Yesterday at work I served a mother who had her wee boy in tow as she embarked upn her shopping escapades. The kid must have been about two, possibly three, years old. I was doing my usual, chatting away to her, and then the wee guy pipes up and interrupts: “This is Donatello!” He was insistent on showing me his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles toy. Yet again he proceeded to tell me the Turtle’s name was Donatello – which funnily enough I remembered, because as a child I too was a fan. Inudging the wee guy I told him my favourite was Michelangelo, to which his mother then asked him ‘what’s Michelangelo?’ And her son look at me before confidently replying “he’s a party doooode.”
My heart melted.
I’ve been feeling incredibly raw the last few days. Not depressed like I was before, but just crippled with an overwhelming sense of sadness. I don’t feel right; I feel constantly on the verge of tears. Sure, I will attribute some of how I feel to the despair born from what happened in Orlando, but now it feels much more than that. And after serving that woman yesterday I worried I’ll never have that. I feat that I’ll never have a family of my own because the world won’t let me.
Orlando has made realise that we as members of the LGBT community aren’t equals. A lot of us do have families, yes. But are those families looked upon as equals? Do people see two members of the same sex and kid or two parents and their child – do they see a family? A family that are penalised and condemned by others for choosing to bring a child up in that ‘environment.’
How many people in your life still believe that you chose to be gay? I suspect a lot more than you think. I know that question is certainly applicable to my life; a question I feel is completely obscene and ridiculous. As if anyone would choose to be persecuted, hated, treated as a second class citizen; ofree themselves up to be mocked on a daily basis; to be targets of hate crimes. It’s so weird how being gay is a choice but I can’t find a single person who can tell me about the moment they chose to be straight.
According to the Bible being a homosexual is an abomination. According to the me if you believe that then you’re a bigot and a moron.
When you look at me what do you see? My sexuality? My clothes, which in turn causes you to form assumptions about my sexuality? How about my mannerisms, traits, gestures? Yes it is a lot harder to ‘spot’ someone that’s gay (we aren’t wild Pokémon FYI) as modern masculinity is growing increasingly ‘feminine’ (I resent using that word as if it’s a negative, because it very much is not) so the lines are blurring. Yet assumptions are still made on a daily basis; about me, about you. About him, about her. About who they possibly like, or love.
Well love is love; it doesn’t choose gender opposites, it just happens. It isn’t a math or science; there isn’t a correct or incorrect love. It just is. So what makes the love between two men, or two women, or between transgender men and women any less equal and potent than the love between two heterosexuals? Nothing.
I look at the all those affected by Orlando, and how their families are now shattered and broken. All I see is hurt; is that what love always inevitably winds up being? Hurt? Or is it having someone to share that hurt with? A family to support and in turn be supported by. In a world where the love I’m searching for is looked upon differently, as if it wasn’t equal, finding someone to be with is only part of the challenge. We accept the love we think we deserve, and more often than not a lot of people think we deserve nothing.