Talking to someone who has not come out of closet about their gender or sexuality yet can be tricky, so, ensuring you're not pushing them is crucial.
Understanding and navigating one's own sexual and gender identity can be a complex and sometimes confusing journey. The intricacies of coming out as LGBTQ+ are well-known, with the reactions of family members playing a pivotal role. But what happens when you suspect a loved one is queer, even if they haven't shared it with you yet? A heartfelt tale posted by u/Firm_Television5825 on Reddit depicted how a woman discovered her brother's possible queer identity when she caught him wearing her clothes and makeup. While she's aware of her brother's previous self-doubts about sexuality and gender, she faces the delicate challenge of approaching the topic without causing embarrassment. Her intention is not to question his identity but to find a way for him to comfortably express himself. Her story raises questions about how to support and respect loved ones who may be exploring their LGBTQ+ identity while also navigating boundaries.
The sister was facing the challenge of how to approach the subject with her brother after discovering him wearing her clothes and makeup. While she assumes he might be queer due to his gender expression, she acknowledges that some individuals may have an affinity for clothing and makeup that doesn't necessarily relate to their sexual orientation. However, her brother has previously confided in her about questioning his sexuality and gender, indicating a potential connection.
The sister's dilemma lies in her desire to address her brother's queer identity without causing undue embarrassment. She doesn't take issue with his identity, but rather with him using her belongings, in her own words, "especially the makeup, that shit expensive." Her concern is not gender-specific, as she mentions she'd make the same request of her sisters.
She even contemplates turning this into a bonding opportunity, offering to go shopping with him for his clothes and makeup to ensure he feels comfortable. Her paramount concern is not adding to the emotional burden he may already be carrying by keeping his identity hidden. She strives to minimize any potential embarrassment, fully aware of the impact it could have on him. Moreover, experts emphasize that the focus should be on providing unwavering support.
According to Your Tango, Psychologist Dr. Lori Beth Bisbey underscores the importance of "complete unconditional love" when someone comes out. In this regard, the sister is already on the right path, demonstrating her commitment to supporting her brother. While expressing support and love is essential, it's crucial to avoid common pitfalls, such as assuming you already know or imposing your own opinions on their identity. In this unique case, the situation is particularly delicate, given her brother's prior disclosures and experimentation with gender.
The Reddit community is quick to offer valuable suggestions, with some advising her to play it cool and ask her brother to seek permission before using her belongings. Others suggested a heartfelt gesture, like gifting him a makeup set with a note expressing love. However, they also cautioned against saying that you "accept" their behavior, which implies a need for forgiveness for their LGBTQ+ identity. It goes against the spirit of a loving and supportive response.
In the edit of her post, the woman decides to shower her brother with love and acceptance, even curating a collection of supplies she plans to gift him. As for the conversation, she's still contemplating the "how and when," but her unwavering love for her brother shines through, ensuring that whatever she chooses, it will be filled with compassion and support.