Helping Gay and Lesbian through the Coming out Process


  • Elda Hallkaj


Coming out is described as a process of recognizing, exploring and disclosing an alternative sexual orientation. This process may entail several pathways until the gay or lesbian individual integrates its self identity. As the process unfolds, there is a multitude of feelings and thoughts that will be experienced. Gay and lesbian need to overcome the negative feelings of shame and guilt that are most often felt as a result of the stigma placed on homosexuality. Found without support, they are self isolated. At this point, individuals may be at increased risk for substance abuse, or other risky behavior as multiple partners, unprotective sexual intercourse. Traditional models of explaining the coming out are very linear and omit a number of dynamic of the process. The new perspectives of the coming out display it as an ongoing and multilayered process. As such it involves a number of complex cognitive, affective, behavioral and social changes that are relevant to the field of counseling. For the best benefit of gay and lesbian individuals, affirmative counseling provided by competent and nonjudgmental counselors strives to build self-efficiency and leads them through the process of identity integration.

Keywords: gay, lesbian, coming out, counselling, affirmative.




How to Cite

Hallkaj, E. (2015). Helping Gay and Lesbian through the Coming out Process. ANGLISTICUM. Journal of the Association-Institute for English Language and American Studies, 4(6), 88–95. Retrieved from



Volume 4, No.6, June 2015