It’s the beginning days of a great month for me and the rest of my LGBTQIA identifying friends, out there! It’s a month where we celebrate the pride that we have as members of this community, as well as remember and honor those who paved a path for us to be as free as we are today. Though the fight isn’t over, it’s a month where we keep the positive vibes alive in order to keep fighting the good fight.
Having pride is so important to me, as an individual, because it’s the one thing that keeps me from letting the opinions of others dictate my life as a gay man. I have enough pride in myself enough to steer clear from people who make me feel less than accepted for who I am. I respect myself enough to not let anyone use my homosexuality as a weapon, or as a way of defining me through what they think they know about gay men. I love myself enough to live my life authentically and unapologetically, because I don’t owe society a damn thing for being gay.
Having pride as a community is important because we live in a society that’s still plagued with people who’d rather see us live in shame. People are still afraid to come out to their families, friends, coworkers, and any person they come across, because anyone could be the next person to tell us we’re wrong for how we were born. We’re apprehensive about holding hands with our significant others while we walk down the street, because we could be the next LGBT pair on the news with the headline “same-sex couple beaten.” Even with that looming threat, we still do it because it’s better than showing the world that we’re scared. We’re sick of being scared.
Having pride as a community, of course, would be so much easier of we weren’t opposed by hate that still spreads throughout the world. That’s why we have to stand together, build each other up, and be there for those who still have yet to find the pride in themselves. It’s so easy to forget that so many people in the community have it much harder than others, and though it may be easy for us to shrug off the hate and show that we’re not falling apart, that’s not always the case for everyone else. Helping one another, being the glue that keeps our LGBTQIA brothers and sisters together, is what we’ll need if we hope to continue the progress that we’ve already worked so hard to achieve.
I wish you all, whether you’re LGBT+ or not, a wonderful Pride month!