Anonymous: i came out to my fundamentalist christian mom about six months ago, and she was kind (enough) about it, but she completely undermines the difficulties of being LGBT and coming out. Lately, our biggest point of contention is that she won't tell anyone. My mom is very close to her sisters, and she won't even talk to them about it, and I try to tell her that it makes me feel like she is ashamed of me, and she argues that it's my responsibility to tell people. Thoughts?

I’m sorry to hear that. Initial thoughts: While this is annoying, it’s not unusual. Many people close to me have religious parents who chose not to tell people about their LGBTQ kids for a while because “it didn’t feel right” or whatever other reason. So, I don’t know if it’s comforting at all that you aren’t alone, but there’s that. In terms of next steps, I would actually suggest doing exactly what your mom wants, in the most cheerful way possible: Call up every one of your aunts one day, with your mom in the same room, and tell them. Keep the conversation short and sweet, tell each aunt that she’s important to you and you want her to be involved in this part of your life, and that your mom has been supportive to you. Once the secret is out, it won’t be such a secret anymore, and your mom will see that having a kid like you is something to be proud of. Good luck! <3

Anonymous: So, i'm a 15 year old girl. I'm out to my friends, and I want to come out my parents. They are pretty accepting, but I still don't know how they will react. I was wondering if coming out on my birthday is a good or bad idea. I was thinking they might have a nicer reaction if it's my birthday, but I might be way off, idk.

You can never know how they’re going to react, but if you think they are accepting people and you already have supportive friends to back you up, sounds like the odds are in your favor. Coming out on your birthday could be a fun surprise, but on the off chance that it doesn’t go well, that would be a pretty big birthday-ruiner, so just keep that in mind. That said, it sounds like you’re in a pretty good place and you’re gonna be just fine. Good luck! 

Anonymous: Hi! I'm bisexual but right now I'm going through a girls-only phase (mainly because men have hurt me so much). I'm on an Erasmus trip and guys keep hitting on me but I don't know how to tell them (and my friends) that I'm not interested in them. If I say I'm bi they're like "whatever, you're still into guys". And I've thought about saying I'm a lesbian just to make them stop (they're really rude) but that's not who I am. What should I do? It's getting really frustrating.

That is awful and I’m really sorry to hear it. You shouldn’t have to lie to get guys to leave you alone, and this isn’t happening because you said something wrong — it’s because these guys are a-holes. What should you do? Look them in the eye and tell them firmly that you are not interested. You don’t owe them an explanation. You hardly owe them a considerate rejection, seeing as how disrespectful they’re being. And if they don’t stop, stand up and walk away. 

Anonymous: Hi! So I considered myself straight all my life even though I always felt sexually attracted to women (even more than to men). But it wasn't until recently that I got a crush on a girl that I started considering myself bisexual. It's like I embraced a part of myself I didn't know and now I feel very lost and confused. I've always been interested in LGBT but is there some kind of "introduction to bisexuality" blog/vlog or anything you know of? Oh, and thanks for everything you do!

Hello, and welcome to the bi club! We’re happy to have you here. :) It’s understandable to feel a little lost, but I can assure you that everything is okay and it’s perfectly wonderful to embrace who you are. There’s no guidebook to being bi because everyone lives it differently! That said, some great resources to learn more about bi issues and communities include binetusa, bisexual-community, and a couple of videos on my YouTube channel! Hope that helps, and good luck! <3 

Anonymous: I want to come out as trans but I don't know what to say? Also I'm afraid she'll ask why I'm telling her, or ask me to explain all the gender stuff to her (I came out to a friend recently who made me do this, and it ended up with me drawing different colored stick figures w/ different colored 'bits' which was hella hard bc I'm hella color blind and I can't tell blue, pink, or purple apart). Do you have any advice you can give me to help me out?

I have never come out as trans because I’m not trans, so I can’t give you any tips specific to this experience. (Followers, maybe you can!) That coloring exercise does sound kinda weird, so I hope this experience goes better! You are wonderful exactly as you are. Promise. 

Anonymous: [Part 1] To start with I should say that I'm male. So, in high school a lot of my friends were lgbt and it was something I was pretty open with despite identifying as straight. I kissed a lot of dudes at a lot of parties. I had a boyfriend for a while, though my longer relationships were mostly with women. I think largely because a lot of my friends were queer they never questioned me or asked about my identity. After all of this experimenting I went through a period of not really dating anyone.

[Part 2] I was sexually inactive for a few years. Now I’m in a happy and healthy relationship with a woman but struggling with my identity. I still identify as hetero largely because it feels easy and my sexuality doesn’t feel hugely important to me. People tell me that is denying part of myself. I’m also not totally sure I “deserve” to identify as queer. Like I am not queer enough? I understand that logic is flawed and problematic but it’s sort of where I’m at and I don’t know where to go.

Oh, sunshine. Your identity is nobody’s to define but yours. If you feel like you’re straight-but-recognize-boys-can-be-attractive, that’s fine. If you feel some kind of undefined queerness, that’s fine too. There’s no such thing as “deserving” to identify as queer. There’s no standardized test to check how many guys you’ve hooked up with. I know it sucks to feel lost and label-less, but there’s really no rush as long as you’re doing what keeps you happy and healthy. Be you, darling. You’re perfect the way you are. 

Anonymous: (Pt 1) I have known about my sexuality for a long time, but forced myself to be involved in a gay bashing Christian group due to where I grew up. My ex girlfriend, former best friends were all my connections to that life, and when I cut it off with them, I started to allow myself to be open about that. I became friends with people who didn't really care about all that stuff, and it made it easier for me to be more open, but I still felt like I wasn't able to embrace myself.

(Pt 2) Then I became friends with a lesbian and she brought me more into that world, and it made it a lot easier for me to be myself, but eventually drama caused us to lose that friendship. So, I went back to that not having anyone zone. I’m still sort of there. I started dating someone about a month ago and she is very involved in that world, even going as far as working for a LGBTQ non-profit. It’s made it easier for me to open up and be real about myself, especially about my past.

(Pt 3) I have a lot of social anxiety and connection issues because of abuse and rape as a child. So, I tend to worry and overthink things, and I allow myself to cling when I finally feel a connection. But I haven’t been able to really talk to her or the friends I’m making through her about these things because she wants to keep it light while we develop the relationship. That’s fair, but I’m excited to have someone like her in my life. A queer ally sorta. My queer ally.

(Pt 4) Which leads me to my talking to you so much, and asking a bunch of questions. I feel like I don’t have a support group or a person to talk to, and I need someone to talk to as I go through it. So if you can point me in a direction for that, I would be most grateful.

Hi, boo. First, I’m sorry you’ve been through so much and I’m really proud of you for talking about it. I hope you are reaching out for support that is more professional than what I can offer you. What I do know is that there are people out there who have experiences similar to yours, or who can empathize with you, or who just care enough to listen to what you’ve got to say. Even if those relationships “keep it light” in the beginning, support networks are crucial for every single person, no matter where you’ve been or where you’re going. Find those people and, if that’s what you wanna call it, cling to them. Stick with the people who treat you right and make you feel good. Make sure they know that it’s okay to tell you if you’re crossing any boundaries if you’re worried you’re a “clingy” person, but don’t feel ashamed for wanting to build relationships with the ones who get you. Plenty of people in the world want to help and connect with you. You’re gonna find them. Good luck, lovey. <3 

so-so-gender-fly:

Can we all please stop sensationalizing transgender people…specifically, trans women? Phrases like, “used to be a man” are so overly simplistic and reinforce the notion that trans women are lying or being disingenuous. How about, “The Highest-Paid Female CEO in America is a Trans Woman….HOORAY!”

Your desire to sell magazines does not trump the safety and advocacy that trans women so desparately deserve. While this is a wonderful circumstance, it is hardly representative of the lives of most trans women in this country. When we attempt to celebrate a white, upper class, trans woman with unhealthy phrases like this, we will only find ourselves doing damage to the ones down here with the rest of the us. Or the ones we keep below us.   

(via transgayinfo)