Gay Support, Gay Support Groups, Gay Support Organizations
Gay support groups and gay support organizations are critical, especially for people who, initially, find it difficult to come out as gay and can benefit from the support of others. Gay support groups and organizations work to support people of minority sexuality such as gay, lesbian, queer, transgender and bisexual. Some gay support organizations are specifically dedicated to supporting individuals while others focus on rights issues and gay politics as well. (There are also groups that support parents of gay children.)
Why Go to a Gay Support Group?
Some people feel very alone when they come to the realization that they are gay, but the fact is, they are not alone. It's estimated that between 5-10% of the North American population is non-heterosexual but often, people need to reach out to find others like them. A gay support group can help with this. In addition to putting a person in touch with others like them, gay support groups also make people feel comfortable in knowing that when they share information about themselves, they are telling others who have lived the same experience. In gay support groups, no one is judged for their sexuality and is only supported. Gay support groups tend to be peer-run organizations.
Online Gay Support Groups
There are some advantages to online gay support groups. For example, they are available in any location, at any time of day and they can be a first step for those not prepared to talk face-to-face with other gay individuals yet.
One place online gay support groups can be found is through DailyStrength.org. Thousands of people are members of these online support groups which cover everything from coming out to parenting to being transgender.
Gay Support Organizations, Gay Support Helplines
The GLBT National Help Center is a gay support organization that runs gay support helplines, gay youth support as well as peer-support chat and contains a database of gay resources. The helplines are:
- GLBT National Hotline: 1-888-843-4564
- GLBT National Youth Talkline: 1-800-246-7743 (PRIDE)
To find a gay support organization near you, use GLBTNearMe.org, The GLBT National Resource Database. GLBTNearMe.org can put you in touch with local gay support organizations and national organizations.