Courtney Act reveals how the label gender-queer freed her.
The Celebrity Big Brother UK winner and Drag Race star spoke at National Student Pride about the importance of living beyond the binary today (10 February).
Speaking to Evan Davies, Courtney defined the moment that changed how she saw gender and sexual identity.
Courtney defines herself as pansexual and gender-queer
‘There’s a lot of labels and how important they are. Once we start living in that truth,’ she said on stage to a packed out room in the cavernous basement of the University of Westminster, London,.
‘For example, gender-queer set me free from feeling not good enough as a man.
‘It set me free from not feeling valuable enough, strong enough as a man.
‘When I realized my femininity was important and could be celebrated, it laid to rest a lifelong struggle with my gender.’
Commenting on Celebrity Big Brother
Courtney also paid tribute to Andrew Brady, her best friend in the Celebrity Big Brother house.
‘Straight men are often the most rigid with their identity,’ she said.
‘But for him all he wanted to do was learn. And maybe getting him into drag helped!’
She also said she was grateful for the opportunity to Google Ann Widdecombe before she went into the house.
‘Every conversation I had with Ann Widdecombe, I felt really defeated,’ she said.
‘It’s great to get outside the echo chamber’
‘What I didn’t realize everyone was watching it at home and hearing two parts of a conversation that needed to be heard.’
Saying that, she said she was glad to ‘get outside the echo chamber’.
‘I thought Ann would be the very right, conservative person and everyone else would be on my side,’ Courtney added.
‘It was a lot more moderate than I expected.’
Gay Star News is a media partner of National Student Pride.
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