Avraam, Social Worker, Athens, Greece

photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong
Avraam, in his own words: “Being -openly- gay in Greece is not that easy because of the fear of being bullied or attacked by homophobes. But this is not an option, but a big challenge that makes me feel special. I really enjoy being gay, I have the need to express what I feel without guilt, I love kissing and holding hands in public with my boyfriends and I think homosexuality is the greatest gift nature could ever give me.

I always wanted to be myself without caring about what people think and I made it happen. I achieved becoming an activist fighting against all types of discrimination and standing up for human rights. I give my big smile to everyone, I don’t hide behind my finger, I show people my real feelings and always tell the truth although our society is absolutely addicted to lies.

My whole life is a short coming out story. If you come out of the closet once, you will love this taste of freedom and you will never ever want to go back inside it again. This is the quote I want all of us to memorize and believe in. I’m openly gay not just for me, but for all those who are afraid of expressing themselves and because I can’t imagine myself without fighting for equality. People can be judgmental, but I have nothing to feel ashamed of. The closet has been burnt.

After the Greek Parliament voted for civil partnership equality into law in December 2015, I feel like many things are getting better for us. The gay community in Athens is like a big vibrant village trying to be more visible, have a stronger voice and attract more allies. There is a large number of LGBTQ+ associations that is growing all the time and a developing gay village in an area called Gazi. But to be honest, there is something that has always bothered me: many gay men prove that they experience internalized homophobia and others tend to be really exclusive in their everyday lives. While browsing profiles on dating apps, it’s not that difficult to notice that the majority of gay men hide their faces, they can be rude and aggressive when you are not into them and outspoken about not liking ‘fats’, ‘thins’, ‘fems’, ‘older’ etc.

(Advice I’d give to my younger self) Kid, be more productive, be careful who you trust, f*ck them all, love yourself and celebrate your gay pride!”

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