photo by sigrún bein
When they tell you it gets better, it comes with a postscript: make it better.
Life can be fucked up, and being gay/queer/bi/trans/poly can mean that sharing the truth can cost you a friend or familial heartstring. But for every person who goes out of your life for love, there is another who will love you unconditionally. Forgive the person who left you (if you can). Cherish the one who stayed/came/celebrated.
All of the older ladies and gentlemen who have deep issue with the hoe-mo-sex-uals will be dead in a couple of years anyway. Look to the younger generation who supports gay marriage and believes deeply in our inherent humanity.
For the first time in history, bigotry, prejudice and intolerance are being perceived by the general public as fucking stupid, and people are being called on their shit. There is a great and strong band of straight allies in our lives who are supporting us at every turn. When we see bigotry, prejudice and intolerance, we now have the ability–more than ever–to be heard when we say: you, sir, are being an idiot.
Gay marriage is coming to a state near you, but it did not become legalized by championing squirrels and unicorns. Gay people, queer people, bi people, straight people and every people in between lobbied for justice and equality, even if it wasn’t their fight to fight (because they believed that our fight is everyone’s fight). A sea-change is coming, but it can not and will not if we aren’t all in this together. Support politicians who support us, whatever their reasons may be. Thank the people who are fighting for your rights. Fight for them, too. You may believe that one person can accomplish nothing, but you are not one person. We are Together, and Together changes the world.
There are so few books and movies and commercials and television shows and cultural points that depict queer people. I know that you’ve noticed. But it’s a straight world out there because we have not created a different one. It’s up to you. Support the creative people/projects/endeavors who write about/showcase/star queer people and more will happen. If you don’t see something out there that you want, and are a creative person, make it. There is not a single soul who can keep you from creating the queer art or entertainment that you want to make other than yourself.
There are acts of unspeakable violence committed to queer peoples every single day–the human race can be so hateful. But there are moments of limitless beauty, too. Every day, there is a mother who accepts and loves her gay son unconditionally, a gay couple of thirty-five years finally takes their legalized wedding vows, a lesbian falls in love with the one for her, and a friend throws a top surgery party for his bestie. Fight back against the violence, and when you begin to lose faith in humanity (because, at some point, we all start to), please remember that there is still a lot of beauty to the human race, and every day, small acts of courage change the world.
Find courage. Speak up. Be genuine and compassionate, fierce and angry, dauntless and relentless in your demands to be treated as equal by the world.
Be endlessly grateful for the people who love and support and cherish and celebrate with you. Through their strength, your own will be helped when it seems so big, and too difficult, this fight for equality.
Every day, we are rising.
This is how: through the knowledge that our happiness and ease and freedom and safety and joy and equality is worth fighting for. And then striving to change the world to reflect that.