She was getting ready for Pride. What her grandma did brought the internet to tears.

Meet Lexie Nobrega. She saw Pride Month as a great reason to celebrate and spend time with her grandparents.

The 21-year-old who lives and studies in Norfolk, Virginia, traveled to Washington, D.C., for the city's Pride Month festivities. Not only would Nobrega celebrate being herself, she'd also get to spend a few nights with her grandparents — two of her favorite people.

Her grandmother's small act of kindness on the day of the Capital Pride Festival is now going viral.

When Nobrega woke up to get ready that morning, her grandma, Hermina, walked into the room, took one look at the creases on her granddaughter's bisexual Pride flag and thought, "No, this won't do." So she got out her iron and started "pressing it out."


Nobrega was overcome with emotion and wanted to remember the moment, so she snapped a picture for social media. Her intention was just to share it with family, but the gesture was so poignant that the photo quickly rocketed into the world, fueled by tens of thousands of likes and retweets.

Nobrega says her grandmother also ironed out the rest of her costume so she wouldn't go to Pride looking anything but her best.

This kind of support is nothing new for her grandparents.

Nobrega, who came out to her grandparents as bisexual during her senior year of high school, notes that while they'd always been her rock, being open with them about her identity was still difficult.

"Both of my grandparents have always taught me to love and accept all people, but coming out to them still wasn't easy," she says. "I was afraid that they would judge me or treat me differently."

Coming out is a complex and personal process and — as many people in the LGBTQIA community will tell you — there's a lot of fear that comes along with telling even the most loving people in your life.

For Nobrega, nothing changed: "They gave me a big hug and said, 'That's OK, we love you.'"

Nobrega's been "blown away" by all the love she received, but it's not surprising that her grandmother's actions have resonated far and wide.

As someone who came out of the closet to parents who were virulently homophobic at the time — though my mom and dad's views have since changed drastically — I can tell you firsthand how lonely, isolating, and scary it can feel.

The feeling of not having to hide who you truly are anymore is indescribable. But having to face the reality that you may lose the love and support of your family isn't just painful, it can be dangerous: According to recent research, LGBTQIA youth are at a higher risk of experiencing homelessness than other youth.

So seeing Nobrega's picture wasn't just heartwarming — it was also a clear sign that acceptance and progress are on the move.

For allies, it's a clear message that you don't have to make grand gestures to show up for your LGBTQIA friends and family. Just like Hermina did.

"My grandma is small but has a huge, compassionate heart," Nobrega says. "She loves learning about the LGBT+ community and never judges others for who they are or who they love. Even the smallest gestures of support speak volumes to someone who is a part of the LGBT+ community."

What does that look like? For Nobrega, support includes showing love and compassion to those in the community, listening to their experiences without judgment, educating oneself on the different identities that fall under the LGBTQIA+ umbrella, and putting a special focus on those identities — such as bisexuality, asexuality, and aromanticism — which often go underrepresented or are erased, and supporting local LGBTQIA centers and shelters.

It all makes a difference.

Lexie Nobrega looked amazing at Capital Pride. Just look at that flag.

Her grandma? She couldn't have been any prouder.

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Photo by Gregory Hayes on Unsplash

"Can I buy you a drink?" is a loaded question.

It could be an innocent request from someone who's interested in having a cordial conversation. Other time, saying "yes" means you may have to fend off someone who feels entitled to spend the rest of the night with you.

In the worst-case scenario, someone is trying to take advantage of you or has a roofie in their pocket.

Feminist blogger Jennifer Dziura found a fool-proof way to stay safe while understanding someone's intentions: ask for a non-alcoholic beverage or food. If they're sincerely interested in spending some time getting to know you, they won't mind buying something booze-free.

RELATED: States are starting to require mental health classes for all students. It's about dang time.

But if it's their intention to lower your defenses, they'll throw a mild tantrum after you refuse the booze. Her thoughts on the "Can I buy you a drink?" conundrum made their way to Tumblr.

via AshleysCo / Tumblr


via AshleysCo / Tumblr

The posts caught the attention of a bartender who knows there are lot of men out there whose sole intention is to get somone drunk to take advantage.

"Most of the time, when someone you don't know is buying you a drink, they're NOT doing it out of a sense of cordiality," the bartender wrote. "They're buying you a drink for the sole purpose of making you let your guard down."

So they shared a few tips on how to be safe and social when someone asks to buy you a drink.

From the other side of the bar, I see this crap all the time. Seriously. I work at a high-density bar, and let me tell you, I have anywhere from 10-20 guys every night come up and tell me to, "serve her a stronger drink, I'm trying to get lucky tonight, know what I mean?" usually accompanied with a wink and a gesture at a girl who, in my experience, is going to go from mildly buzzed to definitively hammered if I keep serving her. Now, I like to think I'm a responsible bartender, so I usually tell guys like that to piss off, and, if I can, try to tell the girl's more sober friends that they need to keep an eye on her.
But everyone- just so you know, most of the time, when someone you don't know is buying you a drink, they're NOT doing it out of a sense of cordiality, they're buying you a drink for the sole purpose of making you let your guard down.

Tips for getting drinks-

1. ALWAYS GO TO THE BAR TO GET YOUR OWN DRINK, DO NOT LET STRANGERS CARRY YOUR DRINKS. This is an opportune time for dropping something into your cocktail, and you're none the wiser.

2.IF YOU ORDER SOMETHING NON-ALCOHOLIC, I promise you, the bartender doesn't give two shits that you're not drinking cocktails with your friends, and often, totally understands that you don't want to let your guard down around strangers. Usually, you can just tell the bartender that you'd like something light, and that's a big clue to us that you're uncomfortable with whomever you're standing next to. Again, we see this all the time.

3. If you're in a position to where you feel uncomfortable not ordering alcohol:
Here's a list of light liquors, and mixers that won't get you drunk, and will still look like an actual cocktail:

X-rated + sprite = easy to drink, sweet, and 12% alcoholic content. Not strong at all, usually runs $6-$8, depending on your state.
Amaretto + sour= sweet, not strong, 26%.
Peach Schnapps+ ginger ale= tastes like mellow butterscotch, 24%.
Melon liquor (Midori, in most bars) + soda water = not overly sweet, 21%
Coffee liquor (Kahlua) +soda = not super sweet, 20%.
Hope this helps someone out!

RELATED: Permit denied for 'straight pride' parade in California

If you do accept a drink from someone at a bar and you want to talk, there's no need to feel obligated to spend the rest of the night with them.

Jaqueline Whitmore, founder of The Protocol School of Palm Beach, says to be polite you only have to "Engage in some friendly chit-chat, but you are not obligated to do more than that."

If someone asks to buy you a drink and you don't want it, Whitmore has a great tip. "Say thank you, but you are trying to cut back, have to drive or you don't accept drinks from strangers," Whitmore says.

What if they've already sent the drink over? "Give the drink to the bartender and tell him or her to enjoy it," Whitmore says.

Have fun. Stay safe, and make sure to bring a great wing-man or wing-woman with you.

Well Being
Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Unsplash

Jasmine has been used as a natural treatment for depression, anxiety, and stress for thousands of years. Oil from the plant has also been used to treat insomnia and PMS, and is considered a natural aphrodisiac. It turns out, our ancestor's instincts to slather on the oil when they wanted a little R&R were correct.

A study, published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, and according to Professor Hanns Hatt of the Ruhr University in Bochum, Germany, revealed that jasmine can calm you down when you're feeling anxious.The results can "be seen as evidence of a scientific basis for aromatherapy."

"Instead of a sleeping pill or a mood enhancer, a nose full of jasmine from Gardenia jasminoides could also help, according to researchers in Germany. They have discovered that the two fragrances Vertacetal-coeur (VC) and the chemical variation (PI24513) have the same molecular mechanism of action and are as strong as the commonly prescribed barbiturates or propofol," says the study.

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Nature


Rep. Peter King (R-NY) is a name you should remember. If you don't follow politics closely, remember his name because he's the first Republican in Congress to openly join the call for a renewed federal ban on assault weapons.

If you're a Democrat or a diehard progressive partisan, remember his name because it's proof that as a nation we can put principles before party and walk across the political aisle to get things done.

If you're a Republican, remember his name as evidence that real leadership in politics sometimes means risking your reputation to do what is right even when most of your colleagues disagree or lack the political courage to go first.

But let's allow Rep. King to explain himself in his own words:

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Democracy