By Tas Kronby, TasThoughts LLC
A month out of every year is dedicated to Pride with a goal of changing societal stigmas and allowing recognition for the accomplishments and impact of marginalized communities.
History of pride
Individuals identifying as LGBTQ marched down Christopher Street for the first Pride parade on June 28th, 1970. A significant point to notice as members of this community marched the street was the positivity that they emitted in regards to their identities. This changing tide was a contrast to a mentality or perception those around them had previously displayed. The need for pride is not one of arrogance, but of challenging a notion where differences are put down, rather than respected.
Other types of pride
Today, the concept of Pride filters to other matters in a push for equality, such as with Autism or Dissociative Identity Disorder awareness. Those who are different are typically cast aside, though, by coming together in their differences, the tides of stigmas can be tempered and reversed. A push for equality and acceptance are the waters that calm the storm.
Since 2005, Autistic Pride Day is run on June 18th each year. The point of interest in this day is that it was not started by an organization, but by members of the autistic community. A celebration of who they are within a neurodiverse community is another turning point in stigmas associated with identity. This day is recognized by organizations worldwide who are in support of Autism Acceptance, as well as holds participation from individuals who value differences and unique contributions.
For those with Dissociative Identity Disorder, System Pride Day began on February 23rd of 2019. A system is the entirety of parts within a person with alternate identities. Due to stigmas causing systems to live in fear and shame of being discovered, a need to shift the way to look at this reality became one of celebration for a survival skill. Rather than focus on how the condition was made to appear, it was recognized for the gratitude one might feel in this unique way of coping.
Celebration of self-acceptance
Just like the concept of the LGBTQ, or Lesbian, Gay, Bi-Sexual, Transgender and Queer movement to represent who they truly are, those in any way outcast to such a degree are valid in seeking recognition.
As accomplishments are valued by those of privilege, even more-so should be praised the shining through of those who worked even harder to get there. While a celebration is not due for all things, the achievement of attaining a level of equality and dignity is something to cheer for.
The importance of self-acceptance is the seed of change for those around us. By taking on the negativity pushed onto those who are different, we can come to feel the same towards ourselves, which only perpetuates this issue. In taking steps to outwardly express self-love and acceptance for themselves and those like them, they create a new wave.
In a movement toward a better future, and as neurodiversity spreads positivity and celebration, their pride will not be their shame.