In this blog, I am going to talk about what it is like to celebrate PRIDE as a care experienced person, while both being in the foster care system, being a care leaver, and even from the experience of someone who is leaving the system and becoming independent and moving into independent living to start a brand-new life for myself.

As we enter into the month of celebrating pride, I feel that it is worthwhile writing a blog from the experience and point of view of celebrating pride from my own experience as a care experienced person, as a lot of the time when being in the care system, we are sometimes not allowed to celebrate this event if it upset our foster parents or even the people we live with, which during the last few months of being in care, this was the case for me… During the time of my life being in foster care, I found it really hard to come to terms with my sexuality, this was more to the fact that I was completely in denial of the fact that I was gay and that I did not want anyone to know, so what I did was I hid all the feelings I had and started pretending that I was straight.

To begin with, pretending to be straight made everything a lot easier to cope with, as I did not need to worry or even think about the idea of me being gay and for others in my college and my friendship group to find out and for the reality of this happening to be real. For once, I was in control of how I was feeling, and I was doing what I felt was the right thing to do…. Or so I thought!…

When doing this, it made me start to feel very alone and depressed with who I was, because I was in denial about who I was and most importantly I was hiding the truth of who I was, which in my experience is the worst thing to do, as it keeps eating away at you until you do not recognize who you are any more, which unfortunately happened to me before I came to terms with the fact that I was gay and that I should not be afraid or even ashamed of being so. From my time in care, I have realized that nothing matters as much as being true to who you are. Being in foster care can be the loneliest time of your life, and it can make you feel that you are alone, because a lot of what you knew was taken away, and your old life was technically a dream that to others never happened, but for you, it did.

However, in my opinion, being in care should not influence the person that you are and the fact that you want to be the person that you are meant to be. Yes ok, your foster parents might not accept the fact that you could be LGBTQ+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Questioning), but this does not mean that you should hide who you are or even be afraid or ashamed of who you are.

As we come up to the coming months of celebrating pride, it is important to remember how hard it is for us to come out and to come to terms with who we are, because like a lot of our peers, we can come out and be accepted, but the reality is that we might not be around people that can help and support us, unlike our peers.

So from one care experienced person to another, always remember that coming out should always be your choice and never someone else’s, but most importantly never be ashamed of who you are, as the one thing you should ever do in your life is to be true with who you are and most of all, be honest with yourself. 

For advice and information about coming out or LGBTQ+ support groups please visit the following links below:

Advice and Information:

By Anonymous Care Experienced Blogger

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