Joshua, 25, Manager for Trafalgar Square
When did you come out?
At 16/17, it is quite a few years ago so hard to pin down the date.
How did you come out?
My mum and I travelled to Preston to go shopping on a very hot summer day. The night before I received a 'love bite' from a guy so was wearing a light scarf to hide the fact, my mother was suspicious of my choice of clothing. When at the M&S cafe my scarf slipped (probably from the sweat generated from the heat) and my mum noticed the mark on my neck. She then said "Is that from a girl?". I replied with no. She followed up with "Is that from a guy?". I said yes. After a very short pauses which felt like ages she responded with "I knew since you were 8".
Why did you come out?
I didn't really, I knew my family were fine with homosexuality as my parents had gay friend. I didn't come out myself as it didn't really seem necessary and didn't really know when was the best time to so it.
Why do you volunteer with Pride in London?
I'm quite lucky that through out my life I've not had any negative responses to being gay. I hope volunteering helps anyone who has had bad experiences helps them realise there are people out there who love them regardless as they are being who they want to be.
Why do you think being out is important for the community?
It can help people who may have had a negative view or little experience of someone who is out. In 6th form I was out to people but a guy I talked to in chemistry lesson for a year didn't know. When he found out he said "You have surprised me as I had this view of gay people that they would try and have sex with me as I'm a guy. You have showed me that your just a guy like me, and I apologise for thinking that". Being able to expose someone to what homosexuality is and letting him coming up with his own view means I'm helping make a step in the right direction.
How has your life/ how have you changed since coming out?
I'm happier and truer to myself. I no longer have to hide any of my actions or think carefully of how or what I say next. It is like have a worry weight off your shoulders.