“Pride” is such an apt name.

While it’s easy to look at Pride celebrations around the world and see it as simply a party, or a flamboyant display of extravagance, it’s so much more than that.

Pride is a celebration of individuality and, at its core, it’s a protest.

For a lot of queer people, feeling proud about who you are isn’t something comes easily.

A lot of queer identity is built around the feeling of being “other”. Cisgender, and heterosexual is seen as the default. People who identify as anything other than that is, therefore, a deviation from the default: a reality that’s reinforced through a lot of the media that’s available to us, particularly during our formative years.

And unlearning that way of thinking about ourselves is a process that takes a long time. For me, it’s a process that is ongoing: I still feel a slight tinge of fear and anxiety whenever I refer to myself as a gay man.

We’ve come a long way, even in the time since I was growing up and coming to terms with my own sexuality. But homophobia, biphobia, and particularly transphobia are not just prevalent, but growing.

Pride is a protest. A time to stand up for our right to live our lives in peace — to simply exist. And to show long people who might still be coming to terms with their sexuality or gender identity that they aren’t alone in the world.

Pride is fight to ensure that everyone has the right to be who they are, love who they love, and be able to love themselves.

I hope that you can feel that way.

I’m Lewis. I’m a gay man. I use he/him pronouns. And I’m getting there. 🏳️‍🌈

About Lewis Dorigo

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