Every week, we collect anonymous entries sent in using the link on our sidebar and post them all on Monday. We post anything as long as it doesn't contain personal attacks or hate speech. Feel free to submit your thoughts and questions :)
Uh. So this blog is blowing up a little bit (that is a good thing, My Mom!). We're [back] on a regular schedule, and we have so many writers. The Most Writers. I think that the broad spectrum of columnists and volume of posts puts us closer to "effectively conveying the diversity within the LGBTQ Community, something that is often underrepresented and underestimated." And this is most certainly a good thing.
The problem we then run into, however, is having more content than our current readerbase can keep up with. Which doesn't mean that we should have
less fewer (grammar police called me out on this) posts, it just means that we're ready for more readers :) So, like, you know how there's a Share! button at the bottom of every post? Use that! Use that. If just ten people shared links on their wall, that would reach, like, 9,000 Facebook users #exactsciences. Or if you're in a hurry (? ("If you have to zap like your blog posts before you head out the door, you might want to loosen up your schedule.")) there's also the Like button there, too. Share the good word, Readers! I can only spam so many people!
In other news, hey This Awesome Article. Thanks to Ryan Brown for doing such a great job with this piece, and to Maya Robinson for putting up with how awkward I am in front of a camera.
The anonymous posts for this week are just too much, You Girls. I know I've said this before, but I am so much so in love with This Blog a little bit.
I write this anonymous entry in my room crying. Why am I crying? I am crying because we live in a world that is not accepting and a world that is very judgmental. For the past few years in my life, I have been trying to change who I am. I have been trying to pretend that everything is ok, when it simply is not. For example I went to church during thanksgiving break, and these girls made a general comment about how gays should not be allowed in the church or even identify themselves as Christians. I am a proud gay individual in secret. I wanted to honestly attack her but I could not since I did not want to reveal my sexuality to my cousin who happened to be sitting next to me. Why am I still in the closet? I am in the closet because I am scared of what my parents will say, I am scared because of what other family members will say and I am scared because of the perception the world would have on people like me. I am scared because I want to run for office on in my foreign country and I am scared because people would judge me based on my sexuality and not on my promise to serve them. Time to grow up, this is the funny part! Have you ever had a crush on somebody, who did not know you were gay or lesbian? Have you ever seen that person and wished to tell them how you were feeling? Have you nicely contacted someone asking them to spend time with you in a nice way, but the person you contacted keeps on rejecting you and making excuses every time? [Ed. Note: Sorry I had to take this next line out, #1. Had to be careful with the whole personal attack thing. If you want to talk about it, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org] I am proud of who I am and I am proud of whom I have become during my freshman year at Duke. I want the world to know the real me. I want the world to know the boy who is extremely funny, insecure, weird, smart boy who doubts himself frequently, and is goal-driven and happens to be GAY. I want to live in a society where people do not judge me based on my sexuality and people rather appreciate the diversity that exists in society. I do not know when I will frankly come out, but the time will certainly come. I do not know when that time will be. But, all I know is I am who I am and I cannot change one bit of it. I am ME, I am unique, I am different and I will never change the fact that I happen to like GOOD-LOOKING boys, not just an boy, but extremely hot boys.Thank God, for extremely attractive people at Duke!
Hello Blue Devils United!
Urban Dictionary Definitions:
Lurker: Someone that follows a forum but doesn't post
Creeper: Someone who views your profile multiple times without saying anything
Stalker: A person who is way too obsessed with someone to the point of being a creeper (see above)
I am one of the above. Well, maybe I'm all of the above. You can also call me:
Mom: The woman who loves you unconditionally from birth, the one who puts her kids before herself and the one who you can always count on above everyone else (definition also from Urban Dictionary).
To those of you whose parents have rejected you for being your whole self: I am very, very sorry. I think of you all the time, and my heart cries for you. I wish that I could give each of you a big hug and tell you that you're just perfect, just the way you are.
To those of you whose parents are fully accepting, loving, supportive, and always know what to say and do: I'm very, very happy for you. It's your birth right to have parents who know how to love you unconditionally (see the ideal definition of "Mom" above). You have been blessed with such parents, and this is a wonderful thing.
To those of you who have parents somewhere in the middle of the two poles listed above, I now speak to you:
1) From your birth, the most important thing in this world has always been your safety and your happiness.
2) It terrifies me to think that you will ever be unsafe.
3) It breaks my heart to think that you will ever be unhappy.
4) While I am very proud that you are out, strong, brave, and such an awesome individual, I'm terrified that being out means that you're now a target for discrimination, hate words, and hate crimes.
5) My fear probably comes across sometimes as very conditional acceptance. What you hear when I say, "Be careful about public displays of affection" might be very different than what I mean when I say it. What I'm saying to you is, "This world is full of dangerous bigots, and I don't want you to get beat up and left on the sidewalk."
6) I feel no differently about wanting to be involved in your life than I would feel if you were heterosexual. I want to know when you fall in love. I want to know when your heart is broken. I want to know if you're dating anyone special. I want to know what that person is like. Please don't exclude me from all of these special talks because you don't think I can handle it. I think you'd be surprised if you gave it a try.
7) In our conversations, if I frequently bring up topics regarding your life as a queer person and how your life is going in these aspects, I'm afraid you'll think that I feel this is the most important part of you, and it's not. If I talk to you too little about it, I'm afraid you'll think that I'm minimizing an important part of your life or that I'm avoiding discussions about important parts of your life. I don't instinctively know the right balance. (And also please note: I used the word "queer" just now and I've no idea if that's the right word or if it's offensive in the way I used it. My lurking/creeping/stalking is the only thing that makes me suspect that maybe it's okay?) Teach me the lingo some time - and tell me what's okay to say when, alright?
7) I need you to tell me what aspects of my parenting are working for you, and what aspects are not. I don't always know how to be helpful and supportive. Sometimes I try and fall flat on my face.
8) Sometimes I don't know what to do or say in certain situations. For example, when the late night shows are on and the comedy routine includes a stereotypical gay character, am I allowed to laugh? Am I supposed to be appalled? Sometimes I watch you, and I laugh only if you laugh. You usually laugh, so I usually laugh too. Are you laughing inside or just outside? Am I hurting you by laughing?
9) While I fully support the repeal of DADT on moral grounds, I secretly want it to stay, so that you will never be able to directly involved in a dangerous war. I know that's terrible. I'll vote for candidates supporting its repeal, but my heart tugs when I do.
Most of all, I love you. And I'm sorry if sometimes my loving you too much feels like lack of support or something I don't mean it to be. I just want you to live a happy and safe life. I'm not sure yet that this is completely possible for you, and I'm scared.
I worry so much about you.
How can I post this not anonymously? I'm rather sick of being anonymous and am on my way out! Well, except to my mother. Ad father. And brother. and grandparents. And okay maybe nobody knows. But I'm trying! I swear! I called my brother this week to come out to him, but he didn't pick up, and responded days later via text. It feels like I haven't had a serious, close conversation with any of my family members in so long that to come out to them would be doubly awkward. It's sad, really. But over Thanksgiving, I decided to try.
So here was my most recent coming out attempt, well, more testing the waters:
I was in the movie theater with my mom over Thanksgiving, and we were looking at movie posters. I'd been looking at a picture of Natalie Portman, trying to figure out what wasn't quite right about it (photoshopping galore). I tried to point it out to my mom, but she said she hadn't spent much time looking at Natalie Portman in general, so she couldn't really tell. I responded, "Oh, I have". And she gave me this look and asked "Why?"
Now I wasn't about to have a coming out party right there, next to the restroom and garbage can in the hallway of the movie theater, surrounded by my boyfriend and the rest of my family. My boyfriend heard the whole thing, and knew exactly what I was talking about, but she just didn't get it. I'm not sure if the look on her face was confusion or disgust.
-Nicole Dautel. Trinity '11
Here's the deal: attention seeking behavior seems to be inextricably intertwined with so many things LGBTQ.
3. What should be done? (or should anything be done?)
I know that people can say pretty terrible things to someone who comes out to them, but I never imagined hearing “I don’t believe you.” But, for some reason, I seem to be hearing it over and over again as I try talk to my friends about my sexuality. It’s not always that explicit, though. From my sister, it was “You’re just saying this because you have so many gay friends now.” From another friend, it was “But you’re too pretty to be anything but straight” (their way of complimenting me?). And, perhaps the most hurtful and least expected of all, “Oh, you and everyone else. You’re just trying to be trendy.” I can’t say I didn’t expect it to some extent. Yes, I am a woman who never questioned her sexuality at all before college, and not really until the end of last year. And no, I don’t know what new label I fit into yet (bisexual... lesbian?) or if I fit into one at all. But does that make it alright to tell me that I am not genuinely attracted to other women? I’ve heard plenty of stories about how hard it is to be a queer woman, especially at Duke, but I could never have envisioned some of my friends (some of whom are gay themselves) telling me that I am trying to be something I’m not. Talk about invalidating.
I saw the article about the LGBT center in Towerview today and while I thought it was well written and said some great stuff about what you guys are doing, I can't help but be annoyed with how frats seem to be covered. As a gay male in a fraternity, I am about as closeted as it comes, except I don't necessarily see that as wrong or as some terrible act of denying "who I am." I am a lot of things other than gay, and so the reason I don't come out and tell everyone I like guys is not because I'm weak or afraid of it. It's because I want to be seen for the other things that I am. Additionally, the world isn't all rainbows (ha) and sunshine, and for most people, coming out risks a lot of other important things that, for some, are just as important as (if not more important than) their sexuality. There are a lot of male actors who don't announce their sexuality because it ruins their chances of getting roles, in the business world a lot of gay men don't come out because they want to protect their jobs, and maybe a lot of guys in frats here don't come out because they want people to remember the other things they do and are a part of (such as their frat, for example). I just think it sucks that when people hear about closeted frat guys at Duke, it's assumed that they're insecure losers with "identity issues" who will never find their way in life because they don't want to run around telling everyone they like dudes. I like guys, but I like my life at Duke a lot more than to risk it in the name of "taking a stand" and "defying a stereotype." I don't do drugs, and I don't sleep with girls, and I think that's enough to defy the stereotypes people have about fraternities here. A lot of us are comfortable with who we are and are gonna live it up for the rest of our time here without it being ruined by something that doesn't feel as important in the short term.
*NTS: I should never write something that is going to be read by anyone other than nobody at 2:40 AM. This post has had to be edited so many times. This is what overtired looks like, People. (It looks like a lot of very long hyperlinks.)