The state of Alabama has had a lot of attention surrounding the LGBTQ community over the last year or two. From the affirmation of gay marriage by the Supreme Court and the subsequent denial of Roy Moore to follow that law to the election of Doug Jones over Moore, to the silencing of LGBT students in schools, to the racist and homophobic rap distributed on social media, the conversation has been heated and the opinions condemning. But there has been one thing missing from the conversation – HUMANITY. People are so sure they know what is right. They are so sure the have the moral high ground, that many times, the fact that you are discussing the lives of humans – and many who are young humans - is lost in the chaos. I want to tell the stories of these HUMANS. And in particular, the stories of these YOUNG HUMANS.
In our area of the country, there are many, many LGBT youth who have chosen not to come out to their families or friends due to fear. There are many who struggle and feel alone and isolated. There are many who do come out only to realize those fears as reality. And there are those who come out to supportive families who still walk in fear at school, in the community and most offensively, at church, where love should be the answer to us all. Every. Single. Time.
So I am beginning this as a series of anonymous stories of Humans who grew up in Alabama. Their understanding of themselves and their communities. Their fears, their hopes and their dreams. It is anonymous because these are my children. They are your children. They are all ours. And do you know if they are yours? Are you a safe space for your children, your family, your friends? Or are you someone to fear? These are their stories. I hope that by reading them, you will see a little bit more HUMANITY in them and learn to love not hate. Period.
First, lets look at some statistics. Please look at the statistics. And while you do, imagine these numbers apply to your children. Imagine how it must feel to see these numbers about a child you love. Imagine. Feel. And then love.
Stay tuned for the first in this series. And please help me show others our HUMANITY.
These are the statistics LGBT Youth and Their Parents Face Each and Every Day. Think about that: