California Teen Uses Disneyland’s Splash Mountain To Come Out
A California teen used one of Disneyland’s most famous attractions to come out as gay to her family. The 16-year-old, only identified as Gina, held up a placard displaying the words “I’m Gay” with a rainbow backdrop as the iconic Splash Mountain flume ride descended down its final drop. She timed the moment so that it was captured by the ride’s souvenir photo system, which her family saw after disembarking from the ride.
Gina told the Huffington Post that she chose to stage the gesture at the legendary Anaheim theme park because “Disneyland, to me, is a place where anyone can be themselves and be accepted for it, so I figured it’d be the perfect place to come out in a safe and fun way.”
She elaborated on her family’s reaction, saying that her parents and brother were very accepting.
“I couldn’t have ever asked for a better response from my family,” Gina, whose father and brother were “about 70 percent sure” that she was gay before she decided to come out, said. “I’m truly so lucky to have such amazing support from all of my friends and family. It made this process go much smoother than I could’ve ever imagined!”
— gina (@ginaslife3) June 20, 2016
The teen’s actions have struck a chord outside her family as well. The souvenir photo garnered over 6,000 retweets and 11,000 likes (as of press time) on Twitter after she shared it on June 20.
With her newfound viral celebrity Gina has spoken out with advice for teen’s struggling with the decision to come out.
“It’s an overwhelming process, so just make sure you’re comfortable with who you are and make sure you’re prepared for questions or reactions people may have. I also know it’s sometimes hard to tell if you’re ready or not, so just be sure to give yourself time to really think about if you’re prepared,” said Gina.