It always seems incredible to me when someone who is constantly in the limelight sets aside the façade of perfection that seems required these days to be famous and comes out to the world as exactly who they really are. And on Saturday night, that is exactly what former Grey’s Anatomy star Sara Ramirez did. During her speech at the True Colors Fund’s “40 to None” Summit, Ramirez came out to the crowd as bisexual, and made a very important point about the conditions facing LGBTQIA youth in the process.
It was a powerful moment. Ramirez spoke openly about the conditions facing many young people who are marginalized in their communities, whether because of race, sexual orientation, gender identity, or citizenship. But Ramirez made her speech even more powerful by explaining why she was so particularly invested in this cause:
Because of the intersections that exist in my own life — woman, multi-racial woman, woman of color, queer, bisexual, Mexican-Irish American, immigrant, and raised by families heavily rooted in Catholicism on both my Mexican & Irish sides — I am deeply invested in projects that allow our youth’s voices to be heard, and that support our youth in owning their own complex narratives so that we can show up for them in the ways they need us to.
I can’t think of a better time for a star of a hit television show to open up about their identity and the real narrative of their lives than to help children who are struggling with their own. Ramirez boldly embraced her narrative on that stage on Saturday in order to show the homeless youth that she was speaking to and for how empowering owning your own identity can be. No matter what your communities or your families of origin say about who you are, claiming your own narrative is the most important step you can take.
It was an extremely powerful moment for Ramirez, who played a bisexual character on Grey’s Anatomy, for everyone in the crowd, and for the children who heard her words and were hopefully inspired.