A DAY IN A QUEER LIFE

QUEER VOICES
In my country, Italy, I talk about creating a family while our parliament is still debating whether there should be a law against homophobia. This in Italy, where every day hundreds of boys and young men are the victims of bullying.
QUEER VOICES
At an age I call "29 plus 1," I have changed countries once again. Sometimes I wish nothing more than to call my parents and hear encouraging words. Alas. My family today is made of wonderful friends scattered all over the globe who join me in hoping that one beautiful day I will tie the knot.
QUEER VOICES
I am a queer transgender man planning my wedding to a queer cisgender woman. Man, did my heart ache to think that the world would see me as heterosexual. See Jocelyn as heterosexual. Depending on a given day or situation, it still stings.
QUEER VOICES
At 8 or 9 years old, I knew that my feelings for boys were different, but I didn't know that there was a word for those feelings, or that it was the word that the bullies were using against me, cruelly and without even knowing its meaning.
QUEER VOICES
Just like any expectant parent, my vague intellectual understanding just meant that I really didn't have a clue. But after a year as Mia's dad, I've come to learn a few things, none of which feel like I ever thought they would.
QUEER VOICES
Next month Andrea has to have a minor operation. But to the government and the hospital's administration I'm nobody in relation to my son. That's how it is: We're family and yet not family, and we stagger back and forth from joy to anxiety.
QUEER VOICES
I'd gone to mixed martial arts training and boxed with cisgender guys, and no one had had any clue that I'd been designated as "female" at birth. I don't hide the fact that I'm transgender; I just don't see any reason to bring up my trans status with that group. Allow me to explain.
QUEER VOICES
It happened one day in the car, when I was driving home with my eldest daughter. The word "gay" had come up in a conversation, and it must have made some sort of connection in her head. She's 8 years old, and I have tried to explain the concept of homophobia to her -- with little success.
QUEER VOICES
Honestly, I hardly know what homophobia is anymore. Even my parents have worked through it. Everyone around me knows, and I live in a bubble of kindly indifference to homosexuality where it is no more an issue than the color of my hair. But I do remember.
QUEER VOICES
I go to sleep every night with a siren alarm, a fire extinguisher and a rope ladder beside my bed, in case of another attack. During my 46 years of LGBT and human rights campaigning, I've upset a lot of dictators, fascists, homophobes and racists. Hate mail and death threats are a regular part of my life.