But inside [the closet], in the dark, you can’t tell what color the walls are. You just know what it feels like to live in a closet. So really, my closet is no different than yours, or yours, or yours. Sure, I’ll give you a hundred reasons why coming out of my closet was harder than coming out of yours, but here’s the thing: hard is not relative, hard is hard. Who can tell me that explaining to someone you just declared bankruptcy is harder than telling someone you just cheated on them? Who can tell me that his coming-out story is harder than telling your five-year-old you’re getting a divorce? There is no harder; there is just hard. We need to stop ranking our hard against everyone else’s hard to make us feel better or worse about our closets and just commiserate on the fact that we all have hard. At some point in our lives we all live in closets, and they may feel safe, or at least safer than what lies on the other side of that door. But I am here to tell you: no matter what your walls are made of, a closet is no place for a person to live.

Ash Beckham

from “Coming out of your Closet”

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