Self-Help LGBTQ+ Resources
Pride Resources That Support Our Community Because You Are Our Family
We always strive to provide our community with a safe zone to help you be who you truly are because you are important and you absolutely matter. It is no surprise that our LGBTQ+ family constantly faces struggles that hinder us from living a life full of happiness, love, peace, dignity, and respect. We are exposed to negative experiences that heavily impact us and may continue to now and in the future. For this reason, we have dedicated this resources page to help you, Beloved, overcome the adversity you have been facing in this highly challenging world. We have compiled a useful guide through recommendations and tips to help you gain access to vital support when you need it most. Each section highlights the top challenges and issues we face as a community and the relevant resources for help. Please feel free to use CTRL + F or Command + F to quickly find the relevant resources you need access to in the article.
Keywords: abuse, acceptance, anxiety, ayuda, bullying, campus, chat, depression, discrimination, employment, family conflict, harassment, housing, homelessness, immigration, rejection, school, trauma, unemployment
Bullying and Harassment
According to a survey, over 72% of the 4,400 LGBTQ students between ages 11-18 surveyed reported being bullied in 2010. LGBTQ+ adults also experience bullying and harassment at a higher rate than heterosexuals. You or someone you know may be suffering from bullying and harassment but are unsure if you can report these types of situations to the authorities. Yes, you absolutely can, and you definitely should. You may be wondering about the next steps you should take. First of all, your safety is a top priority. With that said, it is important to try to remove yourself from dangerous situations that can quickly escalate. Once you are out of harm’s way, here are two ways to help you report bullying and harassment to the authorities.
Step 1: Compile evidence such as video and pictures for a police report. Now, it may be difficult to record these types of unpredictable situations such as when merely walking to your favorite coffee shop or searching for that unique piece to include into your outfit of the day. However, if you can, please try to record these situations as safely as possible. Cyberbullying is also a form of harassment and bullying. Take screenshots if you have been bullied online or on social media. If you were not able to capture or record the incident, you should still report it to the authorities.
Step 2: Visit or contact the police in your area to file a report. School-age students can also report bullying and harassment to parents, guardians, teachers, school counselors, or campus administrators. You may also reach out to any of these resources found here for help. They will connect you to support services both on a local and national level. The Matthew Shepard Foundation has offered five tips to help report hate crimes. Stomp Out Bullying also offers its HelpChat Line for kids and teens.
Actively seeking support from local authorities and these resources may help prevent prolong exposure to conflict and suffering. If you are in immediate danger, do not hesitate to contact 911 emergency response services right away.
Safety will always remain a top priority, especially when it comes to keeping the youth safe from conflicts online and in real world situations. It has come to our attention that the rise in cyber threats is increasingly growing at an alarming rate. More than ever, parents and guardians in our community face great challenges in protecting the youth against online harassment, invasion of privacy, cyberbullying, and others. ConsumerNotice.org has provided excellent information about internet safety and some great tips to help keep children and teens safe online.
Family Conflict and Rejection
This is one of the most disheartening experiences our community constantly faces. Family members may not always see or accept the beauty and the uniqueness that make you who you are. But we see you, and we got you Awesomeness. Here are two organizations that offer their support to our LGBTQ+ family.
PFLAG: Founded in 1973, PFLAG (Parents Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) is an organization that has created a world where diversity is affirmed, respected, valued, and celebrated. It is one of the nation’s largest family and ally organizations with nearly 400 chapters and 250,000 members. They are an absolutely wonderful source of support.
Gender Spectrum: This organization’s mission is to create gender sensitive and inclusive environments for children and teens. It is an organization dedicated and committed to helping LGBTQ+ youth and their families. Helping our community is central to their work.
Family Acceptance Project: The organization was founded in 2002, and one of its primary initiatives is to develop research-based education, training, and assessment. They have been developing resources to help strengthen families to support LGBTQ+ children and adolescents.
Trans Lifeline: Launched in 2014, the organization provides direct emotional and financial support to trans people in crisis. They offer peer support phone services and ensure anonymity and confidentiality. Their hotline number can be reached at (877) 565-8860.
Abuse and Trauma
Abuse and trauma is a conversation that is also essential and critical to address. These experiences contribute to the scars that develop from the painful wounds inflicted by those of whom, at times, may have held a special place in our hearts. The severity of this struggle lingers deep within our community which includes the Black and Latinx communities. If you or someone you know has been suffering from abuse and trauma, then here are only to mention a few of the many resources you can turn to for support amongst others. Remember, dial 911 if you are in immediate danger and require assistance.
It Gets Better Project: This organization was created in 2010 and aims to empower, uplift, and connect the LGBTQ+ youth around the world to give rise to a global movement. They have compiled an arsenal of community-based service providers that support the LGBTQ+, Black Pride, and Latino Pride communities. Affinity, Allgo, Black AIDS Institute, and the Black & Latino LGBTQ Coalition are only to name a few of the many organizations included in their list.
ConnectSafely: Based in Silicon Valley, this organization is dedicated to educating people about safety, privacy, digital wellness, and more. They provide research-based tips, guides, and advice. They have also provided a list of resources that support the LGBTQ+ community which includes the Directory of LGBTQ Centers, GLAD (Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders), the Trevor Project, and many others.
Unemployment and Homelessness
Discrimination is one of the leading causes of unemployment and homelessness when it comes to our community. It is important to learn who you can turn to for help when you have been unlawfully, unfairly, and discriminately denied employment due to race, sexual orientation, and others. Lambda Legal has been providing its expertise to help achieve full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people, and everyone living with HIV through impactful litigation. They have additionally provided a list of resources that support the LGBTQ+ youth by state.
Immigration Equality is a leading LGBTQ+ and HIV-positive immigration rights organization. They have been working to secure freedom, equality, and safe haven for over 25 years. They provide their assistance through legal services, advocacy, and litigation.
True Colors United was founded in 2008 and is an organization that has been implementing innovative solutions to end LGBTQ+ youth homelessness. They offer safe and affirming services that will ensure dignity and respect through advocacy, education, programs, and training.
National Runaway Safeline: Serving for over 50 years, this organization was founded to meet the current needs of vulnerable youth to achieve an end to homelessness. They are a national communication system for runaways and homeless youth. They can be contacted at 1-800-RUNAWAY. They can also be reached through chat and email.
Anxiety and Depression
Undeniably, anxiety and depression continue to impact our communities. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide is the second leading cause of death for people ages 10-34. It is also the fourth and fifth leading cause of death for age groups 35-44 and 45-54, respectively. Both the adult and youth populations of our family face higher rates of depression that are rooted in discrimination and stigma. As with all the struggles previously mentioned, this is a conversation that is also absolutely necessary. We at Pride Clothes want to provide you and your loved ones with the utmost care and support to help you break free from these types of negative experiences to live a higher quality of life. Always know, Beautiful, that you are loved, and you are cherished! Here are four free helplines that are confidential and available 24/7/365.
SAMHSA’s Helpline (Treatment Referral Routing Service) 1-800-662-4357 or TTY: 1-800-487-4889. English and Spanish languages are available.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255 or 988. Chat is also available by visiting http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/GetHelp/LifelineChat.aspx or https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/. Ayuda En Español is also available by clicking here.
Crisis Text Line provides its support through SMS messaging by texting HOME to 741741. Spanish assistance is available by texting AYUDA to 741741.
The Trevor Project can connect you to a crisis counselor through chat, phone, or text messaging. Click here for chat services or call 1-866-488-7386. You can also text START to 678678.
Employment and Housing Discrimination
Searching for a safe and supportive home is a basic necessity when it comes to human rights. It is also a right to be able to find the means to live a life of fulfillment without prejudice or discrimination. If you have encountered employment or housing discrimination and need guidance in regards to the next steps to follow, then here are some organizations that have been included in HRC’s list of resources in addition to Lambda Legal and Immigration Equality.
Acceptance is a struggle that continues to prevent our LGBTQ+ community from living a healthy and happy life full of positivity. This is especially apparent in the Latino and Black youth communities. Struggling with self-acceptance and the acceptance of others can take a severe toll with disparities persisting over time. We want to remind you that you are accepted, you are celebrated, we are proud of you, and you matter to us here at Pride Clothes. If you or a loved one has been suffering from these types of experiences in school, work, or anywhere else, then consider these next steps.
One of the most important steps to take is to NEVER accept cruelty and hurtful behavior. If they react in a negative way, know that their behavior is not your fault. If needed, distance yourself from them to help ensure your safety and well-being.
Take a moment to take a breath and remember to trust in yourself. Think about all that you have achieved and all of the incredible things that make up the marvelous person that you truly are. Your confidence and courage may help reduce the stress and anxiety you are feeling.
Be patient. Whether it is your family, friends, classmates, or co-workers you are coming out to, it may take some time for them to understand what it is to be the wonderful and magnificent being that you are. Give them time.
For parents, guardians, friends, and relatives who are wondering how to react to someone who is coming out:
Listen without interrupting or arguing. Doing so will help provide a more comfortable and supportive environment.
Express your affection, care, and love. Thank them for their trust. This is essential to their well-being and health. It will help develop confidence and courage and will provide them with the assurance that comes from knowing that you are supporting them.
Provide or suggest LGBTQ+ resources like the ones included on this page for additional support.
As we live in this fast-paced and digital world, we continue to find ways to try to help and support one another the best way we can. Chatting with like-minded peers through trained and professional facilitators can also provide a safe and inclusive environment. Q Chat Space is a digital center that provides LGBTQ+ teens a place to connect with like-minded peers for support and information. It is a wonderful and fantastic platform to engage with others who share similar interests through live chat. Teens can connect and have fun while being provided with support by visiting https://www.qchatspace.org.
Educators and school administrators play a critical role in society. They are at the forefront for encouragement, support, and a positive foundation for future generations. For this reason, it is equally essential to provide the tools necessary to support our LGBTQ+ youth. Here are some excellent resources for educators, school, and campus administrators.
Safe Schools Coalition is an organization that has been working with schools to become a safe and inclusive learning environment for school-age youth, regardless of gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation. Click here for their classroom resources page.
Campus Pride was founded in 2001 and aims to create safer environments for LGBTQ+ students. They offer and provide online training to help build college awareness.
GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network) was founded by a group of teachers to help create affirming learning environments. They have compiled a kit to help educators provide LGBTQ+ youth with a safe space/zone at schools.
GSA Network (Genders & Sexualities Alliances) has been uniting and connecting LGBTQ+ student-led organizations to provide safe spaces and support for youth in middle schools and high schools across the country. They also offer a tool kit for Gender Identity Activism in Schools.
Advocates for Youth has compiled a Toolkit that highlights the challenges faced by the youth of the community. This kit also provides insight on how to enhance awareness.
History UnErased is an organization that was founded in 2015. The organization continues to develop curriculums that contextualize LGBTQ+ history for K-12 schools. They also offer teacher training to help create inclusive classrooms, libraries, and school culture.
Transathlete.com is a resource for athletes, coaches, students, and administrators. Its website offers information about trans inclusion in athletics. The site is also a consultancy service that provides expertise in creating transgender-inclusive policies in sports, high school settings, and higher education.
The struggles our family and communities have experienced and endured will be the pillars of strength for hope, inspiration, motivation, and love. We hope that you find these resources to be useful in aiding you on your journey, Dearest. Always remember, we are more than just a Pride shop that produces high-quality and amazingly unique pieces. We are your family, and we are the ones you can always turn to for love and support. We adore you, Beautiful, and from the wise words of RuPaul, “Own who you are, and celebrate it.”
Now get to shopping, Gorgeous! Pick a design that resonates with you and show off your fierceness because your beauty demands respect. Feel the love and spread the love, Darling. See you at Pride!