Welcome to The Floor Is Yours, where we spotlight the creators behind the meaningful content on your FYP — because it’s not just about who they are, but the message in what they’re creating.
“I got on [TikTok], and I was making videos literally targeted to one person,” Grey laughs. That person was Grayson, the other half of the popular TikTok account @OfficiallyVeryGay, and thus began the quintessential digital age courtship that has popped up on countless FYPs. Based in California, Grey, a gender-fluid Afro-Indigenous 25-year-old, and Grayson, a 24-year-old transmasc, both of whom go by their first names, challenge the cisgender, heteronormative narrative of relationships through their TikTok videos. When scrolling through their page, you’ll find vulnerable videos about Grayson’s transition, joyful vlogs of the couple settling into their new home, and some of the cutest and most wholesome clips of them dancing in their kitchen. Through these snippets into their relationship, OfficiallyVeryGay gives young queer people the representation and love story they themselves have dreamed of.
“[We thought] let's just be the really gay parents [on TikTok], which is what we are in real life to our friends and our communities,” Grayson tells Refinery29. “Our home immediately became the house that all the kids came to, and we want anyone to come and feel safe and feel loved.”
Grey and Grayson’s relationship was not only born on TikTok, but has flourished on the platform. After being “moots” for a few months, they started dating in November 2020 and made a joint account a month later. In the early days, you would see playful videos of them driving around in Grayson’s truck while they got to know each other. You almost feel as though you’re not meant to be there and that you’re reading their private journal, a timestamp of those intimate moments that usually are reserved for a couple’s memories. “Some of our first videos are my favourite memories of Grey,” Grayson says. With nowhere to go during the pandemic, they wanted to capitalise on the only thing they had: time. The page was never meant to be a serious platform, but the pair knew that by being fun and genuine, they could provide a community for queer people who didn’t have representation that accurately depicted themselves, let alone their desired relationships. Then, in January 2021, Grey and Grayson sat down for StyleLikeU’s What’s Underneath series, in which they detailed the best and most challenging parts of their relationship. Their follower count jumped by 25,000 overnight.
As an intersectional queer couple, Grey and Grayson appeal to the multiple intersectionalities we all have in our identities. “We get people who have religious trauma, are Indigenous, Black people, white people trying to be better allies, people who don't understand us at all and are just trying to watch and absorb, and transgender kids who are trying to watch and absorb,” Grey says. But they’ve also been subjected to a slew of racist and homophobic comments. “[Haters] can say I invite the commentary, but I'm not really inviting you. I'm inviting the community that I feel safe in and I just can't shut you out,” says Grayson, who has been sharing his transition journey online in the hopes that his experience will help other trans people feel validated.
Both Grey and Grayson know, however, the impact they have is far greater than the hate they receive. Being inundated with white, cisgender, heterosexual relationships while growing up, Grey says her inaccessibility to language about gender identities and sexuality limited her from seeing herself on social media, let alone, the relationships she wanted. She recalls watching YouTube when she was younger and repeatedly seeing the same heteronormative cis couples proudly showcasing the everyday goings of their relationships, posting videos of them grocery shopping or building furniture together. But when she’d go to bed at night, she'd have to imagine her own version that included someone who looked and loved like her.
Grey explains there’s a lack of queer visibility, especially of intersectional queerness, because cisgenderness and heterosexuality is more palatable to those in positions of power who approve content for large brands or accounts. “Brands really only want queer people for trauma or fashion,” Grey says. “It’s frustrating because a lot of brands that are trying to appeal to ‘regular at-home’ couples don't want to work with us, even though that’s what we are. People still don't want that [from queer couples].”
One piece of advice they have for young queer people is to find something to anchor your identity to, whether that be a peer you confide in or yourself. Your anchor should be a person or space that validates your identity when you need it. Grey recalls a time when whenever she was alone, she would look in the mirror and validate her own identity until she had the space to say and live it out loud. Giving her a sweet peck on the shoulder, Grayson adds that young queer people should know nobody can take your identity away from you. And although it’s scary to be queer in a space that has little to no queer representation or conversation, there are safe queer spaces online, and it’s important to hold onto them because the ability to experience life as your authentic self is coming.
“Don't think for a second that you aren’t loved and you aren't going to be protected in this world,” Grayson says, “because whether it be someone small, a large organisation, or a couple like us on TikTok making weird content, someone loves you and is looking out for you and is trying to make sure that by the time you get to whatever age or age, it's so much easier for you.”
Seeing two people that look and love in a way that doesn’t often get shown online is proof of the power that we have harvested from social media. OfficiallyVeryGay is showcasing queer love in the way it deserves to be shown: as normal.