come out of the closet

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British pronunciation/kˈʌm ˌaʊtəv ðə klˈɒzɪt/
American pronunciation/kˈʌm ˌaʊɾəv ðə klˈɑːzɪt/
to come out of the closet
01

to no longer keep one's sexual preference or gender identity a secret

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to [come] out of the closet definition and meaning

What is the origin of the idiom "make a go of something" and when to use it?

The idiom "come out of the closet" originated within the LGBTQ+ community in the mid-20th century as a metaphorical expression. The "closet" symbolizes the secrecy and concealment of one's non-heterosexual or non-cisgender identity due to societal pressures, stigma, and discrimination. The phrase gained prominence during the gay rights movement and was popularized in the 1960s and 1970s as individuals began to advocate for greater visibility and acceptance. Since then, it has become a widely recognized and used term to describe the process of disclosing one's LGBTQ+ identity and embracing authenticity.

02

to publicly talk about something such as a belief that one used to keep secret

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What is the origin of the idiom "come out of the closet" and when to use it?

The idiom "come out of the closet" in the context of publicly talking about a belief or information that was previously kept secret is an extension of its original usage within the LGBTQ+ community. Although the phrase's origin in this specific context is not as clear-cut, it likely emerged as a metaphorical extension of the original meaning. Over time, the phrase has been adopted more broadly to describe the act of openly discussing any previously hidden belief, information, or personal aspect of one's life.

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