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A Stunning Blonde, Blue-Eyed Freshman Sits Next To Him In Church. Things Don't Go The Way He'd Like.

Coming out as gay is hard. Coming out within a faith that rejects you is often devastating. Here is one person's plea, addressed to his youth pastor, delivered so poetically and eloquently that I find myself at a loss for words. I hope it reaches the ears and hearts of many of our religious leaders so this heartbreaking cycle of rejection and bitterness may end.

A Stunning Blonde, Blue-Eyed Freshman Sits Next To Him In Church. Things Don't Go The Way He'd Like.

Sometimes parents, either intentionally or unintentionally, are hard on homosexuality. To a kid, disappointing your parents is hard. In some religious households homosexuality is taught as being a sin. Disappointing God? Just as hard to hear.

LGBTQ kids are at least twice as likely to attempt suicide as their heterosexual peers. With that mind, here are some tips if you find yourself or a loved one raising a child who may be LGBTQ.


1. Be accepting

A lot of LGBTQ kids think their parents don't accept them because of times in the past when their parents insulted or disparaged another LGBTQ person. An off-hand comment about how someone else's child is "probably just going through a phase" could stick in your kid's head as an example of how you might not accept them for who they are.

2. Be supportive

If your child may be getting bullied, the best way to deal with the situation is head-on. Figure out a solution with your kid or their teachers if it's very serious so kids know you're completely in their corner.

3. Be open

The "sex talk" is an uncomfortable conversation for any parent, but it can prove unbearable for parents who are uncomfortable with their child's sexual identity. If you're a good parent, obviously you love your child and want to protect them, so make sure they know how to protect themselves. LGBTQ youth groups can help as well. Support makes all the difference.

4. Be aware


Some people who are considering suicide talk about it before they make an attempt. If an adolescent you know talks about feeling "hopeless" or "wanting to die," take it seriously. Don't assume they're only doing it for attention. Make sure they get help.

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$200 billion of COVID-19 recovery funding is being used to bail out fossil fuel companies. These mayors are combatting this and instead investing in green jobs and a just recovery.

Learn more on how cities are taking action: c40.org/divest-invest


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I got married and started working in my early 20s, and for more than two decades I always had employer-provided health insurance. When the Affordable Care Act (ACA, aka "Obamacare")was passed, I didn't give it a whole lot of thought. I was glad it helped others, but I just assumed my husband or I would always be employed and wouldn't need it.

Then, last summer, we found ourselves in an unexpected scenario. I was working as a freelance writer with regular contract work and my husband left his job to manage our short-term rentals and do part-time contracting work. We both had incomes, but for the first time, no employer-provided insurance. His previous employer offered COBRA coverage, of course, but it was crazy expensive. It made far more sense to go straight to the ACA Marketplace, since that's what we'd have done once COBRA ran out anyway.

The process of getting our ACA healthcare plan set up was a nightmare, but I'm so very thankful for it.

Let me start by saying I live in a state that is friendly to the ACA and that adopted and implemented the Medicaid expansion. I am also a college-educated and a native English speaker with plenty of adult paperwork experience. But the process of getting set up on my state's marketplace was the most confusing, frustrating experience I've ever had signing up for anything, ever.

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$200 billion of COVID-19 recovery funding is being used to bail out fossil fuel companies. These mayors are combatting this and instead investing in green jobs and a just recovery.

Learn more on how cities are taking action: c40.org/divest-invest


The legality of abortion is one of the most polarized debates in America—but it doesn’t have to be.

People have big feelings about abortion, which is understandable. On one hand, you have people who feel that abortion is a fundamental women’s rights issue, that our bodily autonomy is not something you can legislate, and that those who oppose abortion rights are trying to control women through oppressive legislation. On the other, you have folks who believe that a fetus is a human individual first and foremost, that no one has the right to terminate a human life, and that those who support abortion rights are heartless murderers.

Then there are those of us in the messy middle. Those who believe that life begins at conception, that abortion isn’t something we’d choose—and we’d hope others wouldn’t choose—under most circumstances, yet who choose to vote to keep abortion legal.

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via Lorie Shaull / Flickr

The epidemic of violence against Indigenous women in America is one of the country's most disturbing trends. A major reason it persists is because it's rarely discussed outside of the native community.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, murder is the third-leading cause of death among American Indian and Alaska Native women under age 19.

Women who live on some reservations face rates of violence that are as much as ten times higher than the national average.

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