Guest Column

Chris Tebbutt

An open letter to our queer youth

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Chris Tebbutt

I am writing this column to express my unwavering love and support for our queer youth. Please share this with them:

As you embark on a sometimes difficult journey of self-discovery and acceptance, know that you have my deepest admiration. Above all, please remember how special, unique and valuable you are. Your courage is truly inspirational to me. Celebrate who you are proudly, and never forget that your uniqueness is a strength, not a weakness.

Do not allow anyone to undermine your dreams and aspirations. Although you may face adversity, misunderstanding and even hatred, other people’s opinions must not dim your light.

You need to surround yourself with people that lift and support you. It is important that you never give up and never feel ashamed of being who you are. I know, at times, you will feel despair, like there is no way forward. It gets better. Just remember that you are strong and resilient. If you stay true to yourself and focus on living to your fullest potential, anything is possible for you and your life.

You are capable of anything and have the power to create the magnificent future you deserve. The courage to be yourself and break barriers will not only take you far in life, but also help bring about a much-needed change in our society. You are strong enough to overcome any obstacle and make a positive difference in your own life and the lives of others.

Finally, remember this: There is an entire community standing with you. We are here to welcome, love and embrace you for who you are. Please know that you can always reach out to me if you ever want to talk or just need someone to listen.

Chris Tebbutt serves on the board of directors of LBHS Scholarship Foundation and is a trained parent mentor in special education for LBUSD. He, along with his husband and twin sons, love living in Laguna Beach after relocating eight years ago from New York City. He can be reached at chris.tebbutt@compass.com.


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