Name: Roxxie Thunder
County of Residence: Beaver County, formerly Lawrence, and Allegheny counties
How do you describe your identity? Glittery pansexual Femme with a passion for glitz and glamour.
Please describe your coming out experience. Where did you find support? What challenges did you face? My coming out experience was a little rough, when I started performing and finding out who I am, and exploring my sexuality, I found myself attracted to many types of genders, I’ve tried to explain to my parents many times, but they weren’t listening, so it took me moving to Pittsburgh for a short amount of time to be able to come out to them, and they were more comfortable with me coming out and realizing I was happier being who I am rather than conforming to societal standards, as facing any challenges, not many, the only problems I find, is finding anyone cute, and I’m just like “ugh you’re adorable!!” But being in a relationship and engaged only allows me to look, not touch,… lol as finding support I have the support of my performer and second family the gender performance troupe called Hot Metal Hardware.
How would you describe yourself NOW in terms of “being out”? I’m comfortable, I’m just out, as a pansexual femme, I’m not loud and boisterous about it, but I’m out, the small little city I reside its hard to be “out” the people I live around know I’m out, but they don’t judge which is fantastic. But I make no apologies for who I am, I shouldn’t have to.
Tell me about the first LGBTQ person whom you met. What impact did they have on your life? The very first LGBTQ+ person I met was actual a fantastic drag queen named Danyel Vasquez and Jacqueline Rose Lacee, it was after a tumultuous breakup that one of my friends brought me to a club where I started my performer persona called Utopia Video Nightclub that they were having their fierce Friday drag shows, and I got to meet both of them as I was casually having a drink after the show on the patio where I got to converse with them, and they have had a huge impact on my life, as to be brave and bold and have no apologies, be yourself and shine through, don’t let anyone dull your sparkle.
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Past or present, favorite LGBTQ character or creator in television, film or literature? Please tell us why. Well, it’s kinda funny as I’m sitting here drinking coffee and filling this out, my friends referred to me as the “modern day Harley Quinn” not because of the love she has for Joker but because she got out of the abusive relationship she was in, and found solice and comfort in Poison Ivy, Harley (whom is bisexual) is an unapologetic badass who doesn’t take anything from anyone, she is her own person, but she has a heart of gold, she wears her heart on her sleeve, and she cares a lot, but she hides her feelings, which is a lot like me,
How do you stay informed about LGBTQ issues? Through Facebook, and friends.
Describe your local or regional LGBTQ community. There really isn’t a local community, but I have to travel an hour to even be anywhere near an LGBT community.
Have you ever experienced discrimination based on your identity? Specifically, in a job setting, when applying for housing or while in public. Only once when I interviewed for Verizon, I mentioned the term “partner” and the manager instantly thought I was gay, and ended the interview immediately, wouldn’t give me a chance to explain myself,…
Tell us about your access to health care in Western PA. Has it been LGBTQ competent (or not?) Yes it has,
Are there issues impacting your LGBTQ neighbors that aren’t visible or part of the local dialogue? Not that I can think of at the top of my head
What would you like to see elected officials do to improve life for LGBTQ Pennsylvanians? Pass a law that covers discrimination against housing and jobs, making more safe spaces for lgbt individuals,
Please share a lived experience, anecdote or fact about life as an LGBTQ person in your community. My parents thought that I was limited when I came out in the LGBT community when the instance is I’m actually limitless when it comes to opportunities to educate others about coming out in the community and helping them find support.
Beyond discrimination, what other barriers create challenges for your LGBTQ neighbors? Finding jobs, housing, the proper resources, to help the people that are considered my second family find solace, and comfort knowing they are being cared for.
What LGBTQ friendly resources are available for your neighbors? Persad, GLCC
What is your greatest fear for the LGBTQ community in Western Pennsylvania? My greatest fear would have to be, with what happened at Pulse happening locally, every time when there is a large group of performers or LGBT peeps in a safe space that is local is that anyone can come in and do what was done at Pulse, the amount of intolerance around and in our community is deplorable.
What is your greatest hope for the LGBTQ community in Western Pennsylvania? Acceptance, tolerance, love, and understanding,
What can allies do to support your LGBTQ community? Be more accepting, we rely on you to be supportive and understanding, just listen to us,
How can gay men and lesbians support the bisexual, transgender and queer members of our community? Be more understanding, there is more than just the LG in LGBTQ+
What motivated you to take part in this project? Just to let my voice be heard.
Finally, what question should I have asked? Please also share your answer. Everything seems to have been answered thank you.
Thank you, Roxxie.
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AMPLIFY LGBTQ is a series of blog posts designed to give a “signal boost” to the voices of our LGBTQ neighbors throughout Western Pennsylvania. These are glimpses in to the lived experiences of LGBTQ people in Western Pennsylvania as told in their own voices.