Earlier this month, we invited Vancity Buzz readers who identify as LGBT to submit their own ‘coming out’ stories as a way of empowering and inspiring others who may be struggling with their own sexuality.
The Real Housewives of Vancouver’s Reiko Mackenzie is the first of our reader-submitted coming out stories during Vancouver Pride Week 2015, which begins today. #HappyPride
Occupation: Founder/Creative Director of CORSA gluten free beer
This is not your typical “coming out” story. I identify as a woman who believes in love being genderless. I have found over the years that labelling myself limits the existence of who I truly am altogether. At the same time I am not opposed to being called lesbian, gay, bisexual or queer. Whatever floats your boat!
I’ve learned that the most important factor here is to be comfortable and happy with who I am. Everything else will fall into place. I don’t judge others on their sexuality or labels. So why judge me if I don’t feel like being labeled today or any other day.
Throughout my life I have identified as straight, bisexual and lesbian, at different times. I guess there is some truth to evolution right? Granted, it has felt confusing over the years and part of that confusion has stemmed from putting the pressure on my own self for having to choose a side. Or a label! Or just an identity that people can understand.
Sometimes it’s still not easy, however, I’ve decided not to worry so much and to live without prejudice and stay open-minded. If I find love with a woman, a man or a transgendered person, hey – love is love right?
I was married for 10 years to a man who was my best friend during the time. I’ve also been in a few lesbian relationships. All were successful at one point or another. But obviously not in the long term.
At home I am very open to my children about who I am and whom I date. Being honest with them and being true to myself has really created a close and loving relationship with my daughters. After all I am their primary role model!
My values with them are to be accepting and loving of who they are. I’ve told them to never be afraid to ask for help or advice. Like really, what is life if you can’t be yourself?
Staying true and expressing that is the best gift you can give anyone. Not only does it inspire others but it creates ‘real’ relationships and that is what’s most important.
I identify with the LGBTQ community and feel very happy to be a part of such a loving and supportive group of individuals. If I can inspire others to “come out” and be themselves then my work as a human being is worth it!
Happy Pride Vancouver! A time for us to celebrate diversity and being fearless and proud of whom we are!
– REIKO MACKENZIE
Share your coming out story with Vancity Buzz. Click here to learn how you can submit your story during Vancouver Pride Week.
Vancity Buzz is a proud media partner of the 2015 Vancouver Pride Festival