Being “out” at work

I’ve written previous blogs about when you realize you have a rainbow soul, coming out, acceptance, etc. What I haven’t covered is once you’ve come out to family and friends, what happens in work settings? And what happens when people start asking you those fun questions that can feel like they are prying you open. I want to write about this because it’s been happening to me lately.

I’m proud to be a lesbian and I normally don’t have a hard time coming out to new people, but one must assess the situation first before jumping in head first screaming, “I’M A HOMO!” Let me clarify; depending on your work setting (meaning what you do exactly), how close you are to your coworkers and how lenient the environment is determines how your job could possibly be affected by your coming out. It’s sad to even say that, but homosexuals lose their jobs all the time because they are gay.

When I started teaching at an Elementary School I would ask myself, “do I tell these people about me? Should I just lie about it?” I drove myself insane with all the questions. The last thing you want to feel at work is weird and uncomfortable. Recently one of my coworkers has been asking me a lot of personal questions and I feel a little wary because she has that “old-school” outlook on life, from what I’ve gathered of her so far. Yes, I want to tell her I’m gay, BUT at the same time I know I will be working with her all the time and her knowing could change the environment where I work.

I feel like a work environment should always stay somewhat “professional”. Again, it all depends on what you do and what the environment is like. Not everyone needs to know everything about me. And not just that I’m gay, but other personal things I may not want to share. Get what I’m trying to say here? Assess your situations first. I’m not saying be scared and never come out, but obviously if it’s going to make your work environment uncomfortable, why do it right away?

Please feel free to write your own thoughts & experiences. I’d love to hear them! :)

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