June is Pride Month and we here in New Jersey have a record of being very friendly towards the LGBTQ community. While we still have a long way to go in some areas, we are definitely on the right track.

I came out as gay at the age of 13 to one of my closest friends, Trevor, and it was one of the hardest things that I had to do. But at the time, I knew that I needed to tell at least one person because, at the time, Trevor was one of my best friends. So I told him, and I think we can both (to this day) go through exactly what happened afterward. We were playing video games and he paused it and gave me a hug and said: "I love you, bro"... and then proceeded to tell me that he was hungry and we should go heat up the Chinese food. While funny, I am a firm believer that if I never came out to Trevor -- I was never going to come out. It took me three more years to tell my parents who only had loving things to say to me.

It breaks my heart when I hear people that have coming out stories that go wrong. How hard is it to love one another, especially when it is a family member. I know several people that came out to their family and friends and did not get a good response and it really hurt them. Luckily, they are all in much much better situations now.

So while someone coming out to you should not be taken lightly by any means, here are some totally Jersey style responses after you say "I Love You".

 

"... so are we getting a Pork Roll Egg & Cheese or not?"

"... you're still a wise guy."

"... phew, I thought you were going to say that you are a Benny or something."

"... let's celebrate and go get a sub from Wawa."

"... can you hurry up, it's going to take like 10 minutes to get to the beach!"

 

Happy Pride Month. Love all that are different from you. If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the suicide hotline 1-800-273-8255.