14 Great LGBTQ+ Valentines To Send To That Special Someone

14 Great LGBTQ+ Valentines To Send To That Special Someone

Because love is for all.

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Sometimes for Valentines Day, it can seem like the world only aims to sell, advertise, and cater to the standard heterosexual couples. This can make a holiday that may already have it's difficulties be even a bit more difficult. Thankfully times are slightly changing, with some companies making cards geared towards those in the LGBTQ+ community and even making some cards and gifts with gender-neutral pronouns.

Even with the progress, it can be awkward to have a holiday of love when there are many situations that could turn uncomfortable, whether explaining your relationship or people assuming you are out with "friends". Even with said problems for those on valentines, many are becoming more inclusive, including some cute, funny, and slightly inappropriate valentines cards.

1. PAN-TASTIC!

Nice play on words, right?

2. Homosexuwhale.

Personal favorite. The adorable whale with the rainbow horn is just too cute.

3. Can't think.

If you need a bit of a laugh, this one is for you.

4. Janis.

For all those "Mean Girls" fans out there, especially those that thought Janis was the best character.

5. Bi the way.

Another fun one with a play on words.

6. Pairs.

Tetechnically a wedding card, this one can still be a really cute valentines day card.

7. Roses are red.

Taking a classic with a bit of a twist.

8. Platonic.

Even cards for those who aren't feeling especially lovey.

9. Chicks

Cute animals that have a secondary meaning, perfect.

10. No gender.

Cute and direct.

11. Love queerly.

For those who want more a classic looking card.

12. Lady boner.

For the more inappropriate couples, this is sure to get a good laugh.

13. Bow ties.

Simple, yet adorable, as the bow ties just add so much to the card.

14. Trans-cending.

What can I say, I like a play on words.

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This Is How Your Same-Sex Marriage Affects Me As A Catholic Woman

I hear you over there, Bible Bob.
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It won't.

Wait, what?

I promise you did read that right. Not what you were expecting me to say, right? Who another person decides to marry will never in any way affect my own marriage whatsoever. Unless they try to marry the person that I want to, then we might have a few problems.

As a kid, I was raised, baptized, and confirmed into an old school Irish Catholic church in the middle of a small, midwestern town.

Not exactly a place that most people would consider to be very liberal or open-minded. Despite this I was taught to love and accept others as a child, to not cast judgment because the only person fit to judge was God. I learned this from my Grandpa, a man whose love of others was only rivaled by his love of sweets and spoiling his grandkids.

While I learned this at an early age, not everyone else in my hometown — or even within my own church — seemed to get the memo. When same-sex marriage was finally legalized country-wide, I cried tears of joy for some of my closest friends who happen to be members of the LGBTQ community.

I was happy while others I knew were disgusted and even enraged.

"That's not what it says in the bible! Marriage is between a man and a woman!"

"God made Adam and Eve for a reason! Man shall not lie with another man as he would a woman!"

"Homosexuality is a sin! It's bad enough that they're all going to hell, now we're letting them marry?"

Alright, Bible Bob, we get it, you don't agree with same-sex relationships. Honestly, that's not the issue. One of our civil liberties as United States citizens is the freedom of religion. If you believe your religion doesn't support homosexuality that's OK.

What isn't OK is thinking that your religious beliefs should dictate others lives.

What isn't OK is using your religion or your beliefs to take away rights from those who chose to live their life differently than you.

Some members of my church are still convinced that their marriage now means less because people are free to marry whoever they want to. Honestly, I wish I was kidding. Tell me again, Brenda how exactly do Steve and Jason's marriage affect yours and Tom's?

It doesn't. Really, it doesn't affect you at all.

Unless Tom suddenly starts having an affair with Steve their marriage has zero effect on you. You never know Brenda, you and Jason might become best friends by the end of the divorce. (And in that case, Brenda and Tom both need to go to church considering the bible also teaches against adultery and divorce.)

I'll say it one more time for the people in the back: same-sex marriage does not affect you even if you or your religion does not support it. If you don't agree with same-sex marriage then do not marry someone of the same sex. Really, it's a simple concept.

It amazes me that I still actually have to discuss this with some people in 2017. And it amazes me that people use God as a reason to hinder the lives of others.

As a proud young Catholic woman, I wholeheartedly support the LGBTQ community with my entire being.

My God taught me to not hold hate so close to my heart. He told me not to judge and to accept others with open arms. My God taught me to love and I hope yours teaches you the same.

Disclaimer - This article in no way is meant to be an insult to the Bible or religion or the LGBTQ community.

Cover Image Credit: Sushiesque / Flickr

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Conversion Therapy Is Dangerous & Far Too Common

Most people assume that conversion therapy is an antiquated and long-gone practice when it is currently impacting thousands of American youth.

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I was recently watching the movie "Boy Erased" with my mom. She asked me how recently this story had taken place and was shocked when I said the boy in the movie underwent conversion therapy in 2004. She came up with question after question: how common is it today? How many people does it affect? What laws are in place? I did some quick googling and she was surprised to learn that conversion therapy is only illegal for minors in 15 states and Washington D.C. I also told her that it is predicted that 20,000 youth between the ages of 13 and 17 will experience conversion therapy programs before they turn 18.

The stories of LGBTQ+ youth committing suicide due to conversion therapy are endless, while countless others report physical and sexual assault while undergoing the "treatment". These programs advertise that homosexual identity can be cured and that LGBTQ+ individuals have the capabilities to change their thoughts and feelings. Most conversion therapy is religiously supported and motivated, with churches and religious organizations being the creators of many such programs.

Those that have come out of conversion therapy report stories of emotional abuse through therapy sessions with other participants. Those within the programs are reportedly taught that if they are unable to become heterosexual it is their own personal failure. Participants are physically harmed while watching homoerotic film or images. Being given elastic bands to punish themselves when they have homosexual thoughts and practices to associate shame with homosexuality are also common. Use of electric shock therapy has even been reported as part of the "treatment" involved in conversion therapy. Conversion therapy programs additionally focus on gender identity and gender-specific traits. Organizations teach proper behavior for each gender, requiring "patients" to exhibit behavior that is stereotypically masculine or feminine.

Scientifically, it has been proven that being gay cannot be "cured" and that these programs do not work. There is no scientific evidence that conversion therapy can actually change LGBTQ+ behavior or feelings. The practice of these programs to refer to LGBTQ+ individuals as having a disease or mental disorder is also scientifically ungrounded. Several medical institutions including The American Psychological Association, The American Medical Association, The American Academy of Pediatrics, and The National Association of School Psychologists have spoken out against conversion therapy. These organizations say that the practice is medically inaccurate and has the potential to hurt patients more than helping them as a result of the mental and emotional impacts of conversion therapy.

It is shocking that conversion therapy is still allowed to be practiced at all and that 35 states still allow minors to undergo such treatment. The Vice President of the United States and the Republican Party have even come out with statements that seemingly support the practice. It seems ridiculous that something that has no evidence of being effective is still being practiced and that little to no attempt is being made to save kids from the falsehoods they are being told about how they can "fix" themselves. We need to take a serious look at how we handle this issue and remember that kids are supposed to be taught to embrace who they are, not that a fake medical treatment is the secret to being the right kind of human being.

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