Derogatory drive-by

Today I was walking down the street, and somebody hollered “faggot” from their car as they sped by.  I wasn’t really offended.  And this post doesn’t have as much to do with the bone-headed nuances of a simple coward as you might think based on the title.  It was actually just something I brought up to my mother, only to have it used as leverage for shaming.

Shame on me.

To make a long intro short, I have a dying grandmother who does not know my situation.  Sound vague?  Mostly because it is.  You see, apart from myself, my mother has known about my sexuality longer than any other person.  She has been mostly void of negative sentiment, which by her word means she is accepting.  And that’s not to say that she isn’t, or that she’s a bad mother or a bad person.  She has always provided for me the same, and we are never short of communication, it is just obvious to me that who I am is someone she would rather I not be.  She would rather not deal with my situation.

This is why my grandmother does not know.  Because she is dying and it could put her in the grave.  Because I will ruffle feathers and have people talking.  Because it will all fall back on my mother, or my father, or my brother or my sister, and I will be the one to blame.

Shame on me.

I am empathetic to the fact that they should not have to deal with my situation by any force other than their own.  And I am sad that my mother will take the brunt of family gossip, and my father will be harassed with unnecessary comments and suggestions from people at his church.  I am sorry that my siblings will be burdened by questions from their friends.  This is no one’s crisis but my own.  This isn’t even a crisis.  I am sad that people I love are forced to have reservations and concerns.

Shame on me.

Where most of my shame comes from though are these people themselves.  These people I call my mother, my father, my brother and my sister.  These people who over the years have scorned me and belittled me and made me feel lesser through their words.  And I know they don’t mean it.  I know they are unaware.  But the things I say, the clothes that I wear, the places I go and the people I surround myself by are something of an identity.  An identity I have struggled with for a very long time at the hands of these very same people.

Shame on me.

Somebody driving by and calling me a faggot is no skin off my back.  Because you know what?  I am a faggot.  But hearing from someone I call my family to be wary of pictures I share, scowling at my eyebrows, using effeminate hand motions to describe distaste for my outfits, and baiting my closet of shame with my dying grandmother… these are things that hurt me.  More than I can teach them to understand.  Because they tell me that who I am is someone that is not approved of.  They are telling me that I should be ashamed of myself, and to keep my “situation” as ambiguous as the word used to describe it.

I am ashamed."No son of ours..."

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s