By Sam Laurie
It’s crucial to stay strong in the lead-up to the marriage equality survey results being released tomorrow. I’m going to be checking in with friends and making sure we all have the celebration or support we need. If you’re not sure what you can do, here are some tips for you to stay strong.
Plan where you want to be
Work out where you want to be when the Government announces the results. You could take the day off or gather for a meal with you community and allies so you’re not alone. There are also many “yes” events happening around Australia, so you can be with friends and allies who support your rights.
During the campaign, CSU Momentum and Rainbow Riverina ran a picnic in Wagga Wagga. It was a great coming-together of the community in a show of support.
It’s healing to be around like-minded people with a shared experience, so don’t hesitate to find out what events are running near you, or gather some friends and start your own!
Work out how you can stay resilient
Keep busy and plan some activities, read a book, catch up with some friends or get creative. Do what works for you, whether that’s taking a bubble bath, going to the gym or spending time with furry friends.
If everything in the media and social media is overwhelming you, it’s OK to step away and have a break. Check out ACON’s Stronger Together resource for more tips on staying resilient.
Support each other
You might also find it healing to have a variety of people in your support network. Find people you can cry with when you’re overwhelmed, someone to rant with when you’re mad or someone to march with. It’s also good to talk to people you trust about your thoughts about the campaign and as the survey results come out.
So, surround yourself with people you love and work out how you can support others. Also check in on how your friends, family and community are going.
If you feel like you don’t have a support system in place, there are great online communities to reach out to, or you could find a local group or event and make some new friends!
Find an Ally
If you need someone to talk to at uni, find a friendly and trained member of CSU’s LGBTIQ Ally program. Allies are everywhere, whether in residences, SRCs, student groups like Momentum for LGBTIQA+ students, course and faculty staff, Student Services and more.
If you’re feeling distressed, you can get free face-to-face, phone or email appointments with a CSU student counsellor for help and support. There are also myriad helplines and web chat services available.
Into the future
It’s not known what will actually end up happening after the survey. Take speculation with a grain of salt – fact-check everything! Whatever the outcome, stay hopeful, especially if the result is not what you want. That doesn’t mean you can’t have an emotional response based on the outcome. All emotions around this whole series of events are valid and justified. Let’s use our frustration and passion to keep creating change!
The results of the marriage equality survey aren’t the end of the fight for queer rights. It’s unlikely things will change overnight, so don’t forget to keep looking after yourself into the future as the debate continues. We need to keep pushing for equality in all aspects of life for all people. Don’t let the end of this survey slow the momentum.
Hey, I’m Sam! I’m studying TV Production in Wagga Wagga and having a great time living on campus. I love storytelling and animals. I’m also passionate about social justice. I’m the Equity Officer for Rivcoll SRC and the President of Momentum.