“Outright has been one of the most important factors in helping me break out of the cultural pressures that had been instilled in me growing up. I had always felt I was a bit different from those around me, but growing up with traditional, conservative parents forced me to try and bottle it away. As I child, I was taught that not following established cultural norms was bad, and that the family’s reputation for being a uniform unit was more important than the happiness of the individual members.
A couple of years ago, I reached a breaking point. Things didn’t make sense. I wasn’t able to sleep, or quiet the thoughts that had been in my head for so long. It was shortly after this point that I attended Outright’s meetings for the first time.
I was stuck in a vicious cycle of self-deprecation, a coping mechanism born from the lack of being able to be my most authentic self. Outright helped me learn that it was okay to be myself. I was stunned. As cliché as it may sound, the concept of there being people who felt the same way as I did had never occurred to me. The harsh cocoon of repression that had been built around me was starting to break down. I could feel the bad feelings melting away like strawberry sorbet. I stopped asking, ‘Who am I?’ and started proclaiming proudly ‘This is who I am!'”
Lily is a young person who found community and positivity at Outright. With your help, Outright can continue to build safe, healthy, supportive spaces for youth like Lily. Here is Lily’s story:
When Lily found Outright, her life changed forever, and YOU helped make it possible. Your donation today will help ensure that more queer and trans youth get to have life changing moments and experiences like this.
Just this year, thousands of queer and trans youth have felt supported and celebrated in their identities because of Outright. When you give to Outright, you’re supporting youth all across Vermont and making sure they have access to all of the resources they need to live safe, healthy, and authentic lives. In Lily’s words, “It is so wonderful that Outright exists to help youth like me have a safe place to be themselves.” Please give today and help our youth build bright futures for themselves.
Your support changes lives — Thank you for helping us make it better for queer and trans youth!