Ro’s story | Stonewall
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Ro’s story

Read Ro’s story about facing homophobia and transphobia at school, and being accepted at university for who they are

Key themes: School, university, discrimination, bisexual identity

1. Hi, can you introduce yourself?

Hello! My name is Roisin (Ro for short) and I’m a student Graphic Designer for National Student Pride. 

2. Tell us a bit about your journey through school into higher education, and if you faced any challenges along the way?

My journey through education has been a challenge.I had the misfortune of going to an all-girls Catholic high-school and as an LGBTQ+ kid, I stood out like a sore thumb.

I was very vocal on homophobia within Catholicism and constantly challenged the mindset of the teachers as well as the students. I was relentlessly mocked for doing so, but it was extremely worth it. Whether they knew it or not, I made a safe space for these kids and I showed them it was absolutely normal and okay to be LGBTQ+.

As I grew up, I found more and more people who were accepting and LGBTQ+ themselves and when I enrolled in an all arts university, it was the norm. Every single person was an ally or LGBTQ+. 

3. How did you overcome these challenges?

Facing homophobia or transphobia as a child was hard. Very hard. Everyone around me telling me it wasn’t okay or normal made me feel incredibly unsafe.

I may have fought tirelessly for 16 years of my life but I knew what I was doing was right; accepting another human for who they are, who I am. I am human, this is my human experience. I had to be strong. I had no choice. It almost killed me but here I am today. 

4. Tell us a bit about your experience of being LGBTQ+ at university

I go to an all arts university; the experience is simply DIVINE. I hate stereotypes but I am indeed one: a blue-haired, tattooed, bisexual person. It was like I found a new home, or like I was looking into a million mirrors; so many people like me. People who accepted me for me. 

5. What advice would you give to a LGBTQ+ young person thinking about higher education?

Everyone wants to feel like they belong. University has been an escape from my not great childhood, it has given me freedom to express myself without any limits. It was the first time I truly felt free. 

Ro is a part of National Student Pride. Find out more about National Student Pride.

Are you thinking about your education options after school? Head to our education page to find out more about further education and higher education at college or university.

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