• February 9, 2024

celebrating friendship in the lgbtq+ community

celebrating friendship in the lgbtq+ community

celebrating friendship in the lgbtq+ community 495 401 CJ Bourque

Valentine’s Day is often emphasized as a day for romantic love, complete with roses, chocolates, and declarations of affection. But in the diverse LGBTQ+ community, this day can hold a deeper significance beyond traditional (and often heteronormative) notions of love. Valentine’s Day can be an opportunity to celebrate and nurture relationships we have with our fellow friends and allies in the LGBTQ+ community and create new ones.

How Do Friendships and Connections Strengthen the LGBTQ+ Community?

Friendship plays a crucial part within the framework of the LGBTQ+ community. In particular, LGBTQ+ young people often turn to their community to find affirmation, love, LGBTQ+ specific resources like housing and mutual aid, and a general sense of safety and support. Focus on social connectedness and friendships is particularly important when addressing the needs of LGBTQ)+ youth throughout the world. Marginalization due to sexual orientation and gender identity has been linked to higher rates of suicide, among other mental health issues. These are often due to societal pressures, internalized stigma, or questioning their sense of belonging. But the path to self-acceptance is often far easier with fellow LGBTQ+ peers, friends and affirming allies who can show a young person it is safe to be their authentic self. According to the 2022 National Coming Out Day Youth Report, youth who are out to their immediate family or out at school report higher levels of happiness, optimism, acceptance and support through multiple measures. They also report higher levels of in–person participation with LGBTQ+ organizations at school and in the community. Affirming queer friendships can exist as a powerful source of community in and of itself, or as an additional source of joy and support.

Finding Community at Kaleidoscope

Kaleidoscope prides itself in offering a safe environment where LGBTQ+ young people can be their beautiful selves, and helping youth create fulfilling connections that serve as pillars of support. Join us on February 16th for a re-imagined celebration of Valentine’s Day at our Palentine’s Day Event for LGBTQ+ youth and allies, where we’ll celebrating LGBTQ+ friends and community through crafting, games, and good food! RSVP to join us!

Here’sto redefining Valentine’s Day as a celebration of love by honoring our friendships and community.