More

This kid's dad is just as bad as the bullies at school, until he makes me smile at the end.

Doesn't seem fair that some kids get laughed at for who they are inside.

This kid's dad is just as bad as the bullies at school, until he makes me smile at the end.

Especially when it's because who they are inside doesn't seem to match who people assume they are on the outside.

P.S. This mom is understandably angry and upset, but I'm not a fan of the portrayal of her as aggressive and physically violent.


Gender norms are complex and antiquated things. We are starting more and more to understand that gender is a spectrum and that we can't assume we understand or know someone's gender identity based on the sex they appear to be.

People often argue that kids can't know what gender they are at ages as young as 3 or 5 ... but I would argue that kids know a heck of a lot more about themselves than we know about them. Who are we to judge each other based on what we assume we know? Nothing good can come of that.

In fact, the consequences of that judgment and rejection can be deadly. Teenager Leelah Alcorn was 17 when she apparently stepped in front of a truck and died. In her suicide note, she talked about her parents trying to "fix" her.

Here's one heartbreaking excerpt:

"The only way I will rest in peace is if one day transgender people aren't treated the way I was, they're treated like humans, with valid feelings and human rights. Gender needs to be taught about in schools, the earlier the better. My death needs to mean something. My death needs to be counted in the number of transgender people who commit suicide this year. I want someone to look at that number and say "that's fucked up" and fix it.

It's possible that if Leelah had lived, she would have transitioned to living as a woman, which for her may have meant her life would totally change. Some say it is a selfish decision; others say it simply is not a decision. It's who they are and always have been. Joy Ladin, who is the first openly transgender professor at an Orthodox Jewish school, speaks to this:

"It looks to people like a choice. And it's clearly a choice that was terrible for my family, it was terrible for my wife, it broke up my marriage, it broke up my children's home. ... It really wasn't good for anybody particularly, except for me. So, if I chose to do something that was bad for everybody but me, that's an act of radical — even sociopathic — selfishness ... but to me ... there was no one else I could be. It wasn't a selfish choice. It was a choice between living or dying."

She goes on to talk about how she seriously considered suicide for many years, but thought transitioning into living as a woman was a better option for her family. Joy was in her 40s when she transitioned.

The image of the father wearing a dress and accepting his child is so powerful, and the destructive nature of his rejection is also very real. I hope parents see this and realize that acceptance really can be a matter of life and death for their child.

Here are the lyrics to that beautiful song by HollySiz:

Let the light come through us

Let's believe in ourselves
Let's believe in something
Let the lights come through us
Let's believe in ourselves
Let's blow the dust on shelves



Let the shout-outs locked up in our mouth

Let us go
Let us grow
Let's believe we can change
Let's believe in ourselves


Let us go
Let us grow
Let's believe we can change
Let's blow the dust on shelves


Let the shout-outs locked up in our mouth

Let's believe in our minds

Let's believe we will let the shout-outs locked up in our mouth
Let the shout-outs locked up in our mouth

Photo by Louis Hansel on Unsplash
True

This story was originally shared on Capital One.

Inside the walls of her kitchen at her childhood home in Guatemala, Evelyn Klohr, the founder of a Washington, D.C.-area bakery called Kakeshionista, was taught a lesson that remains central to her business operations today.

"Baking cakes gave me the confidence to believe in my own brand and now I put my heart into giving my customers something they'll enjoy eating," Klohr said.

While driven to launch her own baking business, pursuing a dream in the culinary arts was economically challenging for Klohr. In the United States, culinary schools can open doors to future careers, but the cost of entry can be upwards of $36,000 a year.

Through a friend, Klohr learned about La Cocina VA, a nonprofit dedicated to providing job training and entrepreneurship development services at a training facility in the Washington, D.C-area.

La Cocina VA's, which translates to "the kitchen" in Spanish, offers its Bilingual Culinary Training program to prepare low-and moderate-income individuals from diverse backgrounds to launch careers in the food industry.

That program gave Klohr the ability to fully immerse herself in the baking industry within a professional kitchen facility and receive training in an array of subjects including culinary skills, food safety, career development and English language classes.

Keep Reading Show less

This article originally appeared on 11.21.16


Photographer Katie Joy Crawford had been battling anxiety for 10 years when she decided to face it straight on by turning the camera lens on herself.

In 2015, Upworthy shared Crawford's self-portraits and our readers responded with tons of empathy. One person said, "What a wonderful way to express what words cannot." Another reader added, "I think she hit the nail right on the head. It's like a constant battle with yourself. I often feel my emotions battling each other."

So we wanted to go back and talk to the photographer directly about this soul-baring project.

Keep Reading Show less
True

When a pet is admitted to a shelter it can be a traumatizing experience. Many are afraid of their new surroundings and are far from comfortable showing off their unique personalities. The problem is that's when many of them have their photos taken to appear in online searches.

Chewy, the pet retailer who has dedicated themselves to supporting shelters and rescues throughout the country, recognized the important work of a couple in Tampa, FL who have been taking professional photos of shelter pets to help get them adopted.

"If it's a photo of a scared animal, most people, subconsciously or even consciously, are going to skip over it," pet photographer Adam Goldberg says. "They can't visualize that dog in their home."

Adam realized the importance of quality shelter photos while working as a social media specialist for the Humane Society of Broward County in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

"The photos were taken top-down so you couldn't see the size of the pet, and the flash would create these red eyes," he recalls. "Sometimes [volunteers] would shoot the photos through the chain-link fences."

That's why Adam and his wife, Mary, have spent much of their free time over the past five years photographing over 1,200 shelter animals to show off their unique personalities to potential adoptive families. The Goldbergs' wonderful work was recently profiled by Chewy in the video above entitled, "A Day in the Life of a Shelter Pet Photographer."