Pete Buttigieg's Husband Chasten Shared an Empowering Coming Out Message

"You are not required to open healed wounds."

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(Image credit: Emma McIntyre)

If you haven't heard of him, Chasten Buttigieg, also known as Chasten Glezman, is a teacher and the husband of presidential candidate "Mayor Pete" Buttigieg. Not only is Chasten fiercely supportive of his husband as Pete begins the path to a 2020 run, but he's taking the opportunity to speak out issues that are important to him. On Tuesday, he shared a critical piece of advice about how to protect and shield your own coming-out process.

Chasten wrote on Twitter, "Your time in the closet and your journey to coming out belong to you. You are not required to open healed wounds or write lengthy threads in order to explain your worth to others who aren’t willing to see it themselves. You matter first."

He didn't make clear what prompted his message. Chasten is a teacher, so he could have been inspired by a young person, or something he saw on social media, given his reference to a "lengthy thread." It could be a personal reflection, or a combination of the two. It's also possible he's referring to a Slate piece that considered whether Pete, as a gay man, was sufficiently diverse as a candidate—"Buttigieg doesn’t seem terribly sold on the idea of gayness as a cultural framework, formative identity, or anything more than a category of sexual and romantic behavior...When he came out in a 2015 essay four years into his tenure as mayor, it was with some reluctance," noted writer Christina Cauterucci.

Whatever the provocation, Chasten's response is on point and graceful. And fans jumped on the bandwagon, even suggesting that Pete should use "You matter first" as his 2020 campaign slogan.

Here's the original tweet:

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Immediately after sharing the message, Chasten also retweeted a message from the Victory Institute that encourages LGBTQ people, women, and people of color to run for office, especially considering that they "need to be asked more times to run for office before they consider it than our straight counterparts."

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In other words: Not only is Chasten in favor of the sacredness and privacy of individuals coming out, but he supports them using their voices for change and advocacy.

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Katherine J. Igoe

Katherine’s a Boston-based contributor at Marie Claire who covers fashion, culture, and lifestyle—from “Clueless” to Everlane to news about Lizzo. She’s been a freelancer for 11 years and has had roles with Cosmopolitan and Bustle, with bylines in Parents, Seventeen, and elsewhere. It’s “I go to dinner,” not “Her huge ego,” but she responds to both.