Andrew Page of KaleidoScot shares his story of coming out: “I grew up in the Hebrides and it wasn’t really the kind of place where it was easy to come out. In my teens my identity was actually quite confused; the inevitable consequence of a religious culture that treated homosexual feelings as sinful or temporary. It was made tougher by the fact that my dad was gay; my parents had divorced when I was very young and no-one was to mention his sexuality. Coming out wasn’t easy in the early 1990s, and made even more difficult by my context and setting.
“I spent a year at Oban High School, which for the first time allowed me to meet gay and bisexual people. I was able to explore and finally embrace my identity. It took me some time before I accepted myself as bisexual and was able to come out to everyone who mattered to me – it was in my mid 20s. This wasn’t so much because I was worried what they might think, but because I was still finding out who I was. When I did finally go public about who I was, not only did I feel a great sense of relief, but I also found that some of the people I thought would be most hostile were actually massively supportive – especially my Christian friends.
“There are some people in my family who still don’t accept this and will never try to understand my sexual identity and why it’s important to me – one of them says that bisexual people can’t scientifically exist – but their intolerance is their problem. It doesn’t bother me. The people who matter most to me have helped me embrace my sexual identity – something that could never have happened if I hadn’t come out.”