Q&A: I've just come out of the closet as a psychic medium. How long will it take for people to accept?
In college, one of my classmates and soon to be best friend, was gay.
One day, while we were walking home from afternoon class, as we passed by a McDonald’s, which was near my apartment at the time, he shared with me how the story of how he came out to his family.
The story started and centered around his anxiety around how what he might say, may affect their level of love, acceptance and care for him. Would they reject him? Would they send him to a getting straight camp? Would his older brother make fun of him for the rest of his life? Would he still be able to attend the same church? How do you go about finding a boyfriend, anyway?
As he listed all of these anxieties and concerns out loud, enumerating exactly, line by line, what worried him about when and if he came out to his family, I realized something.
I was doing the exact same thing.
Over and over again, I worried about what people would think of me if they knew I could see the deceased.
I was scared about coming out, too.
And, these questions were part of my list of anxieties and hypotheticals about what may happen if I told living people that I also could see and hear dead people:
Would anyone sit with me on lunch break at my job?
Would my family try to convince me to see a therapist?
Would someone try to diagnose me with a disorder?
What if I received a prescription for a drug to get rid of it? Did I take it?
(because I was single at the time) When exactly do you tell someone this on a date?
(because I was in science at the time) Would people still take my work seriously?
Would people call me names in public?
What is my brother going to think?
Will my sister believe me?
Would they yell at me and call me wrong?
What if I was accused as a fraud, did I defend myself or walk away?
Invalidate all my experiences by talking about how it’s not possible, even though I’d experienced it?
What if they said I was just ‘doing it’ for attention?
My list could go on, and so could his. And by this time, as I was getting all worked up about my own anxieties and realizations, just as he was just getting to the best part of the story, and the most important part of the story, for me.
“So, what happened after you came out to your friends and family? How did they react?” I asked.
He smiled and, turned to face me directly, while we now stood outside of the front door to my apartment, “My brother told me he knew since I was 6 and put up Barbie posters in my room and my best friend, he actually kind of had a hunch all along, he said. And my parents? My dad said he would love me always and my mom, she turned her head away in disgust.”
My eyes got wide with shock and I immediately, my heart began to hurt and a frown came heavily across my face. I turned my head to face him, and opened my mouth to speak,
“How does she feel about it now?”
“Well, she’s starting to accept it.” he said. “I imagine I’ll give her about as much time to accept it as it took for me to accept it.”
Fast forward 6 years later, I was finally preparing to come out as a medium.
From the moment of that realization, it took me 6 years to tell the world at large I could see dead people.
So, you ask, “What happened when I came out as a medium? How did they react?”
Well, much like my college friend described in his anxiety filled tale, my experience was much the same. With each person I told, the worries and anxieties mounted and then released, until finally, I’d shared the ‘me’ of who I was fully with everyone I knew.
In this, I was overcoming one of my biggest fears one person at a time.
And guess what?
Pretty much everyone I told . . . already knew.
As it turns out, I hadn’t been doing as good a job keeping myself as a secret as I thought, just as my college friend, hadn't been doing as good a job of keeping his true self a secret, as he had thought.
Parts of who you are, whether you like it or not, tend to spill out everywhere.
There’s no way to avoid it.
The people who we love and admire and those who love and admire us, know things about us that we don’t even know ourselves. When we talk out loud, sometimes forgetting even what we are saying as we are saying it, they’re listening to it. When we read books, choose television shows, point out clothing that we wish to own in the boutique window, they’re seeing it. When we get upset, enraged over an injustice, or overly-saddened by a character in a fictional play, novel or show that we relate to, they’re feeling and noticing it. Those that we love and those who care for us, are external witnesses to our lives. They see what we sometimes don’t see and sometimes, are afraid to admit to others.
Believe it or not, your friends, family and even your closest co-workers, probably already have a hunch that they can talk to you about angels, or tell you thing that happened to them in yoga class last week without you thinking they’re weird, or share with you the strange suspicion they have, that they know you’ll be able to validate if they can just manage to walk across the office to tell you.
Most people already know you have some intuitive ability.
In a way, they can sense it. Perhaps it’s their keen observational skills or perhaps, a part of their soul has connected on a deeper level with you and who you are, a level at which both you or they may not yet be aware.
So, when you come out as an intuitive, a medium or a psychic, please know that for many, your secret gifts aren’t as secret as you thought.
For this reason, when you tell most people about your abilities, they'll accept instantly.
Most people, know someone who has passed and has felt their presence. Most people, have had a dream, a hunch or a knowing of something they couldn’t have otherwise known. If they have not gotten there yet, they at least know someone who has and will be able to relate. And these are ways in which you can relate to them.
When I came out as a medium, many people in my life started coming out of the woodwork with their own paranormal, spiritual or intuitive experiences. It was such a huge relief.
But for all of the insta-accepters, there are others who take a little while longer to come to terms with your abilities and the newness of what it means to have intuition or to use your inner Spirit to see.
but not everyone will accept you right away.
Thankfully, the individuals in this group are somewhere between slim and few. But, they may be very important members of your life. In this group, could be your partner, your best friend, your mother or your father. It could be the closest person of all or the person you care least about.
What do you do about them?
Take a moment to remind yourself how long it took for you to accept the newness of understanding who you are, in terms of your intuitive path or your spiritual abilities. Did it take you 3 months to jump into a realization you might have untapped psychic abilities? Or 1 year to come to terms with possibly being a medium? Or upwards of 10 years?
But what does matter is that you give others as much room and time to accept as you gave to yourself, at the very least.
Likely, they’ll come around.
When they do, there may be a peacemaking opportunity sent your way. Be on the lookout for this. Perhaps they will seek you out to learn about those in Spirit, want to discuss their wonderings about soul purposes, share with you an energy they felt coming from their plants as they watered them, or send you an article via email share about meditation. No matter how small the gesture or the outstretched hand, notice these peacemaking opportunities for what they are - an attempt to communicate and understand. And if you are ready, choose acceptance.
After all, that’s what we’re all seeking.
A small few, many not accept the news you share. And for these few, you may be waiting lifetimes. So rather than wait, accept.
Accept those around you for who they are, even if their beliefs and life experiences differ from yours.