Self-acceptance, Self-worth, and Empowerment
Where does the term Pride come from? Apparently, the term was developed by Mr. Craig Schoonmaker, who was a committee member and activist on the original Christopher Street Liberation Day March after the Stonewall Riots.
And personally, I think this is the prefect term. I like to think that Pride, in this context, refers to an individual's sense of self-acceptance, self-worth, and empowerment in relation to their sexual orientation or gender identity. When individuals feel proud of who they are, and embrace their authentic sexual selves, it can lead to numerous positive outcomes in their personal lives and relationships. (Although really this can be said about anyone).
Firstly, embracing pride and one's authentic sexual self fosters a sense of self-acceptance and self-love. It allows individuals to recognize and honor their own unique sexual orientation or gender identity, acknowledging that it is a natural and valid part of who they are. This self-acceptance is a powerful foundation for overall well-being and mental health, as it promotes a positive self-image, boosts self-esteem, and reduces the risk of internalized shame or self-doubt.
Moreover, embracing one's authentic sexual self can lead to more fulfilling and satisfying relationships. When individuals are proud of their sexual orientation or gender identity, they are better able to communicate their desires, needs, and boundaries with their partners. (This is true regardless of orientation or gender identity). This authenticity and openness promote genuine connections, trust, and intimacy within relationships. It also allows individuals to seek and form relationships that are aligned with their true selves, rather than suppressing or hiding their sexual identity.
There has been a great deal of research over the last 20 years, that supports the positive effects of pride and the authentic sexual self in LGBTQ+ individuals. Research often finds that individuals who embraced their sexual orientation with pride reported higher levels of psychological well-being, greater satisfaction with their relationships, and reduced experiences of discrimination-related stress. (But really, this should come as no surprise).
As we said on the farm, “Always be proud of who you are, because there is only one of you out there.”
Come heal, grow and create together