Tuesday, November 5, 2013

How Brave Would I Be As a Gay Person?

"At the end of the day, what this bill is about is love, it's about family, it's about commitment," said sponsoring Rep. Greg Harris, clutching an American flag he said was sent by a supportive soldier stationed in Afghanistan. 

Source: Chicago Tribune


There is now marriage equality in Illinois. 


A few weeks ago, I had a dream I had a one-night stand with a guy. More accurately, I dreamed I had had a one-night stand with a guy. 

In the dream, I just wrote about it. I blogged it. I posted it online for all to see.

And then I freaked out.

Now, I've never slept with a guy. But I've made out with enough guys on stage (both of us buck-naked in one case) to know either I don't have any gay feelings, or I just haven't encountered the right guy.

What I freaked out about was, it only occurred to me after I posted the blog, after I was away from any means to take it down, that people in my life that don't approve of the gay lifestyle would read it and perhaps shun me. I was trying to get somewhere to take the blog down before the wrong people read it.

When I woke up, it didn't bug me a bit that I had a dream where I had slept with a guy. I've had those dreams on occasion before. What bugged me was how worried I was what some people would think about it.


I come from a very conservative part of southern Illinois, and a very conservative family. Last year, two of my sisters and I had a couple of heated online conversations about gay rights. One childhood friend messaged me to tell me that in recent years, his mom had become lesbian and had a long-term partner, but still, he believed homosexuality was a sin, as if having a gay family member somehow gave him a little more insight on the matter and the right to judge it. At about the same time, one of my childhood Sunday school teachers un-friended me after I posted something pro-gay rights. It's with less frequency these days, but I do see the "I believe in traditional marriage"-type posts in my Facebook newsfeed, mostly from those in my hometown area. 


The take away from my dream a few weeks ago, the fear I felt in that dream, was this: If I had turned out gay, I'm not sure when I eventually would have gotten the courage to come out to my family, and to the people I grew up around. I'm very bold in my beliefs as a straight ally, but perhaps I wouldn't have been as brave if I had to deal with the personal rejection of not just my beliefs, but me as a person. 

All that is to say, I am now in even more awe of my gay friends who live their lives openly and proudly. 

Cheers and congrats on the right to marry. It's about time. 

No comments: