Dreams Of Love, Equality, And Acceptance: Mari Jasmine And Samantha Lee Tug On Heartstrings After Going Public With Their Relationship
"My dream is to live in a world where I feel safe walking down the street holding my girlfriend’s hand. A world where I have the same fundamental human rights that I would be entitled to if I were in a straight, heteronormative relationship," says Mari.
Model and blogger Mari Jasmine's relationship with indie film director Samantha Lee might still be considered outside of the norm in most of Philippine society, but for these women, their conviction to love one another and stand proud while they're at it is more than enough to keep them strong.
Mari and her new girlfriend Sam were one of the 25,000 attendees who participated in last month's Metro Manila Pride Fest staged at the Marikina Sports Center. Like sought-after fashion photographer BJ Pascual who shared his heartfelt sentiments about the successful event on social media, Mari and Sam were just as vocal about their experiences at the festival, as well as their hopes and dreams for members of the LGTBQIA+ community.
Having experienced unconditional acceptance and support from her Pinoy friends aware of her sexual identity, Mari urged other LGTBQIA+ individuals to remind themselves that they are indeed worthy and loved, even amidst the sometimes daily struggles of prejudice and ignorance.
In the same statement, the young advocate also addressed those outside of the LGBTQIA+ community by requesting them to reach out, suggesting that the road to full understanding is two-fold. She advised them to educate themselves and begin learning the truths of LGBTQIA+ individuals to be able to eradicate misconceptions and unfounded fear of their LGBTQIA+ peers.
Most notably, Mari seemingly also opened up for the first time about her sexual identity in two brave sentences:
"Pride is about celebrating love, equality, and owning your truth. So here’s mine: in the little time I’ve spent on this earth, I’ve had the privilege of being in love with both men and women," she shares.
Known to be Kapamilya actor Sam Milby's ex-girlfriend, the Aussie beauty reportedly called it quits with him just a few months ago and has instead focused on her career before making news once again in relation to her public admission of her new relationship.
While Mari’s innermost circle has always known about her preferences, majority of her followers are only now learning about this major aspect of their online idol's identity. Much to Mari's happiness, many of those who have commented on her statement have only had positive thoughts to share.
And even though some amount of negativity may come her way after her big reveal, Mari is confident, loud, and proud about where she stands. How she feels about her identity, as well as that of her fellow LGTBQIA+ peers, is forever cemented in her words that read, "Don’t let any person or any institution let you think otherwise. I stand by you and I will fight with you forever!"
Photos from @givemesam @mari_jasmn