The spring time holidays are approaching which means road trips back home to small towns across America. It also means having to deal with families that call your lifestyle "alternative" and your wife of five years, your "roommate." I still get emails daily from confused, questioning, self-hating, self-doubting women that ask me if being gay is "bad"? Are they going to hell for it? Does it make them a pervert? Does it mean that they will never have a happy marriage? Are they destined for a lonely life? So this is my Easter pep-talk to try to arm all my fellow LGBTQ people with a little extra perkiness for those awkward moments over the mashed potatoes with the folks.
Well first of all, being gay is not bad. It's the same as being straight, except it's a little better. In fact, being a lesbian, to me, is the most empowering thing a woman can be lucky enough to be born as. And yes, I said born as because just like Lady Gaga says, we are born this way. If you doubt that, then try being straight and ask your straight parents or whoever makes you feel bad for being gay, ask them to imagine themselves in a gay relationship. If they say they can't because it's not who they are, tell them, "Exactly! Just the way you can't flip a switch and be gay, I can't flip one and be straight." So let's just quit trying to fit into a mold that you "think" you should fit.
If the world were populated by little chocolate bunnies and we all popped out of the same mold, that would be pretty boring. If all of a sudden one day, there were a few bunnies made out of white chocolate or marble chocolate we wouldn't think we should make a law against them! We would probably just think, "Wow!! How cool!! They're different and it makes the world a more yummy place to have them in it."
I know that's a silly comparison, but think about it for a second. White chocolate might not be everyone's taste, but is it evil or bad just because some people prefer milk chocolate? Or better yet, what should we do with the people who love, love, love dark chocolate?! Should we string them up because they dare to appreciate something other than milk chocolate? That would be pretty crazy if we did, wouldn't it? ... Yet that's what's going on in society when we tell people (via politics and religion) that gay people are wrong, or evil, worst then terrorists or any other bullshit propaganda being spewed out by the conservative right.
Look, just because we don't want the same chocolate as they do, does not make us bad or wrong! It simply makes us different and since when was that a crime?
People who fear independent thinkers, individuals, creatives, intellectuals, and anyone that doesn't fit into the same chocolate bunny mold are really afraid of something. What? I'm not sure, I'm sure each bigot has their own issues. Some are homophobes because they're secretly closeted and are so afraid of their latent (or not so latent, as the case may be) desires that they turn all their fear and self-doubt outward, into hate.
Some of them are just plain ignorant. Let's not mince words here, any educated person (and I'm not talking about college here, any one who has plain simple logic and can research the facts for themselves) will come to the inescapable conclusion that gays do not in fact, present the greatest danger to the American family or to national security. And people who are trying to push that line of crap are hoping and counting and praying that more people will be too stupid and too lazy to think for themselves, then not.
Do you really want to run your life based on people who pander to the lowest common denominator? Or do you want to aspire to something great?
Do you want to be happy? Fulfilled? Accomplished? Loved? Do you want to make a difference? Do you want to inspire others to live a life of truth? If the answer to those were yes, then here is the first step to all of those things: Accept yourself. If you're gay or lesbian or trans or bi, or anything else .... Accept it. Be OK with it until you're not just OK with it, your proud of it. Then once you're proud of it, look around and make a list of things you want in life and realize, "Wow, being a lesbian isn't holding me back! If anything it's better! I won't get trapped in a loveless, fake marriage to a man. I won't accidentally get pregnant and have to sacrifice 18 years of my life to a kid I never planned on. I can be anything I want now without societal expectations holding me down! I'm free! ... I am free."
My father says he always knew I was a lesbian, since I was a little girl. He also says that he's glad I'm gay. He thinks it was the best thing for me, because I would never have a men holding me back. Yes, my father actually says that. Now don't get me wrong, I know there are some great men out there, my dad is one of them. But he's right. There's a lot to be said for the opportunities that being a lesbian will give you.
If you don't believe me do a little research and you will see that in general, gay people have more education, higher household incomes, travel more and have more expendable income. But not to the exclusion of the other things society tries to tell you, you can't have if you're gay. Because you can still have a life mate, children, a happy home and anything else your straight counterpart can have! But you can have it on your terms.
Look, the point of this blog is to shout from the virtual rooftops, "It's OK to be gay!"
It's more than OK, it's actually pretty awesome! So of you're wondering if coming out as a lesbian means the end of the world as you know it? It might. But only because the new world you're about to join is even better!
"Come to the edge, he said. They said: We are afraid. Come to the edge, he said. They came. He pushed them and they flew." - Guillaume Apollinaire