Today is the last day of Pride Month and it makes me a little sad that I haven’t written posts pertaining to it. However, there are a few reasons why Pride is a special month and I want them to be celebrated. In fact – this is a post mostly for you.
Simply put, Pride is important both as a way to express awareness about the LGBTQ+ community to those who aren’t LGBTQ+ but it also helps to let people find a place in the world who don’t feel like they fit anywhere. It’s a form of belonging but also a way to let people question who they are, as safely as they can. Of course, this isn’t exclusive to Pride Month but the conversations that can be started when acceptance is promoted so strongly from so many sources can be invaluable and can start the process of somebody feeling happy enough with how they feel about themselves to begin to ‘come out’, or to be more open with who they are.
Expressing your identity’ in the age of the Internet and modern technology may be easier nowadays then it was 50 years ago but it isn’t easy for everyone. There are still countries and communities in which being attracted to someone of the same sex or gender isn’t accepted as readily; social stigma against many parts of the LGBTQ+ community is still high, even within the LGBTQ+ community itself. Just because I, for instance, didn’t experience much homophobia growing up, doesn’t mean other people haven’t or won’t. This month can allow people to feel a little more secure in their identity, to belong to a community that accepts them when others may not.
Some may ask why Pride is necessary, if the world is more accepting now. However, not only is it necessary for those who aren’t accepted but also for those who don’t fit in with the ‘traditional’ binary idea of sexuality, romantic attraction or gender; for those who wish to celebrate their identity, it’s important. It can take any form, not just marches or parades or material things, but in discussions and collections of thought. It shouldn’t be limited or constrained to inaccessible forms of expression. Everyone is involved in Pride, not just those who speak the loudest.
What makes Pride amazing is the community surrounding it. So many people express their identity, in whatever way they wish to. It is – and should be – about positivity and inclusivity. On that note, I want to share with you a list of bloggers and blog posts who have done, and are doing, just that.
Kirithika opens up about her bisexuality on her blog, especially on how she felt about telling the important people in her life and how her understanding of her sexuality has developed over time.
Lia discusses Aphobia in the media and characters having happy endings that don’t depend on a romantic plotline.
Kel guest posted on Bethany’s blog about people’s perceptions of LGBTQ+ (in a hilarious way), as well as celebrating identity and discussing his sexuality.
Em explains her thoughts about her own identity and how confusing it can be, particularly highlighting how it can and has changed over time; it’s a truly beautiful post.
Bethany writes about her sexuality journey as part of her Pride Month posts, discussing asexuality and how school influenced her; all of her Pride posts are amazing!
Lu discusses 4 LGBTQ+ things she wants to see represented more in YA as well as talking about internalised homophobia, in the first part of her Coming Out series.
Victoria wrote about whether labels were always necessary to identify yourself in a really thought-provoking and inclusive post, taking into account all sexualities and genders in the community.
All of these posts are wonderful and I’d encourage you to read as many as you can; each has a unique voice and highlights different parts of the community, raising important points that should be talked about.
Pride goes beyond the month of June. I shouldn’t be sad about not writing posts to do with it because by expressing my identity, and by others expressing theirs, we keep the spirit of Pride alive. We show ourselves and others that being who we are should be respected and understood and that the world can be a bright place, if you give people the chance to make it so.
Love from Elm 🙂