Go to Content Go to Navigation Go to Navigation Go to Site Search Homepage

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced a new normal on everyone, including the LGBTQ+ community. Best-selling author, educator, and LGBTQ+ ally, Dr. Brene’ Brown points out that as humans we crave connection and belonging, which has been difficult to find during the pandemic. Being a part of the LGBTQ+ community, I understand the importance of human connection and how devastating it can be when it’s lost, as some of us lose our friends and families when we come out and share our gender identity or sexual orientation. For many LGBTQ+ folks, maintaining existing connections may no longer be an option, so they form new families within their community, filled with people who support them.

While living through COVID, “connection” has turned into waving from the car and saying “hi” from the end of the driveway. We’re having regular online video chats with our families, both far and wide. Online meetings and calls have become the new norm, so much so that even our trips to the doctor are being done through phone calls and video chats.

This new “socially distanced” way of connecting has changed so much of our lives, but it hasn’t dampened our spirits. June is Pride Month and, while our celebrations have looked very different this year, Pride did not stop or disappear because we couldn’t physically get together in a park or venue.

Across Illinois, activists held Pride parades from their cars, decorated in rainbows and unicorns, socially distanced while still celebrating and connecting with others. Other organizations have honored LGBTQ legends with online Pride parties.

In many communities, like Bloomington-Normal, the LGBTQ+ community worked through an intersectional lens, in recognition of the other public health crisis so many in our community are living through: systemic violence against Black communities. The LGBTQ+ community in BloNo came out in support of a diverse slate of events this year, joining the Bloomington-Normal Black Lives Matter chapter in several peaceful protests, remembering the Pulse Nightclub tragedy with a tribute event, hosting a car-based Pride Parade through Miller Park, and marching alongside youth from Not in Our Schools to bring attention to police brutality against young Black people.

While this “new normal” isn’t something any of us ever would have hoped for, we aren’t letting it slow us down. Unfortunately, these aren’t the first public health crises we’ve lived through. We’ve made great strides in battling HIV and we won’t let these current challenges stop us either because we are strong and resilient despite all that we endure by living our true, authentic selves.

We are taking it to the streets, masks on, socially distanced, and decorated in all the colors of the rainbow. We are here, we are out, and we are proud.

Happy Pride month. 

Tags: LGBTQ, illinois, pride, pride month, pandemic, equity, covid-19, LGBTQ_rights, future

Planned Parenthood cares about your data privacy. We and our third-party vendors use cookies and other tools to collect, store, monitor, and analyze information about your interaction with our site to improve performance, analyze your use of our sites and assist in our marketing efforts. You may opt out of the use of these cookies and other tools at any time by visiting Cookie Settings. By clicking “Allow All Cookies” you consent to our collection and use of such data, and our Terms of Use. For more information, see our Privacy Notice.

Cookie Settings

Planned Parenthood cares about your data privacy. We and our third-party vendors, use cookies, pixels, and other tracking technologies to collect, store, monitor, and process certain information about you when you access and use our services, read our emails, or otherwise engage with us. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences, or your device. We use that information to make the site work, analyze performance and traffic on our website, to provide a more personalized web experience, and assist in our marketing efforts. We also share information with our social media, advertising, and analytics partners. You can change your default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of required cookies when utilizing our site; this includes necessary cookies that help our site to function (such as remembering your cookie preference settings). For more information, please see our Privacy Notice.



We use online advertising to promote our mission and help constituents find our services. Marketing pixels help us measure the success of our campaigns.



We use qualitative data to learn about your user experience and improve our products and services.