Pride month coming to an end?
Hold your tears, I'm holding mine in too. The month of June has passed us by with flying colors like the ones on the many flags that represent our community, but that doesn't mean that we have to end our celebration just yet! With just about a week of June left, there is still things you can do to end Pride month with a bang!
1. Attend your local pride march/parade.
This one sounds the most like, "Cierra, we know," but you would be surprised how many don't know if there's a pride parade or march or celebration in their city! It's a great way to get out there, celebrate who you are, make a few friends, dance around and make out with strangers while still saying to the world, "Hi, I'm here to celebrate validation and the strides in the LGBTQ+ community, please celebrate with me or don't (it's your loss if you don't)!"
Find your local pride parade! If it passed, dress up for a day in all rainbow and dance around your neighborhood or local public park, or organize a pride party! They're just as fun, and you still get to celebrate! All the rainbow = all the fun. Go find your local pride: Click here!
2. Read about our history. Educate yourself, darlings!
LGBTQ+ history goes way back when! However, we only know about 25 percent because unlike anything other than the majority, we get erased. We are a "Do Not Answer" phone number on the telephone of society. We only get one month out of a whole year, and there's a book for every day! If reading isn't your jam (which is OK!), there are documentaries to watch online! Knowing these things about the community that means so much to you will help you understand why this month (and why coming months ahead) are so important.
A collective (22 cinematic masterpieces) list of LGBTQ+ documentaries: Click me!
A collective list of LGBTQ+ books and literary pieces: Click here!
3. Identify your allies.
We're called the LGBTQ+ community for a reason, but there are people out there who aren't necessarily on the spectrum, but are allies with us! We may live in a world full of bigotry, uncertainty and injustice but there are good flowers among weeds. You are always on a life-long journey to find out who you are, and allies are supposed to be there to support you. For every "straight" person that may put you down, there are a thousand more that will lift you up and support you through your transition/coming out/anything really! You do not have to be straight to be an ally — we are all allies to each other. It feels good to be represented and to feel like a safe space for all can be created wherever we go. If they show their value and positivity within your life — sexuality aside — let them hold your hand through whatever it is you may go through. Invite them to your Pride parties, let them watch documentaries with you and educate them if they are ignorant. I cannot tell you how many times someone outside of the community has asked me questions, let me tell them the answer (with or without explanation, you NEVER have to disclose your identity to anyone if you are not comfortable, although you should be proud and positive within yourself), and they say "I never knew that, thanks." Identify yourself and the people around you, but don't label anyone just yet. You are not a confined space, but a safe, open and "prideful" one. Let them add, but do not let them subtract.
If you are reading this and want to know how to be a (GOOD) ally, here's how: Click me!
4. Donate to your local Pride Centers and charities!
Your time and/or money is valuable to making your and others' lives one of happiness and fulfillment of their truest selves. Donate to places like Planned Parenthood, pride centers, Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation). It's so important for us to contribute our voices along with maybe a dollar or two! It costs nothing to be a good person, so let's make this our safe space together for all.
Donate to HRC: Click here!
Donate to Planned Parenthood: Click here!
Donate to GLAAD: Click here!
To find and volunteer at your local pride center, check local listings (on the internet or newspaper — yes, those are still around.)
5. Empower. Educate. Evolve.
Three words that are applicable all year round, especially the last. Evolution. We are like butterflies coming out of a cocoon or a group of bees coming from a beehive. Together. We can do this. Empower each other, which in turn, empowers ourselves. Educate yourself so we can educate others about this blossoming culture that has been a subthought since the 1990's. We can change it all. Evolve and become the person that you truly are.
And there you have it. End Pride month with a bang!
Lead Image Credit: Pixabay