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Reclaiming My Power Through Speaking My Truth and Sharing My Story


The Pride and Joy Foundation provides a space for our community to write guest posts. All writing submitted is original work by the author and belongs to the author. The Pride and Joy Foundation does not own any publishing rights to work submitted. All work posted is edited for grammar and spelling only. The views and opinions contained within our guest blog belong solely to the contributing writer.

*Content warning: mention of sexual abuse and violence. 

Reclaiming My Power Through Speaking My Truth and Sharing My Story

by Sam Heinrich

We’ve all heard the phrase “The truth shall set you free.” The first time I felt the reality of these words was in my twenties. I had been a closeted boy since the time a cousin of mine explained what being gay meant. I was eleven. There were two things that were true at that moment. The first, I was gay. It was the first time I had a word to identify how I felt towards men. The second,...

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Finding Ourselves in the Pages

Take a moment and think about a time you found yourself somewhere in the pages of a book. Was it because the character shared an interest or a personality trait of yours? Was it because you had the same hopes or desires as a character? Was it because they achieved a dream you hoped you would someday too?

I have always been a voracious reader. As a kid, I found parts of myself in books all of the time. In Roald Dahl’s “Matilda,” I found the peculiar parts of myself celebrated. In E.L. Konigsburg's “The View from Saturday,” I found the nerdy parts of myself winning. And in Louise Fitzhugh’s “Harriet the Spy,” I found the aspiring writer in me begin to blossom. But as a young person, I almost never saw the queer parts of me in the stories I read.

Because there were so few stories with LGBTQ+ kids in them, and because those few often depicted a difficult life, I assumed that my queer identity was wrong and meant to be hidden from others...

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