Monday, July 10, 2017

A thousand needles

Scrolling on my wall on Facebook is often a depressing proposition.  It seems like the bad news stories and articles are shared more often than positive ones.  I have made it a personal rule to only post positive articles or humorous items.  Memes that feature puns happens to be a personal favorite.  But it seems that there are more negative stories, especially surrounding LGBT issues.

Today there was yet another article featuring a doctor explaining how damaging the Transgender "lifestyle" is, especially to youth.  And yet again, those who are Trangender are "delusional" and in need of serious counseling.  It's an interesting feeling to read that you have a diseased mind.  Or that you are an abomination.

An abomination.  Once you have become an abomination, rights no longer apply to you.  Discrimination becomes the proper course of action.  Your life becomes forfeit.  Because I am gay, because I am non-binary, there are people who would not hesitate to take my life.

While the statistics terrify me, there is still little chance for me to experience this kind of vitriol.  I am more likely to face small forms of hate and discrimination.  Smaller forms that poke tiny holes into your soul, which can be far more deadly.  Even the simplest actions could have a profound impact on how people treated me, and how I was viewed.  This point was most evident the first few times my boyfriend and I were together in public.  I never realized how complicated simple acts can be when in a same sex relationship.  Showing any form of affection in public carried certain risks, and even the act of holding hands became a multiple decision process.  Is this an area where this would not offend people?  If it would, what is the chance of violence being used, or a verbal assault?  If we are harassed, or assaulted, were there safe places to get to?  Was it even worth holding hands?

These are questions that people like me ask themselves every day.  Even the act of coming out carries specfic risks that need to be considered.  When I first came out, I was lucky.  I had a large number of friends who were very supportive. They helped me discover who I was, and encouraged me to be my self.  One of my biggest fears was, less about rejection, and more simply a change in relationships.  When the inevitable changes happened, I wasn't fully prepared to deal with them.  A thousand needles began to pierce my soul.  Most often, people would tell me that they would support me and, while I am sure they tried, could not fully follow through.  There was a difference, I discovered, between intellectual support and emotional understanding.  I was soon back in the closet, not by choice, but to maintain relationships and not rock the boat.  A thousand more needles piercing my soul.

I am questioning whether these relationships are worth my soul.  Do I die to myself, or do I die to those I love?  Or will it be both.  By dying to those I love, will that push me further into the dark tunnel?  Can my soul survive either outcome?  Until I answer these questions, a thousand needles will continue to be my companions.  God bless

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