Hi! I’m trying really hard to finally work up the courage to come out to my parents. My big incentive is that I’m about to move to California to continue my education. I’d like to take this opportunity to start fresh and tell my parents my sexual orientation. Throughout the years I feel I’ve been holding back from them, and have felt isolated in my own home because I haven’t shared all of my feelings with them. My parents aren’t truly homophobic, but they do have their moments. For example, my mom cried when gay marriage was passed last year because she felt it devalued her marriage, and pretty much every time we drive by a gay-friendly bar they’ll make a very derogatory comment. There’s also the occasional graphic and derogatory comment about gay sex. It’s comments like this that have kept me in the closet. Otherwise, I have a wonderful relationship with both my parents, and they love me unconditionally, but I’m so afraid to tell them because I’m afraid it will totally change the way they see me, and I don’t want things to change between us. My mom likes to think she raised the perfect boy, and I’m afraid that if I tell her she’ll be disgusted and disappointed and think she did something wrong in raising me. I want to tell them so badly though! I also don’t want to spend the rest of my 20s in the closet. Especially since I’m about to start going to a new school. One thing I deeply regret is that I remained totally closeted all through college, even though I went to an extremely liberal school. I’ve never been on a date or kissed anyone, and I want so badly to feel what that’s like. I’ve fallen in love a couple times with straight guys, and it made me feel so alone and angry with myself for having these feelings. I have so much love to give, but I’m afraid to let it show. My parents are going to be helping me move in to my new apartment and stay with me for a bit to help me get settled. I’m thinking of telling them right before they leave to go back home. That way I won’t have to face them for an extended period immediately afterward. Does this sound like a good idea? I’ve never come out to anyone in person before, so I’m also wondering if I should wait to come out to my parents until after I’ve become more comfortable telling other people. What do you guys think? Should I tell them before they leave me, or hold off for a bit longer? One thing I’m also apprehensive about is of is how the gay community will treat me. Clubbing isn’t really my thing, and I’m not interested in tons of partying, drugs, one-night stands, or anonymous sexual encounters. One of the things I want more than anything is to share my life with another guy in a faithful, monogamous relationship and I’m worried that it will be very difficult for me to find someone like that in the gay community, which is known for being less monogamous than heterosexual people. Are my worries justified at all, or am I just showing how ignorant I am about this? Sorry if that was a bit long, but this is the first time I’ve ever shared these concerns with anybody, and I feel really desperate for advice. I can’t talk about this stuff with anyone. I would appreciate any tips for coming out! Thank you so much for reading this! It means a lot!