Coming out will never be easy even with a loving family and friends. As a teen, it may work better with “what if” impersonal questions to friends – good friends may already have their suspicions and get that you are wondering and grappling with who you are. Maybe a few friends have LGBTQ family members who are quietly out and accepted by the family. Maybe they are LGBTQ allies. Don’t be afraid to ask them “if the shit hits the fan, could I stay with your family?”. Be prepared if things go badly.
Families – there are all types from fully committed to their children and each other no matter what to basically dis-functional and everything inbetween. You may have some sense of how they may react but too often we wear rose coloured glasses hoping for the best and not expecting the worst from our parents.
Telling – be prepared for things going wrong. Try to pick a time and situation where all are relaxed and not rushing off to do other things. Brothers and sisters? – it may be best to start with one that you are closest to, like good friends they may suspect that you are different from “normal” but you are family. Remember that your parents may be ignoring the tell-tale indications that you have silently been giving out but maybe they have been wondering and unsure about you and waiting for you to speak up.
The Aftermath – hopefully things went better and smoother than your wildest dreams! Your “what if” preparations are not needed… or maybe things got heated and you need a place away for a little while, you have prepared. Or they toss you out the door… but you prepared for that outcome too.
Oh, your friends family? They may not be wild about your gender expression but you are not their child thus “not their problem”. They may have no concerns and be willing to accept you which would be great. Or they will tolerate you for a little while as you sort things out for yourself.
School – stick with it and do your best to complete high school. Where ever your life may lead you, having high school completed makes it easier. You may have big dreams but remember you are still a minor thus don’t have many rights. Don’t sass the cops, that is only asking for trouble, if they question you hold your cards to your chest letting out just minor information in general but if it is something bad then tell what you know.
Drugs and Alcohol – they can be very inviting as a way to escape into oblivion if only for a while. I am not going to say don’t do drugs or drink but I will say be cautious with drugs and alcohol as becoming addicted can sneak up on you and you are at increased risk for addiction.
Street Living – it ain’t easy, food and shelter are your primary goals. Try to avoid the need to turn tricks or deal drugs… for many that becomes a dead end street. Your life is worth more then dead by 30 years old.
Whatever happens, good luck. If not your birth family, I hope that you do find a family that will love and support you as you learn your gender expression.