Spend National Coming Out Day in a Google Hangout With Dan Savage: Do Not Do This Alone

LGBT youth dying to live open and free can find unity in an ‘It Gets Better’ online community.

dan savage and terry miller at the white house it gets better google+ national coming out day hangout

Dan ‘It Gets Better’ Savage will have partied everywhere from the White House to your house when you join him on a National Coming Out Day Google Hangout. (Photo: Getty Images)

Allan MacDonell is TakePart’s News + Opinion editor, with a focus on social justice.

Dan Savage, the It Gets Better campaign, and Google+ are hanging out at the forefront of a paradigm shift for National Coming Out Day—October 11, 2012—and you can hang out with them here.

Coming out has gone through some changes in the past 20 years. Way back at the dawn of the ’90s, when the Internet was still in many ways theoretical, personal awareness and acceptance of a sexual identity that diverted from the accepted norm often emerged in an atmosphere of isolated trepidation.

A young man or woman residing in, for instance, anywhere other than sections of New York City, San Francisco or Los Angeles, California, might look in vain for community support of a dawning awareness that in some fundamental and personally vital way he or she was a little different from most of the other boys and girls.

MORE: It Gets Better Project Hits 20,000 Anti-Bullying Videos

Coming out is by its nature a process of vulnerability. Especially if the person coming out has no way to exchange experiences, observations and questions with a group of peers in the midst of a similar awakening, that vulnerability can give way to confusion, denial, shame, ostracism, internalized loathing and self-harm.

Join Dan Savage and a host of moderators and participants on Thursday, October 11, at 5:00 p.m. East Coast time for an “It Gets Better Plus” Google hangout.

But on Coming Out Day 2012, being alone while struggling to align an undeniable internal truth with the ways of the outside world is not mandatory.

Join Dan Savage and a host of moderators and participants on Thursday, October 11, at 5:00 p.m. East Coast time for an “It Gets Better Plus” Google hangout.

You’ll be online and in line with activists and advocates such as British rugby player Ben Cohen, writer Janet Mock, LGBT athletes, GLSEN’s Andy Marra, LGBT student and military ambassadors, and funny comedian Travon Free. You’ll be free to explore and expound on topics that include “It Gets Better in the Military,” “It Gets Better in Sports,” “It Gets Better International” and “It Gets Better LGBT Politics.”

No one in the hangout will be alone.

The hangout will be live at the It Gets Better YouTube channel, now in collaboration with TakePart TV, and accessible via www.itgetsbetter.org/hangout.

What will you bring to the hangout? Leave a preview of your views in COMMENTS.

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