A new year is here, and we don’t know about you, but we couldn’t be happier about it. We’re (so) ready to leave the madness of 2020 behind. In that spirit, we’re already thinking about our 2021 LGBTQ New Year’s Resolutions.
Why We’re Making LGBTQ Resolutions in 2021
While 2020 was a challenge for almost everyone, it’s fair to say LGBTQ people struggled more than most. For starters, we lost an LGBTQ champion in Ruth Bader Ginsburg, dealt with transphobic comments from J. K. Rowling, and bit our nails throughout the high-stakes election. Not to mention countless cancelled Pride celebrations and the shuttering of iconic gay bars.
In addition, LGBTQ people have been disproportionally affected by unemployment during the pandemic. On top of this, many lack financial safety nets, making them more prone to eviction.
What’s more, early evidence suggests that LGBTQ people experienced more social isolation, anxiety, and depression last year due to LGBTQ centers being closed and having to shelter in place with unsupportive family members.
With everything our community has been through, we want to concentrate our New Year’s Resolutions on making life better for LGBTQ people.
We want to encourage you to do the same. That’s why we came up with 5 LGBTQ New Year’s Resolutions for 2021. Keep reading to see how you can improve the lives of our community members in the coming year.
LGBTQ New Year’s Resolution #1
Get Involved With An LGBTQ Organization
Despite all the progress the LGBTQ community has made, our community still has a long way to go before we achieve true equality. Just look at these statistics:
- In 2019, more than 1 in 3 LGBTQ Americans faced discrimination.
- LGBTQ people experience anxiety and depression at rates 1.5 to 2.5 times more than their straight counterparts.
- 17% of LGBTQ adults lack health insurance coverage of any kind.
While we definitely made progress in righting these wrongs, we know these victories come from working together and advocating for our rights. That’s why getting involved with an organization is a great LGBTQ New Year’s Resolution for 2021.
There are hundreds of organizations working tirelessly to improve life for LGBTQ people. They work in various spaces promoting equality, eliminating discrimination, improving access to education and healthcare, and protecting rights for the LGBTQ community.
To start, spend some time thinking about a cause that matters to you and the skills you can contribute. Depending on what you decide, you sign petitions, protest, write letters to senators and congresspeople, make calls, or mentor an LGBTQ youth.
Check out this list of virtual volunteer opportunities with an LGBTQ focus.
LGBTQ New Year’s Resolution #2
Learn Some LGBTQ History
Studying LGBTQ history is a great LGBTQ-focused New Year’s Resolution for 2021. After all, we can’t appreciate where we’re going if we don’t know where we came from.
Learning about LGBTQ history is important for lots of reasons. Chief among them is to pay homage to those who fought for our rights to work where we want, marry who we love, and live our lives without shame.
It also gives us space to reflect on how far we’ve come, to finally see ourselves represented in history, and to teach tolerance.
If you’re not sure where to start, try searching “LGBTQ History” on Google and see what you come up with. Don’t try to learn everything. Rather, spend time researching topics that interest you in a medium you enjoy. That could mean reading Wikipedia articles, watching documentaries on Netflix, or taking an online class.
If you’re looking for more inspiration, check out these resources.
- Take a class about LGBTQ History and Culture
- Read one (or more) of these LGBTQ history books
- Watch one of these LGBTQ history documentaries on Netflix
LGBTQ New Year’s Resolution #3
Be A Trans Ally
Year after year, the LGBTQ community makes progress. 2020 was no different. Last year, LGBTQ politicians gained seats in all levels of government, LGBTQ employees gained more legal protections, and marriage equality passed in Northern Ireland and Costa Rica.
While 2020 had its victories, it’s important to remember that members of our community are still suffering—specifically, trans men and women. Many suffer from harassment and discrimination. This comes in the form of restrictive bathroom bills, lack of access to accurate identity documents, and even violence or death.
Trans men and women need our help. So why not add becoming a trans ally to your list of LGBTQ New Year’s Resolutions?
Here are a few ways you can support trans rights:
- Follow and highlight trans content creators on social media
- Read about why pronouns are so important to trans and non-binary people
- Challenge any transphobic remarks or jokes you hear in person or online
- Learn how to make your workplace trans-inclusive
- Donate to trans-focused organizations like The National Center for Trans Equality
- Celebrate Transgender Awareness Week
LGBTQ New Year’s Resolution #4
Expand Your LGBTQ Circle
Between work, exercise, and spending time with family and friends, it’s easy to fall into a routine of seeing the same people. But this year, why not challenge yourself to expand your social circle?
For instance, find LGBTQ people who belong to a different religion, are from another country, or are of different ages. You’ll be surprised just how much you have to learn about your LGBTQ siblings.
If you’re interested in growing your personal LGBTQ circle as part of your LGBTQ resolutions for 2021, check out these recommendations.
- Meetup.com: Search for terms like “LGBTQ,” “gay,” or “transgender” to find groups near you. Depending on where you live, you’ll find LGBTQ book organizations, queer art groups, and bisexual coffee clubs. For now, most events are virtual but look forward to in-person meetups later in 2021.
- Facebook: Search “LGBTQ” + Your City to find LGBTQ groups or people near you.
- Instagram and Twitter: Search tags you’re interested in, follow a few people, and strike up a conversation.
LGBTQ New Year’s Resolution #5
Do More Things Sober
From circuit parties to gay bars and everything in between, a lot of LGBTQ culture revolves around drinking and using drugs. Indeed, 20-25% of LGBTQ people report having a moderate to severe drinking problem. And even in this era of lockdowns and bar closures, LGBTQ people report binge drinking. Suffice it to say, alcohol abuse is a big problem in the LGBTQ community.
While some people need professional help to manage their alcohol addiction, others can work on reducing their alcohol intake alone. For example, if you find yourself reaching for a bottle of chardonnay every time you watch Drag Race, why not substitute it with a flavored seltzer or a mocktail?
It may be difficult at first but think about the positives: having more energy, experiencing fewer hangovers, and saving more money.
We hope this list of 2021 LGBTQ New Year’s Resolutions inspires you to do more for the LGBTQ community in the coming year. At La Fuente Hollywood Treatment center, we’ll definitely be taking these resolutions to heart as we continue to provide top-notch, LGBTQ-specific addiction treatment.
La Fuente Is Here To Support All Of Your Resolutions
On that note, we invite you to contact us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with any questions or concerns you may have about addiction treatment in the Los Angeles area.
Simply fill out the confidential form below and we’ll be in touch with you shortly.
From Manny and the La Fuente team, we wish you a year filled with happiness, health, and hope.