Pride & Community

Went to my first World Pride event in London recently – not so much a sense of a community but rather lots of interconnected communities.


I like the website. I think communities sounds better than community, which suggests a homogenous whole rather than recognising and valuing the diversity within. At the same time the idea of a community/ies sounds appealing – a place to have a home. It is hard to feel the community – it feels nebulous at times and yet when one goes to events which are designed for LGBT like Pride or the recent gay fringe festival in east london, the community is visible and this feels reaffirming. I think this community/ies like all, share as many differences as similarities, perhaps the problems start to occur if one sees community as being about sameness. If the communities come from anywhere perhaps it has been about sharing adversity and then valuing ourselves and our experiences when so many others do not. In a shadowy way, the communities have been there as a reminder, a recognition and a validation of self....

Blessings and Marriages

It has been quite a rough couple of months for me at church as there have been one or two occasions when I have wished the ground would swallow me up. The faith in God that I was so certain about a year ago and the sexual identity that was so preciously defined by myself over the past forty odd years (lesbian at last) have been brought into question. Of course as a liberal politically I would go for gay marriage and not just blessings but my God appears to not be ready for this. The literalness of the Bible is what we are talking about and it comes down to equal opportunities in this day and age when in Biblical times we lived in a very different society. The Bible is the foundation of my faith but I choose not to be too literal about everything and do accept that moral boundaries that it teaches are good but are also based in culture from so long ago. It has been really tough over the past year or two. When will we learn to love our neighbour? Peace is the most important thing and if we don’t live in peace then we will lose...


In my experience, LGBT+ communities have been the keystone of my life. They have supported me through all manor of issues such as exams, placements and unemployment. As individuals we discuss anything from historical LGBT+ activism to the x factor. Most subjects have no apparent LGBT+ reference but there is often a natural enhancement to the connection between individuals which facilitates the conversation. I was a student nurse (now qualified) and it helped so much to discuss placements with other student nurses in the LGBT+ community. I knew they understood the barriers we needed to have up all day. It wasn’t that the people in the hospitals weren’t accepting, they often were. But they tended to ask so many questions. Which on the outside is nice but it was hugely tiring explaining every aspect of your life to each healthcare professional you met. In the LGBT+ community you are able to just sit talking/in quiet without any pressure. To be honest, it is heaven sometimes. There is, of course, the flip side. To receive the benefits of a community, you have to be included in the community. Although I have never had a problem being included, I have witnessed others struggling. Don’t ask me the formula for inclusion because I have no idea. I have often tried to include these people but it can be an uphill battle with no one to blame. Just because a person identifies as LGBT+ doesn’t mean they are able to access a community, no matter how near they are to its epicentre. I feel these people will probably feel that there is no community as it is often like a bubble. Within the community there is also often friction. Particularly with biphobia. I identify as polysexual but often use bi as there is less explaining, even in the LGBT+ community. My fiancee is a lesbian. There is still a belief that a bisexual and lesbian cannot have a happy, long-term relationship. We have been together for 5 years and are planning on a civil partnership this year. That’s as much proof as I need. Without the LGBT+ community, and my attempt to join it, we would never have...


I’m not a ‘scene’ person but I do feel part of an LGB community – which to me means a sense of belonging (with the past as well as the present and future) within which I can be different without being ‘othered’.

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