Pride month is approaching, and while many use this time to show pride for who they are at soul level, it is also a time to discuss how we can better our community. The LGBTQIA+ community has a higher risk of mental health issues and substance use than other groups. This is all due to the fact that society hasn't fully accepted our community.
With LGBTQIA+ youth, it is especially difficult. Being young is tough enough, add in being LGBTQIA+ and you have a very stressful situation that young minds cannot handle on their own. While kids these days have role models in JoJo Siwa, Jazz Jennings, Josie Totah, and YouTuber Connor Franta, it isn't enough to give queer/trans kids the strength they need to live their truth. LGBTQIA+ youth may resort to substance use in order to numb the incredible turmoil spreading throughout their soul like wildfire. In LGBTQIA+ youth, the odds of substance abuse are 190% higher than heterosexual youth.
Let's look at some more stats:
These numbers are chilling, but people in our community turn to these outlets because they cannot bear the bullying and society's hatred toward them. LGBTQIA+ individuals have 3 times the odds of experiencing a mental health crisis. Looking at the numbers and hearing the stories, there is an immense need for resources.
Bicycle Health is an online clinic that specializes in behavioral health, med management, support groups, and more. Insurance is accepted. If you do not have insurance, you can still receive help for $199/month. For that amount, you receive unlimited instant messaging, doctor visits, care navigations, online support groups, and counseling.
To learn more, visit: https://www.bicyclehealth.com/
This Pride month, and beyond, we need to share more resources for those in our community who are struggling and help them to feel better.
(stats found on: Substance Use Disorder (SUD) in LGBTQ+ Community | Bicycle Health)
In a powerful interview on 'Good Morning America' with Robin Roberts, Colton Underwood revealed that he is gay.
The young man, who first captivated the 'Bachelor' franchise in 2018, told Roberts this:
"Obviously this year has been a lot for a lot of people and it's probably made a lot of people look themselves in the mirror to figure out who they are and figure out what they've been running from or have been putting off in their lives. For me, I've run from myself for a long time, I've hated myself for a long time and ... I'm gay. I came to terms with that earlier this year and have been processing all of that. The next step in all of that is been letting people know."
See video below.
Robin Roberts remarked that through his nerves are joy. She is so right. He is beaming, like he has been freed from chains that have been holding him down for his entire life! He is someone who has become his authentic self, and it's incredibly beautiful to see his light shining through.
Many on social media are lashing out that he was given a "redemption arc" on GMA amid his stalking incident with ex Cassie Randolph.
Listen, I'm not about to excuse his behavior. However, when you are THAT afraid of your authentic self, and afraid of people knowing, you will go to great lengths to hide it. Colton hated himself for most of his life. With his religious upbringing, he was even more terrified. What better way to hide your sexuality than to go on 'The Bachelor?!' Again, I'm not excusing his behavior. You have to understand it from his perspective. Additionally, I'm quite sure he is remorseful for how he treated Cassie Randolph and other women.
Colton Underwood, as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community, I see you, and I am proud of you!
#ColtonUnderwood #TheBachelor #BachelorNation #GoodMorningAmerica
The closer we get to the premiere of the Punky Brewster reboot, the more we are learning about the characters. We all know about the grown up character of Punky: she's divorced with 3 kids. We will even see her ex-husband in a few episodes (he is played by Freddie Prinze Jr.). What hasn't been talked about is Cherie Johnson's grown up character.
Punky's BFF Cherie is queer! Cherie will be 'coming out' in the series premiere, and her partner will be introduced in the first season.
Cherie's partner will be played by Fringe's Jasika Nicole! Jasika will be playing Lauren, who is a lawyer.
Nicole gushed about how excited she is to play this role on Punky Brewster:
"This is the first queer role I have played on network television, so this this a really big deal for me! I do think there is something really specifically special and important about seeing Black love depicted on television. I truly do not have words for how powerful it is to see Black queer love, queer love, trans people, and non-binary people. It is so essential to see people who are different than you are. It creates empathy, it creates compassion, and it expands your ability to love."
Amen, Jasika! It expands my heart to see a show I grew up watching, have a reboot that is diverse, open, loving, and accepting. On top of that, there aren't that many shows right now that feature a black queer couple.
I haven't seen the show yet, and I'm already in love with it. Please renew for seasons 2-infinity!
Season 1 premieres on February 25 on PeacockTV!
Gahhh I'm sooo excited!!!
#PunkyBrewster #PunkyBrewsterreboot #SoleilMoonFrye #CherieJohnson #JasikaNicole #PeacockTV #LGBT #Queer
Elliot Page has filed for divorce from Emma Portner after 3 years of marriage, and social media has thoughts.
'Juno' star Elliot Page has filed for divorce from Emma Portner. The two released a joint statement to People, saying:
"After much thought and careful consideration, we have made the decision to divorce following our separation last summer. We have the utmost respect for each other and remain close friends."
The announcement comes two months after Elliot Page came out as nonbinary and trans. Emma Portner remains a huge supporter of Page, praising him shortly after he came out:
"I am so proud of @elliotpage. Trans, queer, and non-binary people are a gift to this world."
Page and Portner met on Instagram in 2017. Six months later, they married. Everyone called them #couplesgoals. Obviously more was going on behind-the-scenes. We fans will never get the full story of the celebs we love.
This hasn't stopped people from speculating about why Elliot and Emma are divorcing. I've been reading so many comments about their divorce. Many are saying that "Emma didn't sign up to be married to a guy, so that's why they are divorcing." Those who are thinking this have no clue how it works. Elliot didn't just realize he was trans. It's been with him his whole life. It's only now where he feels comfortable living out proud. Emma knew she was marrying a man (and no, it's not the "best of both worlds"). If someone identifies as a male or female between the ears, then they are that gender. Elliot is a male, and Emma knew that.
Elliot Page coming out as trans isn't the problem. Couples break up and it's sad. It's not our place to speculate how they ended. Just send your well-wishes and respect their privacy.
JoJo Siwa low-key came out as part of the LGBTQIA+ community, and the support she's receiving is beautiful!
âJoJo Siwa, who first entered our lives on 'Dance Moms,' has 'come out.'. The 17-year-old singer/dancer/actress/entertainer/etc first had fans scratching their head when she lip-synced to "Born This Way" on TikTok. Shortly after, she shared a pic of her wearing a shirt that says "Best. Gay. Cousin. Ever."
The media jumped at the posts, and put out articles about her 'coming out.' While I wanted to post about this last night, I held off. JoJo Siwa pretty much confirmed the news (for me) by sharing words of congrats from her friends on Insta-stories.
Whether someone is gay or not, I applaud and celebrate anyone who decides to live their truth freely and openly. JoJo Siwa is a tween and teen icon. She could be a life-saver for tweens and teens who are questioning their sexuality, and are absolutely terrified.
When I was a tween and teen questioning my sexuality (I had crushes on a few female classmates, as well as male classmates), I had no celebrities my age to look up to that were openly LGBT. I kept everything quiet, despite the fact my peers kind of knew (in high school, I was nicknamed "Ellen" because I gave off a "gay vibe."). If there had been a celebrity like JoJo Siwa back when I was young, things would have been a lot easier.
To parents who may be upset by JoJo 'coming out:' Please do not ban JoJo Siwa from your kids' lives. I am a parent too, and I understand wanting to protect your kids from things you don't understand. However, JoJo 'coming out' is not a scary thing. Think about it: What if one of your kids were LGBTQIA+, and terrified of telling you? Celebs like JoJo can help your child navigate what they are going through internally, and give them the strength to live their truth. JoJo is a vibrant and positive influence. She's a hell of a lot better than some of the scumbags that are out there. Please, don't take JoJo away from your kids. You will cause your kids more damage that way. You will also teach them that being gay is wrong, and it's not.
JoJo is still JoJo. All that has changed is that we know she loves differently than we thought, which shouldn't matter anyway. What matters is that she loves.
JoJo Siwa, you are an icon. You have already been the big sister to millions of fans, and now you will be their advocate. Being a kid is tough. When you're a gay kid, it can be incredibly brutal. JoJo, you will be that person who will help so many LGBT youth live their truth freely and openly. Blessings to you <3
UPDATE: JoJo herself has confirmed the news (watch video below)
Busy Philipps shares that her 12 year old, Birdie, 'came out' to her, and prefers 'they/them' pronouns.
During a recent episode on her podcast, actress Busy Philipps shared that her 12 year old had recently 'come out' to her. In addition, Birdie told their mother that their pronouns are 'they/them.' The conversation between Birdie and their mother happened after the family watched "Soul." Birdie had gone to their room and was listening to Harry Styles' "Fine Line," while laying on the floor. Busy Philipps went in to check on Birdie, and the two talked.
Philipps admits to struggling with Birdie's pronouns:
"I said, you know Bird, I've been doing a bad job with the pronouns because Birdie said that they would like their pronouns to be they/them and I haven't been doing it because I have this public persona and I want Birdie to be in control of their own narrative."
Busy did give her child some amazing words to live by:
"I said to [them], 'The other thing I want to tell you that I wish I had known was you get to build your life however the f**k you want to and it doesn't have to look like anything you've ever seen or anything that's ever been modeled for you because maybe it doesn't exist. This is a different world that you get to f**king build."
Birdie did give their mom permission to discuss their orientation and preferred pronouns.
Busy Philipps' struggle is not uncommon. Even the most liberal of minds will stumble at times. Humans, by nature, have trouble adjusting to any type of change in life (case in point, 2020). When it comes to our children, parents naturally go to a place of fear; fear that our kids will be relentlessly bullied for being their authentic self.
It's all about educating ourselves on what our child is going through, and asking them questions.
I am so emotional right now, because I am so proud of Birdie. Birdie is wise beyond their years, and that is because they have amazing parents.
Busy Philipps, you are doing a fantastic job!
To the Karens that are about to shade the fuck out of me, I'm sorry that my compassion and tolerance scares the shit out of you. Then again, no I'm not.
Earlier this week, the world met Elliot Page. He shared that he is a trans man, and he disclosed his preferred pronouns (he/they).
While Elliot received support and praise for 'coming out,' there were people 'deadnaming' him. Some of the people 'deadnaming' happen to be in the trans community.
If you're cisgender (your sense of identity corresponds with your birth sex), you may be wondering what 'deadnaming' means. 'Deadnaming' is the name that a trans man or woman was given at birth, but no longer uses. While a person may have been born with male or female body parts, it does not mean that is who they really are. A person could be born with female parts, but be all male between the ears. Same for a person born male, but is female between the ears. 'Deadnaming' a trans man or woman is extremely disrespectful, and it can be psychologically damaging.
Because of the damage 'deadnaming' can inflict, GLAAD created a style guide for journalists, which Elliot Page signed off on, and sent it out. In the guide, it advises the media to refer to them as Elliot Page, and not their dead name (birth name). The guide also advises that the media give Page the same respect as anyone who has changed their name. Additionally, the media MUST respect Page's pronouns and use them appropriately.
Elliot Page's manager told Yahoo Life that "Elliot affirms the right of each trans person to decide how their prior name is used." Their manager also added that more information can be found in the style guide.
It's important to note that the use of the phrase 'deadnaming' is not used by everyone in the community. Some in the trans community say "birth name" and "prior name" in lieu of 'deadnaming.' 'Deadnaming' is a term that is somewhat controversial, as it refers to the former self dying when one transitions. When one transitions, it isn't a death of their former self. It is rebirth, and it's living your soul out loud.
For those of us who are cisgender, it's important for us to educate ourselves and to LISTEN. Don't always assume you know everything. Stay in your lane, and ask questions. I may sound like I know everything, but I don't. I'm going with what I know about the trans community, via my old friend Alyson. I'm learning more and more about the community everyday, and I will never stop educating myself and asking questions.
To recap: Never call a trans man or woman by their prior name. Call trans men and women by their current name, and use the proper pronouns. It's not just a respect thing. It's a HUMAN thing.
Oscar-nominated star Elliot Page 'comes out' as transgender. He made the announcement on his social media on December 1:
"Hi friends, I want to share with you that I am trans, my pronouns are he/they and my name is Elliot. I feel lucky to be writing this. To be here. To have arrived at this place in my life. I feel overwhelming gratitude for the incredible people who have supported me along this journey. I canât begin to express how remarkable it feels to finally love who I am enough to pursue my authentic self. Iâve been endlessly inspired by so many in the trans community. Thank you for your courage, your generosity and ceaselessly working to make this world a more inclusive and compassionate place. I will offer whatever support I can and continue to strive for a more loving and equal society."
"I love that I am trans. And I love that I am queer. And the more I hold myself close and fully embrace who I am, the more I dream, the more my heart grows and the more I thrive. To all the trans people who deal with harassment, self-loathing, abuse, and the threat of violence every day: I see you, I love you, and I will do everything I can to change this world for the better."
Born Ellen Page, Elliot became a worldwide sensation in hit movie "Juno." He went on to star in "Whip It," "Freeheld," and "Umbrella Academy."
Elliot Page's announcement has been praised by many in the LGBTQIA+ community. Nick Adams, GLAAD's Director of Transgender Media, commended Page's announcement and called him an "inspiration to countless trans and non-binary people."
My Two Cents
It's always amazing to see someone who is living their truth freely and happily. I may not know what it's like to be trans, but I know what it's like to finally find yourself and proudly live out loud, regardless of what people think. Being your complete self is an inspiration, because not everyone finds themselves during their lifetime. They just live the way they were groomed to live by their parents and society. It takes bold strength to be your authentic self, whether you're trans or cis-gender. I'm proud to see Elliot's announcement. He is already beloved due to all the work he has done in the LGBTQIA+ community.
Seeing this announcement is like witnessing a beautiful birth of strength and power. It's so inspiring!
Some of you may be "weirded out," "disturbed," etc by his announcement. None of this has anything to do with you. It has to do with Elliot, and how he is sharing who he truly is, with a world that isn't welcoming to trans men and women. Educate yourselves on the trans community, and be supportive. One way you can begin to be supportive is by using Elliot's preferred name and pronouns. In the trans community, if you refer to someone by their birth name (for example: calling Elliot "Ellen"), it is called "dead-naming." It's disrespectful, and can be psychologically damaging.
We are nearing the end of an unprecedented year, but not everyone will be ringing in 2021 with us. So far in 2020, 37+ transgender or gender non-conforming people have been murdered for living their truth. They are often misgendered and dead-named by police, medical officials, and the media after they have been murdered.
This is the deadliest year on record for the trans community.
Below are the trans men and women we have lost in 2020. The oldest victim was 43, and the youngest was only 17.
Despite the fact that the calendar says 2020, we are not living in a day and age that accepts everyone. If you are LGBTQIA+, you are attacked, especially if you are a person of color.
The individuals listed where someone's child, lover, grandchild, cousin, friend. Everyone should be free to live their truth. It is so important that we educate ourselves about the issues facing the trans community. I've mentioned the story of a friend of mine, who was the first transperson I had ever met. She told me to ask any question I'd like, because it is important to educate yourself on history, and the facts.
How to honor the victims: Supporting the trans community is one way you can honor those we have lost this year.
I am not trans, but I am an ally for the trans community. There are a few organizations that I follow that have a ton of information:
Readers, please find a moment today to send thoughts to the friends and family of the victims.
My thoughts, condolences, heart, spirit, and prayers are with the families and friends of all the victims listed above.
Rest in Peace and Rest in Power, beautiful angels!
Get this: Tiffany Trump co-hosted an LGBTQIA+ Pride Event in Florida in order to urge the LGBT community to vote for her father. According to a website dedicated to the event and to LGBT rights, the event was comprised of "a diverse coalition dedicated to re-electing President Trump, the first president to begin his presidency in support of marriage equality." Tiffany Trump co-hosted the event with gay conservative Richard Grenell.
Video was taken at the event, and in the video, it shows Tiffany Trump publicly excluding the transgender community from the event.
"I know what my father believes in. Prior to politics, he supported gays, lesbians, the LGBQIIA+ community."
She went on to discuss how she has gay best friends, and how Trump supports the community. Both of which are false. Trump has made life for the LGBTQIA+ community a living HELL. He wants to overturn LGBTQIA+ rights, including marriage equality. He is even working feverishly to ban trans men and women from entering the military! Donald Trump has encouraged adoption agencies to turn away same-sex couples who want to adopt babies.
The fact that Trump has a website dedicated to the LGBTQIA+ community is a fucking joke.
With all that in mind, the LGBTQIA+ community shredded Tiffany Trump for the blatant transphobia.
I don't claim to be an expert on the transgender community. I'm not trans. My expertise is mainly from asking questions to my trans friends, and learning about their experiences. The rest comes from a compassionate, open, and caring heart.
What I DO know is that Trump is not your ally. He is leading you under false hope in order to secure the election. If he is elected, he will renege on his promises and take more rights away from you.
Trump has everything to lose in this election. If he loses, he faces criminal charges and certain jail time. He will pull out every single dirty trick in the book, including threatening people with armed poll watchers on Election Day. He cannot be trusted. No Trump can be trusted.
Tiffany Trump is just an abhorrent human being. She is homophobic and transphobic.