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How to be an Ally when you're an Introvert
I can comfortably call myself an ally to LGBTQ folks. What I am not is a Pride Parade Participant or a Protest Marcher. People are draining, especially intense ones in situations like these. Here are a few things you can do as an introvert to support your LGBTQ friends and family.
Figure out your comfort zone. For instance, I’m pretty good at temporary confrontation if someone needs it, especially when a kid is involved. I used to make open offers to support scared/worried/anxious kids when I was on panels at large conventions. Yes, introvert, but I knew I would be able to help handle things with convention staff or go full-on momster if necessary.
Be a bathroom buddy. Look, we all have to go and no one expects you to talk in there.
Listen. It’s okay to ask questions. And the nice thing is, it’s so great when people tell their own story that you don’t have to repeat it or anything!
Use your pronouns. Normalize stating pronouns! Mine go out on every email, I put them on con badges, my website, etc. I also ask folks sometimes to make sure. “She/her/hers are mine. What’s yours?”
Hug. I’m generally not one for a lot of touching but I’m willing to step outside my comfort zone for this.
Write letters to government officials, con officials, etc.
Provide a safe space. Sometimes that just means sitting quietly with someone.
Smile. Compliment. Be kind. That might be the only normal, low stress interaction someone has all day.
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