Have a Gay Friend

Are you looking for a new gay or lesbian friend? Perhaps you have always wanted a gay friend or maybe you just want to meet other gay and lesbian people like you. Or did you just find out that your friend is attracted to the same sex and you are unsure how you feel about that? Whether you are looking for a new gay or lesbian friend or you are trying to come to terms with the an existing friend's sexuality, there are clear and easy ways of doing these things.


Finding a Gay Friend (If You Are Also Gay)

  1. Go to a city that has lots of gays and lesbians. Studies have shown that there are more gays and lesbians living in cities than living in rural areas.[1] If you want a better chance of meeting gay and lesbian people in your everyday life then you should consider living in a large city. This is particularly true of specific cities, such as San Francisco, California, which are known for having a large LGBT population.
    • This is not to say that gay and lesbian people don't live in rural communities as well! They may just be a little harder to find.
  2. Go to a gay or lesbian bar. If you want to make a gay or lesbian friend you can meet lots of them at a bar. Many towns have bars that specifically cater to gay and lesbian clientele. It may be nerve wracking to go the first time but just remember that many other people at the bar are there looking to make friends as well.
    • Even if you don't drink you can still make friends in a gay bar. Try practicing your pool game or going dancing at a gay or lesbian bar that has those activities.
  3. Go to a gay-straight alliance or LGBT community center meeting. If you are too young to go to a bar (or you don't like going to bars at all) you can find gay people in other places. A good place to meet gay or lesbian folks is at a LGBT community center.[2] Many LGBT community centers have a wide variety of programs and activities that you might find fun and entertaining. In addition, you will have the opportunity to meet new people, and possibly make some friends.
  4. Attend a Pride celebration. This is an annual celebration that commemorates the beginning of gay liberation and cities usually have a parade and festival that occurs in June. Pride is a good time to meet other gay and lesbian folks in a fun and jubilant atmosphere. Consider marching in the Pride parade or attending a Pride concert or event. These are all activities that could lead to a new friendship.
    • LGBT Pride celebrations have a wide variety of activities associated with them. There is usually a parade but there are also usually concerts, parties, and festivals involved.
  5. Volunteer for a gay or lesbian organization. You are sure to meet other gays or lesbians if you volunteer for an organization that is working for gay rights. Pick an organization that if fighting for a cause that you believe in and give it your all. That way you will make a difference in the world and you may make some good friends at the same time.
    • There are a wide variety of causes that you can get involved in. For instance, there are organizations working for the right to gay marriage, for the legal rights of LGBT folks, to end violence and discrimination, and a ton of other causes. Pick the cause that is most important to you.
  6. Join a gay or lesbian sports team. In many cities there are sports teams, or even whole leagues, that cater to gays and lesbians. Perhaps you are really good at soccer and you would love to play with gay men. There may be a team just for you.[2]
    • Being on a team with other gays and lesbians will increase the likelihood of making a gay or lesbian friend. The camaraderie of sports can really be a great way to break the ice and build a lasting lasting friendship.
  7. Post on an online forum. If you are a gay or lesbian who wants to meet other gay or lesbian folks, try joining an online forum. This is especially good if you are a person that is very shy. Online forums offer you privacy and eliminate the awkwardness that goes along with talking to strangers in person.
    • There are a wide variety of LGBT forums online. Make sure that you find one that is focused on friendship, not dating, if that is really all you want. If you go onto a general website and you think someone is flirting with you, make it clear from the get go that you are only interested in friendship so that you don't hurt anyone's feelings.

Making a Gay Friend (If You Are Straight)

  1. Act normally. You shouldn't act any differently when trying to make a gay or lesbian friend than you would when making a straight friend. Don't worry about only talking about LGBT subjects. Gay and lesbian people like to talk about other things too. Make conversation about topics you care about, in hopes that you have something in common with your new potential friend.
  2. Be on the look out for a gay or lesbian friend in your day to day life. Gay and lesbian people are probably all around you, you just don't know it. Befriend people at work, in your church, at your gym, or at your salon. Your new friend may just be gay!
  3. Don't make friends with someone just because he or she is gay or lesbian. You shouldn't expect to get a stereotypical friendship when befriending a gay man or lesbian. Instead, you should try to make a gay or lesbian friend because you want a really good friend that you have a lot in common with.
    • Forget about stereotypes. Gay and lesbian people lead a wide variety of lives and have a huge array of interests. Don't assume a gay man is going to be interested in fashion or a lesbian is automatically going to be interested in softball. These are stereotypes and they are not universally true.
  4. Put yourself out there. Attend LGBT events or volunteer for LGBT causes. Join a LGBT organization that wants straight members, such as a Gay/Straight alliance at your school.[3] Do all you can to involve yourself in LGBT community. While you can probably meet gay or lesbian people in your day to day life, it will probably be easier if you put yourself out there and go to them.
    • If you are going to join LGBT causes, you need to really believe in the work you are doing. Don't just join to make friends. Join to make friends and make a difference in the lives of those you want to befriend.

Reacting to a Friend Coming Out

  1. Thank and commend your friend for sharing this piece of news. This is a huge, scary moment for your friend. Your friend is probably very worried about your reaction and the possibility of losing your friendship, or worse, being ridiculed or betrayed. No matter how you feel about your friend coming out, the first thing you should do is thank her for trusting you enough to confide in you.[4]
    • Your first reaction is important. This is a big moment for your friend. If you need a second to catch your breath, that's okay.
  2. Listen to what your friend is saying. Even if you are surprised or immediately repelled by your friends confession, your friend deserves your undivided attention. Don't give your gut reaction, but instead give your friend the time he needs to explain the situation and how he feels.
    • This means that you should avoid preaching to your gay or lesbian friend. Be a good friend and listen instead of telling your friend he is wrong.[5]
    • It's okay to ask respectful questions. You will probably have a lot of questions. You can ask things like "Who else have you told?" or "How long have you known?"[5] But avoid questions that undermine what they've just told you, such as "Are you sure?", "Do you think this is just a phase?", or questions that are too intrusive, such as if they've had any sexual experiences with another person.[5]
  3. Ask for some time if you need it. Maybe being gay conflicts with your beliefs, or you're just so shocked and confused you really don't know how to react. Keeping in mind that this is far more difficult for your friend than it is for you, it's okay to tell your friend you need a few minutes or even a few days to process the information.[4] But if you can, give him a smile or even a hug to reassure him.
    • Remember that your friend is likely terrified of your potential reaction and that he may have risked a lot by telling you. Keep any negative feelings like anger or disappointment to yourself.[4]
  4. Act as normally as possible. Once you make the decision to continue being friends, either treat your friend normally, or in a calm respectful manner.[5] When you really think about it, not much has really changed in your relationship with your friend and your attitude should reflect that.
    • This doesn't mean that there won't be any changes in your relationship. If just means that your friend is still your friend.
  5. Support your friend. You need to remember that your friend will be more affected by her coming out than you will be. She may lose the support of her friends or even her family by coming out, and she'll need your support more than ever.[5] Your job as a friend is to provide that support and a shoulder to lean on when your friend needs it.
    • In the long run, your friend's sexual orientation is about her and not you. Remember not to make the situation all about you.
  6. Keep it to yourself. It's your friend's decision where and when and if he comes out to someone, not yours. If your friend confides in you, respect his confidentiality and don't tell anyone else unless he has given you the okay.[5]
    • Even if someone else asks, this is not your news to share. Don't make any assumptions about who knows about your friend's orientation, and definitely don't say anything on social media unless your friend says it's okay.[4]

Accepting a Friend's Sexual Orientation

  1. Figure out what your issues with your friends sexual orientation are exactly. Are you homophobic and that is why you are having a hard time with your friend's sexual orientation? Are you afraid of being made fun of for having a gay friend? These are all questions you need to contemplate in order to continue your friendship.
    • One of the central questions you need to ask yourself is: Do you care about your friend to the point where you value your relationship? If the answer is yes, then it is important for you to continue working on your relationship.
    • Sometimes straight people who have a friend of the same sex who comes out as gay are worried that their friend will now be attracted to them. Realize that this is the same as having straight friends that are members of the opposite sex. Not every gay person of the same sex will be attracted to you, just as not every member of the opposite sex will be attracted to you.
  2. Read about the nature of sexual orientation and how to deal with your friend's sexual orientation. It is not your friend's job to educate you about the issues you are facing. She has enough on her plate dealing with the effects of coming out.
    • You should seek out information on reliable sources on the internet or in books on the subject.
    • You can also talk to other people who have dealt with the same issue.
  3. Talk to someone other than your friend. You should not force your friend to help you accept him. He has enough to deal with already. Instead, see if there's a local chapter of PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays), which may help you find answers and other people with gay friends or family members.[4] You may also wish to talk to a professional counselor or therapist or someone that you trust. If you choose a mental health professional that is accepting of LGBT identity, they can help you understand and move through your feelings. They may even be able to help you accept your friend's sexual orientation.
    • If you choose a mental health professional that is accepting of LGBT identity, they can help you understand and move through your feelings. They may even be able to help you accept your friend's sexual orientation.
    • You can also talk to your religious leader or others who share your beliefs. This can be especially helpful for someone who is having a hard time keeping their religious faith while also supporting their friend.
  4. Realize that your friend is still your friend. Just because your friend is attracted to people of the same sex does not change your mutual interests or the memories you've shared. It's important to keep this in mind when working to keep the friendship alive and when reassuring your friend that your relationship is still important and strong.
  5. Make your choice. Is your friendship worth potentially being made fun of? Are you willing to stand up against someone bullying your friend? Are you confident enough with your own sexuality to have a friend whose sexuality is different from you? If your relationship is important you will need to do some work on yourself in order to keep your friendship strong during this new phase.
    • Consider making a pro and con list. Just write down everything you're afraid of for the cons, and everything good that would happen for the pros. Discuss this list with your therapist or counselor so that each issue can be addressed individually.
    • If you are having a hard time accepting your friend's sexuality then this may just mean that you stay friends by you keep your distance. If you love your friend but you cannot accept her sexual orientation then you should probably just keep your thoughts to yourself.


  • Don't be hurtful to your friend. Be calm and don't freak out. People have feelings and they need support when exposing their inner thoughts and desires.
  • Whatever you decide to do, don't blab to the entire world. This is especially important if your friend haven't told anyone else yet.
  • Depending on your own personal beliefs, a homophobic response might seem logical. However, it's not. Be respectful!

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Sources and Citations