BY JILLIAN PRETZEL
Coming out videos on YouTube often showcase an LGBTQA+ person in an emotional and nerve-wracking moment. After all, coming out isn’t like it used to be. In this age of technology and the internet, lots of people use their YouTube channels to tell the world about their real selves. Some YouTubers cut together a funny creative video to update viewers on their sexuality. Others post hidden camera videos of them telling their friends or parents that they’re gay or bisexual. And others still record videos of themselves sitting alone with their camera, telling viewers their news.
The result is a ton of beautiful, inspirational, and amazing coming out videos on YouTube. Not only do these videos bring joy (and often happy tears) to those who watch them, but they also might inspire other LGBTQA+ people to come out as well. Here are some of the most amazing and inspirational coming out videos ever to hit YouTube.
Ingrid Nilsen revealed she’s gay in an emotional coming out video on YouTube
When Ingrid Nilsen posted her June 2015 video titled “Something I want you to know (coming out),” she was already a YouTube star. The beauty YouTube channel she’s best known for, Miss Glamorazzi, had a loyal following. Plus, her second, more personal channel, The Grid Monster, was already up and running.
But the world was watching Nilsen even closer when she came out online. “This is me,” she said in her emotional coming out video on YouTube, “sitting right here right now. This is me and the fact that I’m gay is a part of me.”
After coming out, a lot changed for Nilsen. She grew from beauty and style guru to gender equality activist. She also famously stumped President Barack Obama when she asked him why menstrual products were taxed as luxury goods in 40 states. In 2016, she also began fighting for gender equality as a Change Ambassador for the UN. In an exclusive interview with Yahoo! Beauty, she said of her coming out, “I stopped apologizing for the things I never should’ve had to apologize for in the first place, and it freed me.”
The Rhodes Bros got honest with their dad in their coming out video on YouTube
Aaron and Austin Rhodes, or The Rhodes Bros, are twins who’ve touched millions with their tear-jerking coming out video. In 2015, the 19-year-old twins filmed themselves calling their dad. “I’m gay, and, um, Austin is too,” Aaron said over the phone, “and, uh, we just wanted to, like, call and tell you.”
Their father’s response was full of love and acceptance. “You know I love you both. That’ll never change,” he said. “You’ve gotta live your lives. You’ve gotta do what you gotta do.” The brothers cried throughout much of their phone call with their dad, and, by the end of the video, the brothers left viewers with the advice that everyone should do what makes them happy.
In just one week, the video was viewed over 14 million times, and it put the twins on the map, with Aaron, Austin, and their father talking about the coming out video on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Their video has been viewed over 27 million times, making it the most-viewed coming out video on YouTube (via HuffPost).
Dan Brian took his mom’s advice to be who he is with his coming out video on YouTube
Some of the most touching videos are the ones where someone isn’t just coming out to viewers, but coming out to a friend or relative live on camera. Dan Brian (who goes by the screen name Mallow610) did just this in a 2012 hidden camera video in which he told his mom about his sexuality. “I’m gay,” he said shyly. “Surprise.”
His mom showed him a lot of love, immediately hugging him. She also warned him about prejudice and bigotry, but made it clear that she had no problem with him being gay. “You know I’m okay with that,” she said in his coming out video on YouTube.
In fact, it seemed she may have known her son was gay before he did. She said she was expecting to have this conversation with him, and was hoping he would feel comfortable enough to tell her. “If you have a friend or boyfriend or date, they’re welcome here, Daniel,” she told him. According to Instagram, Brian still has a great relationship with his mom to this day.
Singer Troye Sivan shared personal details with fans in a coming out video on YouTube
Australian singer/songwriter Troye Sivan came out to fans in a sweet yet simple coming out video on YouTube in 2013. “I’m still gonna make the same videos. I’m still the same Troye,” he said. “This is just some new information about Troye.” He started off the video — which has more than 8 million views as of this writing — talking about coming out to his best friend when he was 14. He then moved on to talking about his path to telling his father. He also shared how lucky he was to have such accepting friends and family, saying, “If anything, it just brought me and my friends a lot closer and me and my family a lot closer.”
Then, two years later, Sivan uploaded another video titled “Coming out (Part 2),” in which he talked about his experience after coming out. “In 2013, I made my coming out video, and it completely changed my life,” he said. Since then, Sivan has continued to find success with his YouTube channel, music, and modeling (via The New Yorker).
Try Guys’ Eugene Lee Yang shared that he’s gay with an epic coming out video on YouTube
Eugene Lee Yang of YouTube’s Try Guys came out as gay in June 2019, with a stunning music video titled simply, I’m Gay.” In the video, which was written, directed, and choreographed by Yang, he deals with issues of identity, religion, acceptance, and societal conflicts over LGBTQA+ issues. The video has no words, but is filled with vivid colors and modern dance.
As Yang explained to PRIDE, he was comfortable with his queer identity, but wasn’t ready to make it public until he came out with this video. “I do feel like, yeah, I always had a very particular wall up, and that it was totally because of personal protection,” he said. “There were relationships that could become tenuous should they know the full extent of my sexuality.”
After expressing his true self in his coming out video on YouTube, he’s been more open about his sexuality on social media, posting a photo with his dad during the 2019 Try Guys Tour, saying, “It’s been an amazing, surreal experience proudly performing as an out, gay Asian artist across America in front of thousands of people.”
Connor Franta gave his followers big news in his coming out video on YouTube
Connor Franta is a popular YouTuber who talks about everything from dating to clothes, to people at the airport. But back in December 2014, Franta used his channel to come out as gay. He started his coming out video on YouTube by saying, “2014 is truly the year that I have accepted who I am and become happy with that person.” Then, he talked about his experience growing up and realizing he was gay.
He explained that, growing up in the Midwest, he was afraid of being gay, so he hid his feelings and dated girls. He shared, “I felt so isolated because I had this secret that I couldn’t even talk to myself about, let alone other people.” After taking time to try to accept himself, he then came out to his friends and family. Once he finally came out, he said it went much better than he’d expected: “This whole thing that I had built up inside me to be this huge deal for 22 years… wasn’t.”
Hannah Hart talked about her personal journey in her touching coming out video on YouTube
Hannah Hart got her start making cooking videos in a series she called “My Drunk Kitchen” on YouTube. Since then, her career has grown in many different directions, but, in 2012, she was gaining fame for her heartwarming coming out video on YouTube.
In it, she explained that society tends to over-simplify what makes someone gay, saying, “People want to quantify it or qualify it and put it in a specific category of, like, these are the things that gay people do.” She then talked about her difficult upbringing and the conservative environment she was raised in. She described dating boys but knowing that something wasn’t quite right. Then eventually, she understood.
She stated, “It’s like seeing for the first time a friend you’ve had all your life, I guess if that makes any sense. It’s like, ‘I know you. I recognize you. Oh my God, what do I do? You’ve never been a part of my life before.'” Things went well for Hart after the video was posted, and, in July 2018, she announced that she and her girlfriend, Ella Mielniczenko, got engaged (via People).
Olympian Tom Daley shared he found love in his coming out video on YouTube
Olympian Tom Daley posted a coming out video on YouTube in December 2013. In it, he sat on a couch and told viewers, “In an ideal world, I wouldn’t be doing this video because it shouldn’t matter.” He went on to explain that he’s often asked in interviews who he’s dating, and he didn’t usually have an answer. But that changed. “I met someone,” he explained, “and they make me feel so happy, so safe, and everything just feels great, and, well, that someone is a guy.” The video was straightforward and honest, and Daley made important points about how important it is to be true to himself.
He said that he was a little surprised to find himself in a relationship with a man, but he noted, “It was always in the back of my head that something like that could happen.”
The person Daley was dating was none other than screenwriter Dustin Lance Black, who wrote the film Milk, and the two wed in 2017, as reported by Metro. Just a year later, in 2018, Daley and Black welcomed a baby boy.
Jacob Brooks talked with his mom in a coming out video on YouTube
Jacob Brooks isn’t a celebrity YouTuber. In fact, his coming out video is only his 12th video on his channel. But his 2018 coming out video on YouTube, titled “Coming out to my mom,” made an impact.
In the video, Brooks asked his mom to sit down with him. When he finally told her he’s gay, she put an arm around him and held him in a hug. “Oh my God, Jacob. It’s okay,” she said in a tear-jerking moment. “It’s alright, Jacob. I’ll love you no matter what.” Brooks’ mom added, “I just want you to be happy.”
Then, in May 2019, Brooks posted a video titled “Update on Life.” In it, he explained how he decided he was ready to come out and shared that the video ended up on YouTube because its file was simply too big to send directly to friends. He also talked about coming out to his dad, saying he was accepting but “was in shock.” At the end of the video, Brooks left viewers with a thought: “If you’re struggling, give it time, and one day you’ll be ready.”
Lucas Cruikshank was all giggles in his coming out video on YouTube
Lucas Cruikshank is a YouTuber known best for creating the character Fred Figglehorn and making various apperances on Nickelodeon (via Gazette Review). But, by 2013, he was posting videos as himself on his channel simply tiled, Lucas. In one August 2013 video titled “Are You Gay?!?” Cruikshank and fellow YouTuber Jennifer Veal got under a blanket and answered some viewers’ questions. After a couple questions, Veal read, “Are you gay?” and they both laughed. Before Lucas answered, Veal said, “He’s gay!”
Cruikshank confirmed that he is gay, saying, “My family and friends have known this for, like, three years. I just haven’t felt the need to announce it on the internet.” He then asked Veal if she knew he was gay when they first met, and right away she said, “Yeah.” While many coming out videos on YouTube can be serious and emotional, this one stands out as being filled with giggles and fun.
The Monastero Twins opened up to their parents in a joint coming out video on YouTube
Adam and Luke Monastero, YouTubers and fraternal twins from Canada, were 21 when they came out (via HuffPost). In August 2014, the brothers posted the video “Twins Coming Out to Parents Live,” in which they introduced themselves and revealed they knew their parents suspected that one of them, Luke, is gay. However, they said, the other twin, Adam, is gay as well, and they were planning to tell their parents together. Later, the twins appeared in their kitchen with their parents where they revealed their sexualities. Though Adam and Luke were nervous, their parents were accepting.
Luke said he was worried about causing conflict within their family, but his mom assured him that he shouldn’t worry about that. “Well, you know what, Luke? If it does, hon. It’s … that’s their choice. It’s their choice. It cannot be your worry or your burden,” she said in the coming out video on YouTube. “You can’t live your life for someone else.”
Shane Dawson told followers he’s bisexual in a tearjerking coming out video on YouTube
In 2015, Shane Dawson posted a coming out video on YouTube titled “I’m Bisexual,” in which he said, “I’m making this video because I feel like it can help a lot of people.” He explained his feelings for both men and women, and his past relationships with women. Dawson explained, “I can’t sit here and say that I am [gay] because that’s not real. That’s not genuine. But I also can’t sit here and say that I’m straight.”
The video received lots of support with fellow YouTuber Julien Solomita leaving the message, “Love you, Shane,” and YouTuber Jenna Marbles commenting, “Love you so much Shane, this is so wonderful and we are all here for you.”
In the video, Dawson said, “Now I’m just in a place where I don’t know who I’m going to end up with. I don’t know what my life is gonna be.” But come March 2019, Dawson proposed to his boyfriend of three years, Ryland Adams (via People). Dawson posted photos of the proposal on his Instagram, writing in the caption, “HE SAID YES!!!!!!”
Gigi Gorgeous revealed she’s a lesbian in a 2016 coming out video on YouTube
YouTube personality Gigi Gorgeous surprised viewers when, in 2016, she posted a coming out video on YouTube titled, “I’m a Lesbian.”
“I thought that I knew who I was attracted to,” she said, noting, “I’ve been in several relationships with men … but I’ve never experienced this feeling until I met this girl, and that’s how I know that I’m a lesbian.” She explained that she thought she was done coming out, as she first came out as a gay man before coming out as a transgender woman. She surprised herself when she became attracted to a woman, but acknowledged that things change and she’s okay with that. In her video, she empowered viewers who are questioning their own sexuality, saying, “I want to let anyone out there questioning their sexuality, or what’s normal, or how they should feel or should act, that it’s okay to feel this way.”
In 2019, she married girlfriend Nats Getty in a glamorous beachside ceremony. Viewers congratulated the happy couple, with one saying, “My heart is filled with joy and happiness for you both!!!”
Elle Mills lived her truth with a colorful coming out video on YouTube
YouTube star Elle Mills came out as bisexual in a heart-warming, silly, and sweet video in November 2017. In the video, Mills said that it started with a girl, but she explained, “Now I don’t want to get your hopes up — this isn’t a love story. But this is my coming out story.” She talked about insecurities but then came out to some friends in a fresh, creative way: by having them draw what they think her crush looks like. At the end of the video, she wrapped her house in rainbow plastic and came out to her mom, who said she accepts her daughter for who she is.
Viewers were just as supportive of Mills’ news as her friends and mom were, with one commenting on the coming out video on YouTube, “Omg Elle, I fully support you. You go girl! You like whoever you like! You’re still hilarious as ever!” Another said, “This video makes me cry every time I watch it! elle you’re so inspiring! thank you!”
BY JILLIAN PRETZEL