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

How I Have Come to Understand everyone’s backgrounds better

Are transgender and other sexualities a trend or are people just more comfortable expressing their unique bodies and minds? This is a question I have pondered over the last few months, as many people I know have joined the LGTBQIA+ community. I am fully supportive of this, but I question when one person joins and their entire friend group follows. Is this a courageous act, or a trend to fit in with your friend group? I have researched the growth of the LGBTQIA+ community to better understand this group. 

Leading up to 2023, different identities have slowly become more widely accepted around the world. We must ask ourselves though how is this population across the board spreading, and that so at a rapid rate? In no way am I here to judge anyone or spread false rumors about people in general. Rather, I am here to propose an idea that no one wants to talk about or rather even consider. As a sociology student at UW Madison, I have learned to understand trends and their causes. Today, statistics according to UCLA law state that 1 in 4 people identify as LGBTQ. I along with many others are in full support of this but this is projected to continue to grow at a moderate rate over the course of the next 10 years. So I sit here asking myself will LGBTQ become the dominant orientation to identify with within 25-30 years? And is this purely the influence of our culture or is it simply because we were never meant to be categorized or rather limited as human beings?

From a cultural standpoint, we rejoice in Pride Month, host events for LGBTQ, and fundraise for them. This makes us focus on whether are we still behind on offering them the love and support we offer others. Personally, I still think we have a long way to go as a nation when it comes to LGBTQ especially as the nation continues to take 1 step forward and 10 steps backward in this controversial field especially in today’s day in age. I’m more so pondering the question 20-30 years from now, will be LGBTQ more popular or even more acceptable than not identifying as this? The world isn’t changing, its people are, so the world changes with it. But in all areas shouldn’t we consider how much the world can change, can we completely rewire humanity time and time again? 

I have left this topic with more questions than answers but I think this topic is something that is still untouched still in today’s world. People often hop on the Bandwagon joining in on celebrations and parades in pride month but simply is it just a social thing to do? Understanding the pressure and fear embedded within this community is something I don’t think I’ll ever be able to grasp. Instead, I simply can be an active ally to these members instead of being a passive one and I invite you to do the same.

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shannon O'Leary

Wisconsin '26

I am a Sophomore at UW Madison who loves the chilly winter season with lots of snow. Writing gives me a way to express myself and also learn more about the world around me!