In honor of National Coming Out Day 2020, Bree Rhoten, Shift Lead @ Banfield Pet Hospital shares her story.
“My story is very similar to many out there. Growing up, homosexuality wasn’t something that was openly talked about. I honestly didn’t know what “gay” was until I got into high school. My junior/senior year, I started dealing heavily with depression. I didn’t know what was going on and I didn’t feel like I had anyone to talk to because I didn’t understand what I was feeling. My senior year, I finally started to understand myself. I met people who helped me accept that I liked girls and that it was okay to feel that way. After I graduated, I came out to my family and friends. I lost many friends but also learned who my true friends were. My family was loving and understanding but it was definitely something that was a struggle for them to accept.
People have said unspeakable things to me, and it took me a long time to feel comfortable being who I am in public. Even still when I’m in certain situations I keep my guard up. But I’ve found my voice and I am never afraid to stick up for myself or for those around me.
I’m proud to work for a company that celebrates me as a person, who recognizes that I’ve struggled, and wants to stand by me and help make a difference for others like me. I’m grateful to have friends, family, and coworkers who accept me for who I am without any judgment, and to have my girlfriend who I love so much.”
PrideVMC thanks Silver Partner Banfield Pet Hospital for their support and partnership!