Disability Community Profiles: Chris
How do you identify/ how do you introduce yourself?
My name is Dr. Christopher Bryant, and I’m a queer man.
What are you passionate about?
Creativity! I’m a theatre-maker and author, but creativity exists in everything, not just ‘the arts’ - it’s in making a nice meal, in finding creative ways to support friends in need, or in the way you dress for any occasion.
How do you spend your time?
Reading, writing, sleeping. A lot of sleeping at the moment.
What does Pride mean to you?
To me, pride means being able to show up anywhere as your whole self. Being true to yourself.
What is your favourite thing about yourself?
I’m a caring person. Physical attributes are temporal, but I always want to care about the world, my place in it, and the people around me.
What do people find surprising about you/what’s a cool thing?
I honestly am not sure how to answer this! I don't know. There are many things about myself I find cool, but I don't know what/if anyone finds surprising - or cool, for that matter. Also, what I find interesting about myself someone else may not.
What’s something you’re proud of?
I finished my Ph.D. in theatre and performance, May of this year!
Where/How do you stay connected?
The Internet is a wonderful and magical thing, and it’s allowed me to stay connected to community pretty successfully - having break out groups, or being able to check in with friends.
Where do people start if they want to connect?
Talk to your friends, and then talk to people beyond your friends - there are a lot of LGBTIQA people with disabilities out of there, the best way is to meet and speak to us!
What is one thing people can do to support LGBTIQA+ people with disabilities?
Talk to us, connect with us, and consider us.
Can you give us an example of practising self-advocacy?
In Midsumma this year I wrote and performed a show at Theatre Works (New Balance - hey, remember being in theatres and going places?) that quite directly dealt with the process of acquiring a disability; what that meant for me and my life. I don’t know that I had then even fully come to terms with it, and so it felt like a huge hurdle to get on a stage and grapple with the reality of my ‘new’ life. Essentially, I was pretty scared of coming out of this secondary ‘disability’ closet. Of course, it was all more than fine in the end - I performed the piece - and by being able to exist as my whole self, I found my friendships had strengthened.