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Episode 118

Holiday Roadcast ft. FIVE advice questions + FIVE Mariah Lipsyncs?! "Should I come out over the holidays??" // "Okay but THEN HOW SHOULD I COME OUT??" // "Dannielle & Kristin, What are your favorite holiday songs?" // "I hate unwrapping gifts in front of people, HELP." // "What do I say when my relatives try to set me up on dates?!" Happy Holigays!!! <3


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Safety Planning for the Holidaze

by Allyee, Wes, and Everyone at The Trevor Project

Ho Ho Ho, Merry…  Ehhh… Not so fast.  For so many of us, the holidays can be a super stressful and challenging time.  On top of the regular challenges we face during the holidays (what presents to buy, how many treats to indulge in, which ugly sweater to wear), LGBTQ young people often face many other obstacles to having wonderful holiday cheer.

At The Trevor Project, we hear from young people from all kinds of backgrounds about their experiences with the holidays. This might include traveling home for the holidays, spending more time than normal with family while being on break from school, or not going home at all. Of course, some young people return to supportive or welcoming homes and loved ones.  However, this doesn’t necessarily protect them from potentially triggering or traumatic situations. All of these different situations might bring up experiences like:

– Having family members who may be openly hostile towards your LGBTQ identity;

– Being around family and having to go back into the closet, even if you’re out in other environments; this can be especially difficult for trans*, genderqueer, or gender non-conforming youth who may have to revert to unwanted gender expressions, names or pronouns;

– Not feeling safe or supported enough to go home or visit family;

– Watching friends and loved ones visit their families when you have faced rejection or hostility from your own;

– Being homeless due to family rejection or hostility – something that really impacts our community. 

While we can’t possibly cover every “what if”, we do know that every young person deserves the chance to thrive, regardless of their identities.  So, we had the ENTIRE staff at The Trevor Project come together and brainstorm Holiday Self Care Ideas for YOU. Here is what we came up with:

– Budget personal time to decompress. You don’t have to be around people all the time, despite what it may seem like.

– Take walks: Try making playlists to match your mood.

– Create a self-care corner: Place happy reminders or notes in mirrors, on your dresser, or in a bag to brighten your day along the way.

– Brainstorm “safe” conversation topics for family.  Try to find neutral topics that decrease the likelihood for offense or pain.

– Plan game time for family/friends: This takes away the pressure to create conversation!

– Try to keep in touch with your chosen family/friends while you’re away from them. Schedule phone or chat dates regularly or for times when you think you might need them.

– Try to acknowledge the things in your life you’re grateful for, or things you’ve accomplished that you’re proud of (big or small). Write them down. If you keep this list in your phone, you can pull it up whenever/wherever.

– Don’t overextend yourself financially if you don’t want to.  You can give gifts and appreciation cheaply or free!

– Give away items you don’t need to charities or shelters.

– Sing! Practice self-karaoke!

– If religion is an important part of the holidays for you, try finding a welcoming congregation in the National LGBTQ Task Force’s Institute for Welcoming Resources.

– Identify safe places if you’re traveling somewhere. Are there Community Centers, or LGBTQ-inclusive spaces in the area in case you need a place to go? Sometimes the best place to go is to an online community. YouTube has a bunch of awesome people and videos to lend support and a giggle or two (I dare you to not smile at this video) Also, TrevorSpace is an online community for LGBTQ youth ages 13-24 from all over the world, and it’s a great place to find support.

– It is especially important for those of us who aren’t going home for the holidays to reach out for support. Whether that be the family/friends you have chosen, or through an online community. If you need a place to stay, please don’t hesitate to contact the National Runaway Safeline at 1-800-RUNAWAY or us here at The Trevor Project at 1-866-488-7386.

– Create your own traditions with a person or people that are meaningful to you. This can be laying in bed all watching movies, having your own party or dinner with friends, or signing up to volunteer at your local soup kitchen.

– Anticipate challenges and healthy responses that keep you safe above all else, and come prepared with those. There is a chance that you might encounter homophobic, transphobic or biphobic remarks. Before standing up to these, some things to think about are; is it safe for me to stand up to this remark? What is the best case scenario? (Can I change their viewpoint? Can I help them understand why that is hurtful and/or offensive? Will they apologize?) What is the worst case scenario? (Will I be outed? Will they say even more hurtful things? Will I get in trouble? Will I be upset for the rest of the trip?) Do you have an alternative place to stay if things get too intense?

– Safety Plan! Do you need help making an individual safety plan? Call The Trevor Project anytime at 1-866-488-7286 and we can make a master plan together.

– Accept sadness. Sometimes we stress ourselves out with feelings we “should” feel. Sadness is okay to feel, especially at the holidays.

Finally, remember that Trevor is here 24/7 at 1-866-7386, including every single holiday. Our trained counselors are here to listen to whatever it is that you are going through and work with you to create your very own safety plan and Holiday Self Care List.

This time of year is an awesome time for reflection and gratitude.  Sometimes, it can feel almost impossible to find things to be grateful for.  At Trevor, we feel tremendously grateful for your trust in us in helping you through those dark times.

We’ll be here every single day and night if you need us.  You are never alone.

Click through to read more about Allyee and our other Second Opinions panelists!


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- Question submitted by Anonymous

Dannielle Says:

Your all caps sent me into such a panic that I almost just clicked ‘publish’ instead of ‘answer’… so…


Now is the perfect time to get creative as hell. Go to Target and check out that $1 shit at the front. There are literally billions of dumb things. Get differently colored notecards and some tape. On each dumb thing, think of some cute shit you can do together.

1 tiny bag of caramel corn (or available candy) “to chomp while we watch ANY MOVIE OF YOUR CHOICE I WON’T EVEN COMPLAIN ONCE”
1 small plastic dinosaur “our first pet!”
3 diamond shaped chip clips “because every kiss begins with kay, and I’m not rich enough for the real thing”
2 sets of Hello Kitty silverware “for the amazing home cooked meal I’m about to make you”
1 tiny note book – this you fill with love notes. obviously.
etc, etc, etc.

You get the point. You don’t have to put a lot of money into something or have three weeks notice or whatever, just be thoughtful and creative and make it personal. LOVE CONQUERS ALL (does that work here?)

Kristin Says:

Oh my god. “Our first pet.”

*clears throat* I agree – YOU NEED TO CALM DOWN.

Here are my ideas:

1. Make 10 mugs of hot chocolate and put them going down the hallway LEADING TO A FAKE FIREPLACE THAT YOU DREW ON PAPER (or the wall if you’re in college, bc that’s what college kids do), and tell her gift number one is a romantic date where you sit on a pile of blankets by the fake fire and listen to all your favorite music and drink five mugs of hot cocoa each and see what happens…

2. Give her a fancy ticket that you make yourself which reads, “This ticket grants you admission to a day where you never leave bed NOT EVEN FOR ONE MOMENT, and you shall have meals delivered to you by the prettiest person in the whole world (*point to self when she gets to that part*), watch movies, be read to, anything your WONDERFUL HEART DESIRES.


4. Omg. Make a movie using your phone or computer or whatever. Think of 7 creative ideas (like a day in bed, or an adventure in your town, or a meal you cook, etc). Start the movie by saying, “HELLO MY LOVE. The following message may only be watched one day at a time, and will reveal one week of special surprises. DON’T SKIP AHEAD YOU CHEAT. Day One: TODAY WE WILL {fill in awesome thing}. NOW STOP THE TAPE YOU CHEAT.” (Then you do the thing) “Day Two: TODAY WE WILL {fill in awesome thing}. STOP THE TAPE NOW CHEATER. (etc, etc)”

5. Propose marriage and scream HO, HO, HO. MAAAARRY CHRISTMAS!!!

You guys. I don’t know.
Good luck.