07 Feb What issues do LGBTQ people face?
Being LGBTQ has its challenges in today’s society, although progress is occurring. More and more people support gay rights and openly support their friends and family members who are LGBTQ.
However, many people still hold prejudices and fears about the LGBTQ community, making it difficult for LGBTQ to openly express who they are. Many religions believe that being gay is wrong, or against God’s wishes. As a result, they believe that LGBTQ individuals need to be “fixed” through therapy and/or religion.
Presently, in the United States, 17 states have legalized gay marriage whereas 33 states have a ban on same sex marriages (www.gaymarriage.procon.org). It continues to be a subject of immense debate with court cases debating its legality going all the way to the Supreme Court. During the Grammies of 2014, Grammy winner Macklemore sang his hit song, “Same Love” which openly expresses his views that the music community (and others) need to better support the rights of LGBTQ people. With the help of Queen Latifah and Madonna, a wedding ceremony was then performed where 20 couples were married – many of them same sex unions. This shows the growing movement to support LGBTQ rights, which some have equated to the civil rights movement of the present.
Because of this difficult environment, telling people, especially a person’s parents, that you are LGBTQ can feel very scary. Lots of teens report that their parents would “just not understand,” “feel horrified,” or “be disappointed in them.” Therefore, they feel they need to hide their sexual identity from their parents and the world. This can become extremely stressful – often leading to anxiety, depression and even self-hate.
Moreover, LGBTQ people are often the targets of bullying and ostracism (being purposefully left out). In order to feel safe and connected to people, people who identify as LGBTQ will often, again, choose to keep their preferences a secret. Seeing how some people treat members of the LGBTQ community often makes LGBTQ people feel fearful or ashamed. To read about how you can help change that experience, read the next post.
(If you would like to read about how difficult being LGBTQ can be, Moffie by Andre Carl Van der Merwe is a good read.)
How did you feel reading about the issues that the LGBTQ community face?