Copyright © 2019 Federation of Students, University of Waterloo operating as Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association
Come Out to Coming Out Week
Thanksgiving can be a stressful time for many in the LGBT+ community, who might struggle with coming out to their family or feeling like their true identity won’t be accepted at home.
That’s why, following the fall break, Glow Centre for Sexual and Gender Diversity has organized Coming Out Week, a series of activities designed to create a safe space and provide resources for students who might be struggling.
“It’s a little bit easier for people to come out to their families around Thanksgiving, so that’s why we host Coming Out Week around that time period,” said Alex McEwin, Service Coordinator at the Glow Centre. “Coming out to your family isn’t always easy, and we want to give students comfort and the realization that, even if their family doesn’t react super positively, there is still a community back at university where they belong.”
The events of Coming Out Week kicked off on Thursday, October 12 with Positivity Banner Signing in the SLC Marketplace. Visitors to the SLC were encouraged to drop by and write kind messages to those who are struggling with coming out. In the evening, there was a screening of Moonlight in The Glow Centre, with snacks and drinks provided.
Avoid the bad luck of Friday the 13 by attending Drag Me To The Bomber, a fan favourite featuring the talents of Miss Drew and the UW Drag Club. There will also be Feel Good Ice Cream in the SLC Great Hall during the day, where students can get free ice cream and answer LGBT+ related Jeopardy questions.
Monday Oct. 16 will feature Tales From Beyond The Closet, a speakers panel discussing experiences of coming out and what people can expect. Attendees are welcome to drop by and ask questions or discuss their experience with others.
Tuesday Oct. 17 will feature Show Your True Colours, where students will have the chance to do some tie-dye near the MC Egg Fountain. All shirts and tie-dye material will be provided.
On Wednesday Oct. 18, We're Glowing to Party will be held in the SLC Multipurpose Room.
“This activity is designed to get people excited and to bring more people out to connect,” said McEwin. “We want people to think it’s a great week.”
For this final event, expect lots of free Glow merchandise, snacks, board games and other activities.
Everyone is welcome and encouraged to take part in Coming Out Week regardless of sexual orientation.
“These events are open to anyone,” said McEwin. “It’s also somewhere people can show support for each other, and know how you can react if someone comes out to you.”
It’s also somewhere students can find resources if their families aren’t receptive right away.
“There’s still a chance that in the future they’ll be a lot better about it, but not everyone is going to be more receptive over time,” said McEwin. “It’s about finding a way to be okay with every possible outcome.”