Embrace and love yourself for all that you are.
That’s the message Vine star Jeffrey Marsh, who goes by the they/them pronoun, has for you. On our most recent episode of the “The Spectrum,” a bi-weekly series where we discuss diverse LGBT identities and experiences, Marsh sat down with HuffPost’s Maria Tridas to discuss their embrace of their genderqueer identity.
“I think genderqueer means different things to different people and to me, I choose it as a label because it’s the label that feels the most like no label at all,” Marsh said.
The social media sensation, who recently released a new book called How to Be You, covered a lot over the course of the 40-minute conversation. They started by discussing being from a small town and coming out to their mother, a pastor, when they were just 11 years old. But in discussing their life narrative, Marsh interweaved advice for learning how to accept yourself, which includes getting “rid of that self-hating voice that is in your head.”
“There are ways out of that internal conversation of self hate and it’s important, one of the things we can offer as queer people, I think, is the way out,” Marsh said. “We have this capacity for joy, for celebration, for transcending all that gunk, because we were the ones that got it a lot, maybe more than some other groups,...when we were kids.”
But Marsh also has advice for people wondering how to better support family members who are within the queer community. One grandmother asked during the segment how she could better understand and support her 13-year-old grandson who said he likes boys and girls and “tries to change his voice to be a girl.”
“I can’t help you understand. Here’s my advice: ask, communicate, talk,” Marsh replied. “Clearly you are already in a place where you’re loving and accepting toward this person that you love and accept. Tell them that. Life’s a little short to hold that back and wait until you got the perfect language.”
Watch the video above to hear Marsh discuss labels, identities and self-acceptance.
This video was produced by Jaques Morel, Maria Tridas and Kira Brekke.