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Starting University as an LGBT Student

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When starting university, you may be a little apprehensive as to whether or not you will make friends and fit in. It can be daunting leaving your comfort zone and starting somewhere new, regardless of who you are as a person. It can sometimes be difficult for LGBT students when starting somewhere new, as you have to go through the whole process of telling people who you are.

Thankfully, times are changing. It has become less of a taboo to be gay, and rightfully so people don’t treat you differently because of who you like. Yet starting somewhere new always brings in self doubt: what if I’m not accepted?

When I went through secondary school, I was bullied for being gay. Whilst that has changed as I’ve got older and people have become more mature, when I first started at university I felt as though I needed to withdraw and keep that side of myself secret. It sounds ridiculous, I know, and I had to keep telling myself that as an adult now, there was no need to do that.

University is very supportive if you feel like you may be struggling to adapt to a new situation. Many universities offer guidance and support to those students who need it. University is full of mature people looking to better themselves. Many people are supportive and even interested in learning about the LGBT community, and learning about you as a person.

The key thing to remember about going to university as an LGBT student is that you’re not alone. In many universities there are societies, where people meet up to learn new things, discuss new options and relax and make friends. Included in these societies are a group for LGBT students. It’s a way for people to make their universities inclusive and supportive of the LGBT community. Many LGBT communities organise LGBT student nights or activities. It’s a good way to meet new people and work towards a greater cause.

We’re lucky here in the UK that we are able to be out and be supported. If you’re feeling afraid of starting university, then don’t be too afraid. It can be an added pressure when you’re an LGBT student, but just know that the support is there and you will always be accepted for who you are.