Despite the daily struggles and discrimination that members of the LGBTQ+ community face every day, they come together during Pride Month on June for a celebration of love and identity. Some also take Pride Month as the chance to come out and find acceptance with the larger LGBTQ+ community. This latter group includes Miel Pangilinan, the second daughter of Megastar Sharon Cuneta and Senator Kiko Pangilinan.
Miel comes out
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Last Tuesday, Miel Pangilinan took to Instagram to come out as a member of the LGBTQ+ community. The 17-year-old Miel shared that she had been exploring her gender and sexual identity and has now arrived at a point where she’s “comfortable enough” in her identity.
“This June, I am celebrating my first pride month as openly and publicly queer,” her post read. “I’m also incredibly thankful that I am able to safely celebrate my identity this year, as I know there are many people in this country that don’t have the same privilege. … I’m trying my best to educate myself on current situations and present issues relating to gender equality and LGBTQ+ rights in our country.”
Her post was flooded with support from family, friends, and supporters — including her own parents.
‘Mama and I will always be here for you.’
Her father Kiko kept his comment simple yet full of support: “I love you my Yellie Bellie! Mama and I will always be here for you. Always. For certain. Forever. No matter what. Period. No more comma. The end of the paragraph. Amen.”
‘Your life, no one else’s’
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Meanwhile, her mother Sharon went on her social media accounts to share a photo of her daughter holding a pride flag. The megastar acknowledged that her daughter’s announcement will draw a lot of attention, both positive and negative.
“[M]y daughter, like so many members of the LGBTQ+ Community, did not choose to be queer. She just is. I believe God doesn’t make mistakes,” the megastar’s post read.
“What’s next is that I will have a happier daughter who is now ‘free’ and will always be a good person with a good heart—and still always courageous,” she added. “I may be a Mom with traditional values, but that doesn’t mean that my mind is too tiny to accept people for what they are — what more my own child?”
Sharon emphasized that she loves all her children and supports each of them in their lives and choices. “I love you, my Yellie. With all of my heart, and more than life itself. Be strong! It’s your life, no one else’s. Don’t give any negative commenters any attention. They don’t matter. We do. And we’ve got your back. Forever and ever.”
Still a long way to go
Netizens commended the posts of both mother and daughter, with many expressing joy for the healthy relationship the two share. “This love letter from Miss Sharon is what every LGBTQIA+ person dreams of. For a parent’s love and acceptance are the most precious,” said Miss Trans Global and content creator Mela Habijan about the letter.
Today, Miel Pangilinan opened up to the world and finally, became free.
Alongside her flight to love and truth are her family and loved ones. And this love letter from Miss Sharon is what every LGBTQIA+ person dreams of. For a parent’s love and acceptance are the most precious. pic.twitter.com/RgJwc1SRpS
— Miss Mela Habijan (@missmelahabijan) June 15, 2022
While members of the LGBTQ+ community are making waves in the Philippines, most are still subject to discrimination and hate from the public, Some don’t even get the support that Miel has from her family. We’ve still got a long way to go, but you can start by learning how to be a better ally for our friends in the LGBTQ+ community.