Being Certified Gottman Therapists (and a gay couple) who specialize in gay couples therapy, we want to highlight just how important it is that the LGBTQ+ community and allies come together and stand proud in celebration this June.
Among the many reasons Pride matters, we believe one of the most important is…
Pride encourages acceptance of the LGBTQ community.
Celebration during Pride increases the visibility of those who have been shamed and ostracized for simply being themselves.
Not only does this allow LGBTQ+ folks the opportunity to see themselves within their community, but the broader community gets to see families outside the traditional. It’s this visibility that leads to the normalization of alternative lifestyles and issues.
But why is acceptance so important to the LGBTQ community?
Contrary to what some may believe, Pride isn’t all about partying. We all seek love, family, and a sense of belonging.
Acceptance gives us the freedom to live authentically.
We’re blessed with a significant degree of cultural acceptance here in the United States, whereas same-sex activity in other parts of the world is discriminated against or, worse yet, criminalized.
That said, our work towards full acceptance is ongoing. The ability to be completely yourself, show a public display of affection for your loved one, and feel appreciated and loved without having to think twice or be judged… We’re not quite there yet.
I’m reminded of a summer trip we took to Amsterdam in 2019 to celebrate Pride. Pride Amsterdam is one of the largest celebrations of gay pride in the world, and our experience was truly amazing. We were surprised to learn that at nearly all of the venues we attended, many of the participants were straight! Everyone there was united in celebration of the LGBTQ+ community. Ours was a feeling of total acceptance unlike anything we’ve felt anywhere else.
And it’s that authenticity to be yourself without feeling you have to look over your shoulder while doing so that is golden. That’s when you can shine and be your best self.
Finally, it bears noting that…
A large part of LGBTQ acceptance and belonging is the enjoyment of equal rights.
The very first Pride parade took place a year after the Stonewall Uprising just over 50 years ago, and its intent was to gather people who wished to demonstrate for equal rights. By coming together strong on Pride, we show others the dignity and self-respect we all deserve. We can raise awareness of the issues our community faces and effect change.
We live at a time where more young Americans than ever identify as LGBTQ. These youth face higher suicide risks than their peers. With the support of the broader community and the ability to fully integrate within it, our LGBTQ+ loved ones can enjoy a higher quality of life. Participation and support during Pride can change the hearts and minds of others around these crucial issues.
We hope you’ll join us this June in celebration of our community and in celebration of being who you are. Happy Pride!
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