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These Lucky Graduates Are Putting Their Culture Front And Center With Their Grad Looks

augie409 / Instagram

Latinos are the fastest growing ethnic minority in the United States and are less than half as likely to get a college degree than non-Latino white adults. The gap is even wider between immigrant Latinos and U.S.-born Latinos.

We’re celebrating the Latinos that are walking across stages this graduation season and using their platform to spread a message against xenophobia, an expression of gratitude for their family or straight up Latino pride.

Every moment captured in this post was more than just four years of work.

@JenJimenez63 / Instagram

It spans generations. Growing up Latino, we all know how important education is to our parents. They would and have sacrificed everything just so we could get an education. It opens doors.

These moments open exclusive doors for a real opportunity to live a good life.

@mindofmolina / Instagram

“Esta es pa’ mi genteeee!!! Honduras 🇭🇳🎓4 good years at TCU, let’s go get this moneeeey now #FirstGen #TCU #2019#GradSzn”

But there’s no going forward without pride in your roots.

@mr_isai / Instagram

“Sí Se Pudo! Dedicated to my #immigrant #graduate #immigrad (s). You/We deserve to succeed, when given the opportunity, we shine. #cipotes  #SalviPride”

So we acknowledge the obstacles (queer, brown, first generation) and take pride in them.

@thecesarcamacho / Instagram

“There will never be a wall high enough to keep Latinos from slaying! The challenges we go through as minorities only make us stronger and make us appreciate the hard work our ancestors had to go through. We not only walk down the stage for ourselves but most importantly for our families and those who’ve paved the way for us to have a voice. I don’t know how I’ll ever thank my parents enough for the sacrifices they’ve had to go through as Mexican immigrants in this country, but what I do know is that I’ll make sure to bring other Latinos on this path to continue giving corporate America some flavor (porque ya sabemos muy bien que le falta sazón!!!)! Can’t wait to walk again on Saturday and receive my Masters as a proud, first generation, queer, resilient LATINO 👨🏽‍🎓🇲🇽🇺🇸🕺🏻”

No matter how much half of Americans want to use who we are as roadblocks, nos vamos pa’lante.

@ashleyy_gonzalezzz / Instagram

Undocugraduates are overcoming statistics like nearly nobody else in America. Keep on dreaming, Dreamers. You make everything seem possible.

Let the migrating butterflies symbolize a forever path forward.

@ChrisFariasTV / Instagram

“FIRST GENERATION UNDOCUGRAD. When I was told by a teacher that my education would stop after graduating high school, I decided to prove him wrong. I am a PROUD Mexican from Uruapan Michoacán y esto es para toda mi gente. Nos graduamos!! #Dreamer #UndocuGrad”

Some graduates are going from high school to their freshman year of college.

@dirtyvysionari / Instagram

“I am an undocumented immigrant raised in the Bay. I am an American at heart with a Mexican lineage. I am a recently admitted UC Berkeley Student for Spring of 2017. I am a mentor to the youth and the homeless. I am a child of God. And I am a graduate from Skyline College. I am no rapist no criminal no killer. Only a dreamer. To my fellow dreamers, don’t let others disparage your value because of your origins. These ethnocentric views will never prevail because they lack humanity. Remember, the shadows will never consume you because light will always be within you.”

This college grad wants to let freshman know to hold onto a sense of humor.

@augie409 / Instagram

“‘No pos… ‘ta cabron!’ is loosely translated to ‘Well shit… that’s tough!’, and has become a popular meme in Latino culture…Nearly everything that could’ve gone wrong during my time in Graduate School went wrong 😂 My parents taught me to always work hard and to trust God no matter how high the odds were stacked against us. They advised me to always find peace in the midst of chaos and still have a sense of humor whenever things do not go as planned. Pops taught me to always walk with my head high and respond accordingly to unfortunate events, and to not react negatively and sulk in misery. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for my friends and family that have helped me, supported me, and inspired me along the way. I appreciate ya! In the last two weeks, I had essays/projects/presentations to finish as a graduate student and a softball team I was still caring for as an Athletic Trainer. I was running through things in an attempt of completing everything, and I was doing quite well. In a span of two days I was in two car accidents roughly two weeks before graduation; one at work & one on the way home from my Capstone presentation. The deployment of the airbag was honestly a huge slap in the face and wake up call for me, literally. 😂It opened my eyes to be thankful that I walked away with only a broken finger, and it taught me to slow down a bit so I could enjoy my accomplishments surrounded by those I love. I called my Pops & all he said was, “No pos… ‘ta cabron! Gracias a Dios que estás vivo.”/“Well shit… that’s tough! Thank God you’re alive.” Yo sobresali con los consejos de mi padre y los rezos de mi madre./I excelled with my father’s advice & mother’s prayers.”

Felicidades to all the graduates!

@jorge.am / Instagram

“This past weekend I had the privilege of graduating from THE Florida State University. Never did I imagine I would be the first in my family to graduate from a public university, debt free. Although, I couldn’t have done it alone, thank you to all my family, friends and mentors throughout this crazy journey… I’ll always be grateful and indebted to CARE and FSU for this amazing opportunity.”

READ: 22 #Immigrad Graduation Caps That No Dummy Can Ignore

Grab The Tissues! These Latinas Told Us Their Coming Out Stories And We Have Been Sobbing In Pride

Culture

Grab The Tissues! These Latinas Told Us Their Coming Out Stories And We Have Been Sobbing In Pride

Coming out can be an extremely personal thing. Yet, for a Latina living in a Latino community, where family, friends, neighbors are all considered part of the mix, they can be exceptionally stressful. From dealing with machismo and religious ideals, for many, coming out can tear a person apart. For many of us, on the other hand, our families can provide all the comfort we need.

In honor of Pride Month, we asked Latinas on Instagram about their coming out experiences and boy did they deliver!

A story that had a surprisingly supportive ending.

“I finally came out to my mom last year when I got into a relationship with my girlfriend since it was my first time dating a woman. My mother and I have always been close so I told her since I was living out of state at the moment and I wanted her to know about my relationship. I told her I was in a new relationship but that it was with a woman. She just looked and me and instantly said, “okay y cual es la problema? No importa con quien estes sea hombre o mujer, solo que estes feliz. Si tu estas feliz, yo estoy feliz. Si tu estás bien, yo voy a estar bien.” – @__shirls__

How pain and cutting ties wouldn’t keep her from being herself in the end.

“I came out to my parents 10 years ago when I was in high school. I had a girlfriend at the time and they had already suspected I was into girls. It didn’t go well at all. To sum things up, over the past ten years it’s been a battle on and off with trying to fight feeling invisible and invalidated, because God forbid we talk about sexuality. Anyway, it took me moving away and temporarily cutting ties for my parents to finally start coming around to it. Only recently after 10 years of trying to talk to my parents about it, my mom finally told me she’s accepted me for who I am, and will continue to work through it. And really, all I had ever wanted was for her to try. There was ten years of gritos and lagrimas, and finally this time the lagrimas were no longer out of enojo but rather love and compassion. t’s never too late.” – @ohluccia

Chisme did it all for her and she didn’t mind.

“My mom accidentally found out (i do not know how, i think she saw a text on my lock screen), confronted me, and when i asked her how she did she know, she said “i mean… we all kind of knew… i mean what girl wears flannels and wants to live with her best friend and eighty cats?” and then came out to me also, she’s bi. unfortunately she also found out about my ex, and asked how our relationship was, i had to awkwardly tell her i ended things a week before, and it took me another 2-3 years to tell her that ex-girlfriend was an abusive shithead. my mama gas supported me always, and i wish other parents did the same to their kids.” – ki.kibug

The one where she was told it was “just a phase.”

“I came out as pansexual at 15 and my moms first reaction was saying it was a phase and would pass, and telling me I needed to pray, that she would pray for me, and that i should try therapy. My mom has always been my best friend and I honestly don’t blame her for reacting this way, but I did make it clear it wasn’t going to change. I decided to take one day out of the year to remind her that I’m still pansexual, regardless of who I am with. I know for the most part she’s able to ignore my sexuality because I’ve had more serious boyfriends than girlfriends buy it’s still there, and a huge part of me. For the rest of my family I’ve only told those who have directly asked me or brought it up on conversation which have just been my younger cousins and they are completely supportive. There’s a good amount of my family that I haven’t said those words to yet, but I am willing to at a drop of a hat.” – @carmennurinda

The one where she threw up.

“It was difficult… I was with my super religious aunt and she was asking why I still don’t have a bf how it upsets my mom that I haven’t given her grandchildren and stuff and I remember there was a big cross on the wall ( typical Pr 🇵🇷) and she said “ Mija te ves tristes porque?” And i just broke and said “ tia estoy triste porque yo se que mi mamá y todos en la familia vas hablar mal de mi porque dos mujeres no puedes tienen un bebé “ and i ran and threw up . My mom showed up when I was throwing up and she freaked out it was horrible …my tia had to calm my mom down she kept saying “what did she do wrong” it was bad.” – j_nyx_

A story about coming out in the most freeing way she knew how.

“I said it via text. With my engagement ring on. Fuck it. At 34 I wasn’t going to hide myself any longer.”- vvaz__

A story that includes being outed before she was ready.

“Unfortunately I was outed before I was emotionally and mentally ready to endure the rejection. Blessed to say after 10 years my mom accepts my sexuality. People need to know the damage they can cause by outing a loved one when they are not ready. You might think you’re helping but not in all cases. Best way to help is by motivating them to be proudly be themselves. ” – karydred

When her abuelita found out on social but just wanted to be supportive.

“Told my family, my mom goes “finally, we were wondering when you’d come out.” and i was like “huh??” and my sister said “you wear flannels everyday, you want to live with your best friend with no men, and you want to have a household of cats??” my abuela basically found out via facebook and bombarded my mom with questions on how to support me.” – ki.kibug

A sad story of still not being totally out.

“I haven’t yet because at 15 when rumors about me were said at school my sister told my mom about it and my mom cried and said she’d disown me if they were true so I lied and said they weren’t.” – tired.latina

A mother who is proud of her daughter no matter what.

“I’m 41. I’m Hispanic, my husband is 46, Mexican & Puerto Rican. Our daughter was a straight A student in elementary. All of a sudden her grades slipped, she became depressed and withdrawn. Then the summer going into 8th grade, she wrote us a letter coming out. She said she was so full of anxiety, not knowing if we would still love her. We basically let her know that it was a nonissue for us. We knew from the time she was a toddler that she was gay. I felt like, there didn’t need to be a big coming out. I don’t see her any different than I see my other children. She’s 15 now & has been with her girlfriend for 11 months. We love her too.” – shes_crafty77

It happend over email and “things are so much better, but not perfect.”

“I did it via email at the age of 27… I was scared, felt ashamed, and thought I’d lose it all… It was hard for me. It was hard for my mom and we took some time to really talk about it almost a year later… Things are so much better, but not perfect. I’m blessed to openly be with my wife in our family, yet there’s still lots to unpack.” – labruxapg

The Latina mama bear who loves her son no importa qué.

“I’m a proud mom of a gay son who came out at the age of 12, as a Latina mom, our culture is harsh on LGBTQ+ every day I try and break that cycle and barriers. My house is a safe haven for my son’s friends and for those kids that have been rejected. As a mom I want you to know that you are loved, you are unique and you are so brave! Hugs and hugs and hugs, you have a mom here that is so so proud of who you are.” – arco___iris___

The Latina who sacrificed herself for her sister.

“My abuela is Dominican, very religious and old school, and doesn’t like my sister’s Haitian boyfriend. One day, my sister was crying to me because my abuela said some harsh things to her about Haitians. My sister screamed at me, “NO! YOU DONT UNDERSTAND! Abuela doesn’t dislike who you are and who you love!” So I said fuck it, I came out to her as bisexual and told her that she’s not alone. We’ve become closer since and I can finally tell her the tea about the girls I like.” – slunaa24

A short story that has long-lasting tears.

“Mine had tears mainly my mom she kept asking what did she do wrong with me. It was a lot for her she’s better now but it’s been over 10 years.” – j_nyx_

When her mom reminded her that she was loved.

“I’m a proud mom of a gay son who came out at the age of 12, as a Latina mom, our culture is harsh on LGBTQ+ every day I try and break that cycle and barriers. My house is a safe haven for my son’s friends and for those kids that have been rejected. As a mom I want you to know that you are loved, you are unique and you are so brave! Hugs and hugs and hugs, you have a mom here that is so so proud of who you are.” – arco___iris___

Reminder! Come out only when you feel ready and safe to do so.

This Photo Of A Dad Showing Up To Pride Even Though His Daughter Had Moved Away Is The Sweetest Thing I’ve Seen In My Life

Culture

This Photo Of A Dad Showing Up To Pride Even Though His Daughter Had Moved Away Is The Sweetest Thing I’ve Seen In My Life

@israelizzy @IAmMissMelissa / Twitter

It’s Pride Month. And, it’s also the month that we celebrate Father’s Day. So why not take the opportunity to celebrate the fathers that support their LGBTQ+ kids? We’ve scoured the farthest reaches of the internet so that you won’t have to and found 13 adorable and sweet stories that show the real love that fathers have for their LGBTQ+ children, young, or all grown up. Read on, and see if you can get to the end without tearing up!

Proud dad with an even prouder gay son.

Credit: @captain_krunchi / Instagram

It was this dad’s first time celebrating Pride, who accompanied his son to show true fatherly love and support at the Los Angeles LGBT Pride Festival. Of course, do the dad duty and try to embarrass his son with a silly t-shirt.

This dad took his daughter and her friends to Pride.

Credit: @linda_marie14 / Twitter

It doesn’t get much more supportive than bringing your kids to Pride, to celebrate who they are with a community of like-minded people. Even more so when it means that this dad would have had to spend hours trailing after his daughter and friends, as a chaperone. If that isn’t a labor of love, then we don’t know what is.

One proud dad at Pride.

Credit: @discogasmic / Instagram

One super proud son had this to say about his father, “This guy had me tearing up today. My dad attending his first pride parade in DC with my little brother. I love you … and I wouldn’t have you any other way.” Because love isn’t just about emblazoning how proud you are of your son on your shirt! It’s about showing up when your children need support. This dad clears knows that, and has shown up for his son – selfies and all.

This dad and daughter duo are well-suited for each other.

Credit: @israelizzy / Twitter

It’s great when kids show their parents love, but it’s even better when they show their love to their kids. And what better time to show off your love for your daughter, than when the two of you are dressed to the nines, and clearly having a good time? This dad knows how to make his daughter feel special – and wouldn’t we all want someone to look at us with as much love and awe as this dad does with his daughter?

A No. 1 supporter, through and through.

Credit: @alexireibman / Twitter

Being a good father isn’t just about making sure your kids are clothed and fed, with a roof over their heads. It’s about showing support for who your kids are, through whatever trials and tribulations they face. It’s obvious that this dad knows that the main thing his son needs is his support, through thick and thin – and this son has taken the opportunity to show his thanks.

All smiles for Pride celebrations.

Credit: @e.i.feliciano / Instagram

This child was all smiles and happiness when both their dad and stepmom came to Pride to support them. And who can blame them? There’s a reason why Pride has the name that it’s been given. It’s not just about being proud of who you are, warts and all, but being proud of how far you’ve come as a person, and who you’ll grow to be in the future. Even though this dad has seen his child grow up, that doesn’t mean that he doesn’t stop being a dad, or that he should stop supporting his child. And that warrants at least one happy, candid selfie.

Sometimes a supportive dad just needs to taste the rainbow.

Credit: @lauren_chloex / Twitter

This daughter knew that the best way to celebrate Pride month was to fill up on Skittles. So you know what this supportive dad did? He bought them for his daughter. Only one rainbow matters during Pride.

Dads can support Pride, with our without their kids.

Credit: @IamMissMelissa / Twitter

This dad knew that he didn’t need his child with him to go to Pride – it was his responsibility as a father to show up and give support to the community, anyway. 

 One super girl and one proud dad.

Credit: @wraithrower / Twitter

This dad knew that the best way to show his love and support for his daughter was to give her the spotlight when she participated in a Pride parade, bearing the Pride flag. Showing support as a parent means not only giving your love to your children but also having the self-control and smarts to know when to give your kids the attention and platform they need when they need it.

Someone else’s dad supports LGBTQ+ children, too.

Credit: @sbearbergman / Twitter

Unfortunately, the reality is that not everyone’s dad is supportive of their LGBTQ+ children. The beauty of the LGBTQ+ community is that it is also filled with dads who are supportive of the queer children in the community. And sometimes we all just need to hear from a parental figure that we’re doing okay and that someone is proud of us. So thanks, someone else’s dad.

A simple message is enough to tell the young’uns that they’re okay.

Credit: @angelicaross / Twitter

They say that actions speak louder than words. Well, sometimes it’s just nice to see parents taking the action of sending a quick text to tell say how proud they are of their child and what they’re doing, and that they care about their safety and wellbeing. This dad took the time to make sure his daughter definitely knew how loved she is – no matter who she loves. Because hey, love is love, guys.

Who says working and supporting your son are mutually exclusive?

Credit: @ninocachondo / Twitter

This son was excited to announce to the Twitterverse that, “… my dad shows off my boyfriend and I at work”. There’s nothing more reassuring than knowing that your dad loves you so much, and is so overwhelmingly proud of you, that he wants to tell the world about you. The fact that this dad is doing the digital equivalent of whipping a roll of photos of his son from his wallet to talk the ear off his workmates really shows the strong bond he has with his son.

Dads can support their kids and their LGBTQ+ journey at any age.

Credit: @dad2summit / Twitter

Sam painted his nails not only because it “looks pretty”, but because it gave him time to bond with his grandmother, who was a manicurist in her working life. But, this gave rise to bullying at school. So, you know what his dad did? He took to social media, to break down barriers around masculinity and show how much he loved his son for who he is. Even if this is just dabbling in nail polish, or if Sam wants to explore his identity further, he’ll know that no matter what happens his dad will continue to be proud of him, and support him in what he does.

So, how long did it take for you to start shedding a tear or two over these loving fathers? Have you got your own stories about your father supporting the LGBTQ+ community? Let us know about your experiences on Facebook – just click the logo at the top of the page.

READ: Mexico City Paints Its LGBTQ Pride Across A Pedestrian Crossing And The People Are Here For It

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