Evan Białosuknia writes on her Instagram that she has ‘made history’ after becoming her school – Olympia High School’s first transgender homecoming queen. The 17-year-old says she didn’t know what to expect when she first decided to run for homecoming queen at her school. “I wanted to have that moment of glory,” she told WESH2, an NBC news station based in Orlando.
The students at her school not only supported her but elected her for homecoming court and then crowned her queen at homecoming. “It made me feel like I actually belonged,” says Evan, “Not just like a joke. Cause that was one of my fears. I was in bed one night like, ‘What if they were just doing this to laugh at me?’”
She was dubbed homecoming queen on her school’s football field right next to the person named homecoming king, whom she said was also very supportive and made her feel just like “any other girl.” “There’s only good energy, just a great person,” She says. Evan says that her coming out was very recent and that more change is heading her way.
Evan is living in her first year of feeling and looking how she wants, as she started her transition only a few months prior. “Looking back, it doesn’t even feel like that’s me,” Evan says to WESH2. “I played football for like six to eight years, and I remember during practices I would stare at the cheerleaders because I wanted to be with them.” She says she couldn’t be as confident in herself as she is not without the love she gets from her family.
After she became homecoming queen, Evan posted a series of photos on her Instagram of her wearing her homecoming court sash and dress; posing with the homecoming king. “It just made me realize I was not alone and don’t have to go through this alone,” she said. “I have to just keep my head up and know that it’s going to take time and it’s going to take patience.”
Schools and students who are part of the LGBTQIA community all over the country are challenging the traditions of prom and homecoming courts. The support from Evan’s classmates is clear to see, but national data shows that many LGBTQIA students still suffer higher health and suicide risks compared to their peers – especially transgender teens.
Recent studies show that 43 percent of transgender youth have been bullied within their schools and 29 percent have attempted suicide. Measures are being taken to try to help these trans youths, and support from their classmates and teachers is certainly a step in the right direction.