...if I'm considering coming out?

Coming out is a unique experience from person to person. It can be the process of sharing one’s sexuality and/or gender identity with others (to come out to friends and family). It can also be the process by which one comes to accept one’s own sexuality and/or gender identity (to come out to yourself).

Coming out can be a lifelong process as folks negotiate when and/or how to come out in different contexts with different people (e.g. your classmate, your coach on a new sports team, your friends in a religious group). One’s reasons for coming out vary, and not everyone can emotionally, physically, financially, and/or spiritually afford to do so.

A few questions to consider about coming out may include: What does coming out look like for me? Why is it important to me, if at all? What am I excited about? What are my concerns? Why now? Are there any potential risks? Are there supports that I might need?

To be respectful of someone’s desire not be out, or to be out differently in different contexts, mirror the language they use to describe themselves in that space and avoid disclosing information about their gender and/or sexual identity.

If you are considering what coming out might mean to you, we invite you to reach out to any of our staff members, schedule a Qoffee with QuInterns chat, visit our Resources page, or consider making use of one or more of the services below.

Support Groups and Counseling for BGLTQ Students:

Religion, Gender, and Sexuality Discussion Group

Religion, Gender, and Sexuality Discussion Group

Mondays (4:00-5:00pm) except for February 19 and March 12
BGLTQ Office Meeting Room in Grays Hall
Contact: Sheehan Scarborough (scarborough@fas.harvard.edu) or Brian Rich (brich@huhs.harvard.edu)

Do you find yourself wanting to talk about your faith experiences, without feeling the need to compartmentalize your gender or sexual identity? Have you had trouble finding religious spaces that are queer-friendly, and queer spaces are religion-friendly? Are you trying to balance expectations from others about your gender, sexual,and religious identities? Are you just looking for people who can relate? Then consider joining the Religion, Gender, and Sexuality Discussion Group!

Part of the Religion, Gender, and Sexuality Initiative of the Office of BGLTQ Student Life.

Support and Education Group for Trans Students

Support and Education Group for Trans Students

Thursdays, February 8 - April 26 (5:00-6:30pm)
Contact: Brandin Dear, MSW, LICSW (bdear@huhs.harvard.edu)

This is a confidential support and psycho-education group for undergraduate and graduate students who identify as transgender, gender queer, non-binary, gender non-conforming, or are questioning their gender identity. This group will provide a safe and affirming space to build community, share stories, process experiences, and learn strategies for navigating challenging situations. Topics include social and legal aspects of gender transition, coming out to family and friends, finding support, medical interventions, physical and mental health, safety issues, relationships, coming out in internships/job settings, and more.

This is a confidential group. If you are interested, please email Brandin Dear, MSW, LICSW (bdear@huhs.harvard.edu) for further details.

BGLTQ Women's Support Group

BGLTQ Women's Support Group

Thursdays, February 8 - April 19 (5:00-6:30pm)
Behavioral Health, 6th Floor Smith Campus Center
Contact: Marin Smith, LICSW (msmith@huhs.harvard.edu) or call 617-495-2042
Open enrollment for first 3 sessions, then closed

This is a confidential support group open to undergraduate and graduate LGBTQ Women interested in a safe space to discuss concerns related to sexuality, relationships, family, health, academics and more. Queer and questioning Women of Color are especially encouraged to come check things out.

Interested students are encouraged to discuss the group in person with Marin Smith, LICSW. Please schedule by email (msmith@huhs.harvard.edu) or phone (617-495-2042).

BGLTQ Men’s Support Group

BGLTQ Men’s Support Group

Tuesdays, February 13 - April 24 (5:00-6:30pm)
Behavioral Health Conference Room, 6th Floor Smith Campus Center
Contact: Brian Rich, LICSW (brich@huhs.harvard.edu)
Ongoing enrollment

This group is for undergraduate and graduate students who identify as male and gay/bisexual in any regards. The purpose of this group is to provide a safe, confidential, affirming space for gay and bi men to discuss a wide range of psychosocial issues related to sexual orientation including, but not limited to, family, coming out, homophobia, dating, sex and identity. In the end, the hope is that this group will provide the opportunity for interpersonal affirmation, to reduce feelings of isolation, and to build a supportive and reliable community for group members.

Contact Peer Counseling

Contact Peer Counseling

Contact provides non-judgmental, non-directive, confidential peer counseling for Harvard undergraduates. Members are trained to handle a wide variety of issues and specialize in issues of sex, sexuality, sexual orientation, gender, and relationships.

Hours: Friday-Sunday, 8 PM - 1 AM, Thayer Basement B-04 (enter through Old Yard)
Hotline: 617-495-8111

For more information, reach out to harvardcontact@gmail.com with any questions!