Jill Layton
July 05, 2016 5:31 pm

Coming out as gay can be an incredibly scary thing to do — even if you know your family will be completely accepting and supportive. A 16-year-old from California took the plunge in a way that ensured she couldn’t back out. And it was amazing.

Gina came out as gay while riding Splash Mountain. As the ride barreled down the 50-foot drop, Gina held up a sign that read “I’M GAY!” in rainbow colors. No one on the ride knew it was happening except for Gina. Clearly.

Gina had the biggest smile on her face because she really was having the best time ever.

“I am not the type of person to have deep conversations with people and I think this is an exciting thing, so I didn’t want to make it a dramatic conversation,” Gina told Seventeen. “I figured announcing it in the happiest place on earth would be fun!”

She came up with the idea to come out at Disneyland the day before she and her family left for vacation, and chose the happiest place on earth because “everyone there is so accepting and loving.”

“I was super nervous!” she said. “I knew my parents and brother would be super accepting, but your mind always thinks of the worst possible situations, so it was a huge relief that they were so accepting! The first half of the ride consisted of a lot of nail-biting and leg-shaking, but once I calmed down, I decided to just go for it. Right after the picture was taken, I felt so relieved because there wasn’t any way of chickening out now!”

She had already come out to two of her friends, and they gave her the courage she needed to let her family (and the entire internet) in on her truth.

“[My friends] were both so so so supportive and they truly gave me so much strength to have the courage to come out to everyone else!” she said. “I could never thank them enough!”

Since her family saw the photo, they’ve been supportive. And so has the internet. “The internet is an amazing place, and I’m so happy that I can be a part of such an amazing community” she said. So far, her tweet has more than 4,600 retweets and almost 8,500 likes. And the responses to her tweet have been super heartwarming.

Congratulations to Gina on being awesome and making such a splash! Literally.

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