Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Living Love Story

We are the anguish and the trial. We are the joy and the hope. We are the example. We are the impossibility. We are the one-in-a-million.

We are young. Too young, some might say. Not so young as we were, though. We have grown old. Our eyes are weary as we look backwards into the light. And surely our eyes will continue to dim as the years pass. We are so young now. We must be very young. Very young to be so full of hope. Hope is all we have sometimes.

We fit all the descriptors, all the markers you must fill. Troubled pasts, secrets, mystery. The bill is there and we fit it perfectly. Running from who we were. Starting over. For some reason in the stories you never see them cry over their past. In the stories it's easy to say good riddance and cast it all off, not a second glance. Don't the people in the stories have mothers? And fathers? Mommies who they cried out for in the night and Daddies who taught them every important lesson in the world? In the stories they leave everything. Good riddance. And it is easier to head forward than backward. They never cry. Or if they do, they only cry once.

We are real. We are two people who exist, who have friends, who have lives. We aren't on a screen or a page. We're your friends. But the way it works is a story. It's a tragedy at times and sometimes it's so funny. We cry from the sorrow and we cry from the joy. And the emotions are so intense that it has the power to bring you, the onlooker, into our emotions and you will cry will us.

And so it is a love story.

All the great love stories have those tears in them. The why is this unfair tears and the why is this so beautiful tears. And you cry because it's not just this life of someone else it's because you see a little bit of yourself somewhere in that love story, or a little bit of what you hope is yourself. And we are the living love story. They so eagerly follow us and hold us up to those around them, see who my friends are! And they cry at our injustice. They fall over themselves with our joy. Because our joy is their joy. Because it is a love story.

But all the parts that make a love story are so hard to live. You cry because you're sad for them. But when it is you, when you're crying because it is hurting you, it is a million times the worse. You cry so that it shakes your body, shakes your whole world. You cry when nobody's looking. You cry so many more times than would ever be on a screen or on a page. Because the full tragedy of it, that's not something you can knowingly give to another person. That's not fair.

We are the hope for the future. We're the light, the here and the now. We are a love story, living and breathing. And we will be one of the ones that makes you cry at the end because you're happy.

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Monday, November 7, 2011

It Gets Better? Really?

The "It Gets Better" campaign is doing a really wonderful thing. I really believe that. It's clear with the number of gay suicides we're hearing about (and what about the ones we don't hear about? The ones that aren't publicized? Or the ones where nobody knew he was gay?) that this is something that needs to be happening right now.

But I find the campaign kind of frustrating at times.

People bullying you at school? It'll be okay. Someday you'll get a job and you'll make real friends who are nice and not bullies. Besides bullies just bully you to feel better about themselves. Feel alone? You're not alone, promise. And look, we're all in adorable relationships and are super successful now and some of us have cute kids!

Which is great and all.

But have you noticed that the people in the videos never really talk about their parents?

So what about if your friends are super supportive, you go to a school where you can be really open without fear, you have a beautiful girlfriend, you're smart and on track to be successful, you're confident...and the only source of sadness in your life is the knowledge that your parents will not and cannot accept you?

They never seem to talk about that.

When your father says the words, "I love you and I will always love you, but I cannot support the choices you're making right now. This is a path that only leads to darkness and sadness." When he can't say the word "gay" or "homosexual" or even your girlfriend's name out loud.

They don't talk about what it's like to know that someday you will have to choose whether to go to a family event or to pretend you're not happily married while you're there. Because bullies might go away. But your family? You don't leave your family behind.

They just might leave you behind.

So does it get better? I don't know. I wanted to believe for so long that it would. But now I'm not so sure. Christmas morning with my family and us as a couple is such a beautiful dream, but I think it will only ever be a dream. A dream I shouldn't have because it just makes me sad to dream it. It builds false hopes. I keep hoping that it'll "get better" and I've put so much stock behind this idea that "it gets better" and I think...I think it's time to give up that dream.

I think it's time to accept that it getting better depends on what "it" is.

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