A variation on the Coming-Out Story
where someone is outed, but not by their own choice. Usually it's the actions of another person who either inadvertently or purposefully outs them. Sometimes the outer has good intentions, while other times it's good old blackmail. Among real-life LGBT people, outing someone who's not ready is considered very bad form, especially since it can literally endanger someone's life.
- Renee Montoya of Gotham Central was outed by Two-Face, and it had a catastrophic effect on her professional and personal lives.
- In Sweet Home Alabama Reese Witherspoon's character, Melanie, outs Bobby Rae (possibly her best friend) as gay —to a bar full of mutual friends in rural Alabama— while in a drunken tirade brought on from frustration at her Southern roots. Apparently no one really cared and there was a Pair the Spares where Melanie's gay friend from New York and Bobby Rae Hooked Up Afterwards.
- The title character is Milk forces a member of his team to come out to his father — something he still hadn't done.
- In And Out has Howard, a high school English teacher in a small town, is outed by a former student live on national TV as he accepts an Oscar. Problem - Howard isn't gay. He eventually realizes he is gay by the end of the film.
- In Glee, both Santana and Karofsky are outed against their will.
- In Barney Miller, a recurring cop character is gay. Everyone in the squad knows but they all basically agree not to say anything, especially to Internal Affairs. Then one time when Wojo is getting hounded by IA over some trifling thing he accidentally blurts it out.
- Showed up a few times in Law & Order. Either the victim was being threatened with outing or the killer was or one of the red herrings.
- One episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation featured a football player who was outed during an investigation. One of the straight female investigators gets called out on this, but she fails to see why it's such a big deal.
- In Veronica Mars there's one episode where Veronica investigates blackmail letters that certain students have been receiving, including one girl whose gay status would be revealed if she did not pay up. When Veronica figures things out, she discovers that the perp was a gay student who just wanted to out her girlfriend so they could be together in public.
- El Goonish Shive
- In the Back Story, Justin was outed by his friend Melissa, who falls under the "accidental" type in that he'd come out to her and then she'd told her sister, who was the town's gossip. He was extremely mad at her for this for years afterwards, and was especially pissed that his own parents found out after overhearing people gossip at the grocery store.
- And Nanase's plan to keep her relationship with Ellen a secret gets demolished when her mother bursts into her hospital room and sees them kissing. In an aversion, Nanase's mother really doesn't care — she thinks it's a phase.
- Stan in American Dad! told the father of one of his neighbors his son was gay, and it turns out that the son was pretty open about it except with his dad.