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Celebrating Pride Month

June is Pride Month, a month when we can recognize the LGBTQ+ community and their achievements. I not only want to recognize achievements, I want to recognize their value as a human being.  I want to bring awareness to the challenges this community endures.  I want to share their strength and stories connecting you to them. 

Pride Month takes place in June because on June 28, 1969, police raided a gay club called the Stonewall Inn in New York. The raid was blamed on the bar operating without a proper liquor license. However, further investigation showed the raid was about harassing and arresting people where they felt safest, in their community.

Over 25 years, I have listened to stories from the LGBTQ+ community in my private practice. My chair gives me front-row seating to the disturbing cruelty in the world and yet the power of resilience. I often hear stories of brutality while witnessing strength and hope. Still, to this day, I am shocked at how hurtful, and unkind people can be. When you attack a person verbally, emotionally, physically, or sexually, you attack their personhood and those around them.  

Becoming aware of Pride month might begin with becoming aware of treating another human being with kindness. Reminding yourself that the person receiving your judgment, cruel words, or disgust is someone’s son or daughter, brother or sister, cousin, wife or husband, mother or father; they are human beings with heart, mind, body, and soul.

I wonder if we all practiced the following, how different our world would be? What do you think the world would be like?

Be love to others: Love is a choice, not a feeling, and deliberately seeks to protect the welfare of others.

Be joy: Joy demonstrates the gratitude of one’s circumstances.

Be peace: Freedom from disturbance. Why be the cause of disruption in another person’s life?

Be patient with others: The ability to accept differences or delays without becoming annoyed.

Be kind and good to others: The ability to express moral goodness and integrity, not using your moral compass to harm others.

Be gentle: Gentleness is the opposite of self-interest and having the quality of humility.

Be internally regulated with your interactions with others: When seeing the differences in the world and feeling reactivity to them, you engage love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, and gentleness as your guide, allowing yourself to internally wrestle with the difference and yet do no harm to the other person.