COMING OUT DAY - Ciaran
Everyone has a different story to tell when they talk about “Their Coming Out Story.” People come out for different reasons, in different ways and have different reactions depending on the love and support they receive from their family and friends.
I joined Police Scotland in September 2016 and at that time I was still of the mind set that I was straight. However two years ago at the age of 24 I realised who I really was and stopped hiding away my emotions and feelings and came out as gay. To be perfectly honest something had been playing in the back of my mind for many years before but I never thought I was gay, I just always put it
down to thoughts, stages and life.
As I mentioned, everyone’s stories are different as are the response they get from friends and family. I was blessed to say the least. My family and friends are and were very supportive. To date I haven’t experienced any homophobic remarks or slurs outside of work however working within an organisation like Police Scotland and dealing with members of the public I have had homophobic comments directed at me.
Since coming out I can honestly say that I have had the best two years of my life so far. I have met so many great friends within the LGBTI community and have managed to incorporate my work as a front line police officer and the LGBTI community by becoming part of the LGBTI Police Association. In July 2020 I started dating someone and currently living my best life.
In August 2020 I took on the role as one of the divisional reps for the LGBTI Police Association in order to promote the association and to encourage others to join. Whether that be someone who is part of the LGBTI community or simply a supporter who wishes to be an Ally.
What I would say to any person, no matter their age, everyone is different with regards to when the right time is to come out and live your true life. Do not let anyone push you, do not hold emotions in. The LGBTI community is one where you can talk to people and especially within the LGBTI Police Association, if you need someone to talk to for guidance, re-assurance, support and advice, I think I speak on behalf of the whole association that no one would turn you away and would in fact help you on your journey.
I certainly cannot deny that it is a scary thing coming out, but with the right people behind you and the right support it can be one of the best things and the best feelings of your life. As all the worries and burdens lift off your shoulders and you start living the life you want.
So, if there is anything to take away from this it is: do it when you’re ready, do not be scared to ask for help and guidance, believe in yourself but most importantly, be you!