I just saw the most amazing TED talk called Coming Out of Your Closet by Ash Beckham. It’s only 11 minutes long, but it’s really profound, so I hope you’ll take the time to watch it.
In it, she talks about the closets in which we all occasionally find ourselves. Closets are not just for people who are afraid to admit they’re gay. We all have them. If you are carrying around a secret that’s eating you up inside, or if you are avoiding having a really hard conversation with someone, then you are in a closet, too.
You don’t have to be struggling with your orientation to feel as if you are alone in the dark. You might not want to admit that you want a divorce. Or you may have to tell someone you have a terminal illness, or you have to confess that you’ve just lost your job and may therefore lose your house. We all have our hard truths that need to be spoken.
Recently I had to come clean to my family and friends that I had lost my entire life savings, what little of it there was, in a really stupid investment. I had been carrying around that stress and anxiety for a couple of years. I didn’t want to tell anyone because I felt like such a complete and utter fool. I didn’t want the people I love to think less of me, or get angry at me for going against their advice. But one day I woke up and I couldn’t carry the burden alone anymore. And you know what? Each confessional phone call was easier than the last, because every single person I spoke to was supportive. And just like that, it felt like a huge weight had been lifted from my shoulders. It was such a relief that I almost became nauseous from the abrupt halt of the adrenaline that had been impacting my health for years. It was honestly the best thing I have done in a long time.
Closets seem safe and quiet and cozy, but as Ash Beckham says, they’re no place for you to live. I encourage you to come out and play.