The New York Times has begun a new project entitled “Coming Out” taking the stories of LGBT youth straight from their mouths and into the view of millions of Americans. What better way to learn about the struggles of LGBT youth today than by asking the youth directly?
With the help of The Trevor Project, who sent out a message asking for interested youth to share their stories with NYT, they received more than 250 responses to begin this project.
The Times editors spoke to or e-mailed over 100 youth already, with varying experiences coming from all parts of the country.
Jane – “I was attracted to girls and boys and I knew that this meant I was doomed.” | Charlie – “I decided at about age 9 or 10 that I was going to fake being straight for the rest of my life.” | Anonymous – “As I fight, I feel more resilient.” | Dan – “As I fight, I feel more resilient.”
I think we forget sometimes exactly how intelligent our youth can be. Reading these stories is more than inspiring for me to keep fighting for our rights so that the youth of the next generation won’t need “coming out” stories. The audio clips that have been put together are fantastic, and what is even more amazing is all of the positive comments on each of them, from LGBTQ adults, from parents of LGBTQ youth, from teachers, other LGBTQ youth, and youth allies.
Not only are these pieces inspiring to out LGBTQ people like me, but they are are educational for those who may not have any relationship with the LGBTQ community. In addition to the mass amount of stories, The New York Times is providing talking points, questions, and related activities for parents and teachers.