by Glenda M. Russell, Ph.D.
WHAT HURTS ?
. Hearing lies – Encountering distortions and outright lies about us and
our lives, and feeling unable to challenge them.
. Being stunned – Feeling shocked, afraid, numb, and sad as we recognize
the depth of homophobia in our world.
. Feeling abandoned – Feeling like people who matter to us don’t care
and won’t stand up for our rights, even finding that some coworkers,
neighbors, friends, and even family are voting against us.
. Feeling divided as a community – Seeing stark divisions in the LGBT
community based on political strategies, racism, sexism, classism,
rural-urban splits, etc.
. Self-doubt – “Internalized homophobia” – discovering that we still
have doubts about ourselves and the community and about our absolute
right to absolutely equal treatment, etc.
WHAT HELPS ?
. Forging a movement perspective – Recognizing that any election is just
one frame in a feature-length film, one small piece of the human rights
movement; realizing it’s not about me.
. Getting active – Doing political work, speaking out, joining a queer
organization, going to PFLAG meetings, working toward other people’s
. Finding friends – Locating and recognizing people who DO care – LGBT
and straight – cultivating relationships with them and working with them.
. Being in Community – Being with like-minded people who remind you that
you are not crazy
. Working on our own internalized homophobia – acknowledging it, name
it, talking about it with friends or with a therapist, finding ways to
move beyond it, helping friends to do the same
Staying Strong: The Three A’s
Analysis: Forge a political/movement analysis of the meaning of this
Allies: Find friends who care.
Activism: Do something.