Connect with us

OPINIONS

‘Why haven’t we beaten AIDS? Because we value some lives more than others’ – Charlize Theron

Charlize Theron: “AIDS does not discriminate on its own. It has no biological preference for black bodies, for women’s bodies, for gay bodies, for youth or for the poor. It doesn’t single out the vulnerable, the oppressed, or the abused. We single out the vulnerable, the oppressed, and the abused. We ignore them. We let them suffer. And then, we leave them to die.”

Published

on

screenshot from youtube of Charlize Theron delivering her address at the International AIDS Conference 2016

Durban, SOUTH AFRICA – Oscar-winning South African Hollywood actress Charlize Theron is no stranger to the fight against HIV, having established the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project that specifically wants to give the spotlight to adolescents affected and/or infected with HIV. At the opening of the International AIDS Conference 2016, Theron noted that “we have not paid attention (to them) at all. We have to stop and say that we might have made a mistake (not including them).”

Adding that the fight against HIV is a “personal passion” because everyone, particularly in South Africa where she originally came from, everyone has been touched by HIV and AIDS whether directly or indirectly, Theron then delivered an impassioned speech on the need to take the fight against AIDS seriously to end this once and for all.

Here is the transcript of the speech of Theron at #AIDS2016:

Good evening ladies and gentlemen. It is typical, when invited to speak at a conference, to begin by saying, ‘I am honored and grateful to be here.’

And I am grateful to be given a chance to speak, and to be here with such an esteemed group.

But if I’m being honest with myself, and with you, I am also sad to be here at the 21st International AIDS Conference. This is the second time my home country of South Africa has hosted.

That’s not an honor. That’s not something we should be proud of. We shouldn’t have had to host this conference again.

Please understand, I don’t mean to insult anyone here or to belittle the extraordinary work that has been done by this amazing community over the years.

I have seen the impact of your work firsthand. I have been personally inspired by your commitment to this fight. Countless millions would have died without your dedication and your compassion.

But I think it’s time we acknowledge that something is terribly wrong.

I think it’s time we face the truth about the unjust world we live in. The truth is, we have every tool we need to prevent the spread of HIV. Every tool we need.

Condoms. PrEP. PEP. ART. Awareness. Education.

And yet, 2.1 million people, 150,000 of them children, were infected with HIV last year. In South Africa alone, 180,000 people died of AIDS last year. 2.1 million children and counting have been orphaned by this disease. I could go on for an hour with the horrifying statistics we all know so well.

But instead, let’s ask ourselves… Why haven’t we beaten this epidemic?

Could it be that we don’t want to? And by ‘we,’ I don’t mean just the people in this room. I mean humanity – all of us.

Because when you ask why, you get the same answers again and again and again. Ending AIDS is too expensive. Too daunting. Too complicated. Too stigmatized. Too politicized. I’ll stop there, because these aren’t really answers. They’re excuses.

The real reason we haven’t beaten the epidemic boils down to one simple fact: We value some lives more than others. We value men more than women. Straight love more than gay love. White skin more than black skin. The rich more than the poor. Adults more than adolescents.

I know this because AIDS does not discriminate on its own. It has no biological preference for black bodies, for women’s bodies, for gay bodies, for youth or for the poor.

It doesn’t single out the vulnerable, the oppressed, or the abused.

We single out the vulnerable, the oppressed, and the abused. We ignore them. We let them suffer. And then, we leave them to die.

My foundation, CTAOP, and a number of our colleagues, are calling on today’s young people to be the generation that ends this epidemic – to be ‘GenEndIt.’

But let’s be clear about what the ‘it’ in that sentence is. It is not just AIDS.

It is the culture that condones rape, and shames victims into silence.

It is the cycle of poverty and violence that traps girls in teen marriages and forces them to sell their bodies to provide for their families. It is the racism that allows the white and wealthy to exploit the black and poor, then blame them for their own suffering.

It is the homophobia that shames and isolates LGBT youth and keeps them from life-saving healthcare and education.

HIV isn’t just transmitted by sex – it’s transmitted by sexism, and racism, poverty, and homophobia.

If we are going to end AIDS, we must cure the disease in our hearts and minds first. And I believe young people are the ones to do it. Young people have always been drivers of social change. And this generation holds unique promise.

After all, this is the generation of Malala Yousafzai and Anoyara Khatun.

This is the generation that is shattering taboos and redefining old notions of gender, sexuality, and racial justice.

Not long ago, right here in South Africa, I watched a young LGBT activist challenge a bishop to accept ALL people into the church. Her courage and conviction was so inspiring to me.

And I know, her confidence comes from caring adults who create safe spaces to talk about tough issues without judgment; who educate and empower young people to take control of their bodies and ownership of their futures.

You are the world’s leading researchers, grant-makers, medical professionals, and program implementers.

The work you do is vital. It has changed the course of this epidemic. But it will not end it—at least, not on its own.

Yes, we have to all play our parts. We have to work harder, and faster, and smarter than ever before. But…it will not be our generation that ends AIDS. It will be the next generation.

I believe the single most important thing each of us can do after we leave here is to connect with a young person. Listen, truly listen, to what she has to say. Give her a seat at the table. Let her be part of the conversation. And let’s make sure our work reflects her input and her voice.

The solution to this epidemic isn’t just in our laboratories, offices, or conference centers like this one. It’s in our communities, in our schools, and streets—where a smart choice or a helping hand can mean the difference between life and death.

Nelson Mandela said: ‘Young people are capable, when aroused, of bringing down the towers of oppression and raising the banners of freedom.’

If we support our young people, if we give them the confidence and the space to speak out against bigotry and injustice, and if we take the time to listen and empower them…they will end this epidemic.

In closing, I would like to thank you – all of you –for your amazing work and your commitment to this extraordinary movement. This assembly is truly inspiring. And I will say it again, I am incredibly grateful to be here.

But with all due respect, I hope we won’t keep meeting like this.

Since the first International AIDS Conference in 1985, we have been counting up, all the way to 21. Now it’s time for us to start counting down. We have set a goal to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030.

There are four more International AIDS Conferences between now and then. They must be our last.

Thank you.

From the Editor

Stop humanizing a killer

Being jailed is supposed to punish AND rehabilitate a person. In Pemberton’s case… this is arguable. So stop humanizing him. When so many of you can’t even treat the victim – Jennifer – as a human being.

Published

on

By now, we all know that when Joseph Scott Pemberton – the American serviceman who murdered Filipino transgender woman Jennifer Laude in 2014 – returns to the US, he will go back to school. Oh, he plans to take up Philosophy. And while studying, he also wants to do sports – e.g. swimming.

These info were provided to us by news outlets; courtesy of the Filipino lawyer who’s been pushing for the convicted American killer, Pemberton, to be freed for his “good conduct”.

And – SERIOUSLY – this has to stop.

Fact: Pemberton killed Jennifer. In cold blood.

Fact: Pemberton considered Jennifer as less of a human, repeatedly referring to her as “it”.

Fact: When he was found guilty, Pemberton was jailed in the custodial facility of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). Not in Muntinlupa, but in an air-conditioned “jail”.

Fact: Whether Pemberton exhibited good conduct or not is hard to ascertain EXACTLY because of the special treatment he’s been getting. (Heck, his supposed handlers should all be fired for not documenting Pemberton’s movements!)

Fact: Pemberton’s camp only recently paid what the court told him to pay the Laudes.

Fact: As mentioned in the news, Pemberton doesn’t “mind” apologizing to the family of Jennifer… though only via a statement/press release.

Being jailed is supposed to punish AND rehabilitate a person.

In Pemberton’s case… this is arguable.

So stop humanizing him.

When so many of you can’t even treat the victim – Jennifer – as a human being.
In case you’ve (conveniently) forgotten, her life was cut short.
Pemberton shoved her head in the toilet bowl until she died by asphyxiation by drowning. He then escaped after committing the crime.
She was only 26 when Pemberton killed her.
She was a breadwinner of her family.

But she is now gone.

She won’t be able to go to college.
Or study Philosophy.
Or choose any sport to have fun.

She’s dead.

And the person who killed her will live freely, even comfortably… and unapologetically.

Stop humanizing him; push to make him accountable for his crime.

Continue Reading

Op-Ed

Murderer Pemberton’s ‘absolute pardon’ unacceptable, ludicrous – LGBTQIA Filipinos

Unity statement of LGBTQI organizations against Pemberton’s presidential pardon, with the move said to send out a loud and clear message that a Filipino trans woman’s life does not matter and that it is open season for discrimination and violence against trans people.

Published

on

We strongly condemn the absolute pardon granted by President Rodrigo Duterte to Lance Corporal Joseph Scott Pemberton, the US marine convicted for killing Filipino trans woman Jennifer Laude in Olongapo City in 2014. 

President Duterte’s claim that Pemberton has suffered injustice when he served time in a special holding cell in Camp Aguinaldo for just 5 years and 10 months out of a 10-year jail sentence is unacceptable and ludicrous. Pemberton should have served time in the National Bilibid Prison, and the President could have granted presidential pardon to a Filipino instead of an American.

Such acts done by the President at this time confirm how his government has been using the COVID-19 pandemic as an opportunity to promote and kowtow to foreign interests which have caused profound suffering, indignity, and injustice to the Filipino people. 

In spite of earlier pronouncements from Malacañang calling the Olongapo court’s order to release Pemberton earlier as “judicial overreach,” the President’s pardon shows that his so-called support for the LGBTQI community is just mere posturing and exposes the truth about Duterte and his legacy—that as a leader, he is nothing but unjust, misogynistic, and transphobic. 

President Duterte’s pardon of Pemberton sends out a loud and clear message that a Filipino trans woman’s life does not matter, that it is open season for discrimination and violence against transgender people, and that American soldiers will continue to get away with murder in Philippine soil. 

We urge the entire LGBTQI community and our allies to unite in our opposition against Duterte’s anti-transgender, anti-LGBTQI, anti-women, and anti-people policies. Contrary to propagandists’ claims that Duterte is the president who has done the most for the LGBTQI community, all he has done is to use the LGBTQI community to further his popularity. His government never served our interests nor protected our rights and lives, and today proves that only a murderer can empathize with another murderer.

Signatories:
Call Her Ganda Documentary
Gender and Development Advocates (GANDA) Filipinas
Pioneer Filipino Transgender Men Movement 
Society of Transsexual Women of the Philippines (STRAP Kababaihan, Inc.)
Transman Equality and Awareness Movement (TEAM)
Lagablab LGBT Network
Metro Manila Pride
Philippine Anti-Discrimination Alliance of Youth Leaders (PANTAY)
UP Babaylan
Rainbow Rights Philippines
Babaylanes, Inc. 
PUP Kasarianlan
BulSU Bahaghari
Benilde Hive
TUP DUGONG BUGHAW
Gayon Albay LGBT Org., Inc.
True Colors Coalition (TCC)
Bicol University – MAGENTA
KAIBA Academic Collective
UP Babaylan – Baguio Chapter
APC Bahaghari
Queer Quezon
GALANG Philippines, Inc.
Camp Queer
UP Babaylan – Clark Chapter
Tribu Duag
LGBTQ+ Partylist
Migrante Europe
Pinay sa Holland
GABRIELA Germany

Continue Reading

From the Editor

Call a spade a spade: Deadnaming Jennifer Laude makes you a small-minded bigot

To simplify this argument: You all refer to – among others – Dolphy, Fernando Poe Jr., Nora Aunor, Gary V., Lorna Tolentino, Ogie Alcasid, Zsa Zsa Padilla, Aga Muhlach and Julia Montes with the names they chose for themselves. But when a trans person chooses a name for him or herself, you… refuse? It really just makes you a hater; and one who refuses to learn.

Published

on

Photo by Brielle French from Unsplash.com

Jennifer Laude is, again, in the news. No thanks to the court-issued order to release her murderer, US Marine Lance Corporal Joseph Scott Pemberton, after staying in a special jail for only six years.

As FYI: Pemberton was initially sentenced to six to 12 years imprisonment by the Olongapo City Regional Trial Court (RTC), Branch 74, in December 2015. He was found guilty of murdering transgender woman Jennifer Laude.

Jennifer – who was only 26 years old at that time of her demise – was found with her head inside a toilet bowl in a room in Celzone Lodge in Olongapo City on October 11, 2014.

Pemberton himself admitted that he killed a “he-she.”

On September 1, the RTC said Pemberton already served a total accumulated time of 10 years, one month, and 10 days. This is including his Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA).

With the surfacing of this news is the deadnaming of Jennifer – e.g. by select media practitioners, haters of LGBTQIA people, and those claiming that they’re not haters/bigots but are only doing this because they’re using the “legal name” of the person.

As FYI: Deadnaming is when someone – whether intentionally or not – refers a transgender person with the name given them at birth.

And as another FYI: It’s wrong.

Let’s get this out there once and for all.

And enough already.

That this has to stop not just because it’s “PC” (politically correct). Deadnaming degrades and even erases a person – his or her life, agency, etc. At its very core is the individual’s right to determine who he/she is. And when you deadname, you basically refuse to respect this; you decide for the person because it’s what “comfortable” for you and your warped way of thinking.

This doesn’t make you “respectful” of the law (for those who say they’re “just” sticking to “legal names”).

This doesn’t make you “not hateful of the LGBTQIA community” (for those who may use this excuse, usually added with: “I can’t be anti-LGBTQIA because I know someone who’s LGBTQIA”).

This doesn’t make you “right” either.

It really just makes you a hater.

And for those who are well-read or actually know about this, it also makes you a hater who just refuses to learn.

To simplify this argument: You all refer to – among others – Dolphy, Fernando Poe Jr., Nora Aunor, Gary V., Lorna Tolentino, Ogie Alcasid, Zsa Zsa Padilla, Aga Muhlach and Julia Montes with the names they chose for themselves.

You all refer to Pope Francis as such; and you all know that’s not the name given him at birth.

You all call Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Madonna, P!nk, Bruno Mars, Gigi Hadid, Natalie Portman, Demi Moore, Joaquin Phoenix, Emma Stone, Prince Harry, Brad Pitt, Lorde, Miley Cyrus, Nicky Minaj, John Legend and Ludacris with the names they chose for themselves.

But when a trans person chooses a name for him or herself, you… refuse?

So let’s call a spade a spade: Deadnaming makes you a small-minded bigot.

Continue Reading

Lifestyle & Culture

How to raise a child as an LGBTQ parent

Even though the LGBTQ community is achieving significant recognition and representation in society, members still have a long way to go before being fully embraced as part of the current era. One essential but inadequately serviced aspect is recognizing LGBTQ households and providing a welcoming and supportive environment for such families to prosper.

Published

on

Even though the LGBTQ community is achieving significant recognition and representation in society, members still have a long way to go before being fully embraced as part of the current era.

One essential but inadequately serviced aspect is recognizing LGBTQ households and providing a welcoming and supportive environment for such families to prosper. There aren’t enough resources and professionals to provide the guidance needed for this community to grow mentally and emotionally as members of a family. 

This article provides an informative guide on how to go about raising a baby in such a family.

How do LGBTQ parents affect their children?

It is important to understand that children who have been raised by LGBTQ parents will probably need more emotional support and guidance to adjust well to the external environment and the challenges that may be posed put there. For instance, we have to see that LGBTQ has not been entirely accepted and embraced in society. 

Homophobic parents will almost always raise their children to be homophobic, so their interaction with your children may not always be smooth. It is important to talk to your children about this, prepare them to anticipate attacks and show them how to deal with them.

The first thing you should do is create a supportive environment at home. You want to make it a good and friendly place where the child can ask questions and get clear and accurate answers.

Do LGBTQ parents affect their children’s emotional development?

No. Research has already been done, and it proves that children raised by LGBTQ parents are not emotionally different from those brought up in heterosexual homes. They are not more likely to transform into LGBTQ members than children raised by straight parents and are neither more likely to be sexually abused. They also don’t show different gender identity and gender role behavior when compared to their peers raised in heterosexual households. 

It is essential to understand that the actions, relationship and emotional health of any child will be primarily determined by the way they interact and relate with their parents rather than the parents’ sexual identity.

What are same-sex parents options for having babies?

In a shallow perspective, it may seem like such couples don’t have many options when it comes to getting babies. On the contrary, however, they have just as many options as heterosexual parents. They will also face the same procedures and may have to deal with similar problems that occur regardless of sexual orientation, such as infertility and sterility. 

Some of the most common options include:

  1. Adoption – Just as in heterosexual families, gay couples can also apply for adoption and qualify if they meet all the terms and requirements.
  2. Insemination – This applies to lesbian couples. One or both members may be inseminated with a donor sperm which, if procedures are correctly followed, should fertilize and grow to a baby. You only need a confirmation that the process is successful and you can be on your merry way to buy baby clothes and whatnot.
  3. A gestational carrier – This is where the couples choose to have the fertilized egg grow to maturity inside a surrogate.
  4. Reciprocal IVF – in a lesbian couple, one partner provides the egg which is then fertilized and implanted in the other partner.
  5. Co-parenting – this is where the couple gets into planned parenthood with another party in a purely platonic relationship.

These are just some of the most common ways that LGBTQ parents can raise children. The list is not exhaustive though. Solutions can be tailormade depending on the needs, sexual identity and health of the partners. There is nothing to get in the way of LGBTQ members to stop them from getting children and raising them.

Your children’s behavior is affected more by your relationship with them and the environment at home than your sexual orientation.

How can LGBTQ parents prepare their children to deal with challenges stemming from discrimination?

Even though research shows that children from LGBTQ families and those with heterosexual parents adjust the same way, the former is more likely to be bullied and discriminated against based on their parent’s sexual orientation. Here are a few ways to prepare your children for this:

  1. Help them understand what the LGBTQ community is and what it is all about. Help them understand the meaning of sexual freedom (if you think that they are too young and this seems too complicated for them, explain that love has no sexual orientation)
  2. Gather some of the questions and comments they will most likely face and help them answer them truthfully with no fear
  3. Keep an open and friendly environment at home where they can ask questions and get appropriate responses with proper regard to their age.
  4. Use more LGBTQ-rich resources around them such as books with LGBTQ families and reasoning
  5. Listen to any teasing or inappropriate comments they may have come across and help them find appropriate responses to them. Have them practice answering these at home so they can say it with more confidence when you are not around to defend them.

Solutions can be tailormade depending on the needs, sexual identity and health of the partners. There is nothing to get in the way of LGBTQ members to stop them from getting children and raising them.

How can I build a support network for my family as an LGBTQ household?

The first thing you should do is create a supportive environment at home. You want to make it a good and friendly place where the child can ask questions and get clear and accurate answers. Educate them as well as you can about the LGBTQ community and include more resources for them to dig deeper when they want to.

You could also consider moving to a more supportive environment where the child is less likely to be discriminated. Enrol them in a supportive school where they use LGBTQ-friendly material to teach them and discourage bullying on this account.

Consider having your children interact more with others who have LGBTQ parents. This will help them build a support network with other children who they will consider the same as them.

In conclusion, your children’s behavior is affected more by your relationship with them and the environment at home than your sexual orientation. Raise them to appreciate who you are, and you will be allowing them to enjoy who they are. Above all, respect your children’s gender stand and get them appropriate footwear and clothes to go with it – things will become clear to them as they get older.

Continue Reading

Lifestyle & Culture

To come out or not to come out? That is the question

For a “conservative culture” like in the Philippines, where the influence of religion and the opinion of the elders are greatly valued, should the idea of coming out be on the table whenever possible?

Published

on

Photo by Lisa Fotios from Pexels.com

Gone are the days when hiding or staying inside the closet is the “ideal thing to do” — or is it?

Many members of the LGBT community are saying that coming out and being proud of one’s true self may be the best way to fully enjoy everything. There are others who are claiming that it can even help transform one’s life.

But for a “conservative culture” like in the Philippines, where the influence of religion and the opinion of the elders are greatly valued, should the idea of coming out be on the table whenever possible?

ONLINE DISCUSSIONS

On Facebook, discussions about this topic had attracted many users – where people from different walks of life share their reactions and thoughts about it.

One person said that the process of coming out is lifelong.

Another user posted a message saying that there is no right time or right way to do it.

And there were those who asked why some people express hate towards someone who chooses to stay in the closet.

MEDIA PORTRAYALS

At least in the recent months, the issue of coming out had also been one of the subjects of some of the non-fiction stories in the Philippine media.

For instance, on iWant’s “Beauty Queens” the topic was discussed in almost all six episodes.

Rica, the youngest child of Dahlia, came out as a transgender woman. It blindsided the entire family. Dahlia disowned her daughter after leaning it. While the oldest sibling, for the longest time, refused to call her “Rica”.

The plot thickened when it was revealed that Dahlia was in a relationship with another woman. And that she was just waiting for the right time to tell it to her family.

Isa lang ibig sabihin nito, Mommy (This only means one thing, Mommy): You have been a practicing lesbian. But you rejected me when I came out. How could you?” Rica asked her mother.

In the Pinoy BL (boys love) web series “Gameboys”, the topic of coming out was also tackled in some episodes.

Cairo, one of the main characters, was partly blamed by his brother London for the health condition of their father.

Dahil sa selfishness mo, nandito tayo sa ganitong sitwasyon. Hindi ko nga alam kung ano ang pumasok sa isip mo at ginawa mo ‘yun (Because of your selfishness, we are in this situation. I do not know what you were thinking when you did that),” London said.

Alam ko naman na kasalanan ko ito lahat. Araw-araw ko sinisisi ang sarili ko. Ako nga, ako nga ang may kasalanan. Hindi ko dapat ginawa ‘yun eh. Sana ako na lang. Alam ko, mali nga ako, kuya. Kuya alam ko mali ako, pero hindi ko ginusto ‘yung kay Papa. Hindi ko ginusto na magkasakit siya (I know that everything was my fault. I blame myself everyday. It was me, it was my fault. I should not have done that. I wish it was me. I know that what I did was wrong, but I did not want that to happen to Papa. I did not want him to get sick),” Cairo responded.

The story took a turn when he had a conversation with his mother after his father passed.

“Ma, I am sorry,” Cairo said.

“Why are you apologizing?” his mom asked.

“I am sorry I am gay,” Cairo answered.

“Cairo, do not be sorry. You do not need to apologize for being who you are. Kung dapat may mag-sorry dito, ako ‘yun. Anak, walang mali sa iyo. Ako ‘yung nagkulang (If there is anyone who needs to say sorry, it should be me. There is nothing wrong with you, son. I was the one who had shortcomings). I knew all along. I did not make an effort to gain your trust para maramdaman mo na puwede ka magsabi sa akin (I did not make an effort to gain your trust so you can feel that you can tell me), his mom said.

Coming out is one of the biggest and most important decisions any person will make. Finding the right moment can be as crucial as the decision itself.

READING THROUGH

Studies show that there are benefits in revealing one’s identity, including feeling good by the person coming out (i.e. he/she will experience less anger, less depression, and higher self-esteem).

“In general, research shows that coming out is a good thing. Decades of studies have found that openness allows gay people to develop an authentic sense of themselves and to cultivate a positive minority sexual identity,” said Richard Ryan, co-author of one such study.

It is also believed that when a person comes out, it will allow him/her to develop as a whole individual, have greater empowerment, and makes it easier to develop a positive self-image.

Another study also noted that when a person accepts his/her true self, it will not only bring happiness but can also be good for the health. 

“Coming out might only be beneficial for health when there are tolerant policies that facilitate the disclosure process,” said Robert-Paul Juster, author of yet another study.

While there are countless positive effects of coming out, there are also some disadvantages when someone decides to leave the closet – to a name a few: bullying, harassment, rejection from society, and violence.

In a 2018 survey by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), 65% of the 7,233 15-year-old respondents said that they were bullied at least a few times a month.

In a school setting, it is a known fact that someone who demonstrates a “different” behavior may be susceptible to bullying. 

Coming out is one of the biggest and most important decisions any person will make. Finding the right moment can be as crucial as the decision itself.

DECIDING TO COME OUT

According to The Cass Theory by Vivian Cass, there are six stages that a person will go through when he/she decides to come out.

Stage 1 – Identity Confusion: This is where you begin to ask yourself if you identify differently than what you were assigned at birth.

Stage 2 – Identity Comparison: You start accepting the possibility that you may have a different gender identity and face social isolation that come with it.

Stage 3 – Identity Tolerance: Your acceptance of your new gender identity increases and you begin to tolerate it.

Stage 4 – Identity Acceptance: At this point, you have resolved most of the questions concerning your gender identity and have accepted it.

Stage 5 – Identity Pride: By this stage, you begin to feel proud of being part of the community.

Stage 6 – Identity Synthesis: Finally, you start integrating your gender identity in all aspects of yourself and life.

And in the end, this is what coming out is: A long — and sometimes endless — journey to finding oneself.

Continue Reading

Lifestyle & Culture

LGBTQIA community: Here’s how to build resilience

Upholding your status within the LGBTQIA takes courage, and in particular, resilience, to maintain the best of you.

Published

on

As with any beliefs or values that stem beyond societal “norms,” there are challenges to be met. Within the LGBTQI community, it can often mean you’re subject to abuse from others, which is incredibly upsetting. 

Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels.com

According to Ryan Thjoreson, from the LGBT rights program at the Human Rights Watch, Filipino students are “often the targets of ridicule and even violence.”

Upholding your status within the LGBTQIA takes courage, and in particular, resilience, to maintain the best of you. 

People may hate you for being different and not living by society’s standards, but deep down, they wish they had the courage to do the same – Kevin Hart

Resilience enables people to cope with stressful situations easily while keeping a positive frame of mind. Although some people are naturally resilient and maintain a sense of calm and positivity under challenging scenarios, others struggle.

However, resilience can be learned and adopted, with some practice. To find out more about how you can build up your protective barrier and become a strong resilient member of your community, the below tips shall help you.

Love Yourself 

To fend off any negativity, you need first to love yourself in every way possible. Stress motivates us to do unhealthy things, such as neglect our health and well-being by picking up unhealthy habits such as smoking and drinking. And worry can cause you to lose hours of much-needed sleep. 

Instead, try to look for alternative ways to handle stress. Use your anger or sadness, and channel that energy into, for example, exercise – a brisk walk can do your body and mind the world of good. Additionally, consider swapping your vice for cigarettes for bc vapes instead; it isn’t so damaging for your health. Vaping mimics the actions of smoking, which is particularly comforting for those who are used to smoking regularly. 

By training your mind to choose salad over junk food, water over alcohol, and sleep over a Netflix binge, you can build a healthier you, who’s prepared to take on daily changes in their stride.

Find A Purpose 

Festering over a bad day, or situation can often pull down your potential to be resilient, and let something go and move on. 

Having a focus or finding your purpose in life can divert your thoughts to something more useful.

Often throwing yourself into something good for you can change your perspective on life and make you realize how insignificant some people’s thoughts and opinions are.

Acceptance 

Accepting yourself is incredibly important. 

“Find out who you are and be that person. That’s what your soul was put on this Earth to be. Find that truth, live that truth, and everything else will come.”
Ellen DeGeneres

But so is accepting others. We might not necessarily understand someone’s reasons for doing something and believe there’s a better way to be. But sometimes, it’s far easier for you to accept and move on, and back away from those you don’t see eye to eye with. 

Help Others In Your Community

Lastly – help others. There are other people in your community with their own problems that might need help. Our inner strength and resilience appears in force when we see the ones we love upset. To propel your resilience, turn to support those who are not coping.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK

Most Popular