Back in June, as I was putting together the Wicked Queer Tarot Spreads ebook for Pride season, I came up with a few spreads that overlapped with pride themes, but weren’t necessarily queer-specific. Today’s theme was 100% inspired by finally watching Pose. (I’m not crying, you’re crying!) While the search for chosen family carries extra weight in the LGBTQIA+ community, where so many folx are estranged from birth families, it’s a nearly universal quest. If we’re lucky, it’s one that continues throughout our lives as we find and love new people.
The purpose of this spread is two-fold: to help find people you can connect to, and to better bond and share with the people you love and like the best.
1. Find: Where do I find my chosen family? Where can I meet new people?
2. Bond: How can I better connect to my people and strengthen the bonds between us?
3. Give: What can I give to my people? What do I bring to the table?
4. Receive: What do I receive from my people? Where do I need to lean on my friends and community for support?
5. Enjoy: Something to celebrate with my people. An activity or experience to share together.
Notes & Variations:
Keep It Casual: If family is a more intense commitment than you need or desire right now, you can point this spread towards community, casual friends, dates, even acquaintances or hobby buddies. It’s a pretty versatile template. Think of the bonding card as a getting-to-know-better card. Remember that even in light and temporary social interactions, a spirit of mutual respect and even exchange makes everyone happier.
Choosing Blood Family: Chosen family can absolutely include biological family! We do not owe extended time or friendship to biological kin who hurt or reject us, or family we simply don’t get along with. Knowing that makes it all the more beautiful when we do like and love, and choose to spend time with our blood relations. Thoughtfully selecting family doesn’t have to mean excluding the ones you came from. You could easily turn this spread toward bonding better with biological family.
Got Enough People Already Thx: If you already know where your people are and your dance card’s full, treat the first finding card as a symbolic meeting. How can I better meet my people where they’re coming from? How can I better communicate with my family? (Of course, meeting people halfway or communicating better does not mean ceding your boundaries or compromising your core values.)
Boundaries Bonus Round: Draw an additional card as needed on how to better hold your boundaries with your people, with love and respect intact.
Lurve & Romance: As usual, the social spreads can be pointed toward romantic or aromantic, sexual or platonic relationships. None of those qualities are inherently better or deeper-diving than the others. Fellowship and camaraderie are super rad, with or without seduction. And any way you slice it, mutuality, consent, and fair exchange are key. (Have fun!)
Seriously Where Are They Though?: It can be really tricky to find people we connect with deeply, especially when we live anywhere that our personal values and interests clash with the local culture. That first finding card will be a sticky wicket for some folx, and that’s okay. Be willing to think outside the box, and remember that deep bonds take time to forge. Don’t expect a familial connection with people you’ve only just met, especially if you’re starting from scratch. Proceed with mind and heart open, but expectations in check. This card may point to trying something new you wouldn’t have thought of, or lead you to people you get along with alright but don’t bond with quickly. That’s to be expected in many cases! If you can’t find what you most desire now, the next best thing is usually still pretty great. Finally, don’t expect to stumble across a hidden den of perfect, beautiful strangers, void of faults—all families have their internal disagreements and dissonances, loving and consciously chosen ones included.
And remember pals, tarot is for intuition, creativity, and introspection. It is not a substitute for therapy, medicine, or professional counseling! If you’re struggling with miscommunication, abuse, isolation, loneliness, or depression, there’s no shame in reaching out for professional help! Please do do that if at all you can. And as the meme chorus says, “if you can’t make your own serotonin, store-bought is fine!”
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