How To Be a Good Ally to the LGBTQ Community
Adolescence and young adulthood aren't easy times for anyone, but for LGBTQ youth, life can feel especially fraught. According to the Centers for Disease Control, lesbian, gay, and bisexual* young people seriously contemplate suicide at almost three times the rate of their heterosexual peers.
That's where The Trevor Project comes in. The nonprofit is the world's largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ young people. The Trevor Project works to save lives by providing free, confidential, 24/7 phone, chat, and text lifelines. (Social media integrations are coming soon.)
Bumble wants to make sure everyone feels safe and supported, both within our platform and in their real-life communities. On June 26, Bumble will partner with The Trevor Project, donating $0.01 for every match made with the designated card in our app. Open Bumble in any mode and get matching to find it.
In the meantime, there are other ways to be supportive of LGBTQ folks in your everyday life. Being a good ally can be as simple as really listening when your friends and acquaintances from underrepresented groups have something to say.
"Listen to their stories, to their struggles, and to their needs," said Erin Miller, Bumble's learning and development specialist. "Then ask them how you can help, and follow through. That might mean putting yourself in situations you personally find uncomfortable, but it'll help you understand what they deal with on a daily basis."
Erin also advocates recognizing your privilege as, for example, a cisgender, heterosexual person when you're seeking to ally yourself with your LGBTQ peers.
"Know the privilege you are afforded as a member of the majority," she said. "Acknowledge that you can feel their pain, but that the conversation is not about you. To take your allyship to the next level, use your privilege to help create space and opportunities that they usually wouldn't be invited to. Flat out, know when to give up your seat at the table."
The Trevor Project's comms chief Kevin Wong agreed, adding that being respectful of a person's chosen pronouns is another way to be a good ally. So is stepping in when you see someone from the LGBTQ community being harassed or bullied.
"Being a good ally is active, not passive," Kevin said.
If you'd like to step up your allyship, there are a handful of ways to help support The Trevor Project's work across the country. If you’re interested in becoming a crisis counselor to support LGBTQ young people through their text or chat services, or helping with advocacy work in your home state, visit www.thetrevorproject.org/get-involved.
If you live in New York City or Los Angeles, you can also sign up to be trained as a crisis counselor on TrevorLifeline, the group's 24/7 phone line for young people in crisis. You can also support their crucial work directly by donating at www.thetrevorproject.org/donate.
*the CDC did not include questions about gender identity in their study.