Opinion – How to Support Our LGBTQ&U Community

Mr. Hogan

During the LGBTQ&U panel Mr. Hogan shared his experiences in the EPIC community.

I have worked at EPIC South for five and a half years now. Since coming out, I have been supported in a way I never expected by both staff and students. I appreciate that I had the opportunity to sit on the LGBTQ&U panel and was able to speak about my experiences both in and out of EPIC.

I hope that students at EPIC feel comfortable coming out and being who they really are. No matter who you are, it is not an easy thing to do. For any student who wants to come out, please know that EPIC is a safe space. There are staff members who can help support you in whatever way you need.

If a friend has come out to you, that means they trust you. They trust that you will respect their private information, and help them through this process. Sometimes they might be looking for answers but the most important thing you can do for them is listen. Listen to their concerns, their fears, and their successes. They are going to have good and bad days just like everyone else and they will need you to help.

When a friend comes out to you, be aware of your reaction. I still remember how every individual person reacted when I told them and I felt the love and support, but I also felt the uncertainty and the judgment from some. You might not understand and you might never understand what they are going through. Just be there for them.

Thank you EPIC for giving me a safe space to be myself. Thank you for creating an inclusive environment where everyone can be themselves.

Mr. Hogan