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One Year Later and I’m Here and Still Queer

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Virginia Tech chapter.

As I’m writing this, I’m tearing up a little because I’ve come a long way in only a year. On December 8, 2021, I came out through an article as lesbian and that’s not easy for anyone no matter how confident you are. I’m beyond proud of myself because it’s not an easy thing to do. I did something that not many people feel safe to do or even know how to do. I’m beyond lucky to live where I do because I knew that nothing bad would happen to me. I knew that I had support, and I wouldn’t be alone. I am lucky that I have the support I do because not everyone does. 

There have been many challenges since coming out, but I’ve come out on the other side. I have always known that the queer community had a lot of people that looked down on them but since coming out I have realized how much people truly look down on the queer community. There are times where I want to scream and cry because things get hard, and things happen that hurt my heart. Then there are times where I do scream and cry because it’s human and the queer community has been through a lot. Although I face challenges, I try my best to stand my ground and stand up for my community. 

Over this past year, I have felt more myself than ever before. For me, it was beneficial coming out. Figuring out why I was different from most of the people I know was monumental for me so when I finally gained the confidence to come out, I felt a weight be lifted off my chest. This past June was my first pride month being fully out. Although a lot went on during the month, I still enjoyed a lot of it because I got to go to my first pride festival, and I got to spend a lot of it with my girlfriend. During pride month, my girlfriend and I went to a Nats baseball game, and it ended up being their pride night. We didn’t know that was going to happen, so it was truly a great surprise. We ended up having so much fun. It was comforting seeing all the pride stuff around us at a baseball game. Towards the end of the month, we went to our first pride festival together. It was so fun, and we loved meeting other people in the queer community. I enjoyed going because it was a place where queer people were loved and appreciated. 

This year has been really eye opening to me. I have learned who my biggest supporters are and who the people that shouldn’t be in my life are. I am grateful for the friendships I’ve gained that have made me feel loved and appreciated, but I’m also grateful for the ones that ended. Those friendships that ended have taught me what I don’t need or want in my life. If you’re reading this and you’re still in the closet, don’t rush yourself. I’m proud of who you are and where you’ve gotten yourself to, whether it was on your own or with support. To the queer community, J, my family, and my friends I love you and I am grateful for you.

Katie Tuggle

Virginia Tech '25

Hi, my name is Katie and I'm a senior majoring in psychology. I love being around my friends and family, chasing sunsets, listening to music, and driving around. I am so happy to be a part of the Her Campus writing team because I feel like I have found a place where my voice gets heard. Her Campus allows me to tell my stories without being interrupted and it gives me a place to be my true self.