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The Your Stories section is all about you! Please take a minute to tell visitors of the ILGA website about what LGBTI life is like in reality. Please submit your personal story and share your experience!

YOUR STORIES
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Readers Experiences

This is what people are saying about life for LGBTI people in UNITED KINGDOM...
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(user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 22/02/2014
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Read my facebook page Martin Passow
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Hi - I wanted to leave you with a mostly positive story, which is nevertheless laced with frustration. I socialised within the gay community from 1886 to 1995, in the UK. The reason was so that I could cope at the time with my 'gender dysphoria' (as it was called) - this led to my full gender change. Later, I effectively moved, though not deliberately, more into the 'straight world' but as a post-op transsexual (M to F). I have managed to work professionally since 1996 in a well-respected role, without anyone knowing. I have not 'come out' - even though I have been in two 'lesbian' relationships during that time. I wanted to state this now because it proves that transgendered people can work well in society. However, the frustration has been that coming out would have ended my career - of that I have no doubt. The number of people who openly castigate gay people and transgendered in particular, to my face, without the slightest idea about me is remarkable. If there is a joke in any of this it is on them - but of course, it's not funny. In my role, I do the best I can to educate people - but it has to be subtle, with small moves... My gay and transgender experiences have been wonderful and I would never go back on them - but it has been a long and hard road. I found I needed to be very resilient. Thanks for reading this.
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Dean MacKinnon-Thomson (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex readers on 13/11/2013 tagged with gender identity, sexual orientation, marriage / civil unions +5
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Privacy, acceptance and just plain rudeness...

I was eating out with some friends last week, tapas and red wine, all very casual when the conversation shifted strangely. Now don't get me wrong, they didn't mean to be offensive, rude or generally far too nosy, but still...
So there we are, and one of my very good female friends I've known for a little over a year now asks me about my date with a (really hot) Egyptian dentist. Now, innocent enough right? Nope, she wanted to know which of us was 'the top'. This quickly became the hot topic of our dinner discussion: namely my sexual preferences with a maybe-perhaps partner.

I can practically hear people reading this and shouting, 'what is wrong with any of that?' But let me reverse this for the benefit of the ethically impaired heterosexual majority. What if us gay people decided it was 'casual conversation' for us to know if you prefer anal or oral sex with your partner? Suddenly it becomes a little bit more personal, and a little less fair game doesn't it?

Is it just a novelty factor?

Does our society really accept this? Or is this just cultural impetus devoid of moral learning?

I try to convince myself this is probably a good sign. That in polite society, in busy restaurants and even among relative strangers the 'taboo' aspect of my sexual orientation has dissipated. That said, can I ask: when the fuck will the novelty of having a gay friend wear off?

Culturally we've come a long way, even in my short 24 year lifetime. I've seen the age of consent become equalised, civil partnerships become the norm, section 28 become history (in the UK at least)... oh... and Conservative PMs introducing equality in marriage for us (who'd have thought it!)

And I wonder if this massive shift in public acceptance of all things 'gay' has unintentionally left straight peoples sense of decorum behind. Is my being gay, and loving to hold, kiss, and fornicate with my fellow males of the species really still so 'in'? From Sex & the City, through to more recent programmes like 'Vicious' we see the popularisation of my sexuality. Crikey, Tesco was caught selling 'GBF dolls' for young boys and girls (that's Gay Best Friend for those out of 'the know'). But is this a sign of the accepting times? Or is this the commercialisation of my sexual orientation?

No, I'm not over-reacting at any of this. I can tell you, being able to hold hands in public with your lover and not have people give a crap is wonderful. Being able to enjoy legal equality is empowering. And knowing well over 2/3 of my fellow citizens think I'm born normal is thrilling.

But let me tell you what isn't: being reduced to a comedy doll item for prepubescent kids. Or having some of the most personal aspects of my love life become casual fair game conversation. Or even seeing the name of my orientation 'gay' become a synonym for negativity, un-coolness or freakishness.

Thus: is this widely felt British public acceptance genuine? Or just a novelty factor soon to wear off?

The moral of the piece...

The lesson of this piece is simple. If you think we're normal just like you heterosexuals then why not treat us like it? Boundaries are wonderful things, and yes, even gay partnerships enjoy them. We aren't all drama queens with limp wrists just baying at the leash to spout all utilitarian-happy about our latest squeeze. Sex & the City stereotypes aren't real; but gay couples appreciation of boundaries are.
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Time to show a true leadership on same-sex marriage bill
Niranjan Kamatkar & Subodh Rathod
http://epaper.asian-voice.com/PUBLICATIONS/AV/AV/2013/07/06/ArticleHtmls/Time-to-show-a-true-leadership-on-same-06072013027009.shtml?Mode=1
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Very interesting film depicting the passing of same-sex marriage legislation within London and the UK in 2013. Worth a look!! http://youtu.be/NZaBse2hrQU
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(user currently living in CAMEROON) posted for lesbian readers in response to this story on 31/03/2013 tagged with lgbt families
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john, if you want to see homophobias then let invite you to my country cameroon where i live.
you certainly will be served.
if you are interested then let me know through this same forum and we will exchange ids and get to venture together
witing to read from you as soon as received.
fleur
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I left the UK in 2011, to travel around the world with my civil partner, we are still on the road and there is no end to our journey. I must say we have not experienced any hate crimes or homophobia on our trip so far. You can see the countries we visited and follow our journey around the world at our travel blog http://flashpackatforty.com/
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Dominic Davies (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 23/01/2013 tagged with lgbt families, health, gender identity, sexual orientation
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International Summer School
In July 2013, We are going to be running for the 4th year, our International Summer School 8-13th July 2013. In previous years we've had people from Brazil, Colombia, Croatia, Denmark, Eire, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Scotland, Serbia, Singapore, Spain, Thailand, Turkey, USA.

The five day non-residential course will be held in central London and is aimed at counsellors and psychologists and others engaged in mental health support work across the world who wish to update themselves in contemporary thinking around work with LGBT people.

Places are strictly limited and early application is advised as we expect this course to be filled up quickly. We welcome people of all genders and sexual orientations from across the World.

Full details are on our website http://www.pinktherapy.com/Training/tabid/82/ctl/ViewCourse/mid/422/CourseId/118/language/en-GB/Default.aspx

Pink Therapy is the UK's largest independent specialist therapy training organisation and has been running for 14 years. Our website hosts the Directory of Pink Therapists an online database of LGBT friendly counsellors/psychotherapists. We welcome therapists overseas who wish to list their practices advertising with us. We also have an extensive KNOWLEDGE base of recommended books and articles. and an International Library of some of our most recent papers have been translated by a team of volunteers into most of the world's major languages and you can download them for free here:
http://www.pinktherapy.com/en-gb/knowledge/translations.aspx
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Tamhewt (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers in response to this story on 27/12/2012 tagged with intersex, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion
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Good, at least if I'm in hell, I'll be warm and far away from your homophobic ramblings. Many people on other country's pages have explained personal experiences or supported one another, you however choose to tarnish the UK's page with bigotry and hate.

As for caring about me, I don't want/ask you to and I certainly do not need it. I do not believe in any God(s) either and reject your beliefs which you attempt to force upon me.

The UK is on the whole a tolerant country for LGBTI people (although not perfect, like many countries).
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holly (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual readers in response to this story on 23/11/2012 tagged with lgbt families, hate crime and violence prevention, gender identity
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they can say all they want about us tg to be honest they can point and stare at us all we have to do is ignore them and hold our heads high and walk tall . same for l,g,bs ignore the comments no matter what people say hold your haeds high and walk tall . eventually it will stop because they will get bored .

all my best holly tgirl
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holly (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for lesbian transgender readers in response to this story on 18/11/2012 tagged with hate crime and violence prevention, gender identity, sexual orientation
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you have done a good and brave thing coming out and showing in public especcially with the way people are about us transgenders. all i can say to them is we are human to and we are not going anywhere so they had best get used to it .
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Leeon (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 28/09/2012 +0
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No one on this earth is a good person. You are a sinner! "The is none righteous, no, not one:" - Romans 3:10

Good works, church attendance, baptism, religion will not save you. Only the blood of Jesus Christ can save you from your sins. "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." - Romans 6:23

"Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners." - 1 Timothy 1:15

Because God loved you so much He sent His Son Jesus Christ into the world to save you from your sins. On this earth He lived a perfect and sinless life, died on the cross, was buried and rose again on the third day. "Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures." - 1 Corinthians 15:3-4

You can be saved right now! "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. - Romans 10:9 "For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." - Romans 10:13 "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved." Acts 16:31 There is only one way and no other way to be saved. "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among me, whereby we must be saved." - Acts 4:12

10 out of 10 people die everyday. What you do with Jesus Christ in this life determines where you will spend eternity, heaven or hell. "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." - John 14:6

IF YOU DIE WITHOUT JESUS CHRIST YOU WILL GO TO HELL!

I'm telling you this to warn you because I care about you.
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Gay Nights UK (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 15/08/2012 tagged with tourism, lgbt families, marriage / civil unions
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WELCOME TO GAY NIGHTS UK!!!
We are the UK's first and only National events company that specialise in organising weekend party packages for gay men, women and their friends! Whatever the occasion, Gay Nights UK is perfect for celebrations such as birthdays, hag parties, corporate events, team building, reunions, anniversaries and much more!

Our company aim is to create a new tradition known as a 'hag' party which is a unique celebration for same sex couples about to celebrate their civil partnership or gay marriage. Hag parties can involve both men and women at the same time which generally consist of friends, family and of course both of the grooms or brides to be!!! Wave goodbye to the old fashioned stag or hen party and say hello to the ultra modern Hag party! The revolution is here!

Party packages for your celebrations are available in the following UK cities: Bournemouth, Brighton, London, Cardiff, Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, Blackpool, Newcastle & Glasgow!

No matter what your group size, Gay Nights UK will take the stress out of organising your perfect weekend away which gives you plenty of time to sort out your big day! Choose from the many packages on offer which are suitable for every budget and taste. Don't worry if you don't see anything you like as we can create your very own bespoke package!

Here at Gay Nights UK we like to take the time with each and every group that books with us so we can make sure we offer you exactly what you want. We talk over the phone to every group organiser to find out their individual requirements. Unlike other companies out there we do not treat you as just a number or deal with you only by email. We care about our reputation and we care about you!

Why not take a look at the various packages on offer right now. Here at Gay Nights UK we make it simple and stress free to book your weekend celebration in some of the best cities in the United Kingdom!

Check out the website today and receive a 10% discount off your booking! www.gaynightsuk.co.uk
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(user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 30/04/2012
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From the margin to the mainstream..
Niranjan Kamatkar, GFEST Artistic Director reflects on the impact of society’s slowly changing attitudes towards homosexuality on LGBTQI artists.

Consultation on the ‘Gay marriage’ Bill has opened up an opportunity for society to look at sexualities and gender prejudices in a way that some among us may not have done before. Opportunities are important: I have been noticing comments among Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender, Queer and Intersex (LGBTQI) communities about the need for wider understanding of gender identities. People who think they are liberal and support the ‘gay cause’ – and more specifically in the arts – may be in for some surprises at their own perceptions and prejudices.

At GFEST – Gaywise FESTival , an LGBTQI cross arts event in London, we have witnessed a broad diversity of artistic content. But how do we look at a female artist’s work celebrating the ‘gay marriage’ of a white gay male couple? What about two trans women? How about the celebration of one white and one non-white women getting married? We all have views on homosexuality, sexual orientation and ideas about what defines a cohesive family unit, and media exposure can shape and influence these views. In recent years much more media coverage has been dedicated to diverse issues surrounding social changes and legal protection that affects LGBTQI people, but how successfully do the arts media (including mainstream news or media arts journalism) cover these issues to truly celebrate the works of the artists?

In theory, contemporary art created by LGBTQI practitioners will be exposed to the same degree of access, critique and opportunities as the mainstream art. In practice though, successful journeys for LGBTQI art works may prove more elusive due to fears that the physicality or directness of LGBTQI themes will shock and provoke objections among mainstream audiences. There have been instances of mainstream arts venues celebrating LGBTQI artworks but they are few and far between. The large body of work is still waiting to be showcased in venues with higher profile. Investment to create LGBTIQ artworks is a key issue, so innovation, creating critical vocabulary, marketing and reaching new audiences remains problematic. There is no single LGBTQI arts and culture ‘lobby’. There are organisations and passionate individuals who are doing excellent work, but most of us are still under resourced. Funders increasingly need to demonstrate that they reach out to tackle marginalisation, so that vulnerable LGBTQI artists can get their fair share of attention.

A number of people may wonder why ‘Same- Sex Marriage’ is an issue for the arts? The arts can exist and creativity can flourish without a specific social mandate (like marriage), without boundaries. But whilst for some the angst of inequality is the stimulus to creating a work of art, this is not the case for all and it is vital that opportunities to pursue creative avenues are not blocked by social perceptions. Life, in whatever situation, offers us enough to feed into our creativity – without needing the stimulus of being treated unequally because of our sexual orientation and/or gender identity. ‘Same-Sex Marriage’ will see British society slowly changes its attitude towards homosexuality. It is not about the word ‘marriage’ but about the acceptance of ‘equality in all walks of life’. It can and will influence long-term structures in sectors such as art and culture. More collaborative initiatives will take place to encourage development between LGBTQI artists across ethnicity groups, cultural origins, sexualities and age ranges, and more young LGBTQI artists at crossroads in their careers will seek guidance and gain the confidence to generate or exchange high quality artistic ideas, collaborations and creative developments.

Oscar Wilde said: “A work of art is the unique result of a unique temperament.” I think the challenges posed in a Same Sex marriage will offer that uniqueness to LGBTQI artists and the wider arts, benefiting audiences everywhere.

GFEST announced call for 2012 entries on web: www.gaywisefestival.org.uk
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Chrisie Edkins (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex readers on 27/01/2012
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Dear Pride organisers, my name is Chrisie Edkins I am transgender British solo artist, I have been performing live for a number of years and soon to be releasing a album. I have performed at a number of large venues from Las Vegas to Spain and also a lot of places around the UK. I have also been on television in the UK on This Morning ITV, Trisha Goddard show and even twice on RTL Germany raising awareness and fighting for equality. Last year I was headline act at Manchester Sparkle and on main stage in Reading and also performed Exeter Pride, Bristol and Essex.

Now the reason I am emailing you...

From now till the end of 2012 I am doing any pride/LGBT event around the world totally *FREE* all the Pride organisers have to do is just get me there and give me somewhere sleep. This is all in the name of Charity!!! So far I have had a number of other prides around the world willing to help and spread the word. Confirmed returned bookings due to a great performance and also bookings from All over the UK, USA, Germany, Switzerland, Poland, Canada, Russia and Span pride events.

I am also looking for a Airline sponsor who would be willing to help take the cost down so the Pride organisers are more willing to accept due to there budget. There will also be filming at most of the Prides, Podcasts and Magazine interviews, why not be part of the changing world at little cost to you.

Major part of the "T" part of the LGBT is Beaumont Society who are a big charity organisation for the Transgendered. They has also chosen to sponsor me and in exchange I am creating a soundtrack for the Podcast's they are doing. " Together with our sister organisations, since 1966, we've been at the forefront of supporting transgendered people, their partners and families, as well as advising and training on transgender issues."

So far I have had 12 comfirmed bookings around the world and stilling have over 35 waiting to be confirmed.

This is a article that was in the largest LGBT magazine:

http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2011/12/30/uk-trans-artist-offers-to-play-any-pride-event-in-2012-for-free/


Youtube Link to videos/music:

http://www.youtube.com/user/imthedevil6?feature=mhee

Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/chrisie666

Bellow is my contact detail and your welcome to call any time up to 11pm Monday to Friday.

Kind Regards and hope to hear a reply

Miss Chrisie Edkins
www.chrisie.net
Home: 02380476028
Mobile: +447927120054
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It's so big of you to report them & then actually get things fixed & now you're improving things for other people, People who may have been victimised just for being who they are. You truly are an inspiration.

Also you picked a great union! My Dad works there :)
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Dear Sir/Madam,
We have just updated our Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) guide to resources and support groups available online to be re-launched for the upcoming Tower Hamlets LGBT History Month in the United Kingdom.

Your organisation is featured in this guide.
http://www.absoluterelaxation.co.uk/LGBT

The guide aims to help Teachers, Parents and Students understand and support Young People with LGBT issues.

It contains helpful resources and a wide range of of support groups and links to help those students who are gay, think they might be or for Young People who would like a better understanding of LGBT issues.

Teachers will also find helpful resources to tackle homophobia and bullying in schools.

The pages include lists of support groups and information of LGBT History, Employment Issues, Religion, Health, Parenting, Books and Resources.

Kind regards,
Bernard Hazell
Michael O'Meara
Absolute Relaxation Ltd


"I'm thrilled that Tower Hamlets has compiled this comprehensive and stunning resource"
Sue Sanders, founder LGBT History Month


"It's great to see young people in Tower Hamlets
having access to such a useful resource.
I wish I had been given this information when I was at school.
It's a really cool website."
Peter Tatchell, Human Rights campaigner
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Naleen (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual readers on 09/10/2010 tagged with gender identity +5
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As a Transgender you are often left out off to one side of the LGBT communities. Where there is lack of information. Where communities say they are LGBT they really mean LGB but they are forced to add the T as it was campaigned to add the T to LGB.
With LGBT laws in various countries often leave out the Transgendered people so we are left guessing the laws half the time. Such as where is Homosexuality illegal. That's great for LGB but as for transgendered its still a mystery as we do not always follow the homosexual rules.
Some female only website seem to be confusing to what they mean by female only. Many T-Girls would benefit from what they have to offer but due to still having a penis we may find that we are not welcome. Why cant these websites and communities say no T-Girls or T-Girls also welcome. But then there is risk of regular males trying to gain access by claiming they have gender dysphoria when they do not. But if this is the same with T-Boys too I do not know. But all I can say is there is allot of confusion in my transition and I hope it gets easier.
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Stephen Whittle (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex readers on 21/09/2010 tagged with laws and leadership
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IF YOU READ THIS MESSAGE AND KNOW WHO THE ILGA WEBMANAGER IS, PLEASE PASS IT ON

PROBLEM with ILGA DIRECTORY MAP
This isn't a story I'm afraid but to ell someobdy that the World Map isn't showing on the large version of the Directory Map at page http://ilga.org/directory/en/list?country=US&offset;=a

The box for it appears, and if you put your mouse on it, generally a country's name and details appear -- but not the map.

Your site needs contact details on it - I searched and searched and could not find details of a webmanager or your office other than the Brussles postal address.
Yours
Stephen Whittle stephen@pfc.org.uk
Transgender Europe
Press for Change UK
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Zoe Bremer (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian bisexual straight readers on 06/08/2010 tagged with laws and leadership , sexual orientation, religion, marriage / civil unions
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Nottingham Unitarians (www.nottinghamunitarians.org.uk) had a stall at Nottingham Pride on 31st July 2010, distributing leaflets on equality issues and giving away back copies of THE INQUIRER and THE UNITARIAN. We aim to make this an annual event and to do more outreach work with minorities in our area and would love to hear from gay and feminist groups in and around Nottingham.
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Fertility Road (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 24/06/2010 tagged with adoption, lgbt families, health, human rights, marriage / civil unions
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SAME SEX SURROGACY - Feature in the next issue of Fertility Road (www.fertilityroad.com). First Lifestyle Fertility Magazine! We are happy to announce that we are working together with Pride Angel to provide a fantastic resource for all the gay community that have an interest in becoming parents.For more information please visit Fertility Road website..
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Gea Vox (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex readers on 15/06/2010
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Individual members of our LGBT Organisation were scammed by a man - Ivan Bruce Ssempa Ssendenge, a Ugandan claiming to be a gay Asylum Seeker who had survived horrendous violence and fled to the UK.
After supporting him (fortunately only in our individual capacity, to protect the organisation) and getting him released from detention, the two women who'd acted as bail guarantours and out him up discovered he'd been watching the TV Adult channel and downloading ONLY heterosexual pornography on their laptop, visiting over 100 porn sites in the process!

Be warned, do not let yourselves be scammed like this!
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Zoe Bremer (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian straight readers on 17/04/2010 tagged with human rights, religion +5
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I attended the Annual Meetings of the General Assembly of Unitarian & Free Christian Churches last weekend (8th-11th April), which took place at Nottingham University. Anyone wishing to know what happened can find out in THE INQUIRER, the national Unitarian newspaper, or contact Essex Hall, www.unitarian.org.uk (Tel. +44-(0)20 7240 2384).
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Stephanie (user currently living in UNITED KINGDOM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 28/01/2010 tagged with lgbt families, gender identity, sexual orientation, marriage / civil unions +10
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I recently came out as bisexual to my British husband of 6 years. I hail from New York but live permanently now in south west of England with him in a relatively rural location, well outside London, so I have come to expect some relatively provincial attitudes about most things related to gender, sexuality and marriage roles. My husband's response was loving and beautiful and akin to "oh now that explains some things." He was only sad that I took so long to trust him with this and that still lingers between us, unresolved. And though he was raised by middle English parents with some run of the mill and tedious homophobic attitudes (his parents think our gay male nanny is a 'obviously' a child molestor and are entirely blind to the fact that their younger son is quite likely gay), his attitude to my bisexuality is so-far postive and progressive. After making it known to him, though, I slowly started to make it known to friends and colleagues, gay and straight, that while I was happily married with kids, my psychosexual self (for lack of less psychobabbly term) was bisexual. I got every response from neutral acceptance through to encouragement from my gay and lesbian friends, but the straight friends still surprisingly held some seriously old fashioned views. So far none of them have shunned me or seem to direct any overt hostility towards me, but there is a passive aggressive line of questioning that I keep getting. Questions like: "But doesn't that mean you are really just a lesbian and don't want to admit it?" or, "So are you leaving your husband for a woman then?" And my 'favourite': "How can you be bisexual and monogamous?" That seemed to be the prevelent attitude really -- that bisexual either meant a life-long menage with both a man and a woman at once or a life where you could not commit to only one partner. The concept that I was a married, monogamous woman just happy and more content to finally be honest about who I really am was not sufficient. Saying I was bisexual now meant I needed to "do something about it." Again, this is all very new to my friends and husband... but that is what I experienced so far. A set of sadly retrograde questions and the expectation that my ability to be faithful was under scrutiny. I suspect there will be more to come, but for now ... that's it.
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