Nicolay Berge


Mr Gay Europe 2023

Why do you want to take part in MGE23

The traumatic events of last year deeply motivate my desire to participate in Mr. Gay Europe 2023. During the pride celebration in Oslo, our joy was shattered by a brutal attack on our LGBTQI+-friendly bar. Lives were lost, and many were injured, leaving a lasting impact on our community.
This act of terror served as a wake-up call, highlighting the ongoing challenges faced by sexual minorities. Even in Norway, not all minorities feel safe or accepted. It reminded me of the urgent need to stand up for myself and others.
I am determined to raise awareness about the importance of knowledge, particularly in sexual and reproductive health. When we understand that we all share common needs but have different preferences, we can unite and continue the fight for equality.
Participating in Mr. Gay Europe 2023 would give me a platform to advocate for comprehensive sexual education. By emphasizing the significance of inclusive education, I aim to contribute to the ongoing battle for equality and foster a more inclusive society.

What is the biggest LGBT challenge in Europe today

The main challenge for those of us who are LGBTQ+ in Europe today is the persistent discrimination and inequality we face. Despite progress, barriers still exist, hindering our full inclusion in society.
Education is a vital tool to address this challenge. By implementing inclusive and informative sex education programs, we can empower future generations with knowledge about diverse sexual orientations and gender identities. This helps break stereotypes and fosters acceptance.
Recognizing our shared humanity is also crucial. Emphasizing universal experiences and needs builds empathy and understanding, promoting unity among individuals with different sexual orientations and gender identities.
Strong legal protections are essential. Comprehensive anti-discrimination laws that explicitly include sexual orientation and gender identity should be enforced to ensure equal rights and opportunities.
Engaging with conservative and right-wing groups through dialogue and highlighting shared values can challenge misconceptions and foster positive change.
In conclusion, addressing the biggest challenge for those of us who are LGBTQ+ in Europe requires inclusive education, recognizing our shared humanity, strong legal protections, and engaging in dialogue with diverse groups. Together, we can create a Europe that values and respects every individual, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Your profession / study

First of all, I am a medical student at the University of Oslo. Part-time, I work as an optometrist. I graduated with a degree in Optometry and Visual Sciences from the University of South East Norway.

Your hobbies

I’ve done a lot of volunteer work and love getting my hands dirty with woodworking, fixing cars and motorcycles. Staying fit through workouts is a big part of my life, and I’m always eager to learn new things.

Why should you become MGE23

I am a person that many can relate to—a human being with the same needs as everyone else: the need for safety, belonging, and love.
I strongly believe in the power of education to foster unity, combat discrimination, and promote understanding among people. That’s why I’m dedicated to advocating for comprehensive sexual education.
For a long time, I’ve been tirelessly working to promote better sexual education. I believe that when we understand that everyone has a sexuality and that love is about connection rather than physicality, we can recognize the equality that unites us.
I envision a world where every child is welcomed, and where sexuality is simply a part of the diverse human experience. By advocating for comprehensive sexual education, I aim to provide accurate information, foster respect for diversity, and empower young people to embrace their authentic selves. Together, we can build an inclusive society where discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity is left behind.
If chosen as Mr. Gay Europe 2023, I will use this platform to amplify the importance of comprehensive sexual education. I will advocate for inclusive policies and initiatives that empower young individuals to embrace their identities and promote acceptance and love.
Through education and understanding, we can break barriers and create a society where everyone, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity, can thrive and be accepted. I am dedicated to being a vocal advocate for this cause and using my voice to drive positive change within the LGBTQ+ community and beyond.
I am honored to have the opportunity to potentially serve as Mr. Gay Europe 2023 and contribute to the advancement of equality and acceptance.

What is the biggest mental health challenge in the LGBT community today

One of the biggest challenges we face as LGBTQ+ individuals regarding mental health is the higher occurrence of issues like anxiety, depression, and suicide. Many of us experience these struggles due to societal exclusion, discrimination, and the challenges of embracing our sexual orientation or gender identity.
Adding to the challenge is the lack of support and understanding we encounter when seeking help. It can be hard to find healthcare professionals who are knowledgeable about LGBTQ+ issues, which affects our access to proper care and support.
Education also plays a crucial role in addressing these challenges. By promoting comprehensive education about LGBTQ+ issues, we can foster understanding, empathy, and acceptance in society. When people are aware of our unique experiences and challenges, they can become better allies and provide the support we need.
To address these challenges, we need mental health services that are LGBTQ+-inclusive and affirming. Healthcare professionals should receive training to understand our unique experiences and provide culturally sensitive care. We also need tailored mental health resources and safe spaces where we can openly discuss our mental well-being.
By acknowledging and addressing the specific mental health challenges faced by the LGBTQ+ community and promoting education, we can create a more supportive and inclusive society. It’s important to reduce stigma, promote awareness, and ensure that everyone, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity, has access to the mental health support they need to thrive.

Your idea for your national costume

I have some ideas in mind, and since I am from a farming town, I might go in a farmer’s suit.