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Edit: Kim gave us a post elaborating on how RPR handles LGBTQ+ discussions. :)

Heeeeeey! Pride month comes again! And since I'm tired of making any effort to explain anything to the brick walls that keep @-ing on things I said months ago... Let's... uh... yack about it? ^^;

I decided to do this on my way to bed, so no specific plan on what to have here (so of course you're that much more welcome to create a separate, more focused topic/thread if you want!). I'll go ahead end super briefly explain what Pride Month is (because there are people who are new to it every year!), and then throw out some ideas on stuff to chat about here.

What is Pride Month?
I think most people (at least in the US and a few other countries...?) know what it is already, but in case it's new to you (or you don't know how it came to be), here's the gist:

Pride Month, aka LGBTQ+ Pride Month, features an assortment of events that put those who are LGBTQ+ in the spotlight in a positive way. You've probably noticed that there are a lot of variations of the acronym; the version I used means "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, and others who are not heterosexual (sexually straight) and hetero-romantic (romantically straight) and cisgender (gender matches sex). There are other terms used as well, but they all tend include slightly different groups. (I personally prefer to just say queer, but I think I remember seeing members of RPR who are still deeply bothered by the term, so I'll be trying to avoid it from here on, especially when referring to the community as a whole.)

Its roots actually come from a protest (accurate to even call it a riot) that started at a gay bar called The Stonewall Inn, objecting to the harassment that such establishments and LGBTQ+ folks got on the regular from police and basically everyone else. A commemorative march/ongoing push for equal rights happened the following year, and as it continued, the reference to Stonewall was quickly dropped in favor of "Pride" in part to make it more inclusive, and in part to ensure the mafia (who financed and therefore technically owned all gay bars and such at the time, since no one else would) couldn't put any claim on it. Worth note: don't get stuck on the term "gay bar;" Pride is not just for gay folks, and some of the most important figures in its creation were trans women of color.

Today, Pride Month is internationally celebrated throughout June. Parades are one of the most common features, and many places will set up public spaces dedicated to sharing information & resources, drawing more attention to LGBTQ+ owned businesses, creators, etc, and generally celebrating and supporting LGBTQ+ folks in their journeys of self-discovery, self-acceptance, and achieving self-love. There are commonly other, more focused events as well, and they can be incredibly varied: mini-courses about certain aspects or sections of the LGBTQ+ community, drag shows, special LGBTQ+ "prom" events for those who missed out or who were still "in the closet" for theirs, maker markets, performances by specialized LGBTQ+ groups (for example, gay men's choirs seem pretty popular), and other things you might associate with basically any festival.

Be aware: Some events are for all ages, and some events are age-restricted. While that increasingly includes things to support LGBTQ+ youth and LGBTQ+ seniors, adult-only events also exist - some simply because it'll be in a bar or something where minors legally aren't allowed, but some may also focus on dating or get a bit too risqué to allow minors in.

One more thing: Allies are usually very much welcome at Pride events, but remember that "ally" means that you support and assist something, not that you're part of it. (It's also totally fine if you only say you're an ally because you don't feel safe about coming out yet, or are unsure and don't feel like using "questioning" to describe yourself.)

So what're we gonna talk about? Well, that's going to kinda be up to you. It could be as simple as getting a sense of what sorts of things people want to discuss before creating a whole topic focused on one of those things. Some other options include...
  • Simply introducing yourself as someone who is LGBTQ+. Maybe it'll even be your first step out! (If so, I encourage you to mention if you're open to getting congratulated, would rather not get any attention over it, or even would appreciate some kind of support if you're having a hard time.)
  • Share some awesome announcement! Get engaged as an LGBTQ+ person? Came out to someone and got a better response than you expected? (Or heck, came out and just want to express being proud of that?) Got something gender-affirming that you're excited about? Realized and accepted that you are LGBTQ+ (or even just started working on figuring that out)? Just keep RPR's rules in mind for certain things.
  • Request some support. Pride Month doesn't mean everything is great for all of us, and for some in certain situations, it might even make things worse. If you just need to rant briefly, so long as it still fits within RPR's rules, sure, post it, though I am going to ask that you put it in a labelled collapse tag (I do want you to have space, but this is mostly intended to be for positive things and/or some general learning). If it goes outside of RPR's rules for public forums, is likely to need an extended conversation, or you just don't want to post it all publicly for any reason, you're welcome to state that you'd like to talk privately with someone open to it and briefly describe what you'd be talking about.
  • Offer support. Obviously this includes responding to those requesting it, but you can also simply state some things you feel up to helping with, whether that's to possibly offer some advice or reassurance, to commiserate and empathize, or simply to offer an ear.
  • Talk about Pride events you've been to (or will be going to)! Maybe it's just about a really cool float you saw, maybe it's a unique event, maybe it's a neat or funny story, etc.
  • Inform us! Do you have a really niche micro-label? Do you feel your identity gets too stereotyped, or just want to share a bit of how you personally experience it? Know some neat facts about Pride? You can also provide links to resources (with some description of what it is, please!) for LGBTQ+ folks. And unless the mods or Kim say no, I'm going to say that that includes links to helpful information about legislation affecting LGBTQ+ folks (please provide a warning if it's bad news) or to trustworthy resources or petitions for opposing anti-LGBTQ+ legislation, but please either avoid actually discussing those things or keeping discussion limited to the practical points, not the political points (and again, for unpleasant stuff, please wrap it in collapse tags. Supportive and affirming religious resources are similarly welcome.
  • Ask questions. Trying to learn more to help sort out your identity? Want to better understand another identity? Have other questions regarding the LGBTQ+ community? It's okay if you're not quite sure how to ask so long as you are making an honest effort to be respectful and to really consider the answers you are provided. And keep in mind that experiences do differ!
  • Post fun LGBTQ+ memes! You are strongly encouraged to stick to ones relating to your own identity/experiences, just to be sure you don't end up posting something that might actually be pretty cringy (you know, in a bad way). I also encourage you to either post the link to the image or to put the image inside a collapse tag, especially if the image is flashy or could otherwise be a problem to those with visual sensitivities. And please describe images (or other visual media) for anyone who might be using a screen reader or something! Note: Please refrain from sharing images, quotes, etc. which could be taken as inciting or encouraging threats, violence, or other legally problematic activities.
  • Share your story of self discovery. Some of us know basically our whole lives, some of us take awhile to figure things out, and some honestly do have things change on them. Some of us get the right answer the first time, some of us have some more steps along the way. Some of us still don't know. And sometimes, people go through that questioning process and maybe even start making some changes before concluding that they really are straight and/or cisgender after all (and yes, I actually would like to hear from you, too!).

Remember: Although RPR does not consider inherent identities to be political matters (it's been stated by Kim, I just don't recall where), we should still keep this away from specifically political stuff (more details in the "Inform us!" entry), and real-world religion is also not to be discussed (nor pushed, nor generalized disparagingly). From the Forum Use Rules and Terms:

Edit: Kim gave us a post elaborating on how RPR handles LGBTQ+ discussions. :)

And what about me?

I thought I was fully cishet for most of my life and have since realized that I am none of that. I'm non-binary of a vague and genderfluid variety. I'm some variety of asexual, but kinda too lazy to have yet sorted out some concepts and technicalities to be certain where I actually fall in that spectrum (honestly it probably changes around like basically everything else does with me). Romantically, I'm aroflux, and I don't actually know how to live with that yet. I'm willing to at least attempt to answer questions about any of those things, though I may sometimes talk more about what I've seen in communities rather than my personal experiences (I'll probably usually try to address both).

I have ended up in "arguments" about gender... a lot more than I'd like. I probably have some pent-up rants, so be careful if you're curious about how that tends to go. Up side, yes, I've got a decent idea how/where to find digestible info that itself cites the more technical research and such. And even just saying that has me wanting to delve into a rant. Not gonna right now, though. I can also try to help explain things like the Split-Attraction Model (it's why I mention sexual orientation and romantic orientation separately), attempt to communicate the concept of an "oriented aroace" or of QPRs (Queer-Platonic Relationship), and get into why I don't think anyone can accurately claim to fully understand gender (especially if it hasn't broken your brain).

Two groups that I would love to talk more with, if we have any who feel like sharing about it, are intersex folks and detransitioners. It'd be particularly nice to be able to probably discuss a bunch of stuff via PM, but general statements about what you'd consider relevant, whether here or privately, are fine, too. Since the things I'd like to discuss the most aren't celebratory things, I'm putting them in a collapse.

I still think it's important
For intersex folks, the primary thing on my mind is the way intersex folks tend to get used in debates about gender and how intersex folks feel about it. For detransitioners, my top priority is getting a better understanding of why and, especially for those who feel that transition truly was a mistake, how detransitioners can better be supported and their issues addressed without being reduced to just a divisive "topic" to be used as arguments.

And I am willing to explain more about why I'm interested in those to anyone, but it gets even more un-fun.

Beware: I over-explain. A lot. ^^;

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So I'm not fully sure where to start this. Might turn into a ramble. Might not even be coherent. I should be sleeping.
So, I've known that I'm Not Cishet™ for.. 5-6 years? Basically as soon as I realized I could be something other than the "default", I began working on figuring myself out. Even then, I spent quite a long time being incorrect about a lot of it. Which is okay, of course. This goes for everyone: it's okay to be wrong about your gender or orientation. You don't need to have all the answers right away, and you don't even need labels if you don't want them.
On that note, still not sure what's up with my gender. I'm AFAB (assigned female at birth) and I can say with certainty I have had dysphoria for as long as I can remember. I've identified as various flavours of trans throughout my teen years (mostly just 'non-binary' and 'agender'), as well as wondering if I was a binary trans male. At this point though, with a lot of self-reflection that I won't talk about in depth right now, I've realized that even with the dysphoria, I might be cis, or perhaps a demigirl. I don't know what my gender is, but I do know what it isn't. (It isn't male or anything remotely close to that.)
Sexuality-wise, I've known I'm asexual for as long as I can remember. Never doubted that. As for my romantic orientation, I never really considered myself 'straight', but I definitely assumed that I liked boys for a long time (in retrospect, I just convinced myself that I did because it's what my peers were doing.) After learning more about various LGBT+ identities, I decided the gender of my partner didn't matter, so I went with asexual-biromantic— quickly changing it to asexual-panromantic when I learned about 'pan' as an identity.
I spent quite a long time thinking I was "pan, but with a preference for girls." (There are debates about whether pan allows for gender preferences but that's not the point; I'm just phrasing it the way younger me did.)
Anyway, I eventually realized that, no, actually, I was not pan. The fact of the matter is that I do not like guys, at all. Never have. Part of it was compulsary-heterosexuality, and part of it was.. well, a certain harmful individual who we no longer speak of. In any case, I wasn't sure of my orientation for a bit, as I knew I liked girls, probably liked non-binary people (depending on the person in question), and didn't like guys. I wasn't sure what label to use, though I eventually found 'polyremantic/polysexual' (defined as attraction to multiple genders but not all.) I used that one for quite a while. Technically, it is still fairly accurate, but it is constantly confused with polyamory, so I dropped the term and went unlabeled for quite a while.
Now, I usually describe my orientation as 'sapphic'. There are a lot of definitions for this one, but for me, it's "I like girls, and that's pretty gay of me, because I'm not a guy even if I can't tell if I'm 100% a girl or not." Also, pretty flag <3 I internally think of myself as a lesbian as well though I don't usually say so, because then people yell at me about gender. Or I'll just say "I'm really gay" and leave it at that.
In summary: Hello hi I'm a sapphic ace. Girls are pretty. Gender is a bit confusing but I might be cis or cis-adjacent, even though dysphoria is really mean to me. Gender-nonconforming for sure. (I'm not sure if this makes me a detransitioner, but if it does, or if it doesn't but someone still wants to ask me questions about my experience, feel free to do so.) I am still keeping the they/them pronouns though, at least for now. Don't touch my pronouns. >:>
Well, I know none of that was anyone's business, but I'm going to post it anyway! :D
In other news, I'll (probably) be going to my first pride event this year!! I'm so excited! ^-^
Butch lesbo here, don't got the most interesting Joker origin story aside from how hilariously ironic my denial phase was. Those sad virgins over on 9gag put some pretty awful ideas inside of ol' 13-year-old Garn, which were quickly dropped once I realized that 'straight but not really attracted to dudes and with a fetish for all things that make a girl attractive' wasn't a real thing. Now I'm just, gay as hell an' thrivin', y'know?

Gender is another ugly beast to wrestle, but I've found that calling myself a marc or butch lesbian really does make my chest swell with pride, so there's that. I don't got the typical short hair most stereotypical butches boast and my genes certainly haven't gifted me with a perfect skinny white Hollywood-approved tomboy body, but I got the animation packet of a construction worker and try to dress as andro as my wardrobe allows me so, ayy, get ****ed, Imposter Syndrome! Gettin' a bunch of fun gay uni friends is helping out a ton too, it's cool to be among folks who can relate to certain aspects of the gay grind- I'm even gonna go to Pride for the first time this year since COVID is on its way out in my country.

Ayo but that's the ramble. If any cool comrade reads this; you're valid as ****, mateyy, cheers to ya.

being a genderfluid kinda got me bullied
Im transgender(male to female) and pansexual, but i have a lot of friends who are also LGTBQ+ who are supportive!

YinYang_Creator wrote:
Im transgender(male to female) and pansexual, but i have a lot of friends who are also LGTBQ+ who are supportive!

that's nice! I barely have friends in my school, so finding support hasn't been the easiest.
Well, you have friend here, right?

YinYang_Creator wrote:
Well, you have friend here, right?

you :>
YES! Ikr!? Also, i changed my pfp for pride month, i photo shopped my original onto a pansexual flag!

I got my genderfluid pride frog!
bisexual nonbinary polyamorous person here, if anyone has questions about anything ask! could be about those or other things
joke questions welcome >:D

Bicurious and an fellow ally.
I am omniromantic and nonbinary C: I use they/them pronouns mostly, but don't mind the use of she/her(though still kinda eh on it)

Just your fellow blob of trauma and father-issues 😎
Proud lesbian here.
Happy Pride month everyone!! I am non binary-genderfluid (still figuring it out but this fits me for now) and biromantic disaster :] I use any pronouns

I'm a fellow blob of weirdness and mother issues :D

Anyways, have a pride meme:
Do you mind if i take that picture? It is great! And something Loki would so say.
YinYang_Creator wrote:
Do you mind if i take that picture? It is great! And something Loki would so say.

Sure! I don't mind, it's just a random one I found on pinterest that I thought was perfect.

I'm bi and love pride month, my current bf is straight and is totally supportive too!
Sooo, I've actually got a question about a dream that I think might be related to me being bi-

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