To this day I do not know a single LGBTQ* person from my youth. I was not privileged to have understanding parents nor to have role models with whom I could connect. Many youth today find themselves in a similar position.
Growing up as an LGBTQ* person is rarely easy. Rejection, isolation, discrimination, harassment and physical violence are all too common. Understandably this results in low self-esteem, risky self-destructive behaviors, homelessness and suicide. Hope for a better future is often an essential lifeline to those of us who are hurting. We need to know that suffering will end and that we can be happy.
I choose to be visible for this reason. As many others have said, I want you to know that life does get better. So much better!
If you are struggling please know that you are not alone. You are precious and you are loved. There are many resources available to you. All you need to do is reach out.
- The Trevor Project (http://www.thetrevorproject.org) is a 24 hour help line that is available to anyone who needs a listening ear.
- 866-4-U-TREVOR (866-488-7386)
- Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (http://www.pflag.org) provides support and resources for families and friends of LGBT people.
- Information from the American Psychological Association (APA)