Just Because Your Friend Is Queer Doesn't Mean They Like You

Stop Assuming Your Queer Friends Are Going To End Up Falling For You

News flash: if you're my friend, the chances of me falling for you are slim to none.

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Ever since I came out my senior year, I've encountered bumps of my friendships due to my sexuality. I think people understand gay, lesbian, and bisexual identities rather well. However, there are other members of the LGBTQ+ community that isn't as understood as well.

I identify as pansexual but start using the term queer. Essentially, I don't have a preference if someone identifies as female or male. When it comes to love and relationships, I care about the quality of the person and if I'm getting the love and respect I deserve.

However, to some of my friends, they seemed to become afraid. They distanced themselves in our friendships in fear I would end up falling for them.

News flash: if you're my friend, the chances of me falling for you are slim to none. You are my friend for a reason. If I liked you, I would honestly be too nervous to talk to you.

It's nice to know to have that kind of self-confidence where you think everyone has a crush on you. That's the attitude to have because you are a pretty great person. However, sorry to break it to you, but you just are not my type.

There is absolutely no reason to cut off a friendship just because you don't understand. Your queer friends would probably like you to ask questions. It can be a sign you care about them and showing support. There is nothing wrong with asking questions either. When you're in class and you don't know anything, then you ask a question. When you are getting to know someone, you ask questions. Even if you knew this person for a while, ask away!

I think there is a stigma of not knowing something and feeling embarrassed. However, it shouldn't be this way. We should embrace the unknown, learn, and grow from it. It's 2019. It's all about being open-minded to differences. We have to do better for the next generation.

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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Pride Month And People’s Sexual Identity Are Not Marketing Ploys For Corporations To Pillage

What is feeding into these limited-edition rainbow products actually doing to help the LGBTQ+ community?

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You may have heard of pink or even green capitalism, but now, meet rainbow capitalism: the latest ploy from corporations to make you believe that they care about your cause!

Perhaps it was inevitable. As support for the LGBTQ+ community grew to the majority being in public support, corporations jumped at the opportunity to sink their claws into the movement for their own economic gains. It appears in the form of Adidas's "pride pack" rainbow merchandise, despite being one of the biggest sponsors in this year's World Cup in Russia, a country whose anti-LGBT laws make being apart of the community a dangerous thing.

It appears in companies changing their logos to that of rainbow colors, without actually doing literally anything to contribute to the LGBT+ community. It appears in the slacktivism of "allies" purchasing a rainbow product and feeling as though they have contributed to the cause.

To give context, Pride Month was created in honor of the Stonewall Riots of 1969, headed by LGBTQ people, predominantly of color, including black trans women Marsha P. Johnson, after being silenced by the police all throughout history. It garnered attention to the LGBTQ+ fight for equality by taking a step further than the polite and resigned protests.

So then why is our current Pride Month being defined by just that: movements for equality that are polite and resigned?

Here's the truth you may not want to hear: buying a 'love is love' mug or posting a picture of your rainbow Ikea bag is not really supporting the LGBTQ+ community. Sorry, not sorry.

Corporations are thriving off of people's willingness to accept the most minimal efforts as support. What is feeding into these limited-edition rainbow products actually doing to help the LGBTQ+ community? In most cases, nothing but exploiting the very real and very serious battle for equality to love who you want to. Even though the LGBTQ+ symbol of a rainbow can be found nearly everywhere during the month of June, its current use by corporations only works to silence the actual hardships and meanings behind the movement and its activists.

To mend this loss of focus is to raise awareness. Continue to educate yourself and other people on the real reasons for Pride, and the real reasons why companies may be using these symbols. Investigate the companies that you want to purchase LGBTQ+ products from: Are they donating to LGBTQ+ causes? Have they ever actively donated to anti-LGBTQ or other humanitarian causes? Are they only vocal when it comes to the month of June, and silent on anything gay-related after?

Pride Month was designed not only to celebrate the braveness of those LGBTQ+ activists who have come before us, but each and every single member of the community who continues to fight for equality. When corporations minimize that down to a rainbow-colored bottle of mouthwash, ask yourself: Are they supporting for the right reasons? Or is it just another contribution to the silencing of the LGBTQ+ community?

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