Happy Pride, Everyone!

Hey my fellow queer cuties! Just checking in to see how everyone is doing this fine pride month.

I’m always conflicted come June every year, because although I love celebrating my queerness and also reminding folks of our history, it also becomes a tedious time. From companies turning their logo rainbow but donating against our interests, to the recent SCOTUS ruling, to the fact that it seems every June I spend a lot of energy/time educating folks during Pride that I’m queer/what that means/what actual queer history is, to the intense discourse that can happen within the community on a variety of topics…it can be exhausting.

So just checking in to see how we’re all doing. Anyone doing anything fun or cool or reflecting in a meaningful way?

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Ha, I’ll answer my own question.

I’m waffling going to the Chicago Dyke March, my body is still a bit rough after having covid last year, but I’m so happy it’s happening in-person this year.

My friend DJ’d his small suburban town’s first pride celebration last weekend and it was a hit! He even had an alter and yellow roses to honor the Pulse victims, it was a really special and meaningful night to be able to pay respects and dance in their honor.

I also just ordered a pint from a local ice cream shop, Pretty Cool, here in Chicago that is doing a special lesbian pride flag-inspired sherbet! They have a few lesbians on staff who dreamed up the combo of raspberry, mango and orange water sherbet. It’s hot here in the midwest, I can’t wait to enjoy it this weekend. I’m a sucker for small queer businesses doing fun pride stuff.

And I kicked off this month with a special moment: one of the books I worked on in my day job won a Lammy! The Lammys are the Lambda Awards (aka the gay book Oscars, ha), it’s a huge deal to win one. My author truly didn’t expect to win, so it was a wonderful shock, we both cried, haha. His book has these great teen characters that are queer and were so the type of people I needed when I was a closeted teen, so it was a really a special moment for his book to win and to work with him on it.

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Glad you’ve been enjoying Pride month so far! And CONGRATS on the Lammy! That’s so awesome! :tada:

For me it’s been a lot about self-reflection and almost wanting to avoid it out of fear of what my mind might conclude.

I’ve recently had a difficult time connecting with my sexuality. I’ve spent years going from my sexual awakening, to identifying as bisexual during high school, then identifying as Pansexual in university. At some point within the last two years or so, I’d see a lot of discussion about how people label pansexual people as having a different identity than it was once thought. Like, for me, being Pansexual means that I sexually, physically, emotionally, and mentally connect and am attracted to them regardless of their gender, male, female, non binary, etc. But I’ve seen loads of criticism on how pansexual is just a different word for being bisexual and it made me start to question my validity. Not on this but ever since my toxic relationship with a cis-girl years back, I never dated someone of the same sex. Currently I’m in the process of dating a cis-male and so that has added to me questioning myself and feeling like I’m falling into a “hetero-looking relationship.”

I’m afraid that if I take the time to really think about my sexuality then I’ll feel even more of an outsider of the community. As this month has come along, I find myself unable to celebrate with everyone because I feel ashamed of not having an identity and I feel ashamed that I have to question who I am in the first place, sexuality-wise. I haven’t really talked to anyone about this, not even the guy I’m currently dating which hopefully leads to a long term relationship. I’m unsure if maybe talking about it more might help?

But regardless I’m happy for everyone who has been having such a wonderful time celebrating already! Makes me so happy to see everyone enjoying themselves and feeling empowered and happy :two_hearts: :hugs:

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Oh, I know this feeling ALL too well. And sending you lots of love, it sucks!

First off, whatever your queerness looks like or however you identify, you are so valid and part of this big, diverse community. It took me a very long time to examine my own sexuality, for a lot of the reasons you spoke about. Honestly I just call myself queer because there is SO much bi vs. pan discourse that is so toxic and I hated it and it made it feel so dismissive that I just sort of opted out. And that discourse probably kept me from examining how I felt about my sexuality for a long time because of how toxic it was. There is so much gatekeeping in the lgbtqia+ world, and a lot of toxic folks (like with all humans), and it so sucks it makes a lot of people feel like they aren’t queer enough or are an outsider.

My partner and I are to the naked eye a straight couple, but he’s bi and I’m queer and honestly both of us just like who and what we like. It took both of us a long time to get there, and we’ve found the fellow queers in our life that are the same, it’s great to find them, but I def. sometimes still feel like I’m not enough because my committed partner is a cis man. Even though I know it isn’t true! It’s so hard to unlearn those things though, esp. when there is so many opinions on it.

But truly, whoever you date, however they identify, that doesn’t ever erase that you are a loving person with the capacity to love and be attracted to folks outside of the heteronormative culture that we live in. No partner erases that from who you are. I see you my fellow queer babe, so happy pride to you and always here if you want to talk!

Thank you, your response brought so much peace in my heart. Now I feel less afraid to examine my sexuality a bit more. Sometimes I try to tell myself that labels at the end of the day don’t really matter (depending on the person of course.) But the very welcoming members of the community make me feel confident enough in myself to also be celebrated! So thank you so much for your kind words! Happy Pride to you too :hugs:

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Of course and always!