Growing Up Gay In A Seaside Town

My advice

Live life as you. it could be hard to accept for some people, but don't hide from the world. Live your life to the fullest it can be! There is support all around you, there's nothing better than being true to yourself. Be fierce, be you, love yourself you only have one life, make it a happy one - and put on a pair of heels, and strut down the street.

My recommendations

The Rainbow Project, Belfast Cara Friend in Northern Ireland Stonewall UK

For years and years, I was very much in the drag closet in Portrush. I knew there wasn’t a lot of gay people here and that it would be easier if I was straight. I didn’t know how people would take it.

It felt difficult, emotions get dark. Because I was hiding I got myself in a really bad, bad place. You don’t want to do that to yourself.

And then as soon as I came out, I felt like so free – like a butterfly!

I started off in drag as I always loved entertainment. I did shows after school and I always liked to perform.

When I started, I literally just had a wig and I was practicing makeup in my room. I had a pair of booty heels and that was my first drag.

I took a few photos and thought “Uhm.. there’s room for improvement”

The first time I walked down the main street in drag was St. Paddy’s Day. I had been drinking all day in a bar in a seaside town of Northern Ireland and decided to go home and get into drag!

I had a lace dress and green shoes and I don’t even think I had a good a wig then, I just went out in my own hair and I strutted into the bar and everyone was like;

“Do you know what? Yes!”

I remember there was one person who was like “Oh who does he think he is coming in here in heels and looking like that” and one of the other local guys turned to him and said;

“Who are you to judge? Let him be himself, he isn’t doing any harm”

I was really taken aback, and really, really happy that there was so much support from local people.

I feel like, when I was growing up here in this small area, that I didn’t think there was anywhere that I could go. I wanted that to change, to help make it really gay friendly and welcoming place for everyone!

I think a lot of people here in Northern Ireland hide that they’re gay, or they’re not as open with their sexuality – but that’s why I wanted to do it as well – help them rise and show them that it’s okay. It’s a safe place.

I will continue to share my love in drag; I am the kindest drag queen you could ever meet!