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WHAT ARE THE CHANCES OF A LESBIAN ASYLUM?

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  • #61
    There's certainly no "class" I took, or "rule book" I was given, to "train" me to be gay. I was not abused in any way when I was younger, it was completely natural, I just always preferred another man as opposed to a woman. Have those who are sickened by two men kissing each other in public, or holding one another's hand, ever considered how your heterosexual "flamboyance" might be perceived? All I see, everywhere, are heterosexuals flaunting their "straightness" -- it gets to be rather old after awhile ..........

    My point with that above... before you start spouting off about those damn "fags" ... why don't you consider how YOUR BEHAVIOUR appears first? .......... I'm not going to throw a fit when I see some overt display of heterosexuality in public, so you best not spaz out if you happen to see me kissing my boyfriend at the museum ........ otherwise ........ Again, I have to deal with heterosexuals fawning upon one another, you'll have to deal with men who would decide to show affection. Well, as you see, I don't support the double standard in which heterosexuals can do whatever they'd like together in public, but I'm supposed to "keep it at home" ............

    Gay pride parades, in my opinion are disgusting; and I'd never find myself attending one. Those people are very atypical of your average gay or lesbian. Oh, and I so wish I'd be making money for how many times the word "lifestyle" has been used here. Being gay isn't a "lifestyle." I can see people ignorantly confusing the "club lifestyle" that a small percentage of gay people partipate in, and viewing that as how everyone behaves. This is simply not true. You want to know what lifestyle I have? The office guy, telecomuting, what have you, you know, typical grey collar sort of person. There's nothing at all there that is different from probably a vast majority of others here. You want to know that ONE difference? At the end of the day, my loved one is a guy.

    Those who scream about "special rights" are sadly uninformed. It's all about being afforded the same rights under the law that any heterosexual man would be given. I don't want any special treatment. I want to be able to have a legally binding commitment, just as heterosexuals would. Imagine, you love someone greatly, and there's an auto accident. The hospital REFUSES to allow you to see your loved one, because "legally" you are not family. You see, without the genders and the sexuality involved, it's an awful situation. I want to be able to extend my health insurance to my "spouse" just as a heterosexual man would be able to do with his wife. And, sure, I'd like to have the tax relief that married individuals have too. There's nothing at all special there. It's just receiving the SAME rights that heterosexuals have.

    And if I could take a pill to magically make me straight, would I take it?

    No.

    If I was given a choice at birth, or before puberty, whatever, would I have chosen to be heterosexual?

    No.

    I'm proud of myself. I'm proud of who I have become too. The basic thing is, you know far more gay people than you think, you probably just don't know they're gay. The majority of us are just plain folks, we just choose to love someone of our own gender. I agree not to be revolted when I see heterosexuals flaunting their straightness, can you agree to leave us do the same?

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    • #62
      Hmmm...

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      • #63
        Unfortunately, I believe your odds are not good, at least based on this article in our local newspaper printed yesterday, June 29. Best of luck to you.


        If he can't live and love here, he'll take his creativity abroad

        Patrick Scully

        Published June 29, 2003

        In 1978 I flew across the Atlantic to be the best man in my friend Keith's wedding in Warsaw. Four years earlier he had met Bozena at a language camp and fallen in love. They decided to get married and make a life together. They were free to live in either her homeland, Poland, or Keith's, the United States. They came here, and have lived happily together. A sweet love story.

        Keith was the first friend I came out to, back in 1972. Like Keith, I am a native of Minnesota. Like Keith, I fell in love overseas. In November of 2000 I met a man, Mauricio, in Rio de Janeiro. We fell in love. I have since been to Brazil to be with him eight times, for periods ranging from two weeks to three months. We traveled together in Italy for a month in 2001, and worked together on a performance project in Germany for a month last summer.

        Unlike Keith, I have no right to get married. Unlike Keith, I have no right to be with my partner in my own country.

        I have tried. A little over a year ago Mauricio applied for a tourist visa to come here. He was turned down. Like me, he is a gay artist, working in dance and theater, and scrambles to make a living. Our consulate looks for proof of his ties to his country. These are things like a wife and children, a full-time job, home ownership and a lot of money in the bank. He's a gay artist and has none of these (just like me). His application was refused.

        We tried again this year. In mid-May Mauricio had an interview at the U.S. Consulate in Rio as part of his application for a student visa. He had been accepted to study English at the University of Minnesota. My brother had agreed to sponsor him. He had a letter explaining that as of Jan. 1, 2004, he would be a full-time member of a Rio-based dance company that tours internationally. He was going to study here from September through December.

        Our consular officials asked him why a dancer needs to learn English, and suggested he learn it in Brazil.

        Many people see Thursday's Supreme Court ruling as a watershed moment for gay rights, and perhaps it is. But imagine yourself in my situation, and you will see that it is not nearly enough.

        If there were true equality in this country, I would be able to apply to bring Mauricio here as my life partner, as any heterosexual can.

        As it now stands, I am forced to choose between living in this community, which I love, and being with the man I love. I want to live with the man I love here, but can't. This is sad and unfair.

        I am going to Berlin to build a life with Mauricio.

        I have contributed much to our community in my lifetime. Among my contributions:

        "¢ Over 30 years of performing on stages ranging from the Walker and Guthrie to the Southern and Illusion theaters, to scores of schools across the state.

        "¢ Creation of Patrick's Cabaret in Minneapolis.

        "¢ Development of the Science Museum of Minnesota's outreach program, Museum on the Move.

        "¢ Original development of the Museum Magnet School in the St. Paul schools.

        At 49, I have not yet contributed half of what I have to give. In these challenging times, our country needs the experience and creativity of people like me. I would love to continue to make my contributions in the Twin Cities, and to live with my partner at the same time. Current U.S. immigration law makes this impossible.

        My relationship counts for nothing in the eyes of the federal government. There are thousands of American citizens in similar horrible situations, all created by laws that treat gays and lesbians as second-class citizens.

        I have a great job waiting for me in Germany. I look forward to accomplishing wonderful things there. Mauricio will be able to stay with me there, because he is my partner. If Germany were the United States, I would be refused entrance because I am HIV-positive. If Germany were the United States, I would be refused entrance because I can't provide proof of ties to my country (wife, kids, house, car, full-time job and a big bank account). Fortunately, Germany is not the United States. In Berlin I will have more right to love and live as a noncitizen than I have in my own country.

        A bittersweet love story.

        Patrick Scully is an artist and activist living in Minneapolis.

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        • #64
          Thanks about being compassionate towards us, lurker.

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          • #65
            Are you being sarcastic Hola?

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            • #66
              I am taking Hola at her word, as I hope she has taken mine. I live in one of the best cities for diversity in this country, and to still see someone have to make a choice such as the writer is having to do makes me mourn for us as a people. To the degree Americans or any people remain elitist, sexist, xenophobic or otherwise exclusionary, we fail ourselves, our children, and the evolutionary progress of our souls.

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              • #67
                Hmmm

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                • #68
                  Hmmm about what, Z?

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                  • #69
                    "rapu"'s post is really excellent. He states it as it is.

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                    • #70
                      Lurker, you've a very interesting username. Do you use it in the real world as well?

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                      • #71
                        I won Asylum this past April based on my fear of persecution. As long as you can prove that your claim is both subjective and objective then you will be granted Asylum.

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                        • #72
                          You are NOT...

                          ...a straight (or str8 acting), a b i s e x u a l, a g a y, a man who has s e x with other men, a p o o f/q u e e r/h o m o...

                          But you are...

                          ...A MAN

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                          • #73
                            Extended intimate contact with black people isn't going to make a white person black; however, the same sort of extended intimacy with g a y people just might make a few "straight" people into b i s e x u a l s. Maybe more than a few ... Of course, in making a statement like that I realize that I am flying in the face of the orthodox dogma that holds that h o m o s e x u a l i t y is not a choice, that we can't help feeling these desires, it's out of our control, and so on. Interestingly enough, though, it is generally h o m o s e x u a l s and sympathetic heterosexuals who most strenuously assert this position; the right wing, on the other hand, often displays a more generous evaluation of the fluidity of human sexual desire, as well as an unfortunately much more openly repressive response to that fluidity. Paradoxically (although somewhat predictably), we find "progressives" arguing that individuals are essentially powerless victims of their sexual orientations (the "no choice" position), while the "conservatives" recognize that under the right circumstances, anyone might be seduced into practicing the love that dare not speak its name.

                            You surely have heard, for instance, how some people argue why open h o m o s e x u a l i t y is a threat to military discipline. An author argues, e.g., "During my Army career I saw countless officers and NCOs who couldn't stop themselves from hitting on soldiers. ...The objects of their affection were impressionable lads who, searching for a caring role model, sometimes ended up in g a y relationships they might not have sought." While this author is ostensibly talking about sexual harassment here, he also confesses, no doubt unwittingly, that sometimes what can make the difference between a "straight" man and a "g a y" man is nothing more than the right circumstances at the right time. His comment also serves as an example of the extremely active imaginations of the opponents of ending the ban on h o m o s e x u a l s in the military. Indeed, a pattern quickly emerged in the public debate on the issue: those who favored lifting the ban supported their position with arguments rooted in the established American tradition of civil rights and equal opportunity (individuals should be judged according to their performance and abilities), while those who favored continuing the ban based their arguments in fantasies of predatory g a y s menacing innocent young straights. "Out on the battlefield," said Hopkins, "I'm going to have enough to worry about without thinking about the guy next to me. If you're out there a long time, you worry the guy might have sexual feelings toward you, might come on to you." Now who exactly is it, we might want to ask, who's preoccupied with thinking about the guy next to him? As others have pointed out before me, there's at least one thing that both h o m o s e x u a l s and h o m o p h o b e s have in common, which is an intense preoccupation with h o m o s e x u a l desires. These comments assume as a kind of unconscious given that *** men will find the (straight) speaker so irresistible that they will ignore the mortal dangers of battle in order to come on to him. In other words, this particular soldier has evidently already constructed a whole imaginary scenario of attempted h o m o s e x u a l seduction with himself at the center of attention. Perhaps he is just assuming, as so many straight men do, that g a y men look at other men the same way that straight men look at women, in which case we can read the h y s t e r i a among straight men about serving with g a y s as a kind of confession of the disrespectful, predatory (hetero)sexuality traditionally encouraged by military culture. On the other hand -- and without invalidating or replacing that possibility -- perhaps we are dealing with unconscious h o m o s e x u a l desire, conveniently projected onto a fantasized g a y man and thus disavowed.

                            Consider, for example, the approach to the issue taken by a senior research fellow at the Hoover Institution who also served in the U.S. Navy. He argues against lifting the ban by reminding us of just how much intimacy with his comrades the average serviceman is already forced to experience: "Moving fast and tired in every state of undress and sometimes full of bloody bruises, he ***ps and rubs up against his fellows innumerable times." The h o m o e r o t i c i s m of this observation is so transparent that if we didn't have a context for it, we might think we were reading the outline of a scene from a g a y **** flick (an impression that is reinforced near the end of his article where he speciously raises the possibility of "the use of taxpayer funds for military hospitals to treat **** g o n o r r h e a or the consequences of such practices as 'f i s t i n g' and 'r i m m i n g' "). He goes on to tell us, "S e x is an explosive part of military life. Young men are at the peak of desire. ...To say that the atmosphere aboard ship is sexually charged is an understatement." Since these young men are presumably heterosexual, one has to wonder where so much sexual tension is coming from -- of course it couldn't be from all that running around naked and r u b b i n g up against each other, could it? It seems to me an obvious point to make, that the vicious homophobia typical of military culture must be directly related to the fact that military life is by its very nature incredibly h o m o e r o t i c. What I am referring to with the term "h o m o e r o t i c" is the simple fact that, as Eve Sedgwick puts it in her book Between Men, "what goes on at football games, in fraternities, at the Bohemian Grove, and at climactic moments in war novels can look, with only a slight shift of optic, quite startlingly 'h o m o s e x u a l'. . ." The above-mentioned comments are representative of the conservative fear -- also seen in the nervously energetic h o m o e r o t i c s of buddy movies like "Lethal Weapon" -- that the good, clean, s e x l e s s and often brutal "normal" h o m o e r o t i c i s m of straight male culture might at any moment cross over into the forbidden zone of actual h o m o s e x u a l i t y. Instead of sexual tension and "accidental" half-dressed b u m p i n g and r u b b i n g, guys might decide to simply have s e x; as in the case of conservative fears about the pleasures of casual drug use, one thing might lead to another ... This is the premise, of course, of an awful lot of g a y sexual fantasies. Locker rooms, fraternities and military life are staples of g a y ****ography because these places are already in some basic sense "h o m o s e x u a l": everyone is the same s e x, and there's a great deal of physical intimacy.

                            So what is quite striking about the debate over g a ys in the military is that the stereotypical imaginary scenarios of g a y fantasy are appearing with such regularity in the paranoid fantasies of straight men who oppose lifting the ban. Opposition to the open presence of h o m o s e x u a l s in the military (or anywhere, for that matter) is grounded in the wish to prevent these scenarios from becoming realities to the fullest extent possible. In other words, in much of the support for maintaining the ban on g a y s in the military we find straight men defending themselves against their own anxious h o m o e r o t i c fantasies through the active repression and suppression of actual g a y men, who are blamed for their intrinsically disruptive presence, in exactly the same way many straight men blame attractive women. The current controversy about g a y s in the military has more than a little in common with the ongoing controversy about the sexual harassment of women in the military. For example, both the g a y man in military service and the s e x y woman in the presence of a group of military men are perceived as "asking for it," the difference being that s e x y women are supposedly invitations to Getting Laid, while s e x y - g a y men are invitations to that other time-honored ritual proof of manhood, Beating Someone Up. F a g-bashing, like the sexual violation of women, should be recognized as a form of rape: both are violent physical attacks directed intentionally at someone's sexuality. However, f a g-bashing, despite being an intimately physical experience of sexual humiliation, is not commonly perceived as a s e x crime in the same sense as r a p e, presumably because the f a g-bashers are "straight," and "straight" men don't feel sexual desire for other men (that's what makes them different from g a y s, right?). So f a g-bashing, according to this reasoning, is essentially different from woman-r a p i n g because there can be no sexual motivation to the attack on a g a y man. But at the same time that we as a culture strive to maintain this useful fiction as a kind of "official" ideology about the fundamental difference between hetero and h o m o sexualities, we also routinely confess to the strong suspicion that f a g-bashers are "really" g a y themselves, or maybe they're "confused, " and are just, as the saying goes, not dealing with it very well. Given how often we hear of or know people who have experienced at least some degree of "confusion" about their sexual orientations before settling into their "true" identities, it's amazing that we are still in so much denial -- culturally, socially, individually -- about the implications of that common confusion. "Confusion" about one's sexual identity can only come from conflicting desires, from feeling varying degrees of attraction to both s e x e s. What I know of my own experience and others' suggests that such "confusion" is in fact so common as to be a normal aspect of human development, particularly during adolescence. However, because we live in a culture that teaches us that heterosexual desire is not just natural, desirable, and normal but also completely incompatible with h o m o s e x u a l desire, we are encouraged to regard our b i s e x u a l potential as "confusion" rather than a normal human sexual response. Our current "common sense" about sexual identity tells us that a certain degree of h o m o s e x u a l attraction is normal, but that sexual identity is a matter of being either straight or g a y, and in either case it's just the way you are, not something you "choose" -- so anything else is just "confusion." In my experience, some version of this understanding is shared by most g a y s and straights alike. It should be easy to see, then, how an integral part of our "sexual identities," whether straight or g a y, is a kind of search-and-destroy program that continually scans for signs of the "opposite" orientation so that these "confusing" impulses can be neutralized through the usual array of psychological defense mechanisms. The "success" of the program is measured by how effectively it blocks conscious recognition of any attraction to the "wrong" s e x, attractions that "confuse" our sexual identities. The search-and-destroy mission is especially important, of course, in the construction of "normal" heterosexual masculinity; seen in this light, f a g-bashing is merely the outward and visible expression of an interior psychological conflict.

                            Returning to the specific issue of the debate over g a y s in the military, we can see now why an emphasis on the sexually tense and homoerotic atmosphere of military service would quickly yield to warnings about the inevitability of violent attacks against openly g a y servicemen. Indeed, this movement has characterized the shifts in emphasis of the larger public debate: first the paranoid fantasies of predatory g a y s and the "discomfort" of straights at the idea of having openly g a y men around them, and then the threats of violent harassment of g a y servicemen. Since the fears about how g a y s will actually behave if they were allowed to come out about their sexuality are easily answered by already-existing codes of conduct that will work equally well -- if enforced -- for g a y s as well as straights, the opposition to lifting the ban seems to be left with basing its case on assurances of morale problems (again, no matter that this is exactly what the opponents of racial integration of the military said, too). Straight servicemen will be offended and uncomfortable, and g a y servicemen will get beat up. So we are left with only one meaningful question, which is, what are these guys so afraid of? After all, we're talking about military personnel -- rough, tough super-macho guys, men intimate with guns, trained killers. Yet these are the people whose sensibilities are so sensitive that the possibility that they are merely being looked at with sexual interest by another man is supposedly intolerable to them. But why? If a g a y soldier, say, were to make an unwanted pass at a straight comrade, why can't the straight man politely and firmly refuse, the way one refuses any unwanted friendly advances? A refusal to take "no" for an answer would constitute sexual harassment, and could be dealt with accordingly. But all that changes, of course, if what is truly intolerable in this situation is the straight man's unthinkable and unspeakable interest in saying "yes."

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                            • #74
                              Excellent post!

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                              • #75
                                Here are the phases that a homosexual person usually goes through as described by a g.a.y friend of mine:

                                It can be asserted that the life of a homosexual, compared to that of a heterosexual, is approximately made of the following phases:

                                PHASE 1: GROWING IN A HETEROCENTRIC WORLD
                                During childhood and adolescence, a homosexual child finds himself in a hetero-centric world. What he sees around him is a series of exclusively heterosexual models. At the movies, at the theater and on television, from cartoons to films, he/she's shown only heterosexual stories: love, as well as scenes of affection, kisses, caresses and more or less explicit s.e.x., are always represented between opposite s.e.x persons. A boy loves a girl, they get married and have children. The family model is always the straight one. In music, love songs sung by men are about women and for woman singers is just the other way around. In the streets, the only possible and acceptable examples are those of heterosexual partners who walk hand in hand or kiss on a bench in the park. Inside the family, upbringing always implies the assignment of well defined roles to boys and girls accordind to purely heterosexual schemes. Little girls are given dolls at an early age, since their future implies that they'll be mothers and wives. Little boys, while growing, are brainwashed taking for granted that sooner or later they'll find a girlfriend, will get married and have their own family, and if these expectations seem to be late to arrive, there come the first pressuring questions - "when will you find yourself a girlfriend?" or "when will you get married and give us grandchildren?". The heterosexual schemes shown in the family are also found at school where the social roles of boys and girls, without any possible alternatives, are imposed among school mates and by teachers. In literature, we read about "Romeo and Juliet" or "Tristan and Isolt" and examples of homosexual love are voluntarily left out.

                                PHASE 2: SELF AWARENESS
                                It's the phase that, even if at different stages of life, is certainly lived by every homosexual and bisexual. Despite those who think that showing homosexual models could influence children during their growth, making them confused or even making them "become" homosexual themselves, one can object that, in a such made world, homosexuals shouldn't exist, since whoever is g.a.y., at an early stage, should be so influenced by the plenty of heterosexual kisses or *** scenes shown on TV, should be so conditioned by the view of two straight lovers that kiss in the street or by the example of their parents, that this should make them "become" straight. This doesn't happen of course, sexual orientation being part of one's nature or something that it is possible to change whenever you like. If someone finds out to be homosexual at a certain age, it means that this part already existed in their nature and is not transplanted in their minds by an external influence, but it is more likely that this influence comes to wake up a sleeping nature. But why should one's nature be sleeping and not express itself from the beginning? The answer is to be found in the first phase previously described. In the heterocentric world, there's no space for other kinds of identities, except for the heterosexual one. If on one hand this doesn't make straight children become g.a.y., on the other hand it does have an effect: confusion. It's not straight children who get confused by a homosexual kiss (this should instead educate them to the knowledge of diversities and to consider them natural), but it's homosexual children that start to feel confused living in a world that doesn't seem to fit them. They'll start asking why they are different from the others, why they don't feel attraction to the opposite s.e.x., and when they hear others talking of homosexuality for the first time - and unfortunately they will hear about it in a negative way most of the time - they'll be suddenly aware of themselves.

                                PHASE 3: SELF-DENIAL/SELF-ACCEPTANCE
                                Some get **** in this phase for life, some go on to the next level. When a homosexual reaches his/her self awareness at a given age, there are different possible paths and choices to follow. Well, if you do not choose whether to be straight or g.a.y., it is now that you choose whether to live it or not ... In some cases, the social context or your own character brings to a natural and painless acceptance of your own diversity, but the negativity with which homosexuality is often charged and the contrast with the rest of the world can make this process hard and painful. In fragile characters and/or very strict social contexts, during adolescence, this can bring to suicide and unfortunately the cases of young ***s who commit suicide are not rare. In some other cases the lack of strength and/or too closed family and social contexts don't bring to suicide but to a strong repression on the individual that will grow hiding himself/herself and will keep on denying their own already-denied-identity. A lot of homosexuals end up getting married, having children and living unhappily their condition. Many of them, whether they're g.a.y. or bisexual, can't bear all this forever and sooner or later will start looking for the objects of their desire and will start having promiscuous s.e.x. with unknown men in cruising areas, *** saunas and darkrooms. Many end up getting used to this rituals, never admitting to be g.a.y. to themselves and often running away from the men they have just had s.e.x with -- they avoid conversation with them, because talking to other homosexuals would mean admitting to be g.a.y themselves.
                                This double life and the promiscuous s.e.x. often add pain to the existing pain. The luckiest ones get to accept themselves and, as married men or divorcing their wives, start looking for someone alike, no more anonymus sexual objects, but men with a body and a soul, with whom perhaps to fall in love. Homosexual promiscuity that is often mentioned in the straight world should therefore be judged considering its context, analysed and not generalized making of it a simple and easy stereotype. In stronger characters and/or more open social contexts, the self awareness, even if initially lived more or less painfully, can bring to the next phase: the search for the denied identity.

                                PHASE 4: SEARCH FOR THE DENIED IDENTITY
                                This phase is lived only by some homosexuals and bisexuals that have not gotten stuck in the previous phase. After achieving self-awareness, the self acceptance process starts in every homosexual with a common factor: lonelyness. The boy who has just found out to be g.a.y., or to have a g.a.y. side besides his straight one, or a girl who finds out to be a l.e.s.b.i.a.n., is soon brought to believe that he/she's the only one to be that way in the whole world. The first thought is that other persons like him or her don't exist. The heterocentric world, showing only one kind of models, has infact tried to impose a false identity to them, denying one of their own. It is only normal then that they start looking for their real identity, dismantling all the imposed models and stereotypes one by one and beginning to build new ones. This is perhaps the phase where a homosexual developes a higher sensitivity (not as synonim of kindness), a deeper inner view and a stronger critical sense compared to the avarage heterosexuals. Heterosexuals won't spend a big part of their adolescence asking themselves why they are straight, analysing themselves and the others, developing a culture of diversity, homosexuals do. Heterosexuals take for granted that they are that way, a way which fits the world they live in. Homosexuals have to work hard to understand why they are that way because that way doesn't fit the world they happen to live in. At this point g.a.y.s start looking for some answers. They make researches in books, magazines, in the most hidden corners of every day life. But the easiest way is through the Internet. Compared to a time when this phase was really hard to live, today most of the people visit g.a.y. web sites and enter g.a.y. chat rooms that let them find out that other persons like them exist and this brings them to the next phase: the search for others alike.

                                PHASE 5: SEARCH FOR OTHERS ALIKE
                                This phase is usually a natural consequence for those who have reached phase 4. After finding out that they are not alone, it is spontaneous for g.a.y. people to go look for others similar to them. But this process is once again not so easy, because even those who have reached self-awareness and that have started looking for their denied identity, might not accept it in the end. Many of them are still frightened, feeling lost in a family or in a society that don't accept them and can even end up going back to the early phases, caving and doing what others expect them to do, like getting married and denying themselves. Some prefer to keep on living their loneliness on the internet which on one hand has given them the chance to find out what happens in the outside world, but on the other hand has also given them the possibility to remain safe and sheltered behind a screen like from a window where it is possible to be spectators of an appealing and frightening world, without having to use the door to go out and live in it. But it is hard in this case to remain spectators forever and sooner or later the need of going outside becomes stronger. A lot of g.a.y.s. start finding out g.a.y. associations, g.a.y. bars and dance-clubs, bookstores and other meeting points and with a bit of courage they sail in search of "others like them".

                                PHASE 6: SELF-ACCEPTANCE
                                It's the goal that everyone should aspire to achieve, but that not everyone manages to reach. When homosexuals find out that hidden beneath a straight world, there's also a g.a.y. world (which today is fortunately spreading out trying to come out and be integrated in the straight world), they start interacting with other g.a.y.s.
                                This represents a thrust that, in times that vary from person to person, bring sooner or later to self-acceptance. Finding out that they're not alone, talking about homosexuality without any drama, interacting with guys similar to them that live their homosexuality more or less naturally, makes them get used to the new world and brings them to live what formerly seemed to be weird or even wrong in a more natural way. It is only then that it becomes easier to live the first relationships, whethere they are friendship, love or s.e.x., and unlike many heterosexuals a lot of g.a.y.s. begin some sort of second adolescence at a later age. Many could object that g.a.y. clubs are some kind of ghettos and that they tend to confine homosexuals into isolation. This issue is not so simple and is always object of debate, because if this is partly true, on the other hand, in a world where homosexuality is seen as something evil and is still condemned, g.a.y. clubs represent a shelter where it is possible to love without any fear and to take off that warrior armour that you've been wearing all day, laying it aside and resting by being youself. The ideal would be to consider g.a.y. clubs just like simple means to facilitate encounters and the acquaintance with other g.a.y.s. and to live your own sexuality openly in every day life; this would be the only way for them to stop being considered ghettos. But not everyone achieves this new phase which is perhaps the most difficult after that of the self-awareness and the self-acceptance: the coming-out phase.

                                PHASE 7: COMING OUT
                                The rebirth phase: the g.a.y.s. that reach this phase are still quite few. Coming out means "coming-out-of-the-closet". Some homosexuals, after reaching self-acceptance, can start feeling claustrophobic inside a closet and they get tired of hiding themselves, lying to friends and family and above all loving someone in the dark like they were criminals, so they decide to come out. This is certainly not a simple phase, but it often seems more difficult than it really is. If a homosexual achieved pahse 6, the big step has already been take. It is all up to your courage to tell friends, family, coworkers, of course not in a superficial and instinctual way, but considering all the consequences and valuing your inner strength more than what others may think. After all, others need time to get used to it, just as a g.a.y. had to go along a long path before reaching this phase. The time to get used to the new discovery, especially among friends and co-workers, is often quite short because people that know you and love you will always see the same person as always, with the same flaws and virtues, before seeing you as a homosexual.

                                Perhaps, when a lot of g.a.y.s. have the courage to come out and live openly in every day life, the world will stop being heterocentric and will become "person-centric". No more stright models, no more denied identities, no more hidden lives, no more suicides, no more self acceptances, no more ghettos.

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