When I was in high school in the 80’s, nobody was out of the closet. There were people you might have guessed were gay — gaydar is a thing after all. But no one was willing to admit it.
Growing up in a Texas suburb, being queer wasn’t safe.
Everyday life was closely interwoven with the dominant religious doctrine of the area. And while teenagers would rebel with drinking or sex. Admitting you were gay was crossing an invisible line from safety to danger. And almost no one dared.
It’s no wonder I wasn’t able to consciously recognize my own queerness back then. On some level I knew I was a lesbian. I remember having an undeniable crush on a girl during my sophomore year. But I somehow rationalized it away because being gay just wasn’t an option.
I had been taught — and wholeheartedly believed — that being queer was fundamentally bad. My...
In a world passing increased hateful anti-LGBTQ+ legislation and spewing anti-LGBTQ+ and racist rhetoric, programs like the Pride and Joy Foundation's Keynote Queers, Leaders for Inclusive Change, OUTWrite Authors, and Pride and Joy Parent Events, hold spaces for the queer community to come together and share our stories, use our voices to elevate our stories, and dive into deeper conversations with allies through education, advocacy and outreach.
Events like this remind me that we are not alone. Events like this remind me that we do have allies out there standing alongside of us. I am grateful for our Pride and Joy HEROs who helped us sponsor our operational costs in 2023 so we can host events like this. I am also grateful for every single person who donated their time, energy or money to the Pride and Joy Foundation, who signed up for our newsletter, who liked or shared our content, who showed up to spaces and events and I am grateful for us, the LGBTQ+ community,...
We are days away from our biggest Pride and Joy Parent Event: Prepping Your Family for Pride. We sat down with one of our incredible panelists, Kalyela Josephs (she/they), and also known as Coach K, to chat about pride, family and purpose. Kalyela has been partnering with the Pride and Joy Foundation for a long time. She was featured on our podcast, Out of Queeriosity last season and you can listen here.
Kalyela will also be part of our Pride and Joy Summit - a two part series on Friday May 12 and Saturday May 13 of all LGBTQ+ public speakers across a variety of topics you won't want to miss. Coach K will give their talk "Coming Out to Your Purpose" on Saturday May 13 in the second round of our speakers.
Their work as a public speaker, coach and LGBTQ+ advocate has changed and empowered individuals and organizations. Kalyela has dedicated their life to helping others find and live with purpose. We hope you will enjoy our meaningful conversation.
We had an exciting opportunity to chat with our headline panelist, the one and only Ms. Junior Mintt. Read more to hear about drag, her makeup line Mintty Fresh, and all things LGBTQ+: pride, allyship, and community.
Junior Mintt will be part of our next Pride and Joy Parent Event: Prepping Your Family for Pride, open to everyone and anyone who would like to be part of the conversation. Learn a little more about Junior Mintt on this post and catch her on Tuesday May 16 at 4pm PT/ 7pm ET for more on the conversation around all things pride. You can save your spot here!
"Being queer means embracing change and fluidity. Queer does not mean one thing, so embrace the fluidity of identity if you’re an ally and check your assumptions at the door. As a 28-year-old Black Trans woman, I am still learning and growing as I get to watch the queer youth begin to expand even further our understanding of gender. From Neo-pronouns to Tik Tok, think of being an ally as a...
We are one month out from our next Pride and Joy Parent event, Prepping your family for Pride and are so excited that Rae McDaniel (they/them) will be joining our incredible panel of distinguished guests.
Rae is a licensed therapist, certified sex therapist, gender specialist, coach, educator, and author of the new book Gender Magic. They are the Founder and CEO of Practical Audacity, a Gender & Sex Therapy practice in Chicago, Illinois. We spoke with them about writing their book, Gender Magic, what pride means to them, and some notes on allyship. Here is more from our conversation.
"I believe the world is a better place when we all have the freedom and audacity to be our biggest, most lit-up, authentic selves. That’s my mission and I hope you will join me in it." -Rae McDaniel (they/them)
Pride and Joy Foundation (PJF): Could you speak a little on the process of writing Gender Magic? (How long did it take, how did the idea...
Our second cohort of Keynote Queers begins today and we are excited to share with our Pride and Joy Foundation family about the successes of one of our Keynote Queer graduates, Amy E. Porter (she/they). After Keynote Queers, Amy has spoken to over 1000 medical professionals across the world and incorporated her own non-profit, Tiny HeartsCan Foundation, the only non-profit in North America dedicated to prenatal detection of Congenital Heart Disease (CHD).
We interviewed Amy to learn more about CHD, how Amy began Tiny HeartsCan, and about their upcoming fundraiser, the Acorn Project. Keep reading for important information around CHD awareness and advocacy. "One heart scan, so tiny hearts can."
The Acorn Project fundraiser will launch on March 20, 2023. Acorn keychains will be given as a free gift for any single donation of $25 or more via e-transfer or donation on our website, www.tinyheartscan.org/donate...
I’m not a therapist or a trained mental health professional in any way. And when I find those resources and they help me, I’ll share them.
What I am is an LGBTQ+ mom with at least one LGBTQ+ kid. And I’m not here to actually give you advice, I’m here to share and also hear from you. I’m here to start the conversation.
First, thank you for even asking yourself this question. It means you’ve truly internalized your child’s identity. If you thought it was a phase, this event would feel like it happened to “others”, it would feel distant and not so immediate.
But for those of us in the community, it’s very immediate. It’s right here. There is a mix of anger, sorrow, and fear. This emotional cocktail is normally squashed, we don’t allow it to take up much rent in our brains. When we do, it feels like we’ve let them win.
But waking up yesterday to the news of what happened in...
I run Pride and Joy Publishing and for months I’ve been hearing about this breakthrough novel in the LGBTQ+ community, Gender Queer by Maia Kobabe (e/em/eir). I was told it was “first of its kind” as one of the first graphic novels that was also a memoir. (another great one is Fun Home by Alison Bechdel). I was told it was a physical experience to read and that once I had, I’d never forget it.
The leader of an LGBTQ+ networking group I belong to asked me to lead a book club discussion and I chose Gender Queer. I decided to pick Gender Queer for the discussion as I figured the accountability would make sure it got read. Having made a very public commitment, I ordered the book. Within the first weekend I could, I sat down to read.
By page 31, (when Maia got eir period for the first time) I was shaking. Crying by page 48 when 13-year-old Maia walks into eir school’s diversity club for the first time. The story on page 103 had...