Why is it important to celebrate Pride Month at your place of work?
This is my first time working in a company that is so inclusive and it’s the first time working anywhere where they celebrated Pride Month. Pipefy is amazing and fantastic because in past jobs, no one even talked about this. Here, we go deeper and have real discussions on the topic, not just sticking a rainbow logo on something and being done with it. It’s important to remember that a lot of people are gay that are not out, or are gay that don’t want to be gay, and if I can help impact and inspire even one person to love themselves for who they are, I will be happy. The world needs more love.
What do you hope to change in your country in the next five years?
In Brazil it’s very complicated. We don’t have the best president right now, particularly for the LGBTQ community. Things are definitely changing for the better in the past few years, but we need to do more. We need to rise up and fight for ourselves. It’s time to stop hiding. That’s one of the biggest things I want to change in myself, too. I want to not live in fear of being who I am. I am not ashamed at all, anyone who knows me knows that, but it’s still dangerous to be public. Holding hands, kissing, things my boyfriend want to do, are things I am not comfortable doing yet, even though I’m so proud to be who I am. I want to be confident enough to shout in the streets, and those are the things it might take to get a change. I am fortunate that my family is okay with who I am, but not everyone is so lucky. I think we need to start with our friends and family and go from there.
Share a time where you faced a difficult situation due to the prejudice of others:
I have to put in a lot of effort to be a strong person. My mom told me “Marlon, if you are gay then you must be the best at everything. The best student, the best person, you should inspire gay children who have no references or support to be themselves.” I didn’t come out, my parents figured it out before I had a chance to. At first, it was very hard on them and they wanted to “fix me” because they didn’t want me to have a difficult life. Everyone comes to acceptance at their own time, and now they are supportive of me and my life. When I look back now, I know they just didn’t want me to suffer.
What advice would you give someone who was afraid to come out?
There will be some suffering. There is no magic wand for them to wave to make it stop. Be patient. Also, stay strong. Take the hate and rage and transform it into love. Never stop spreading love.