To be honest, I’m terrible around the LGBTQ community (I’m not going to speak about the I – Intersex part of the community because I’m not intersex).
At first I always put it down as me being awkward around people. Until I realised that I could actually interact with people who were cis or non-heterosexual with ease. I could also interact with people whose gender identity or sexual orientation I was not aware of.
But put me in a room of LGBTQ people and I freeze. I feel awkward.
Did I look up to them? after all, they were people who came out. I’m out too for the most part, but I would automatically assume that these people came out before me. So maybe I saw them as my heroes, but after spending time with them I would be able to calm down.
That never happened.
I tried joining my local LGBTQI group but I just could never interact. I didn’t contribute with my opinion on issues I could contribute on. So what was going on?
I didn’t feel *gay* enough. I didn’t feel *queer* enough. And I feared their judgement.
Was this way of thinking my fault, or theirs? I would say both.
It’s my fault that I feel like I’m not a valid member of the community. I need to learn that the way I feel and express myself are good ways, so long as I’m myself. I need to learn that just because I don’t identify as trans* it doesn’t mean that I’m not non-binary.
But it’s also the community’s fault for being so aggressive. I can understand the need to fight for one’s rights, to have to justify one’s emotions because the *normal* people can’t get it. But it’s this aggressiveness which makes it so hard for someone to join that community, to say ‘here I am, in all my glory’.
It’s also the community’s fault for not fighting against the stereotypes which they themselves can perpetuate. Am I expected to look and act gay? and is there a point where I become *too* gay or queer to be accepted?
I’ve realised that I could never be part of the queer or pansexual community, and I’ve accepted that. But it’s still a very difficult thing to accept, after all, we’re all looking for our place in this world.