Being LGBTQ+

I was going to write a post to outline my thoughts from therapy today (the new semester just started on Monday, and thankfully, I was able to keep my Wednesday therapy session, and would still see S regularly until such a time that we both feel that I’m ready to rough life out by myself. Being able to keep the same session helps me keep some regularity to my often irregular schedule), but then new thoughts kept jumping out at me.

Lately, I’ve been thinking about the LGBTQ community, and LGBTQ related topics – somehow, that and the topic of my divorce kept coming up in my mind. From today’s session, S and I learned that perhaps the reason that I keep fixating on those two topics is because these are two major issues in my life that I have yet to truly process.

I will have to write a separate post for my thoughts from therapy because in this post, I want to focus on a couple of thoughts that I have concerning LGBTQ stuff.

I was recently told by a coworker that the song “The Greatest” by Sia is actually a tribute to the victims of the mass shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, FL last June. I was intrigued and so I looked up the video.

What I witnessed for 5 minutes and 51 seconds shook me – the imagery was vivid and the lyrics resonated.

I then Googled for the meaning of the video – to see if I could find what other people’s interpretation sounded like. I was intrigued. I found an article that I felt was beautifully written:

Analysis of Sia’s “The Greatest”

A paragraph jumped out at me –

“As cathartic as it is for a gay person to assume their true identity, to free themselves, there will always be a bigger cage. In the modern ages, the cage takes many forms. It can manifest as an antagonistic bathroom bill or the outing of closeted gay athletes. Then, of course, there are the hate crimes against members of the LGBTQ community.”

It’s so true.

I feel, at the same time, a sense of relief when I came out last October as well as a sense of fear (for how people will treat me, or that their perception of me will somehow change), and restriction because despite the fact that the world is starting to become more tolerant, there are still plenty of examples of discrimination, and hate.

As a queer person (of color, no less!), everything’s always a challenge. You always have to advocate for yourself, to share your experiences, and to find courage to just be. There will be questions in the flavor of, “So…. Are you……. A lesbian?”, “Uh… What does queer mean?”, “Are you a boy or a girl?”, or “Isn’t bisexual just another word for ‘slut’? Like, you can’t make up your mind whether you’re gay or straight, so you just sleep with everyone?” There will be some form of microagression or another in our daily lives – as someone who is misgendered daily, I know what this is like, and how stressful it can get.

There is never a period of time in my queer life where I can relax, and just be who I am. I am constantly looking over my shoulder; censoring what I say or how I say it; wondering what I should wear or how people would perceive me if I wore this outfit, or that outfit; choosing who I could and couldn’t date; answering endless LGBTQ related question because your straight friend only knows the one queer friend (me); and so on.

It’s exhausting. On top of already dealing with depression, anxiety, and ADHD, coming out for me meant that I now have another thing I need to advocate for. It gave me a lot of relief when I came out, but at the same time, it also brought on a lot of other things – some of which I’ve described above.

With this in mind, who would choose this “lifestyle”?

I ask that because recently, someone asked me through a private message on Facebook if we could still be friends despite our differences of opinions regarding my “choice” to live a bisexual “lifestyle” – quotation marks, mine.

Yes, because I chose to be persecuted. I chose to be in anguish over who I am attracted to for the last 30 years of my life. I chose to be confused about my faith, and my sexuality all my life. I chose to feel like an outcast in society. I chose to not have friends that understand me. I chose to be hated, mocked, and vilified.

And of course, the paragraph above drips with sarcasm, in case someone didn’t get it.

I just want to make it clear that no one will choose a life like this. It’s a life of pain, and suffering. That said, for someone to imply that a queer person chose their sexuality/orientation is rude, at the very least, and savage, at the worst. Those who use religion and their faith to condemn a queer person are even more savage. Speaking as someone who is a Christian and who have doubted my faith my entire life (I could never believe that God loves me enough because if he did, then why am I ‘broken’?), it’s extremely distressing to hear someone say, “God hates f*gs”, or “You’re gay because God hates you!”, or “God doesn’t hear your prayers”, or “God will never forgive you. You’re going to hell!”. It’s as though I don’t already hate myself enough – these people help me add more reasons to why I don’t feel worthy.

I’m just so tired of all the hate. I’m tired of all the hypocrisy that a lot of Christians seem to exhibit towards people like me. I’m tired of all the violence aimed at my newfound community.

That’s my rant of the day. I just thought it was time I said my little piece in this narrative and share something I’ve had on my mind for a while now.

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10 thoughts on “Being LGBTQ+

  1. I can see how you might feel both relieved and also shouldered with new burdens by coming out. It sucks that you have to be afraid or be judged or have people ask you ridiculous questions. I hope that will get better over time (and I know it is easier in some parts of the country than in others).

    You’re doing a great job, though, becoming your authentic self. I hear the strength that’s rooted in being who you really are.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Q. Your words melted my heart, and made me realize how I am coping despite new challenges.

      Yeah, I think it’s very similar to being mentally ill. We often face such ridiculous questions all the time with that too. And while it’s still annoying when someone says, “You don’t look like you’re (insert mental illness here)”, it’s more bearable now as I realize more and more that people are just ignorant. Some do want to know the truth, and will ask to educate themselves, but others won’t and those are the kinds of people we ignore.

      I’m in the ultra conservative MidWest which will take a lot more time. I think this may be a good thing though – it’ll help me distinguish people who are truly supportive, and those who aren’t.

      Anyway, I hope you’re doing better yourself, Q. I’ve missed you!

      Like

      1. You might one day think about moving to the west coast. 1) great scenery; 2) progressive politics; 3) better (imperfect but better) acceptance of/protection for LGBTQ rights; 4) excellent local food; 5) access to beaches; 6) local wine and beer; 7) more diverse population; 8) milder winters… Have I sold you on it yet?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Haha…. I’m hoping that I can become a good enough programmer or web developer that I get hired out in California! But we’ll see… I have thought about it…. A friend of mine was so good, Nvidia hired him and he moved out to Sacramento!

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    1. Wow awesome! I’m so glad to hear that! And good on you for coming out. It’s not an easy journey.

      Also, I just discovered biphobia and the sad thing is, a lot of the biphobia is coming from the LGBTQ community… It’s disheartening to see such things because you’re like, “WTF…. You’ve been oppressed all your life, and now you want to oppress a fellow community member?” I see things like, “I am not comfortable dating a bisexual because I fear they’ll cheat on me with the opposite sex” Um…… No…. Bisexual people, like all others, are only as likely to cheat as anyone else does – not more likely. *eyerolls*

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I have soooo many stories of biphobia from cis hetero “friends”, from a psychiatrist, a clinical psychologist… hard to not automatically write off “cis het” people.

        I haven’t dared immerse myself in the LGBTQ community because I know about that biphobia and trans phobia from events I’ve been to.

        Like

  2. I’m sorry to hear the things that have come up just because of who you are. It is a struggle to find commonality in this day and age of digital information. It is great that you are able to keep your head up even in the face of adversity. But isn’t that the point?

    Strength through adversity.

    Liked by 1 person

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