Holding the Space
Blogging is relatively new to me. I’ve tried to start my own several times with little success, and while I am required to once a month for work, it’s something I’ve yet to find a real passion for. That’s likely why, when I expressed interest in writing for this blog, I waited until the last possible moment to submit anything.
That, and writing specifically within an LGBTQA perspective feels foreign to me. I spent a lot of time trying to separate my sexuality from my identity because I simply don’t want to be marginalized. No one does. But I can’t, and no one can. And writing from an LGBTQA perspective isn’t foreign to me because everything I say, everything I write, everything I do—it’s all informed in some form by who I am, and being a gay man is a big part of that.
There was also a lot of fear that I am somehow going to misrepresent the community as a whole; while I told myself that no one could possibly see my perspective as being representative of all gay men, I do recognize that some folks can and will do so. I mean, every time someone who identifies as a feminist says something even remotely un-feminist, they’re pounced on and folks will denounce feminism entirely as a result of one person’s one statement. It’s ludicrous, but it happens. So what if I mess it all up?
Well, that’s the risk that we marginalized folks need to take (or so I believe). So often, our voices aren’t heard. We are routinely silenced and our experiences are invalidated. Look at Pride—there is still such a large push back and a chorus of folks whining about how there’s no “straight Pride.” …Except straight folks don’t need Pride because they’re not routinely told their identity as a heterosexual person makes them less worthy or less human.
As such, whenever we can, I feel like we need to speak up—to add our voices to the room and take a seat at the table regardless of whether it was offered to us. In coordinating this blog, the ACNBA is holding the space for our voices to be heard and is offering us a seat at the table. Maybe the statements I make in these blog posts won’t reflect all gay men or others in the LGBTQA community, but when we are routinely denied these opportunities, I can’t pass this one up.
So, here’s to the beginning of a new blogging adventure. I hope you enjoy going along for the ride with me, and I hope together we can engage in some neat conversations about the LGBTQA experience.