What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

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What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by Admin on Wed Aug 09, 2017 11:50 am

I’m currently conducting research into what factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities and I need your help. I’m looking for people who are part of the LGBTQIA+ community and are between the ages of 18 and 30. If this topic brings up anything that distresses you or makes you feel unsafe please contact QLife on 1800 184 527.

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Post by Nopostcode on Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:06 pm

I've always turned to online forums and communities to lurk and vent. I grew up isolated geographically with ptsd and lived in forums just to feel some sort of connection to someone. As fb grew it took time for me to feel comfortable posting no longer anon but after the call out culture period of 2013-2016 ended I felt safer asking questions and confessing and venting online. I met my partner through online communities and many kind beautiful people.

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Post by Nopostcode on Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:06 pm

I've always turned to online forums and communities to lurk and vent. I grew up isolated geographically with ptsd and lived in forums just to feel some sort of connection to someone. As fb grew it took time for me to feel comfortable posting no longer anon but after the call out culture period of 2013-2016 ended I felt safer asking questions and confessing and venting online. I met my partner through online communities and many kind beautiful people.

Nopostcode
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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by :) on Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:28 pm

Things that make me go online is the heteronormativity that's everywhere in the traditional media as well as the undercurrents of homophobia that often comes hand in hand with it. Even if there's the inclusion of queer people, the vast majority of it is often tokenistic, superficial, and/or just a convenient prop or story telling mechanism in a narrative driven from an overwhelmingly hetro perspective. In all these cases, those characters just reinforce a particular position queer people hold in the eyes of the hetro majority. Online spaces however don't have as many barriers for queer people to establish and curate their own spaces outsides the assumptions of traditional media and provides a platform on which like-minded people can connect. And that's great because I think it helps queer people establish and grow stronger, more positive self-perceptions and identities. cyclops

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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by queeraknightley on Tue Oct 03, 2017 3:56 pm

i think that online communities are inextricably woven into the way that 21st century queer culture operates, expresses and evolves. digital platforms have always provided an alternative space to the physical, which i think as queer people is more likely to resonate with us due to the fact that many physical and theoretical/institutional spaces are not created or maintained with us in mind. the structure of hegemonic "physical" society is set up to maintain the dominance and power of white, cis, heteronormative, able-bodied, neuro-typical society, and variance to this blueprint is more often that not, not welcomed. i am drawn to online communities for the safety they seek to create, the boundaries of which can be created and edited continuously (any structure is naturally accepted as ever-moving). Online communities encourage expression of identity and ideas in ways that we would not be able to outside of the digital space, be it due to danger, expense, physical or mental capabilities (these reasons are limitless). There is also the expectation of a given and a received continual support of that expression, and an engagement with this expression that is geared towards progressing and developing a more safe and compassionate community that is continually self-reflexive. Online communities are specifically and intentionally generated to create the loving, supportive, expressive space that we are predominantly denied in physical and institutional spaces.

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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by N on Thu Oct 05, 2017 12:34 pm

When I was younger I seeked online LGBTQIA+ communities online because I lived in rural Queensland where homophobia and the sense of otherness is super prevalent. I mainly went online to find other people who felt the way that I did because I didn't have anyone offline that was also queer. I think finding communities online where I could be myself without the worry of people judging me helped me grow more confident in myself and made me realise that the way I was feeling wasn't abnormal - like I was often led to believe offline. I also used these communities to seek advice about crushes and emotions that I was feeling, because I couldn't really comfortably talk about them to people offline, especially when it came to my family. I went online for dating opportunities because there is a lack of opportunities for young gay people in rural areas, and felt very left out and uneducated when it came to this. Sexual education wasn't very prevalent in my schooling either, and when we did learn about it none of the content was directed at LGBTQIA+ people, which reinforces the heteronormative attitudes relevant to these areas. Online communities helped me in the process of coming out, even though it's not an essential part of being queer, but because I wanted to allow the people around me, such as my family and friends, to understand that being gay isn't as stereotypical and stigmatised as people think. I think representation is super important and have prided myself on my sexuality because representation changes attitudes and perceptions of heterosexual and queer people alike.

N
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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by hellooo on Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:30 pm

I went online to find friends who were LGBT like me, to find support and understanding about who I was. I think that the internet is great for that, it allows you feel more connected to people who share similar interests and experiences.

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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by foreveralone on Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:34 pm

I seek/sought out online communities to find other LGBT people in order to not feel so lonely. I used dating apps and met people through Facebook groups. Through this I have been able to increase the likelihood of meeting people that I feel a romantic connection with. I've met a few people that I dated for an extended period of time through these times of online avenues. I find that this kind of access allows people who don't have much luck meeting people offline to meet people that one otherwise might not meet.

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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by comingout on Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:37 pm

When I was younger I was afraid to tell the people around me that I was queer, so I went online to find people like me and to find information about who I was. I think this was really vital in understanding my identity and finding other people online who were/have been through similar experiences. Through online communities of LGBTQ people I was able to become comfortable with who I was and come out to the people around me (offline). I don't think I would have been able to grow confident in and comfortable with myself had I not done this.

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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by meowcat on Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:42 pm

I think a big reason for LGBTQIA+ people, especially young LGBTQIA+ people, to seek online communities is because of the discrimination that is often felt both offline and online. I think these kinds of communities can be really vital to the mental health and well-being of many people. I think it's especially important that access to these online communities creates safe and non-hostile environment in which people can speak openly with others who share similar experiences, such as depression and anxiety. The suicide rates of queer people are so much higher than that of heterosexually people, so these online communities are a really vital part of a lot of LGBTQIA+ people's lives.

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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by meowcat on Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:43 pm

I think a big reason for LGBTQIA+ people, especially young LGBTQIA+ people, to seek online communities is because of the discrimination that is often felt both offline and online. I think these kinds of communities can be really vital to the mental health and well-being of many people. I think it's especially important that access to these online communities creates safe and non-hostile environment in which people can speak openly with others who share similar experiences, such as depression and anxiety. The suicide rates of queer people are so much higher than that of heterosexually people, so these online communities are a really vital part of a lot of LGBTQIA+ people's lives.

meowcat
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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by anxiousoldme on Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:48 pm

Social anxiety was the reason that I seeked online communities when I was younger. I felt a sense of exclusion and fear because I didn't think that anyone understood who I really was, and I was too afraid to tell anyone the truth. I was raised around stigma and stereotype about being queer, but when I found a community of people online who understood me and what I was going through, it really helped me. I felt that my anxiety was eased, although I don't think it will ever go away. There is still so much discrimination towards people who are LGBTQIA+ and I believe that online communities allow us to find each other and to give advice and help where we can.

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Online forum safe

Post by Gaynonomus on Tue Oct 10, 2017 7:05 pm

Online forums are a great place to ask questions and feel accepted. As we are a minority I feel it is often difficult to find answers within friend groups, so we are lucky with technology, likely other people are asking the same questions online. Also it's a safe place to ask questions.

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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

Post by anonymous1 on Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:09 pm

I think the reason I looked online for a sense of community was that I grew up in a rural area and I didn't have anyone who empathised with the struggles I was having. Online I could seek advice, read other experiences and even talk to people directly about what I was going through. I sought out advice having to do with my sexuality, identity and sexual education. I think that the anonymity afforded from being online is really important for people to understand who they are - like moving to a new town and having the opportunity to be someone new, or to explore different aspects of your personality.

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Re: What factors contribute/lead LGBTQIA+ people to seek online communities?

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