Sunday, January 15, 2012

LGBT Teen Suicides...Enough!!

After watching multiple videos from the “It Gets Better” project on Youtube, I have decided that I would write a blog. It is sad that there even has to be a Youtube channel to remind gay teens that life gets better outside of the company of closed-minded individuals. For those of you who aren’t fond of this subject or do not care, kindly exit this page as I do not wish to offend. I am not seeking acceptance by writing this blog, nor am I pushing my beliefs onto anyone....I simply ask that you read with compassion.
Many people argue that being gay is “wrong,” and use the Bible as a means to substantiate their reasoning. That’s quite alright as everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I am fully aware of what the Bible says and as a human being I will say that I have fallen short; but that is something that I hold in common with each and every person who reads this very sentence. 
I am a gay Christian and I will say it proudly in the face of anyone I encounter. I point out that fact, so I can point this out  as well--I can see things from both sides. I can see that being gay is difficult and I can see all the reasons a fellow Christian would protest; but one thing I cannot see is how a Christian can put down on another human being for a sin. A sin, is a sin, is a sin. No matter how perfect a person aims to be, they’re never fully perfect. Everyone sins. Point blank. 
A commonly asked question is this: “Is being gay a choice or are you born that way?” I believe that with anything else, acting upon your feelings is a choice. Bullying is also a choice. I have found, and this has nothing to do with my lifestyle, that gays are more compassionate as Christians because they truly know what it is like to love those that hate them. In some cases that is hard to do. It is absolutely repulsive to me that in 2012, there has to be a project such as “It Gets Better” to remind people that their lives are worth hanging onto because their current situation, to them, isn’t worth living for. 
If you’re a numbers person and you need statistics, I have them for you. In America, in 2010 alone, over 1,000,000 people died by their own hands. This is a problem. Even more so, that 26,000 of these suicides were teenagers. America now has 26,000 less promising individuals to grow into adults because they were bullied and called names. In school, a place where people are supposed to feel safe, 70% of LGBT teens feel unsafe and constantly uncomfortable. 90% of LGBT teens have been mistreated, ridiculed, made fun of, and harassed while at school. In 2011, two ELEVEN YEAR OLD children took their own lives by hanging themselves because their classmates ridiculed them for being gay. Children in the school with one of the young men that took his own life was told by a friend that he could no longer hang out with him because his father said the child was a “faggot!”  A 16-year-old was stabbed to death two days after “coming out of the closet” by people who he had known all of his life. Teenagers attempted to murder a lesbian classmate because she “wanted to be a boy, and they were showing her she didn’t want to be one.” One guy even said that “God told him that he needed to take her life.”  Lawrence King, a 15-year-old boy, was killed INSIDE his school by classmates. The last word he heard was “faggot!” Taylor Jo Doherty’s story is one that I always get upset over. She was 14 and told her parents that she had a girlfriend, her mother and step father sent her to live with her biological father because they didn’t want the negative effects of her decisions. Upon arrival he asked why she had been kicked out, she replied that she had a girlfriend and he told her to go live somewhere else. So she went to who was always there for her, her girlfriend. One day at school, having lost everything she loved because nobody would support her, she walked home from school during her lunch period and took her own life. 
If you see no problem here, then it’s safe to say that you are heartless. If your grounds for explaining your reasoning is the Bible then you are sick. My Bible reads “Love thy neighbor as thyself,” “Do not judge lest ye be judged”. Nowhere does the Bible say that only straight people are worthy of the love of Jesus Christ. As a matter of fact I have been told by several atheist people that the reason they do not believe in God is because the ones who are supposed to be “Godly” are in fact the ones who put them down. If that doesn’t tell you something about the way you treat people, then nothing can. I also know several people who want to “come out”; but are afraid for the sake of their reputation and the way they will be treated. It must be horrible to be a prisoner in your own life. I know a few people who are willing to never know what it feels to love a human being and fight every single feeling they have because they know for a fact they are gay, yet they are not willing to lose their families acceptance over it. Sad. I have been the listening ear and crying shoulder to a few guys who were star football players, one of which has a family very involved in a well known church in this town, who knows he is gay, but acts straight to not deal with the repercussions. 
After hearing and reading the stories of the young men and women who have taken their own lives because of the hate that they experienced their short lives, I am sad to say that I never knew what it was like to be taunted. I am a strong individual and would’ve taken those experiences to save another child from dealing with it. My parents have always told me to stand up for what I believe in. I’m sure they weren’t counting on my sexuality being one of the things I would stand for and if you know me, then you know I’m not your “typical gay.” I don’t believe that pushing for rights is the way to acceptance and so forth. I will take what is given to me. I did, however; stand up for myself in school. Nobody really ever picked on me because I would fight for myself and others and that made everyone afraid of me. By standing up for myself I was taken out of school and did not complete my senior year with my classmates. Instead, I attended an alternative school until I graduated because I wasn’t treated fairly. I would do it all over again, the same exact way because I am not ashamed nor afraid of who I am. I don’t think that messages of hate by ANYONE should be drilled into a teenagers head telling them that they are worthless for something that makes them happy. 
These suicides were preventable. Unfortunately, they won’t be the last. There should be no “It Gets Better” project. It should already be fine. My God does not condone hate. He loves endlessly. You and me. If that offends you then maybe you need to dig a little deeper. 

1 comment:

  1. I am so PROUD to have watched you grow into the BEAUTIFUL GAY CHRISTIAN WOMAN you have become!!! I love you always.