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Meet eleanorrthomas, who believes being queer is ‘inherently political’

Meet eleanorrthomas, who believes being queer is ‘inherently political’

Eleanor thanks Twitter for her relationship

A friendly face on queer twitter is that of @eleanorrthomas.

It was a delight to talk to Eleanor as, like myself, she’s a bisexual woman.

She also co-hosts The Bennet Edit, a fortnightly podcast with friend @sophlynne.

Eleanor shared with me the unfortunate story of how she knows people who have pretended to not be bisexual at work.

‘They just let people think they’re a lesbian or straight at work, so that they don’t get all the flack about it.

‘I’ve had people at work say that bisexuality is just a phase stuff like that. I just don’t bring it up very often that I’m bi. If someone calls me a lesbian, I’ll be like “I’m not”.’

Working in a predominantly straight office, Eleanor keeps her sexuality to herself.

‘It’s just something I try not to advertise to straight people. My work place is very heterosexual and I don’t need any more people coming at me.’

✌🏼

A post shared by Eleanor Thomas (@eleanorthomas) on

‘It’s just a really close community’

On the queer Twitter community, Eleanor explained just how important it is to her.

‘A lot of us are really political but also disabled or of color, so I think it’s a really important space for people to get their emotions out.

‘Twitter particularly is a space where queer people can be themselves and help each other to do that. I think for me, it’s been a really eye-opening and inspirational place.

‘So yesterday, I had a moment of panic – I was like “I’m too obsessed with Twitter. I need to delete it. I can’t be on there anymore.” So I deleted it… for about three hours.

‘Then I thought “No I need to know what’s going on.” I feel like so much of my friends lives are just lived on Twitter.

‘There’s so many people I haven’t met but we’re friends. It’s just a really close community.’

Eleanor explained that even with people she knows in real life, Twitter has helped them grow closer.

‘If it wasn’t for Twitter, because of things like anxiety, or time, or just not being able to meet in person to hang out, it’s a place to get to know them. Like my girlfriend for instance. Twitter is the main reason she and I became so close.’

It’s the friendships made on Twitter that Eleanor appreciates, as she explains ‘A lot of queer spaces are sexualized, or seen as places to find a partner.

‘The people I meet online in queer spaces are just friends and you have these similarities in your life that are so great to talk about.’

Happy Valentine’s Day to this one 💜

A post shared by Eleanor Thomas (@eleanorthomas) on

‘I’d been denying it for a really long time’

This is when Eleanor shared the cute story of how her and her girlfriend Jess get together.

‘So I met my now girlfriend when we were at uni together. I had a massive girl crush on her and was thinking ‘I just really want to be her friend.’

She explained since Jess used Twitter a lot, she started to use Twitter and tweeted things she knew Jess would be interested in.

This was when she realized that she was interested in women.

‘I feel like I’d been denying it for a really long time and then, the more I was on the internet, the more I was on Twitter, on Tumblr and stuff… I was like, oh okay. This is a thing.’

Eleanor says her announcement of becoming official with her girlfriend  was her coming out. Despite being with her girlfriend for three and a half years now, it was only a year ago that she came out to her parents.

‘That was a big moment for me. But they said they knew! So I feel like coming out was just everyone going, oh yeah it’s okay.’

‘It was a turning point in our relationship’

What Eleanor also hadn’t expected was how much of an impact her coming out would have on her parents.

After they found out, her Dad took to Facebook to express his pride in her.

‘It felt really incredible. I never expected my parents to get it,’ Eleanor explained. She never expected them to understand it ‘politically’ either, labelling being queer as ‘an inherently political thing’.

‘My parents were just like “oh you’re gay. Be who you are.” That Facebook post specifically, ever since they’ve really cared about queer activism. My Dad has now talked to a lot of people his age and wants people to think about it. He wants to make it easier for young people to come out.

‘That was a turning point in mine and my dad’s relationship. We’ve always been close but from then it was nice to be myself around him without having to hide what I had been for quite a long time.

Lil’ photo shoot with Misha the snake 🐍😍 #snakesofinstagram

A post shared by Eleanor Thomas (@eleanorthomas) on

‘People ignore the history’

With Pride in London behind us, it was a topic that we had to touch upon.

‘It’s come to a point where people are all “Oh it’s all rainbows and glitter and everyone’s having fun and celebrating gay people”.

‘But there’s so much weight behind Pride, the history of it, how it started. How the trans people and the people of color were at the forefront of it are just ignored for the cis gay people who get the most attention. Or the cis straight people who are the “Best Allies” and have said like one thing about gay people.’

This isn’t where the issue of people ignoring history stops though.

‘With feminism as well, a lot of people just think feminism is about equality or people think that it’s about making women better than men – It’s about liberation, not any of those.

‘And I think people ignore the history and just take a little snapshot of what they see it as.’