Edwin Gino Raagas

New York City

New Year, New Me

Gay + Male / 18-22 + 23-29 / Asian / Catholic

I always knew I wasn’t like all the other little boys. Growing up in a traditional Filipino household meant church on Sundays, bringing home straight As, and “fitting in.” Somewhere in between my affinity for beauty pageants but my aversion to being sexually attracted to those beauty queens, I knew there was something about me that didn’t quite add up. I came out to myself and my friends when I was 18 years old, but it took me another 5 years before coming out to my parents. Every year, December 31st is not just the date I celebrate New Year’s Eve — it’s also when I celebrate the moment I came out to my parents.

Edwin’s story is part of a collection of stories celebrating Filipino American History Month the he personally helped curate. To see more, just search for “Filipino American.”