Moving through the world as a queer human being has it’s struggles. I would like to shine some light on what I and many others deal with every damn day of our lives, and hopeful show people that it’s more than just rainbows and sunshine.
One of those struggles that absolutely drives me crazy is when people are debating your rights directly in front of you like you’re not even human. It seems everyone has an opinion on how I choose to live my life.
For example, in my government class in high school my classmates are debating about whether LGBTQIA+ people should have the right to be married. At the time I wasn’t really out and intimidated so I just kind of sat back and listened to what they had to say. I’m from a pretty conservative area so you can kind of see were this is gonna go. It blows my mind that they don’t see it as a basic human right, like you’re trying to tell someone you can’t be married to someone you love because I don’t believe it. It’s not debatable, it’s a basic human right and last time I checked we’re both humans just trying to make it in this world. I’ve mentioned this before but it’s like they don’t see LGBTQIA+ people as actual human beings who have their own feelings and opinions.
The second struggle that I run into a lot is the fear of showing affection to your partner in public. It can be as simple as holding hands through the store or a quick peck on the check. You’re always looking over your shoulder to see if someone is staring a little too long or you hear comments from people around you. It’s definitely not the most ideal situation to look forward to every time you go out in public, but it can be taken one step further which is were the great issues rises.
I did some research and found on nbcnews.com that about 1 out of 5 hate crimes are anti-LGBTQIA+ related in 2018. As a member of the LGBTIA+ community, that’s a scary number. It makes you second guess holding your partners hand in fear of the long stares might turn into violence. It’s knowing that people are going to judge you no matter how nice you are just because you’re out with your partner.
The last “struggle” I would like to point out is the constant having to come out to new people. There’s plenty of other problems queer people face but this is one that happens pretty frequently to me and my partner.
There’s always a spike of anxiety when you’re talking and the subject is brought up about if you’re dating anyone or they assume you’re heterosexual and then you got to be like actual… It can happen when you’re making new friends, family reunions, work, pretty much anywhere and I usually don’t mind it because a lot of the time the person is like “oh cool” and the conversation moves on. It’s when someone completely reacts not how you expected and it’s really awkward and options are thrown around that gets annoying and no one wants to deal with it.
This struggle is obviously not as big of a deal as possibly being hate crimed just for existing. It’s more of to bring awareness to things people don’t normally have to go through like worrying whether it’s safe enough to hold your partner’s hand in public, and that we all have to work together to help stop all this violence and hate toward the LGBTQIA+ community.