by John R. Sylliboy, W2SA Committee Member

The Atlantic Wapanaki Two Spirit Alliance(W2SA) is currently seeking individuals that woul like to share their “coming out” stories to our families, communities and other Two Spirits. Coming out is a term that is referred to people coming out of the closet or what the W2SA accepts as one finding peace within themselves to accept their sexual identity as Two Spirit: gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgendered (GLBT). This sense of peace is internal and external, which require a series of balanced circumstances in their lives (health, family and community) for the person to live their liferespectfully and dignified as a Two Spirit. There is no similar book in the Atlantic region, so the W2SA hopes this book would be a source of education and empowerment for Two Spirit people.

Two Spirit was accepted as a term in reference to GLBT Aboriginals in North America at a Gathering in Minnesota, 1988, and in 1990 in Winnipeg, Canada. The W2SA is researching similar accepted terms in our sister languages to describe TwoSpirit in Maliseet, Penobscot, Inuktitut, an Passamaquoddy. Puouin is a term that best describes the concept in Mi’kmaq. There are many gifts that the Two Spirit individuals were recognized for: cultural advisors, medicine people, spiritual/ceremonial leaders, educators, care takers, crafts people, artists, etc., which are all traditional knowledge carriers. “Two Spirit People are people who assume cross, or multiple gender roles, attributes, dress and attit ...

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