We Are Metro DC PFLAG

Pam's Story

I am not a Rock Star

Pamela Bryant

In 2012, I walked in my first Gay Pride Parade in Washington, DC, with PFLAG. I was delighted to do this in support of my daughter who came out in 2002. I am writing to explain that if you think that the LGBT community makes their lifestyle by choice, you are wrong. So frequently, their families turn their backs on them. I have a short story to tell. The PFLAG organization was founded in order for parents and family to come out publicly and support their LGBT sons, daughters, and friends. That was in 1972.

Parade day was a very sunny and warm June day in Washington. The parade participants were excited and attendees were vast and very friendly. The parade route was about 2 miles long and went around DuPont Circle at one point. Remember, this was my first time marching in the parade. I had only attended Pride Parades in the past as a viewer. Being on the other side of barricades was only an entirely different experience. I was walking and holding a banner. The screams, yells, and whistles when the PFLAG banner was sighted were extremely loud. It was a very distinguishable increase in noise volume.

Going forward, after several minutes I began to notice a very strange sensation in my chest. The feeling continued and after a few moments I realized that the feeling was my torso actually vibrating. The adulation from the volume sent out by the parade view was literally shaking my body. My only thought was… what the heck, I am a nobody. I am neither Paul McCartney nor Mick Jagger. People were celebrating my support and coming out for my daughter. I came out to support the LGBTQ community.

After the parade, while having dinner with my daughter and her friends, I asked where I was when she saw that I was crying.  Her answer: DuPont Circle. I explained what I had felt, how strange it was. She then went on to explain that the largest concentration of viewers were there.

I write in hopes that I can make possible for just one parent, sister, brother, or friend see how their support is absolutely craved and needed in the LGBTQ community.