We Started At Zero

In the past month or so, more than 4 youths in America killed themselves because they were bullied at school for being gay.

This is Ellen Degeneres’ message regarding the matter. I’ll let you watch this first.

When I heard that the youngest of the boys were 13, I felt that stabbing pain of heartbreak – 13!

The oldest of the boys were younger than me.

When I read the news article, I actually sat there, shocked, for a few solid minutes. I could only stare at the faces of the boys, smiling back at me. I tried looking for any sadness in their eyes, and shadow in the curve of their smiles, and I couldn’t see any. These boys who, when the shutter clicked, had so much happiness, had been pushed to end their own lives to escape from the teasing. And for what? For being exactly who they are, and liking people that they naturally are attracted to.

When I was 13, I was in my first year of high school. My worst problem was that my closest friends in primary school all went to different high schools from me – I had to make new friends. And I did make new friends.

The THOUGHT of killing myself – or even HURTING myself – because I’m upset, didn’t even occur to me at that age.

Being different to other people is hard, but sometimes it’s easy to change it, even if it makes you a bit upset. The skill of fitting in is crucial in the early years of teenage-hood, I won’t even sugar coat it, I did it, you did it, I know that everyone did it at times. Maybe you’ll even realize that changing yourself a little to fit in actually pushed you onto a path you feel better with – or led you to that path, whatever. I know that I really wanted to make friends with Dani, so when she recommended music, I listened to them (oh, Dani, don’t see any less of me). It was a good thing that I did that, because I ended up loving the music in my own right.

However, there are things you just can’t change. You can try to deny it, but there is no way you can change it. Things like being attracted to people who are the same sex.

So, there you are, being very different to people around you, and you can’t change it. You’re not at the age where saying “fuck it, I am who I am” does anything. At these times, having at least someone on your side is crucial. The sad part is, and I know what this feels like, with things like being gay or bi, you actually feel like there is no one who would really be on your side. Even your closest friend might turn their back on you in your imagination of how events might go.

Even if you are brave enough to tell someone, then it becomes that THING where it needs to be kept secret, because you just KNOW there is gonna be an asshat out there who would make your life a living hell if they found out.

For these boys, the asshats found out.

I’m pretty sure this is the first time I made a direct reference to it here, but yeah, I am bi. I know quite a few of you will probably already know this, or guessed it by implication, but this time it’s written down here. (By the way, if you know me or my parents personally, can you please not tell them? Both of them are rather homophobic and I really am not ready to tell them yet. Don’t be that asshat and screw my life up.)

I am incredibly lucky. From the first person that I had the courage to tell, and all the subsequent people after that, all of them have been fine with it. I wouldn’t say that they’ve all embraced it with open arms, but I haven’t lost any friends over it. I won’t kid myself – there are very likely people who have sad bad things about me behind my back, and I’ve had a few say un-nice things to my face, but I have enough love from all my friends to help me pass that. And that’s why I say I am incredibly lucky. I would be count myself blessed if my parents could accept it too, but I’m not looking for miracles ha.

I honestly feel the utmost sympathy for anyone who is suffering because they don’t feel that luck and love that they need. I would be willing to talk to anyone who needs a pair of ears to receive their problems. But I wish I didn’t have to say that – I wish that kids don’t need a complete stranger’s support to be okay everyday, that if they need someone to help them, they can do what I get to do, and call up a friend to unload onto them.

It’s just plain wrong that these boys felt like they didn’t have a single one of these friends to talk to.

There was absolutely nothing wrong with them, so why were they made to feel like they had to end their lives?

May their souls rest in peace in, if they so believed, heaven. Yes, because even if I am not religious, I don’t think that an all-loving God would bar a 13 year old boy from having eternal peace.

If you’re feeling upset about something, please tell someone. People have a habit of surprising you in the amount they can care.

Alex.

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