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coming out

Definition of Coming Out

(verb) The social, psychological, or political process and act of recognizing and acknowledging a sexual or gender identity within oneself and disclosing this to others.

Coming Out Pronunciation

  • IPA Pronunciation
    • American English
      • /ˈkʌmɪŋ aʊt/
    • British English
      • /ˈkʌmɪŋ aʊt/
  • Syllabification: (com·ing out)

Usage Notes

Additional Information

Related Terms


Works Consulted

Andersen, Margaret L., and Howard Francis Taylor. 2011. Sociology: The Essentials. 6th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Crooks, Robert, and Karla Baur. 2014. Our Sexuality. 12th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning.

Oxford University Press. (N.d.) Oxford Dictionaries. (https://www.oxforddictionaries.com/).

Wikipedia contributors. (N.d.) Wiktionary, The Free Dictionary. Wikimedia Foundation. (http://en.wiktionary.org).

Cite the Definition of Coming Out

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “coming out.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved October 17, 2019 (https://sociologydictionary.org/coming-out/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

coming out. (2014). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/coming-out/

Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “coming out.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed October 17, 2019. https://sociologydictionary.org/coming-out/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“coming out.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2014. Web. 17 Oct. 2019. <https://sociologydictionary.org/coming-out/>.