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ComingOut

Watch This High School Student Come Out to His Entire Class in Style

Watch This High School Student Come Out to His Entire Class in Style

Watch This High School Student Come Out to His Entire Class in Style

"We love a good reveal!"

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18-year-old Shankar Lal knew he wanted to come out at his graduation from the Media Arts & Music program at Hillcrest High School in New York this past June, but it wasn't till he went shopping that inspiration struck. 

"I remember shopping at Target and seeing all the pride gear," he told Buzzfeed News. "I thought to myself, 'Wouldn’t it be crazy if I just whipped out a pride flag at graduation?'"

And so he did. When his name was called, Lal whipped out the rainbow flag—and the crowd went wild, even surprising Lal.

"I walked across the stage with my pride flag over my shoulders and suddenly everyone started cheering for me. I remember hearing my principal and teachers tell me they were proud of me."

"There was so much love in that room," he went on. "It was amazing. Even on social media, I had so much love and support. Coming out on graduation was definitely one of the proudest moments in my life."

Even Lal's parents, who he had come out to only a few months before, approved of the stunt. "After the graduation ceremony, my mom gave me a big hug and told me how proud she was of me."

It was a journey with his family, and Lal wouldn't have had it any other way. "I approached this situation as an opportunity to educate them," he explained. "I tried my best to teach them about LGBT people and culture. Now they’ve learned to be more accepting and supportive."

Lal hopes his coming out can inspire others to take the plunge. 

"Being in the closet can be such a dark and lonely experience. I want people to see a positive coming out experience—I would hope that they feel more empowered and inspired to live in their truth."

Congrats Shankar!

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Taylor Henderson

Taylor Henderson is a PRIDE.com contributor. This proud Texas Bama studied Media Production/Studies and Sociology at The University of Texas at Austin, where he developed his passions for pop culture, writing, and videography. He's absolutely obsessed with Beyoncé, mangoes, and cheesy YA novels that allow him to vicariously experience the teen years he spent in the closet. He's also writing one! 

Taylor Henderson is a PRIDE.com contributor. This proud Texas Bama studied Media Production/Studies and Sociology at The University of Texas at Austin, where he developed his passions for pop culture, writing, and videography. He's absolutely obsessed with Beyoncé, mangoes, and cheesy YA novels that allow him to vicariously experience the teen years he spent in the closet. He's also writing one!