Privincetown Carnival Parade August 2019Photo: Shutterstock
Celebrating Pride for the first time can be an equally exciting and daunting experience. It’s okay to be afraid to head into the unknown, but don’t let that stop you from having a great time and thriving with your people.
If you’re feeling nervous about Pride, maybe you’ve just gotten out or haven’t been to Pride yet due to the pandemic, first know that you’re not alone. Second, we have some tips to guide you.
Related: 6 Queer Musicians to Immediately Add to Your Pride Playlist
1. Choose the event that suits you
While all Pride events may look alike, they’re not some sort of “one size fits all” situation. Therefore, you should consider where you will feel most comfortable. If this is your first Pride, it could be a smaller party rather than throwing yourself all the way. If you’re anxious, you might want something more low-key than a five-day affair. There might also be a specific city that feels more like home and where you can be yourself safely. Do your research and find the event where you will have the best time.
2. Take care of yourself
We’re about to start looking like a parent to this one, reminding you to take care of yourself, even when you’re dancing down the street and wondering if you really need a full-time job. or if being queer and happy can just get you by.
Pride is likely to be quite intense for a few days (or weeks), so make sure you have the essentials on hand. Stay hydrated – especially if you spend a lot of time in the heat – be sure to eat plenty, rest between celebrations, and dress in a comfortable and expressive way that will keep you cool.
3. Make plans ahead of time
It might even only be the day before, but having a vague idea of what your itinerary will be can really put your mind at ease and prevent sleepless nights. Make a plan with friends about what you want to do and where you want to be. The preparation process itself can be exciting, so use this time to secure travel, accommodation, venues and resources.
4. Go with friends or family
While chosen family is really a thing and it’s nigh on impossible to attend a Pride event and not feel welcome – even by complete strangers – it’s sure to lessen your fears if you have a loved one who supports you. You are bound to meet new people on your travels, but having someone to share magical experiences with can only make them more special.
5. Hold your head up high and be proud
Don’t let your fears ruin your memories. Ultimately, Pride is about celebrating who you are and committing to the journey ahead as we seek equality for all. Pride is about expressing yourself in the boldest way and showing the rest of the world that who you are isn’t just normal and worthwhile, it’s beautiful.
So whatever your fears, while understandable, they shouldn’t get in the way of having a good time, and if something goes wrong, or you find yourself down a more spontaneous path, that’s fine. ! What matters is that you are safe and prosperous.