Cake and Conversation: A Coming Out Story


It was a regular day–well as regular of a day that was possible during the sourdough/banana bread days of the pandemic, and my daughter was in the kitchen, hard at work decorating a cake.

Our Daughter’s Big Reveal

Once she finished, she called my husband and I into this kitchen for her big cake reveal. But it wasn’t just any cake, it was her coming out cake. It was a funfetti cake, with a pink, purple, and blue flag made with sugar crystals (I would later learn that this is the bisexual pride flag) and the rainbow sprinkles spelled out “I’m bisexual”.

Cake featuring bisexual pride flag

I immediately gave her a big hug, during which I could feel her heart pumping nearly out of her chest. Dad then wrapped his arms around both of us. At that moment, a bunch of thoughts rushed to my head… Why was she nervous to tell us? Have we said something that made her think this would be a big deal to us, or that we wouldn’t accept her? How do I not mess this moment up?

So I simply said, “Thank you for trusting us enough to share that with us, we love you.”

We then sat down and ate cake. Her dad did ask her why was she so nervous to tell us and she shrugged her shoulders and said she didn’t know. And I told her, we don’t care who you love, we just want you to be happy. Immediately, I wondered if saying we don’t care was the right phrasing, but then I decided that I was overthinking it, and we then carried on with regular conversation.

Did we get it right? I hope so… but to be honest, I can’t say for sure. It was kind of anti-climatic, but in my mind, I think that is how it is supposed to be… or at least I hope so.

Coming Out of the Closet… Literally

A few weeks earlier, as I was putting something away in her closet, I saw a pride flag taped inside her closet door. Her dad and I discussed it, and we both agreed that we would just wait for her to initiate the conversation when she was ready. But when the moment came, I still felt shockingly unprepared, nervous even. Not because I have strong feelings about her sexuality, because I don’t. I think I just put a lot of pressure on myself because I have heard so many beautiful and awful coming out stories, and if coming out was going to be a core memory for her, I wanted it to be a good one. The next day I came into her room and I said, “You know the whole point of the pride flag is to not be in the closet.” She gave me a little smile and then put her flag on the outside of her closet door.

Words of Wisdom

I wish I had some great advice to give all the moms out there, but as you can see, I do not have all the answers and I am still learning. But one piece of advice I can give is this:

Be an ally and let your child see you being an ally. This is important even at a young age. Just because you assume or hope your child is or will be straight doesn’t mean they will be. If your child decides you aren’t a safe space, it’s hard to course-correct later. According to the The Trevor Project’s 2022 National Survey on LGBTQ Youth Mental Health, LGBTQ youth who felt high social support from their family reported attempting suicide at less than half the rate of those who felt low or moderate social support. Being an ally can literally be a life or death issue.

*Author’s Note–I could not be more proud of my daughter. This post is written anonymously because while I experienced it, it is not my story. This was however written and posted with her permission. Happy Pride Month! To learn more about Pride and LQBTQ language, check out this great post!