Thursday, 7 June 2012

"Labels" are not my name

The famous gay persona group the Village People;  disco novelties
 It was brought to my attention the other day that many closeted youth fear the social stigma in being associated as a homosexual. I often hear friends expressing their fear with being classified as a "poff" or a "fairy"- so I would like to set the record straight for all closeted youth out there.

Often homosexuality is affiliated with effeminate behavior in men and masculine behavior in woman. This is more a generalization than a fact. With the short amount of time that I have been exposed to the gay community I would actually say that- gay men are now associated more with perfect bodies and over emasculating behavior than anything else. Once again- I have made an assumption based on my experiences, it is not to say this is completely true. Regardless whether these stereotypes are authentic or valid- their importance to you should be null and void.

In todays society people are over-conscious with the image they portray. We are constantly in this struggle to fit in. It first occurs when we can not identify with our straight friends' attraction to the opposite sex, furthermore, as a teenager when our bodies change shape and take form. Then- as you come out, there is this undeniable pressure to associate yourself with certain labels. Labels which categorize you- based on your physical appearance and behavior. Therefore, once again, a need to fit in.

This all leads me to my main message. Being gay does not mean you have to enjoy dancing, wear make-up and listen to Lady Gaga. But if that is what you enjoy doing- don't let me, or anyone else, stop you from doing that. It is vital that you know- when you do come out it does not mean you have to live up to a label or a stereotype. Don't fear being gay because you dislike the stereotype associated with it- rather break that stereotype. On the same note, if you enjoy living up to the stereotype- there is nothing wrong with that! You can just be YOU!

Found this venn diagram funny

Final Thought:
"Fairy. Queen. Muscular. Fem. Camp. Masculine." Why change yourself for other people? We essentially come out the closet to live a more open and genuine life- not to change who we are. It is our differences that make us unique- not our similarities. Regardless whether you live up to the stereotype or not- you should not fear a life of honesty. Being gay will not change who you are. There is no need to label yourself or associate yourself with anything... Don't let the stereotype scare you back into the closet- it's darker back there anyways! 

Image Source: Google
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  1. Beautifully put Greg!

    When I was a young man living my life in fear, it was because I knew I didn't identify with many of the stereotypes that were associated with being gay. But when I did finally accept myself and the truth of my heart, I realized that I had not changed except for the fact that I no longer lived in fear. Coming out is a wonderfully liberating experience and although it comes with challenges and sometimes rejection, it frees you to be yourself - the self 'you' choose to be.

    It's true... "To thine own self be true!"

    1. Thank you Christopher!

      I completely understand- I, too, could never identify with stereotypes. Fortunately we have the freedom to express ourselves as we wish and we don't have to live up to stereotypes.

      "To thine own self be true!"- couldn't have said it better!