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Queer folk share touching, funny and painfully relatable stories about the first time they realised they were LGBT+

Josh Milton and Patrick Kelleher September 8, 2020
After an anti-trans figurehead said young people shouldn't be 'labelled' LGBT+, Stonewall asked users to share when they realised they were queer. (Stock photograph via Elements Envato)

After an anti-trans figurehead said young people shouldn't be 'labelled' LGBT+, Stonewall asked users to share when they realised they were queer. (Stock photograph via Elements Envato)

Countless LGBT+ people took to Twitter Tuesday (September 8) to give endearing accounts of how they realised they were queer, after a lawyer with links to the LGB Alliance claimed young people shouldn’t be “labelled”.

“I first knew I was LGBTQ” was the UK’s number one trending topic after Allison Bailey, a lawyer who describes herself as a “gender critical” lesbian, said a 12-year-old cannot know they are queer.

Bailey is best-known for announcing the launch of the LGB Alliance, an association which has sought to strike a wedge between the LGB and T communities.

She spoke out after queer Black youth advocacy group Exist Loudly asked for followers aged between 12 and 23 to answer a questionnaire.

“A 12-year-old is a child,” she wrote. “Stop putting children in with adults and labelling them LGBTQ+.”

As the backlash against Bailey’s tweet grew, Stonewall urged people to share their stories in an effort to show that being queer is not reserved for adults.

From Section 28 to crushes on Batman, queer people reveal when they knew they were LGBT+. 

LGBT+ people rushed forward to share their stories, with many talking about childhood crushes, stolen glances and first kisses — as well as the shame that society puts on young queer people.

Many trans people waded into the conversation to point out that children often understand their gender identity far more than most adults give them credit for.

Many people, of course, came to realise they were LGBT+ by their first TV crushes.

Meanwhile, others spoke of that general feeling of not fitting in that so many LGBT+ children experience.

Exist Loudly, the group which sparked the discourse, sent an apt tweet restating its mission to protect all queer and trans Black youth, regardless of any attempts to erase their reality.

More: coming out, Exist Loudly, lgb alliance, LGBT

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