is an excellent starting place for all kinds of information, including coming out. They also have a great page called "What Do You Say to "That's So Gay?" that provides some really good strategies for dealing with that offensive phrase.

If you're interested in starting a gay-straight alliance at your school or looking for ideas for your existing group, check out the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network (GLSEN.) You can find information about No Name Calling Week, Days of Action, and more. 

 And for friends, family, and allies of local GLBT youth,  PFLAG of DC is a wealth of information and help.

The main thing is to remember that there is help and support available. And it gets better.  

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