Coming out of the closet is never easy, but it's almost always easier coming out to friends than it is to strangers and family. Friends already love us because of who we are, and thus tend to be more accepting than we sometimes give them credit for. That being said, there are a couple of things that I wish I knew before I came out to my friends.

1. They're Going to Ask A Lot of Questions

It's natural to be curious. I know I just told you that I'm gay as f*ck, but I'm not ready for an exam. "When did you know?" "How did you know?" "Wait, do you think [random guy who is nearby and is almost always semi-attractive] is cute?" 

Okay first of all, I only found out a few years ago (but everyone is different). Secondly, I know because I think boys are hella cute,  and lastly, hell no, I have high standards. 

Look, I get it, people simply want to know things. I appreciate the questions...well no not really, but I get it. However, there is one exception to this rule— the one question that always bothers me.

"Hey, Edmund do you know my gay friend Guadalupe from Greenland?"

Listen, honey, I know no one from Greenland. Do you know my straight friend Jerry from Japan? He's 40, bald, works at a car dealership? No? You don't? B-but you're straight! Do you see how ridiculous questions like that can be?

2. They Might Doubt You

This really does happen, especially if you're really good at being in the closet. You might even get asked for verification. So I would recommend printing out your gay card and bringing it with you for identification purposes (kidding, we don't have gay cards—yet). 

Chances are there will be a handful of people who respond like this, and if you're lucky it might just be one person. It also might be more of your family members, because many families raise their children automatically assuming that they're straight. But I did have a friend ask me once if I was sure, to which I replied with:

3. You Will Probably Be Labeled

This actually came from some of my gay friends. I know, I'm shook as hell too. When I came out to a few of these friends they started throwing out terms in my direction that are well-known in the gay community like "twink," "otter," "cub," and of course "bottom" and "top."

I'm sure those who are unaware of these concepts are asking themselves, "What does a twinkie have to do with gay guys?" And to answer that we need a completely separate article about gay lingo.

Your LGBTQ+ friends are probably excited to have you come out. So don't be too surprised when they want to claim you in their respective groups, it happens. It might not happen the second you come out, but it does occur over time. It isn't necessarily a bad thing either, but it can be draining trying to figure out what part of gay culture you fit into.

4. Dealing With All the Stereotypes

You knew this was coming, the inevitable stereotypes that come with being LGBTQ+. You might have people instantly thinking that because you're gay that you want to do "gay things." For example, some friends will ask you to go to parades and stuff, which is nice, don't get me wrong, but that isn't something that every gay person does. 

Stereotypes are practically engraved in some people's brain. The only way to get rid of them is with time. However, I've found that in today's day and age, more and more people are avoiding these stereotypes. Just be aware, they're still out there.

5. Support, Support, Support 

Listen, most of your friends—if they are true friends—are going to be there for you no matter what. They will love you no matter what your gender or sexual orientation is.

I hate getting too sappy, but I'm being real with you all here. I cannot express to you how much support I got from my friends when I came out. I realize that not everyone gets as much support as they hope, but trust me, friends are some of the best sources of support you'll ever get. 

It makes sense to be nervous; everyone is when it comes to coming out. The most important thing to remember is that they are your friends, and orientation doesn't change any of the memories you have together.

6. "I Always Knew"

Alright bitch we're fighting. I hated when people told me this. Maybe this is just for me personally, but expect people to say it. They will proclaim that they knew from the moment they met you, and sure they might have, but it's just rude.

You don't see me going, "Oh, I knew you were straight from the moment I met you." Wanna know why? Because it's unnecessary. I don't want to hear that. It took me five years to find out I was gay, I do not want or need to hear that you knew it from the second you met me.

Anyways, your friends, especially friends who are not in the LGBTQ+ community, will react in different ways. The important thing to remember, however, is that your friends love you. They might be a bit shook, confused, or ask a lot of questions—but they're still your friends. Plus, you need that support from your closest network because they will provide you with all the help you'll ever need.