Lesbian News

New Podcast Chapter – Out Out (Coming Out Part 2) : butchlesbians

10 Chapters & a Bonus Episode

The latest chapter of my podcast is out now, you can listen here or wherever you get your podcast.

This chapter is the second half of my coming out story. There is a CW, so please check that first.

If you haven’t seen one of my posts before… here’s the podcast blurb…

Tales of a Well Established Lesbian

Join a Butch Lesbian as she talks about growing up, and being a grown up, gay woman who is also gender nonconforming. Memories meet stories and become tales of experience.

Thanks for listening!

-WEL

Wynonna Earp Series Finale Recap: We’ll Always Have Purgatory

Wynonna Earp Series Finale Recap: We'll Always Have Purgatory

Wynonna Earp series finale recap below! Major major major spoilers for the whole show! 

Previously on Wynonna Earp, Waverly grew wings and made Nicole her angel’s shield, Jeremy lost his job and his boyfriend but helped save Purgatory, Wynonna and Doc had half a decade of love and heartbreak, and Waverly and Nicole fell in love and the very fabric of sci-fi television and queer representation was changed forever. Casual.

We open on a red wedding that feels like a bad omen for a big gay wedding episode of teevee. A woman in a white wedding dress with a blue sapphire heart wields an axe and chops everyone up and ultimately chops herself up, too. Seems chill and fine…

…until we cut back to present-day, where Waverly is taking that very same wedding dress out of a box, impressively bleached clean of the bloodshed. Waverly holds it up to show Wynonna and it hits them both anew: Waverly is getting married.

Wynonna Earp series finale recapWaverly holds up her wedding dress for Wynonna.

You know what was fun about the first half of this episode? I wasn’t sure the wedding was going to happen the way they planned/hoped but I never once worried someone was going to die. What a world!

Later, Nicole is putting flowers into the back of Wynonna’s truck, smiling lovingly as her big day comes together, when Wynonna snaps her out of her reverie. The Earp heir is inspecting her sister’s wedding cake with wee spectacles and has determined that it’s not vegan, like they ordered. It’s buttercream! A disaster!

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: Wynonna looks inquisitively at Nicole.

“BE STRESSED WITH ME” is a relatable mood.

Nicole isn’t worried about it, she jokes about just not telling Waverly, but Wynonna is holding on to a thread about it. She wants this day to be perfect for her baby girl, but Nicole promises her that it will definitely not be perfect. Nothing that has ever happened on the Homestead has been perfect. But Wynonna wants this to be the exception, BECAUSE of that. She reminds Nicole that both of Waverly’s dads died right here and Nicole probably thinks maybe they had that intervention for Wynonna too soon because she could use a little loosening up right now.

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: Nicole looks way more calm than Wynonna

“Do we need to do shots of banana liqueur to calm your nerves?”

Waverly comes out, just as chill as Nicole, and they’re both all cute and smiley about their impending nuptials. Wynonna tries to get HER on her level of stress about the buttercream, but Waverly is also too busy basking in the bliss to be stressed. Besides, this isn’t her first vegan rodeo, and she has cupcakes in the freezer.

Wynonna takes her nervous energy into the barn where she is dutifully hacking at a plank of wood with a knife when Waverly’s dress catches her eye. Next thing you know she’s wrapped up in a coat despite the beautiful sunny day and storming to Doc’s RV, things literally falling apart around her as she walks, and tells him that she felt compelled to try on the dress…and now she can’t get it off.

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: Wynonna looks adorably upset about her predicament.

I hope Melanie Scrofano is on another gay show I can cover soon, I’ll miss screenshots of her very expressive face.

They flirt a bit while Doc tries to get it off but he can’t even cut it off her so when they hear a familiar jeep approaching Wynonna DIVES inside the RV before Waverly can see her. Waverly is here to give Doc a gift and ask him an important question. The gift is Wyatt Earp’s saddle, restored to its former glory. And the question is whether he’ll be her best man. Doc has been one of the only people to not underestimate her from the jump, and has always been a rock in her life like no man has been before. Not her ex-boyfriend, neither of her fathers. Maybe it would have been Uncle Curtis, if he were still with us, but at this point in Waverly’s life, Doc Holliday is the best man she knows. And not because he’s perfect, or even always good, but because he is constantly trying to be better.

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: waverly smiles her angelic smile.

“Remember that one time you saved me from mean girls at a bachelorette party? Good times, good times.”

Doc asks about Wynonna, but Wynonna is going to stand with Nicole. Because they’re best friends. No take backs. Doc accepts Waverly’s offer with pride in his voice and she squeals with delight and scurries away. With a hiss of a reminder from the hidden Wynonna, Doc asks Waverly where she got her wedding dress and she points him toward a quant boutique…

…named CURSEY’S. Sweet angel what did you DO.

Wynonna and Doc make their way around the bridal shop, when they get the pearls scared out of them by a wispy wacky woman in a bridal gown…who is also Charlotte Sullivan,

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: Brigitte played by Charlotte Sullivan gives crazy eyes through a veil.

I’ve had a crush on Charlotte Sullivan since I was approximately 10 years old, this was a lovely surprise.

Gail Peck, ladies and gentlepeople!!

The dressmaker tells them that the dress will make Wynonna kill everyone at the wedding, and the only way to kill the dress is with the silkworms that made it. Or to kill the person in the dress, but Wynonna and Doc think they’ll try their luck with the bugs. Wynonna isn’t about to let some haunted hussie ruin this day for Waverly. No matter how pretty she is.

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: Brigitte looks wild-eyed.

Also this character was named after/absolutely a gift for my friend Bridget Liszewski from the TV Junkies who also happens to be one of the greatest gifts this show has given to ME so really it was a win-win-win.

Back at the Homestead, Jeremy and the brides-to-be are surveying the sudden damage to all the wedding goodies and can’t figure out what the heck happened. Jeremy spots a caterer and gets a funny feeling in his groinal region so he storms off to accuse the man named Damon of being a demon. Damon thinks he’s giving him shit because he knows he’s gay, which sounds pretty rich coming from the guy who is about to officiate a marriage between two women.

Waverly and Nicole follow the trail of destruction into the barn and see that Waverly’s dress is missing, at which point she realizes she doesn’t actually like the dress after all. Nicole points out that only the wedding stuff is trashed…and then they both realize at the same time that this means they have a haunted wedding dress on their hands.

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: Waverly and Nicole exchange ah-ha looks.

I love when people on supernatural shows remember the supernatural exists!

On their hunt for silkworms, Doc dives into a dirty pond and while he’s fruitlessly looking for silkworms, Wynonna sees her name on a note sticking out of his jacket that she’s holding and reads it, sadness washing over her like she was the one who jumped in the pond. The note is a goodbye letter, and he tries to justify it; he’s a human man now, the imminent danger has passed, what’s left for him here in Purgatory?

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: Wynonna holds a letter and cries.

Me reading all my friends’ tweets about how much this show means to them.

Back in the barn, Waverly and Nicole have set up an impromptu murder board and research station, where they start seeing a pattern of wedding murders that Waverly never noticed before because, well, there’s a lot of murders. They trace it back to a dressmaker named Bridgitte, who Waverly confirms is the wackadoo that sold her the dress, and who was the first to have a red wedding, killing all her wedding guests after being left at the altar.

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: Nicole and Waverly look at a laptop together.

“Do you do want to check for new ones or do you just want to read Stay the Night again?”

Nicole can understand the sentiment; if Waverly left her, she would, and I quote ,”Fuck shit up.” This assertion makes Waverly smile a sly smile and pounce on her girl.

As Doc puts on dry clothes after his impromptu dip, Wynonna calls him a coward. He scoffs and says she’s one to talk; a hero in war but a coward in love. He does say though that, in his defense, he wasn’t just going to leave a letter. He was just drafting his goodbye. He asks her to come with him when he goes, but she fights back tears and changes the subject instead. They have earthworms to paint.

Meanwhile, Jeremy walks in on a post-coital WayHaught who apologize but solving crime makes them horny.

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: Nicole and Waverly scramble to put their clothes back on.

We were just…solving crime…in a friend way.

Jeremy tells them he found their culprit and is surprised that at the same time he says demon caterer, they say haunted wedding dress. That’s when he realizes he fucked up but good. Waverly feels bad for JerBear but she has a flapper to stop so she runs off with a shotgun and a pun.

Wynonna and Doc bring their faux silkworms to Brigitte the Dressmaker, but she’s not fooled. She is, however, amused at their sad attempt and delights in the fact that they’re all going to die.

Wynonna Earp series finale recap: Brigitte is just standing there with her veil down looking insane.

I love that Waverly just straight-up shopped here and bought something from this kooky lady and was like, “Yeah I’m sure this is fine and totally normal that she wears a wedding dress to sell wedding dresses.”

Wynonna tries to reason with her, says that failure is never irreversible, and that she’s determined to give Waverly the perfect wedding day. Brigitte is suddenly confused about whose wedding it is but before she can ask more questions Waverly comes bounding through the door, chasing Brigitte around with a banner that I definitely thought said WHORE at first.

Waverly holds up a banner that almost definitely does not say WHORE but could if you look fast enough because cursive.

I’m just saying it doesn’t feel entirely off-brand for the homestead to have had a WHORE banner lying around.

Waverly saves the day with a spell and Wynonna is ready to send Brigitte to hell but Waverly says not today. Just this once, everybody lives. And besides, she has sympathy for this woman who was left at the altar; no one deserves that much pain. Brigitte is still confused as to who’s marrying who but she appreciates the understanding.

Brigitte looks up fondly at Waverly.

WHO LOOKS THIS GOOD THROUGH A VEIL AND WHILE USING THAT VOICE. Witchcraft.

The Earp sisters go back to the homestead where Waverly decides to wear Mama Earp’s wedding dress instead. We’ll take regular baggage over a homicidal curse any day. Waverly can tell something is weighing on her sister but Wynonna plays it off as wedding day feelings.

Nedley goes to the house to give Nicole her boutineer and finds her nervously pacing.

Nicole looks nervous but dapper as heck in her purple suit.

Instead of Cursey’s, I see Nicole went to Lena Luthor’s online shop (L’etsy) to buy a custom suit.

She takes the flower from him and says she has one more thing she needs from him. And then she asks her to walk beside her down the aisle, like he’s been walking beside her since he first saved a little redhead girl from the Cult of Bulshar.

Nicole looks teary and grateful for Nedley

FOUND! FAMILY! FEELS!

He accepts like the proud papa he is and takes her outside where the wedding begins.

The song sings happy words like, “Every up and every down made us who we are now, wouldn’t change it for the world.” The sign does not in fact say WHORE, but “Where you go, I go.” It’s a makeshift wedding and a makeshift family and it’s absolutely perfect.

Wynonna walks Waverly down the aisle, looking beautiful and delicate in blue as she leads her favorite person on this planet to stand with her best friend. Before letting go of her arm, Wynonna presses her forehead against her sister’s and reminds Waverly that she’s the best of us. Still, always.

The Earp sisters press their foreheads together.

THE EARP SISTERS ARE VERY IMPORTANT TO ME DOT TUMBLR DOT COM

Jeremy officiates, wrapping Nicole and Waverly’s hands together with twine as Nicole promises her angel to stay by her side on every adventure and to hold her hand when the firelight grows dim.

Nicole beams and cries through her vows.

“She says I smell like safety and home. I named both of her eyes forever and please-don’t-go.”

Waverly says she’s grateful for the bulletproof vest Nicole once wore (which…same) and a love stronger than she’s ever known and promises to always stand beside her.

Waverly also smiles and cries through her vows.

“My love, my love, my love, she keeps me warm.”

The music swells and the camera pans over the chairs labeled for people they’ve loved and some they’ve lost and Jeremy tells the beautiful brides they are officially married. You may kiss the bride.

Waverly and Nicole kiss, married.

“When you’re afraid and you’ve lost all hope, I’ll lead the way. I will walk you home. It’s all gonna be alright, from now til the end of time. I’ll take your hand and I won’t let go.”

Rachel is so grateful to be part of this family and tells them all they’re inspiring heroes to her. She didn’t know what to get them as a gift, so she decided to sing them a song, and it’s perfect.

Rachel holds a microphone ready to sing.

Also she sang the song that was playing during the first WayHaught kiss I’M FINE IT’S FINE EVERYTHING’S FINE DON’T TOUCH ME

There is a joyful montage and gods it’s so nice to see them all SMILING and laughing and dancing and being able to BREATHE, at least today, at least for now.

Waverly and Nicole laugh and are visibly in love.

“And it starts in my toes, makes me crinkle my nose, wherever it goes, I always know, you make me smile, please stay for a while now.”

Wynonna toasts her best friend and her baby sister, happy as can be that two people she loves so much are in love with each other.

Wynonna toasts WayHaught

How often do people genuinely love their in-laws??

Nedley is a little tipsy and trying to share his champagne with the cake toppers when Rachel and the Billy formerly known as Invisible Monster Teen approach. Nedley is planning on taking Rachel on a fishing trip and she’s so excited that she wants to bring her maybe sort of boyfriend with them. After a warning Billy to keep his lures to himself, Dad says yes and Rachel squeals with glee.

Next page: Are you crying yet? If not, GET READY. 

Tom Daley no longer a Potter fan as he struggles with JK Rowling’s views

Tom Daley

British Olympic diver Tom Daley has admitted he’s fallen out of love with Harry Potter as he struggles to reconcile JK Rowling’s views on transgender people.

Until recently Daley was a huge Potter fan, enjoying a private tour of Warner Brother’s Harry Potter World in London when he and his husband were newlyweds.

Daley even chose Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone as his favourite book on BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs in 2018.

But he’s now had a serious change of heart in light of the author’s controversial comments about trans rights.

“I did love JK Rowling’s books,” he told The Times. “But it does always leave a little bit of a…” Here he seemed about to say “bad taste”, according to the paper.

Daley, 26, acknowledged Rowling’s support after evangelical Christians on Twitter claimed he’d dived badly in the 2016 Olympics because he was gay.

“So, the thing is, she stuck up for me in the past,” he said, adding that he was grateful for it at the time.

“But then what she said about trans people… It’s one of the hardest things to understand, how trans people think and feel, because she has never lived that experience, the same way white people trying to understand the Black experience will never be able to understand that.”

He said he would now change his Desert Island Disc book choice and pick A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle, a “spiritual manifesto” about living life without anger, jealousy, and unhappiness.

Asked what he would say to Rowling in person, he said: “It’s hard because I’m not someone who likes conflict, but I have strong views and beliefs.

“I guess it would be a conversation rather than a shouting match. I always try to listen first and try to understand, and then try to share my point of view and my opinions and show how things [said] can hurt other people, to try to get the best outcome.”

Tom Daley’s husband, Dustin Lance Black, used stronger terms to describe the author after the release of her latest book – a novel about a cis male serial killer who dresses as a woman to murder his victims.

“JK’s work has always been jammed full of ‘borrowed’ old tropes. It was just that she ‘borrowed’ tales many enjoyed revisiting,” he wrote in a now-deleted tweet.

“Her new well: long disproven, discriminatory old tropes and lies sown by bigots. She’s a pretender. A thief. A fraud. And likely always has been.”

made some stickers 🤪 : actuallesbians

made some stickers 🤪 : actuallesbians

A place for discussions for and by cis and trans lesbians, bisexual girls, chicks who like chicks, bi-curious folks, dykes, butches, femmes, girls who kiss girls, birls, bois, aces, LGBT allies, and anyone else interested! Our subreddit is named r/actuallesbians because r/lesbians is not really for or by lesbians–it was meant to be a joke. We’re not a militant or exclusive group, so feel free to join up!

5 love poems by LGBTQ+ writers to read at your ceremony

5 love poems by LGBTQ+ writers to read at your

Written by 37-year-old queer English writer Yrsa Daley-Ward, who is of both Jamaican and Nigerian descent, this beautiful love poem encompasses the excitement of dreaming about a life together:

“I can see the house on the hill where we grow our own vegetables out back
and drink warm wine out of jam jars
and sing songs in the kitchen until the sun comes up
wena
you make me feel like myself
again. Myself before I had any solid reasons to be anything else.”

Jamaican-American poet June Jordan has an entire book of love poems, aptly called Haruko/Love Poems.  Poems like Poem for my Love would be a lovely part of any ceremony. There is also a beautiful couplet from the poem, Update:

“Still I am learning unconditional and true/Still I am burning unconditional for you.”

Colorful red and white engagement photos in Brooklyn, New York red suit two grooms husbands Brooklyn Bridge New York City kiss

Wu Tsao, considered one of the great Chinese lesbian poets, lived in the early 1800s, and wrote this beautiful love poem that in part reads:

“You glow like a perfumed lamp
In the gathering shadows.
We play wine games
And recite each other’s poems.
Then you sing, ‘Remembering South of the River’
With its heartbreaking verses. Then
We paint each other’s beautiful eyebrows.
I want to possess you completely–
Your jade body
And your promised heart.
It is Spring.
Vast mists cover the Five Lakes.
My dear, let me buy a red painted boat
And carry you away.”

Summer camp wedding in the Adirondack Mountains two brides upstate New York forest mountains Forest Lake Camp Bindle and Keep BHLDN bow tie sunset kiss

What Will It Take to Protect Trans Youth in Arkansas (and Everywhere Else?)

What Will It Take to Protect Trans Youth in Arkansas

The news these last few weeks has been… a lot. This week’s Extra! Extra! takes a look at the devastating anti-trans legislation just passed in Arkansas, the Chauvin trial, voter suppression, the pandemic that is not yet over even if we’re all pretending it is and more.

A Devastating Week for LGBTQ+ News

Our conversation about anti-trans laws is broken

Arkansas becomes first state to outlaw gender-affirming treatment for trans youth

Natalie: The bans on health care access — during a damn pandemic no less — are offensive and wrong and should be struck down. The American Medical Association shouldn’t just denounce the bills, they should move to revoke the credentials of any doctor who refuses to provide critical and necessary gender-affirming care for trans youth.

Himani: This is one of those times when I’m simply horrified. I honestly am at a loss for words about how to process the news out of Arkansas and the rising tide of anti-trans legislation at the state level. As countless activists and writers have said, these laws and bills will cause people to die. Quite literally. This isn’t one of those moments where I can reflect on some particular angle of what’s happening. No matter how you look at it, it’s awful.

In the last EE we included an article about proposed legislation in Georgia similar to what just passed in Arkansas, and the article was centered around the work of a doctor who provides and advocates for trans health care in the South. I’m not sure that revoking licensing for doctors is going to really help this situation. Medical professionals are already placed in an impossible position because of the terrible laws that have passed/are being considered: if they provide life-saving care they will face criminal charges. Revoking their credentials will only further drive health care providers out of the state which is going to hurt a lot of people, including trans people who will lose access to affirming and competent health care providers. And given the anti-science rapacity of Republicans, I’m not sure that the threat of losing health care providers is actually going to force their hand to change their stance on this. A lot of the places that are taking on anti-trans legislation are the same ones that already have health care shortages and have refused to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.

There’s still time to stop some of this in other states. Chase Strangio of the ACLU put together a twitter thread of what’s coming down the line and steps that you can take (also shared by Carmen in yesterday’s AAA):

Rachel: It’s impossible to overstate how devastating this is, and the fact that as many advocates for trans youth have pointed out, it will absolutely lead to the deaths of trans kids. I’m tempted to draw comparisons between previous eras of anti-LGBT lobbying, like the National Organization for Marriage’s run in the 2000s and anti-Prop 8 organizing; you may remember the “It’s Already Happened” ad which also weaponized “concern” for children for a far-right cause. This political and cultural moment targeting trans people is part of a longer legacy, but it’s crucial to name that this chapter of it isn’t something we can lay at the feet of solely Republicans. The current attack on trans kids owes a great deal to the TERF and transmisogynistic logic that increasingly pervades liberal circles, including cis queer women’s communities. As many have pointed out, allegedly ‘well-intentioned’ liberals ‘just asking questions’ about trans kids, like Jesse Singal’s infamous Atlantic cover story, is a huge part of how we got to this moment, and voting Republicans out of office isn’t a meaningful solution here. Trans kids need more than legislative solutions; they need cis people to work to uproot the violent transphobia in all our communities, not just the Arkansas legislature.

Republicans are waging war against US children: Anti-trans bills part of longstanding GOP campaign

Natalie: It seemed inevitable that the anti-trans legislation that’s proliferating across the country would make its way to my home state of North Carolina. After all, the same conservative forces marshalling this effort — the Heritage Foundation, the Alliance Defending Freedom and Eagle Forum — are the same folks who were behind HB2, the so-called “bathroom bill,” in 2016. But it seems like, with each state we hear about taking up these anti-trans bills, they continue to get progressively worse: as if the Right is testing the bounds of the Courts’ tolerance for their bigotry. How much of their hatred can they write into law before the Courts step in and say, “enough!”

What’s happening in North Carolina is insidious: it goes beyond not offering healthcare to trans youth — though, clearly, it does that too because these are reprehensible human beingsRepublicans have “devised a way to punish gender thoughtcrime.” If the bill becomes law, state employees would be required to report any “symptoms of gender dysphoria, gender nonconformity, or otherwise demonstrates a desire to be treated in a manner incongruent with the minor’s sex.” What’s that mean exactly? No one really knows; it’s that broad. Is a teacher responsible for reporting the tomboy in class that likes to wear baseball caps and boys shoes? Under this law, yes. Is “gender nonconformity” limited to clothing or do short haircuts or kissing other girls count?

They were coming for trans people and we should stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the trans community to battle them…and if you haven’t devoted yourself to the cause of securing trans equality, you should…because this North Carolina bill shows us, without a doubt, that they’re coming for all of us next.

Prosecuting the Murder of George Floyd

Trial by trauma

Chauvin defense falls back on racist stereotypes

Himani: I read a fair amount of depressing news on a regular basis, and the coverage of this trial has just completely drained me. The witness testimony, the newly released footage, the shamelessness of the defense — harrowing is really the only word that comes to mind. But, I also think it’s incumbent on all of us who are not Black to engage with this, to really look at this violent, corrupt, racist system in the face. To bear witness to the injustice of this trial — with the defense relying on racist tropes and police crossing the proverbial blue line so that they can bolster the “bad apples” argument — and the many, many trials before it that haven’t even made it this far. To that end, here are two of the best articles I have read about it. I also highly recommend the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder’s daily coverage of the trial for an in-depth look at the proceedings.

Rachel: Himani is absolutely correct; harrowing is the only word that comes to mind. Everyone I know impacted by this trial locally is just exhausted and hollowed out, especially after this past year. I keep coming back to this witness’s cross-examination, both very difficult and very sustaining to hear (does not contain video or audio of Floyd’s murder). The cross-examiner’s line of questioning is so blatantly, explicitly racist, and also the witness is so clearly anticipating and aware of his limited rhetorical options for resisting it; but has to just… sit with this? His grace and determination are so admirable, and also it’s so unspeakable that he should have to call them to bear.

Meanwhile, In Canada

Cops Wrongly Entered Black Family’s Home, Left 11-Year-Old ‘Shaking’

A Little Bit of Hope

New Mexico eliminates qualified immunity

Natalie: I know I should be focused on what a tremendous accomplishment this is for activists in New Mexico and their allies in the legislature and governor’s mansion but the response from the head of New Mexico’s state’s police chiefs association made me laugh out loud. He discounts the law entirely, claiming it “will only ‘get a few people some justice in state court.’” First, I’d point out that a few people are better than no people, but more importantly: if it’s not a big deal, why are police associations across the country fighting so hard to preserve qualified immunity? And if police associations are sincerely concerned about addressing “more pressing issues, such as police training,” why don’t they address them? And why don’t they stop condemning activists when they call for more training? Oh, that’s right, because they’re not sincere at all about stopping the epidemic of police violence against the citizenry they’re sworn to protect.

But, back to the subject at hand, this is a historic moment for New Mexico, especially since the state boasts one of the highest rates of fatal police shootings in the country. I’m hopeful that momentum — which began in Colorado — continues to build for an end to qualified immunity. This isn’t justice — and these victims and their families deserve justice — but it is accountability and that matters too.

We’re Not Even Trying to Lie Any More about “American Democracy”

Yes, the Georgia election law is that bad

The fight over voting rights comes to Arizona

Himani: Isn’t it incredible how the seasons have just barely changed and yet the state of Georgia has moved swiftly since November to enact voting restrictions that completely undermine the notion of democracy? Arizona isn’t too far behind either. As the article from Vox rightly points out, the details are hardly the point because the Republican party has been playing a very, very long game of eroding democracy to, effectively, secure a one-party rule. And, in many ways, the Republican party has already won that game given that 60% of Republicans still think the 2020 election was stolen from Trump. Sounds an awful lot like a bunch of countries abroad that we like to criticize for being democracies in name only, doesn’t it? Honestly, I don’t even know what to hope for in 2022 or 2024.

Fulton DA won’t prosecute lawmaker arrested during election law signing

Natalie: I wanted to highlight the effort by Park Cannon in Georgia for two reasons: first, what was done to her was egregious. For the sin of wanting to bear witness to the anti-democratic legislation being signed into law, Cannon — a duly elected lawmaker — was arrested by the Capitol Police.

But also? In a previous edition of EE, I bemoaned Kyrsten Sinema and her inaction on the filibuster …and how upsetting it is to note that the person standing between LGBT people and the Equality Act is a person from our community. While Sinema remains a disappointment, LGBT representation among our elected leaders is still vital… and there are queer women, elected to public office, who are doing incredible things for our community and beyond. Park Cannon is doing that in Georgia and we should remember and celebrate that.

News from the Court

Will Justice Breyer Retire? Reading The Clerk Hiring Tea Leaves

President Biden to Sign Executive Order Creating the Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States

Natalie: I don’t know how much, if anything, this group will accomplish…or if this is the kind of group that’ll recommend the kind of change that’ll make the Supreme Court into a representative body (which may be point, considering who Biden is)…but this is like a Murderers’ Row of brilliant legal minds.

Labor Rights and Discrimination

The Anti-‘Cancel Culture’ Republican Party Is Trying to Cancel OnlyFans

Rachel: This story may seem like kind of a nonstarter given the glut of extremely urgent stories impacting the wellbeing of multiple marginalized communities, and in some ways it might be – hopefully this story goes nowhere! But in other ways, it’s deeply troubling, and it’s a major tell about the way both the specter of sex work and policing of digital spaces are being leveraged by GOP policy right now. As backstory, laws meant to crack down on ‘trafficking’ (a legally murky concept, and a topic plagued by QAnon conspiracy theories) have either shut down most online portals for sex work or severely restricted them. Even the legal platforms like OnlyFans, which explicitly allow for legally confirmed adults to sell access to digital images or video in exchange for money, are increasingly limiting performers: any terminology that could be in any way related to offline meetups is banned or will get you kicked off the platform; many types of content or thematic representations are banned completely; performers routinely report that their earnings are frozen or withheld and have no recourse to getting them back. Even with all these restrictions, platforms like this are still weathering attacks from right-wing legislators and pundits who would like to see them shut down after an influx of workers have turned to them to stay afloat during the pandemic & recession. In this letter to the Attorney General, Rep. Gosar argues that OF violates “the Mann Act, known as the “white-slave” law, the 1910 law forbids paying to transport women over state lines for prostitution,” saying “On this site, individuals can advertise their willingness to travel across state lines for illegal or immoral activities, and the platform providing publicity for these individuals appears to subsidize and capitalize off this travel.” The implication is that OF is not just “immoral,” but a pretext for trafficking.

This is not actually a bill, and if it was, there’s no reason to assume it would pass; Gosar is, to put it lightly, a wingnut. But this attempt comes at a time when, as the Daily Beast reports, “a new panic around pornography. First, The New York Times collaborated with a homophobic church to paint all PornHub users as sex traffickers and criminals. Then Utah decided to pressure phone manufacturers to block porn on adults’ phones. After four years of insisting freedom of speech is under attack by the left during the Trump era, Republicans are back to policing Americans’ sexuality and censoring porn stars.” Furthermore, it comes at a dangerously unstable moment of QAnon preoccupation; they truly believe there are massive global trafficking rings of white children, and that even the amateur porn industry is a cover for it. Rep. Gosar has been strongly linked to the Capitol attack, organized by the same QAnon devotees; we know what they’re capable of when they’re serious about something, and now they know there are basically no consequences for them.

Sex work advocacy and organizing has been really visible and effective in recent years, with meaningful progress towards decriminalization; as we also see with advances in rights and visibility for trans people, progress is always accompanied by backlash. This is worth prioritizing not just because sex workers are people and sex work organizing is labor organizing, but because, as sex worker advocates often remind us, sex workers’ rights are canaries in the coal mine; what happens to sex workers happens to non-sex-working queer people and women soon after.

Racism and sexualization of Asian women pushes them into low-wage jobs

It’s A No: Amazon Warehouse Workers Vote Against Unionizing In Historic Election

Natalie: The headline should be, “Amazon Successfully Manipulates Workers To Vote Against Their Own Interests.”

Himani: Not sure if it was manipulation so much as intimidation. Probably both, in all reality.

COVID-19 Update

The Overlooked Demographics of COVID

Himani: This was a bit of a dense read, but the main takeaway is this: “The headlines have been ‘Men Fare Worse Than Women’ [when they get COVID]. But who disappears in that picture? Black women who are dying of COVID at extremely high rates. That specific vulnerability is lost. It’s the Kimberle Crenshaw intersectionality story.” This is not a particularly unexpected finding, but I think the main point of these researchers, that the intersections are not getting analyzed, is important because again and again research tends to focus on things along one dimension only.

Reading this article against the backdrop of the anti-trans legislation that has been getting passed, I couldn’t help but focus on this statement from one of the researchers: “And what we have observed in the discourse around sex differences is a focus, a rush to biological causal variables. But our research has shown that there are extreme variations in the degree of the sex disparity similarly across states. All of this shows that biology would be a very poor candidate to explain these kinds of variations, just like we consider biology a very poor candidate to explain the extreme racial disparities that have been seen. Instead, they pattern along these well known social trajectories.”

Republicans are so focused on the “biological definition of sex,” and while I don’t know that anyone is connecting any dots between the reporting on the “sex disparity” in COVID outcomes to anti-trans policy, specifically, this article — once again — undermines the notion that biology can explain everything. This is complicated because historically, medicine has focused the bulk of its research on cis men and used that to extrapolate to the medical needs and experiences of everyone else — which is well known to cause disparities in reproductive health care and has led to limited understanding of the health of people who are not cis men. So I don’t want to completely dismiss or discredit the work that countless people have to done to move the needle away from making cis men the standard for whom the entire world and on whom our understanding of the world is defined. But certainly, as we all know, going to the other extreme of relying on “biology” to explain everything has led to a lot of other horrors ranging from eugenics to conversion therapy to the latest round of anti-trans policies.

Children now playing ‘huge role’ in spread of COVID-19 variant, expert says

Natalie: This week, my nephews — who have spent most days with me since last March — went back to school. It’s not the first time they’ve been in a classroom this school year but it is the first time they’ll go back without social distancing or health protocols or three week rotations. It’ll be as close as to normal school days as they’ve experienced in a year, only with masks. I’m as nervous about sending them out into the world — and having them come home — as I’ve ever been…and this reporting did not calm my anxiety, especially since the UK variant’s dominance continues to grow.

Canada Is One of the Only Countries Fighting Three COVID Variants at Once

Himani: Reading this and the previous articles is literally like watching my worst nightmare regarding the pandemic slowly unfold. I feel like the world is reopening far too fast. I feel like people are moving on with their lives, but the virus hasn’t moved on from us because that’s not what viruses do. I feel like the communities that have already paid the worst price for this will do so again and again and again. I’ve grown so tired and so weary of watching the same people make reckless decisions that put all of us at risk while the rest of us continue to make our lives smaller and smaller to try to curb some of the damage. I’m losing my grasp — if I ever really had it in the first place? — on what is necessary to do in this moment to keep us all safe and what is just an extension of my personal struggles with a childhood largely defined by isolation taking over my life. Basically I’m unraveling, as so many of us are, from the weight of a year of gaslighting by political leaders across the world about the severity of the situation we are in.

Covid: new vaccines needed globally within a year, say scientists

A year after pandemic hit, Haiti awaits vaccines amid apathy

Rachel: I want to echo both Himani and Natalie, and Himani’s observation that “I feel like the communities that have already paid the worst price for this will do so again and again and again.” I’m also torn and increasingly exhausted from trying to parse the multiple realities we’re all living in; I feel incredible relief at the vaccine rollout (my mother works in schools with developmentally disabled kids, a job that can’t socially distance; my brother works in retail, and they’ve both been working in person the entire pandemic) and frustration with folks who seem hellbent on stoking doubt in vaccine efficacy and suggesting that it’s unethical for vaccinated people to change their quarantine behavior at all. I also feel grief and anger at how unequal the rollout is, especially on a global scale; there are wealthy communities in the US who really can pretend covid is functionally ‘over’ even though it only slightly impacted them in the first place, and there are so many more deeply disenfranchised communities who will seemingly never get that chance even after all they’ve lost and continue to lose.

International News

Ferry brings 1,200 survivors of Isis Mozambique massacre to safety

Oxfam to investigate misconduct claims against staff in DRC

Himani: There is a long, disturbing history of abuse committed by “humanitarian workers” in developing countries. These abuses range from gross neglect to rampant sexual exploitation to corruption. The problem is so ubiquitous that conspiracy theories have taken hold around it and undermined organizations actually doing credible work. And so, once again, Oxfam is under scrutiny for literally all of the above issues. It’s just so damned shameful.

Alleged Narco President Hires GOP Lobbyists to Sing His Praises in Washington

Natalie: It’d surprise — or horrify — most people how common this is.

Northern Ireland Is Experiencing Its Worst Violence in Years. What’s Behind the Unrest?

‘The Beautiful Dreams That Are Burnt’: Portraits From Iran Under Sanctions

Michael Henry has thoughts on mastering the art of YouTube, plus gay demons! / Queerty

Michael Henry has thoughts on mastering the art of YouTube,

It’s that time of the week! The latest installment of Queerty: The Podcast, our weekly breakdown of the biggest headlines of queer news and pop culture, is here and oh so queer.

On this week’s episode, host Gabe González talks everything from Kate Winslet’s running tally of closeted actors, to a hate group fundraising off of a video that should’ve been taken offline by now, and why one Alabama pastor thinks there’s a demon inside gay people.

Plus, comedian Michael Henry joins in the conversation to talk about his YouTube videos and how he would personify the gay demon inside of him.

Queerty: The Podcast is available every Friday wherever you listen to podcasts. Subscribe on your favorite podcast player to get each episode. And if you like what you hear, don’t be shy! Leave a review and let us know what you think.

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle

Dave and Dan say the vibe of their May 2019 wedding in Vancouver, Canada is best described by the dress code written on the back of their invitation: “Semi-formal/garden party, a hint of sparkle is encouraged!”

With one from Canada and the other from Australia, the couple focused the weekend on bringing their loved ones together. They had approximately 90 guests from out of town, and so they had several parties leading up to the big day to maximize their time together.

Dave and Dan decided to walk down the aisle at the same time from opposite sides, meeting in the middle.

“After the ceremony, we then walked down the centre aisle together, holding hands,” they say.
“We really liked the symbolism of this, and how egalitarian it was; guests commented how much that detail impacted them!”

What advice would you give to engaged LGBTQ+ couples?

Take the time to make the day your own celebration. In planning out the details of the day, we found so many wedding customs have very traditional aspects. Instead, we were able to take an extra step back and completely reimagine parts of our day that felt just right for who we are as a couple. We fought really hard to get the ceremony we wanted. Instead of giving in to having a religious ceremony in order to use a space like a church (even if it was affirming!), or having a marriage commissioner we didn’t know run the whole ceremony, we made our own hybrid model.

We wanted the official, legal part of the ceremony to be in front of everyone and not at another time. But, in our province, the only choice is a religious officiant or someone from a select list of civil celebrants. Luckily, we found an accommodating marriage commissioner who worked with our custom arrangement to co-officiate with our friend, Peter Fitch, and the two of them switched back and forth —fairly seamlessly—weaving together a beautiful (& legally binding) ceremony!

What advice do you have for vendors and venues working with LGBTQ+ couples?

Keep in mind that LGBTQ+ couples have a range of ways they can identify, especially when it comes to gender identity; only having “Bride & Groom” on forms is so passé!

What challenges did you face as an LGBTQ+ couple planning your wedding?

Some family members on one side chose not to attend for religious reasons, and that was difficult to come to terms with. When the time came, joy won the day and we were thrilled to be surrounded by more than one hundred of our friends and family who enthusiastically celebrated our marriage with us.

Did you encounter any pleasant surprises as an LGBTQ+ couple planning your wedding?

In a strange way, planning our wedding as an LGBTQ+ couple brought with it a sense of greater significance, given the history of our community and how hard fought our very right to marry was (Australia hadn’t even legalized gay marriage when we got engaged). For the straight world, weddings have become less commonplace, but for us the very act of getting married publicly felt like a triumph as well as a celebration, and this added an emotional resonance to the day that I don’t think we’d quite expected. For a lot of our guests (and even one of us!) it was their first time experiencing a gay wedding, and the idea of chosen family was something that permeated throughout the whole event. We were particularly grateful for the guidance of many of our vendors.

Sparkly Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Search our directory of LGBTQ+ inclusive vendors.

FEATURED VENDORS

Photographer: Shannon-May Photography

Ceremony Venue: Rose Garden, at the University of British Columbia.

Reception Venue: Sage Bistro at University of British Columbia

Florist: DIY flowers from Costco ; Boutonnières from Divine Vines

Day of Coordinators: Rosey & Ishita from A Stylish Event

DJ: DJ Josephine from Airwaves Music

Invitations: Self designed through Zazzle

Attire: Custom tailoring by Surmesur 

Jewelry: Klepner’s Jewellery, Melbourne 

Videographer: Paul Cameron Productions

Cake: Jenny Bakes

Officiants: Peter Fitch (longtime friend) and BC Marriage Commissioner, Kelly Ip

Family Equality’s New ED: “I Have Been Preparing for This Role My Entire Life”

Family Equality’s New ED: “I Have Been Preparing for This

Stacey Stevenson, the recently hired executive director of Family Equality, is serious about the work ahead. “This isn’t about a job for me; this is about survival,” she told me in an interview. “Through all of the adversity I have faced over the years, I feel I have been preparing for this role my entire life.”

Stacey Stevenson - Photo credit: Angela Flournoy

Family Equality Executive Directory Stacey Stevenson. Photo credit: Angela Flournoy

Stevenson comes to Family Equality, the national organization for LGBTQ+ families, after more than 20 years in the corporate world, most recently as senior managing director for talent at financial giant Charles Schwab. She has also been an executive at technology and defense corporations in a variety of operations and supply chain roles. “I’ve kind of done it all,” she said. One constant, though, she said, is that “I feel very strongly about leading people and ensuring that I’m showing up as a leader and being as egoless as possible.”

She also has the lived experience of being a Black lesbian mom residing in Texas, who encountered many obstacles on the way to forming a family, from eight fruitless years of fertility treatments, to an adoption agency that went bankrupt, to another that refused to work with same-sex couples. “I don’t want anyone to have to go through that,” she said. Eventually, though, she and her wife adopted twin boys, who are now “rambunctious” six-year-olds.

Forming her family was not the only challenge Stevenson has faced, though. She grew up in a small Texas town, was outed as a teenager, and endured bullying and physical abuse until she dropped out of school. She eventually obtained a GED and at age 21 moved to Dallas with $70 in her pocket, where she got a degree, met her wife, and started her career.

At Schwab, Stevenson was also the local and national co-chair for the company’s Pride employee resource group and established partnerships with multiple LGBTQ+ nonprofits. She also came to know Family Equality by sharing her family story for the organization’s 2020 “Out in Texas” video series. When the executive director position opened, she said, “I was ready to make a move out of corporate America to do more non-profit work and to make more change in the world.”

I think the biggest challenge is ensuring that we can form our families without denial of services.

She takes the helm at Family Equality at a pivotal time. “I feel like we’ve come out of trauma after the last four years before this new administration,” she explained. With a new Congress and administration, however, “There’s a kind of awakening happening,” she feels.

Difficulties remain, though. “I think the biggest challenge is ensuring that we can form our families without denial of services,” she said. She noted one case now before the U.S. Supreme Court, Fulton v. Philadelphia, which could let adoption and foster care agencies around the country use their religious beliefs as a reason to discriminate against LGBTQ people and others. “This case is really important for LGBTQ+ families as well as youth-in-care, and we hope the Court does the right thing and does not carve out an exception to generally applicable law for these taxpayer-funded agencies,” she explained.

Family Equality does more than just legal and political advocacy work, however, but also provides tools and connections for LGBTQ families and LGBTQ prospective parents. “Family Equality has specifically created this space for LGBTQ families,” she explained. “I’m hearing that more people want to have families but they’re a little afraid, [asking] ‘How do I parent in this heteronormative world?’” She asserted, “We provide that resource.”

She cited a 2019 Family Equality study that found as many as 3.8 million LGBTQ millennials were considering starting or expanding their families. “I want to attract more of those millennials to Family Equality,” she said.

That means being there for any LGBTQ people who have or want families. “In our policy work and everything that we do, we’re being very conscious of all LGBTQ families regardless of race or socioeconomic status,” she said. She wants to be even more intentional in their policy and program work “about touching Brown and Black families who would normally not know that Family Equality existed.” She added, “Black lives do matter at Family Equality, but we are in the process of continuing to evolve and build racial and social justice into our daily work.”

Nine days into her tenure, when we spoke, she doesn’t yet know exactly what that work will encompass, but she’s starting with a listening tour. “I want to hear from everyone,” she said, including not only employees and the board, but also volunteers, partners, donors, and others. “I want to use that to shape our strategy because sometimes that’s where some of the best ideas come from.” Overall, though, she said, “We feel really good about the future.”

Now that I have a family, I can’t imagine any LGBTQ person who wants to form a family not having a family.

Her own advice for LGBTQ people who want to start a family? “If that’s what your heart desires then you should do it,” she counseled, but cautioned, “We have to understand that there are additional complexities related to LGBTQ people being parents because of the world we live in.”

At the same time, she added, “Now that I have a family, I can’t imagine any LGBTQ person who wants to form a family not having a family.” To help that happen, she said, “I’m ready to hit the ground running.”

Visit familyequality.org for more on the organization and about their virtual gala, “LookingOUT: Together for LGBTQ+ Families” on April 22, as well as their annual Family Week in Provincetown, which will likely have both virtual and in-person components this summer.

Originally published as my Mombian newspaper column.

9 spots to find the most beautiful nature in Belgium

9 spots to find the most beautiful nature in Belgium

Bosland in Limburg is a unique place to visit and to explore nature in Belgium. The extensive park spreads out over 4 villages and it is the home of a broad natural diversity. Part of this park is an actual Sahara or desert, while other parts comprise peaceful forests and tranquil lakes.

Keep in mind that this nature park is also called Adventure Forest. The park has tons of activities for kids, like multiple adventurous treasure hunts, donkey walks, playgrounds, and a lot more. If you have kids, this might be one of the best places to get them into nature playfully.

For adults, the Lommelse Sahara is also a great place to find some peace. But if you like, you can also engage in a few cool activities, like cycling or mountain-biking. There are a few places where you can go horseback riding in the area. 

Bosland Lommel stretches out over 4 villages: Lommel, Hechtel Eksel, Pelt, and Peer. You can access this beautiful stretch of nature in Belgium through various entrance gates.

The most common way visitors get in is here:

Address: Sportveldenstraat 10, 3920 Lommel

Entrance to this nature park is free. 

Most of the separate activities are independent. You can expect to pay a small fee for these activities.

The ins and outs of wedding dress shopping for two

The ins and outs of wedding dress shopping for two

When my wife and I were planning our wedding, we decided to do almost everything together. We both attended every vendor meeting, had a joint shower, stopped by each other’s bachelorette parties and more or less got ready together on the day.

But there was one tradition that neither of us wanted to shirk: keeping our dresses secret from one another until the wedding day. There was something beautiful to us about a first look, about seeing one another as brides for the first time mere moments before we would walk down the aisle. Beyond that, it simply felt fun to have it be a surprise.

Shopping Separately

The ins and outs of wedding dress shopping for two | Anna Zajac | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine
Photo by Anna Zajac

Keeping things a surprise was a bit more complicated once we knew we’d both be wearing dresses. We didn’t want to accidentally end up in the exact same one. Personally, we were not too concerned with whether or not our dresses would be well coordinated, but we knew we did not want to match. Since we were both shopping at the same two stores, it didn’t seem a far-off possibility for us to unintentionally select the same dress.

My wife purchased her dress first. When I arrived for my appointment at the same store she purchased from, they told me she had called ahead to have it put away so I couldn’t inadvertently pick it out or even lay eyes on it. It was a great plan, and I ultimately picked a dress from a different store, anyway, so we figured we were in the clear.

The First Look

The ins and outs of wedding dress shopping for two | Anna Zajac | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine
Photo by Anna Zajac

We spent the entire wonderful morning before our wedding getting ready together, but we separated to put on our dresses. When the moment for our first look arrived, we turned around and were both delighted and amused to discover that while the dresses were not the same, they were indeed very similar.

All of our guests thought we had done it on purpose, and as it turned out, we didn’t care. We both looked beautiful, and the dresses looked gorgeous together. The situation was merely a continuation of the many times we had accidentally matched for events in the past, and in our eyes, it was merely another sign that the two of us were meant to be.

Different Ways To Shop

The ins and outs of wedding dress shopping for two | Anna Zajac | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine
Photo by Anna Zajac

If you and your partner both plan to wear dresses, and being well coordinated (and not accidentally matching) is important to you, I would not recommend our method of completely surprising one another.

I have read about couples who work with the same stylist who can make sure their dresses are complimentary, and other couples who merely decide to shop together. One of my wife’s and my original plans was to have our moms compare our dresses before we purchased, though once we each fell in love with our respective dress, we never did follow through on that.

In the end, your wedding is yours alone, and you get to decide what makes it special. My wife and I loved the freedom that being an LGBTQ+ couple gave us to design our wedding. Without the pressure of gender normativity, we made every decision based exclusively on what worked for us. In this case, it was keeping the dresses secret. As a result, they ended up similar, but it ultimately made the day even more perfect.

So, if it is special to you for your dresses to coordinate, then there is nothing wrong with picking them out together or having a designated person ensure it all works out. If being surprised is the most important thing, there is also nothing wrong with leaving it all up to fate.

The ins and outs of wedding dress shopping for two | Anna Zajac | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine
Photo by Anna Zajac

an actual conversation i had with my therapist. im sorry im a ✨useless lesbian✨ : actuallesbians

an actual conversation i had with my therapist. im sorry

A place for discussions for and by cis and trans lesbians, bisexual girls, chicks who like chicks, bi-curious folks, dykes, butches, femmes, girls who kiss girls, birls, bois, aces, LGBT allies, and anyone else interested! Our subreddit is named r/actuallesbians because r/lesbians is not really for or by lesbians–it was meant to be a joke. We’re not a militant or exclusive group, so feel free to join up!