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Just because Pride Month is almost over doesn't mean we have to stop celebrating and embracing the LGBTQIA+ community.

I'm sure a lot of y'all are already familiar with the memes. Big companies around the globe will simultaneously change their profile pictures to rainbows on June 1st and revert back immediately at midnight on July 1st, doing nothing else to show they actually care about the community. It's just to earn some brownie points. The moment Pride Month is over, they stop caring.

The memes are plentiful:

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While it's funny, I think we should all do a little better to stay supportive every day of the year.

Pride Month means a lot to me, personally. Pride in and of itself is important. I'm a part of the community and almost every single one of my friends is a part of the community, too. It wasn't exactly on purpose that I befriended so many people like that, it just kinda happened.

Finding your true self is hard. It's tough for kids, teens and even adults. I was super conflicted with myself for many years, even being ashamed in some ways. I never had a super religious upbringing, though, so I suppose I had it easier than a lot of other less fortunate folks.

It took me a long time to become truly comfortable with who I am, and now I don't hide it at all. I've got a big ole bisexual flag hanging up in my office, and I'm proud of it. I just hope that other members of the community can come to terms with themselves and not have to be scared about how other people feel about them just existing.

I know a lot of close-minded people think that the "gay agenda" is being pushed and is infiltrating things like media and schools, but I don't think they understand how helpful that can be to others growing up. It tells them that the way they are is ok and is absolutely nothing to be ashamed of.

It's tough when the media you grow up with doesn't represent how you feel in any way. It makes you wonder if there's something...wrong with you, and that sucks. It sucks even harder that Florida "discouraging" elementary school teachers to have pictures of their same-sex partners in the classroom, but the Florida situation in general is a whole other story for another time.

Lubbock has a somewhat small but active community. We don't just go away once July hits. We're still around, and all we can do is hope that y'all will accept our existence regardless of what time of year it is.

Lots of love, friends.

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