Out or Out Of The Closet is the act of being open (to one or more individual) about ones queer/variant identity/trait. It is the opposite of being closeted. The act of opening up about ones queerness is called Coming Out.
Individuals do not have to "come out" if they have a conformant identity, as that is what society expects. "Coming out" about being cisgender, straight, monosexual, allosexual, alloromantic, monoamorous/monogamous, pronoun-conforming, gender-conforming, cissex, and/or dyadic can come across as offensive and mocking towards queer individuals, as coming out for someone that is queer can put them at risk for abuse/harassment/assault and in some locations can face torture/imprisonment/death.
Coming out should not be a necessary act to live authentically, as all queer identities should be normalized, however - until they are normalized - it is an act/decision that will continue to be made by queer individuals.
Ways to normalize queer experiences include educating others on them, raising children with the knowledge of queer experiences (gender-neutral parenting and non-conformant parenting), and creating representation in media/fictional sources where coming-out is not needed and where there are no expectations in terms of identity. If this is done, over time the act of coming-out will no longer be a struggle queer individuals will face (although this is likely going to take an excessive amount of time to be normalized.)
Some identities/experiences/traits one may have to come out about include the following:
- Being gay (lesbian/vincian/gai), gae, m-spec, a-spec, or having other marginalized attractions (such as being autosexual, autoromantic, objectum, etc.)
- Having a tertiary identity/experiencing tertiary attractions (such as having queerplatonic, alterous, or other lesser-recognized attractions.)
- Being ethically non-monogamous (ENM) or having an otherwise marginalized relationship (ie: casual relationships, breakup-buddies, intimaships, waverships, etc.)
- Being transgender/cisn't (transfeminine, transmasculine, transneutral, transandrogynous, the non-binary spectrum, xenogenders, etc.)
- Being intersex/having an intersex variation.
- Being altersex. This could be an altersex identity that is possible to achieve through surgery, (such as afabris) or an altersex identity that is not (yet) possible to achieve through surgery (such as xenogenitals.)
Non-queer identities/experiences/traits that are marginalized may also be necessary to come out as in order to be ones authentic self. This includes the following:
- Plural folks tend to experience a lot of a lot of invalidation, backlash, and mockery and in many cases abuse/harassment due to being a system/existing. In many cases, this causes systems to have a required coming out experience in order to live authentically.
- Alterhuman individuals tend to experience a lot of invalidation, backlash, and mockery for their internal sense of identity. In many cases, this causes alterhumans to have a required coming out experience in order to live authentically.
- Individuals that age regress, species regress, age-slide, or species-slide tend to experience a lot of invalidation, backlash, and mockery due to their regression, especially by those who experience impure-regression. In many cases, this causes regressors to have a required coming out experience in order to live authentically.
- Furries tend to experience a lot of invalidation, backlash, and mockery due to their interests and internal sense of identity, especially for sexual furries. In many cases, this causes furries to have a required coming out experience in order to live authentically.
The identities/experiences listed above also tend to overlap with the queer community in many cases.
Outing is the act of exposing someone else's queer identity to someone that they have yet to come out to. Outing is a disrespectful, unacceptable, and dangerous act as it can put the individual that was outed at risk and is betraying an individuals trust/safety.
Outing someone to their family, friends, loved ones, law enforcement, superiors, etc can put the individual at risk of being abused, harassed, assaulted, isolated, kicked out, and in some locations arrested or killed.
If someone tells one about their queer identity/experience, the individual told should not share it with anyone else without the queer individual's clear consent/permission, and should ask about the limitations of who is and is not allowed to know.
The flags were coined by Cryptocrew, specifically by their headmates Anderson and Alex, on October 4th of 2021.
The general coming out pride flag was designed by Arco-Pluris via Tumblr blog Beyond MOGAI Pride Flags on July 17, 2021.
For the gay (lesbian/vincian/gai) out flag, the rainbow represents gayness in general, the white represents non-binary and/or PNC/GNC gays (lesbians/vincians/gais/etc), dark pink represents female-aligned and feminine-aligned vincians, light pink represents m-spec vincians, dark blue represents male-aligned and masculine-aligned lesbians, and light blue represents m-spec lesbians. The circle represents the world and how being gay should be accepted everywhere.
For the out m-spec (bi/bin/pan/omni/abro/etc) out flag, black represents m-specs that are genderblind, green represents m-specs that recognize gender, pale gold represents those attracted to xenogenders, brown represents those that are attracted to anthrogenders, white represents non-binary and/or PNC/GNC m-specs, blue represents those that are attracted to male-aligned/masculine-aligned genders, pink represents those that are attracted to female-aligned/feminine-aligned genders, pale purple represents those that are attracted to neutral-aligned/androgynous-aligned genders, and purple represents those that are both gay and m-spec. The circle represents the world and how being m-spec should be accepted everywhere.
For the a-spec (ace/greyace/aro/greyro/etc) out flag, dark purple represents ace-spec individuals lacking full sexual attraction, light purple represents ace-spec individuals that do not lack full sexual attraction, white represents non-binary and/or PNC/GNC a-specs, grey represents aro-specs that enjoy romantic intimacy, black represents ace-specs that enjoy sexual intimacy, light green represents aro-spec individuals that do not lack full romantic attraction, and dark green represents aro-spec individuals lacking full romantic attraction. The circle represents the world and how being a-spec should be accepted everywhere.
For the marginalized orientation (tertiary identities/auto-spec identities/objectum identities/etc) out flag, light yellow represents tertiary attraction, dark yellow represents objectum attraction, green represents marginalized romantic orientations, purple represents marginalized sexual orientations, pink represents autosexual/autoromantic individuals, red represents objectum individuals, white represents non-binary and/or PNC/GNC individuals with marginalized orientations, and the rainbow represents queerness in general. The circle represents the world and how having a marginalized orientations should be accepted everywhere.
For the marginalized relationships (ENM/waverships/intimaships/casual relationships/breakup-buddies/etc) out flag, blue, red, and black represent ethical non-monogamy, white represents non-binary and/or PNC/GNC individuals with marginalized relationships as well as waverships/fluid relationships, pink represents relationships that are platonic-related (such as breakup-buddies and casual relationships), and purple represents relationships that are sex-related (such as intimaships.) The circle represents the world and how having a marginalized relationships should be accepted everywhere.
For the GNC/PNC out flag, blue represents feminine-aligned/female-aligned individuals who use he/him or present masculinely. pink represents masculine-aligned/male-aligned individuals who use she/her or present femininely, purple represents non-binary individuals who use binary-associated pronouns or present masculinely/femininely, white represents open expression/acceptance, mint green represents using neopronouns or binary-related individuals who present androgynously/neutrally, orange represents having fluid pronouns or fluid presentation, and red represents using no pronouns or having xenine presentation. The circle represents the world and how being GNC/PNC should be accepted everywhere.
For the trans/cisn't out flag, dark blue represents trans-men, light blue represents transmasculine individuals, purple represents transandrogynous individuals, orange represents xenogender individuals, light pink represents transfeminine individuals, dark pink represents trans-women, white represents genderfluid/multigender individuals and PNC/GNC cisn't individuals, light green represents being on the agender/genderless spectrum, and dark green represents being transneutral. The circle represents the world and how being trans should be accepted everywhere.
For the varsex out flag, orange represents medically-possible altersex identities, light purple represents being transsex, mint green represents altersex identities that are not yet medically possible, white represents non-binary and/or GNC/PNC varsex individuals, and yellow and dark purple represent being intersex. The circle represents the world and how being varsex should be accepted everywhere.