Finding LGBT Community This Pride, No Matter How Isolated You Feel

Pride season means something different to everyone: parties, parades, rainbow merch at Target, hungover brunch with friends. For some of us, Pride feels more abstract than material — it can feel hard to know how to get looped in to the queer community that’s celebrating, especially if we’re newly out, live in more rural or isolated areas, or don’t already have a big group of queer friends. Whatever your circumstances, there are ways to connect to the queer community this Pride month — here’s a few ways to get started.

Get connected online

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For all its toxic corners and dangerous subcultures, the internet has been an incredible boon for queer and trans people. It’s enabled us to find each other no matter how rural and isolated we are, in forums, chat rooms, social media and through queer independent media (and blogs like this one!). Many of us have met partners online, whether that’s through traditional dating apps or because a hottie thousands of miles away liked a selfie of ours on Instagram.

How to get connected with other queer people online today? You can start by following your favorite queer celebrities, public figures and advocacy groups; watching what they post (and who in your network is also following them!) can help loop you into a larger queer life online. Spaces like Reddit that prioritize discussion over a more image-heavy platform like Instagram can be a fulfilling way to meet people in lgbt-specific subreddits or in subreddits centered around queer media or pop culture.

You can also check out queer media, online magazines, influencers and newsletters — though the industry is in a challenging place, queer media will always exist as long as queer people do. Reading these outlets can help you stay connected to your community through shared experience, and maybe more directly too. Many of these digital spaces have community components, and real friendships (and more!) have been built there.

Look into your local scene

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Depending on where you live, there may be a range of cute, queer events IRL you can join. Especially during Pride, it’s easier than ever to find a Pride party or queer dance night at a bar. (Many queer communities are still offering accessible and COVID-cautious Pride events outside, even!) Even if you don’t have a group of queer friends to go to parties with, Pride is a great time to attend events alone or for the first time — many other people will be, too! 

If late night and parties aren’t your thing, that doesn’t have to mean staying home. Many cities will also have pride events at a different speed: beach hangs, park picnics, bike rides, and more. Eventbrite will list some events, but seeing what people talk about going to on Instagram might be even better. And of course,

Plug into queer culture through pop culture

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Queer women & trans folks are, as a group, very hooked into pop culture. Maybe because we’re so hungry for any representation after having it so often denied, we’ll often watch any and all movies, tv shows, even Superbowl commercials that are even a little bit queer. That’s before you even get into podcasts, musical artists, and all the rest. We can invest a lot of time and emotion into the pop culture we love, sometimes getting deeply involved in fandom culture.

You don’t need to be a full fandom nerd to connect with others through queer pop culture. In person, try joining watch parties or starting your own; online, try subreddits or discords dedicated to what you’re most into. You might be surprised at how deep and authentic the connections you can make in these spaces can be — if you’re someone whose idea of a great night is watching the latest episode of your fave and then discussing it for two hours afterwards, you may find a whole community waiting for you through queer pop culture, no matter how isolated or rural your life is.

Time travel: we’ve always been here


Sometimes, Pride month leaves us feeling a desire to feel connected to something deeper than parties or TV shows. One place to look is our past — it can paradoxically help us make sense of our present to understand our rich, dynamic queer history. Whether it’s Alison Bechdel’s Dykes to Watch Out For, Leslie Feinberg’s Stone Butch Blues, or Audre Lorde’s Zami: A New Spelling of My Name, there’s something restorative on a soul level at seeing your struggles and joys reflected through generations. 

It’s also a great time to reconnect with the roots of Pride — the Stonewall riot that catalyzed the national movement for LGBT civil rights into motion, and Brenda Howard, the activist who created what we now know as the first Pride parade.

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