I used the following to reply to a post on a transgender forum and think it deserves merit to be posted here.
I believe that there are wrong and right ways to come out to people. First you need to prepare yourself by doing research on the web, not from one or a handful of pages but a lot or cut to the chase and purchase a copy of True Selves which provides insight into how to best present yourself to others.
Personally I did my homework as per above, solidified knowledge into my brain that included how to present myself to friends, family and co-workers. This was followed up with individual twist to whom I told. My first hard and fast rule was to include ‘I am still the same person inside’ was spoken at the end of my speech. For some I figured it was best to give a brief explanation leaving the person whom I just told to ask questions rather than me supplying answers which may not be interpreted well from me telling them pieces of information. Bottom line is be prepared, try and pick a time when the person you are coming out too is in a calm mood and not tired, this will make things easier overall.
Will you lose people from your life? There are many factors that will decide the outcome. Out of roughly close to 200 people I came out to I lose three people. Several told me they were against transgender before I came out and that the way I came out made all the difference. Two of them I told via email and both asked to meet with me the same week to better understand what was going on and afterwards they have remained friends. Granted some may simply be putting on a front but if so, it’s a good front. I will admit from reading stories of others coming out losing friends, family and co-workers and that is too be expected but should not be the norm. Perhaps a percentage of them came out using bad wording or wrong timing, I don’t know. If you do it right and still lose people they were never your friends in the first place if they don’t support you here. Of course there are some areas that will never give you approval as it’s locked into how a community thinks and behaves.
Just know if you are prepared it may still be a rocky road but when done right will get easier and easier. For me if I look back to my first disclosure it was scary then as the months went by and the year closed out I am still finding people to tell but it is so much easier than when the first time or the fiftieth time.