Sunday, 19 June 2011
Fear is a nasty horrible emotion that can cripple you and make you feel worthless
I felt crippled, and worthless today. And I am now angry, and needing to get this off my chest.
I am angry that I felt fear, and that I allowed myself to be made to feel worthless. Let me explain
My husband, myself and a visiting friend were today walking back to our apartment from a bus stop, a very short 3 minute walk, at most, when upon turning a corner, we walked past a group of 3 male youths, who were walking along with much bravado, dressed as thugs and exuding an attitude of carefree youthful malice.
They noticed 3 adult men, dressed well, walking together in a group past them, and therefore in their minds they decided that it was appropriate to call us a group of 'gay boys', with the leader commenting 'gay gay gay boys' to which they all laughed. The walked past us laughing.
This was clearly a hate comment, said with malice, hatred and the intention to make us feel inferior.
We continued walking, in silence and when we were out of ear shot remarked what a bunch of idiots they were, and why they would have assumed we were gay, by the way we were dressed.
Now I am really angry about 2 things:
1. That they felt that it was ok to use derogatory tone and language towards us, and to laugh at our expense of indeed being 3 gay 'boys'. That in their minds filled with ignorance and hatred, they thought it was ok for them to speak to other human beings in that fashion.
2. That ultimately we did nothing, but walk on past them in silence. I am angry because I did not stand up for who and what I am, because a part of me clammed up with fear and I accepted that hateful comment. I am angry because I did not say or do anything to defend myself, to try change their viewpoints or to show them that I am not a victim and that it was not ok for them to speak to us in that way.
The situation could have turned out in many different ways. There could have been a fight, there could have been a knife, and there could have been police involvement. Could have, could have, could have...
In that moment, I allowed fear to govern my life. I will not let that happen again.
This I vow to myself, that I will not be quiet next time, I will not let myself feel fear, and I will not let them think it is ok.
What are your thoughts on this?
Homophobia is allowed to live in the hearts and minds if no one opposes it. Including gay men walking down the street.
I am angry. I will be angry for a while.
I will be 100% me in all things.
I have learnt something of value from this experience.