Please note, these might not fit everyone’s experiences, but are general guidelines to help navigate sometimes challenging issues.
If you are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and/or Queer…
- Don’t assume you know how somebody will react to news of your sexual orientation or gender identity — you may be surprised.
- Remember that “coming out” is a continuous process. You may have to “come out” many times.
- Don’t wait for your family’s attitude to change to have a special holiday.
- Let your family’s judgments be theirs to work on, as long as they are kind to you.
- If it is too difficult to be with your family, create your own holiday gathering with friends and loved ones.
Before the visit…
- Make a decision about being “out” to each family member before you visit.
- If you are partnered, discuss in advance how you will talk about your relationship, or show affection with one another, if you plan to make the visit together.
- Have alternate plans if the situation becomes difficult at home.
- Find out about local LGBTQ+ resources.
During the visit…
- Focus on common interests.
- If you are partnered, be sensitive to his/her/their needs as well as your own.
- Remember to affirm yourself.
- Connect with someone else who is LGBTQ+—by phone or in person—who understands what you are going through and will affirm you along the way.