By David Clarke
School for many people is not a fun place to be it’s full of rules and discipline. This applies to all people but if your LGBT it can be a lot worse, there are emotions that you can’t figure out you begin to realise that you do fancy boys or girls like the others in your class and coming to terms with this can be very difficult. I have gone through this so I know what it can be like, for me it began in first year back in 2000, I was just starting to figure out who I was. I remember the blinding fear the came over me would my feelings change or was it a phase or would it be like this forever things looked very bleak.
I resorted to getting a girlfriend to try and hide who I was and also to protect myself from the torment I so feared, this worked for a while but I could not continue with it because I wasn’t being true to myself. Later on that year I came out to my best friend over a text message because I couldn’t say it out loud yet, I thought that if I could avoid saying it I wouldn’t have to believe it, I was very lucky with her reaction she just said she didn’t care I was who I was supposed to be and for the first time she knew the real me the relief was so overwhelming it brought me to tears.
I kept who I was a secret until I was in fifth year when tragically one of my close friends died I started to feel guilty for not having the courage to tell her and swore I wouldn’t let that happen again so during that summer I came out to everyone of my close friends each of whom I could trust to keep it quiet or so I thought. About three months I started hearing things back I was devastated the my trust in my friends had been broken , this forced me to come out to my parents which was by far the scariest thing I have ever done.
I wrote them both letters left them in the work jackets of my parents and went to school where I told my maths teacher what I had done. The teacher sat me down a just talked to me about everything I was going through and how everything would be ok and she offered to help me whatever way she could. My parents were fantastic they accepted it and have even welcomed my partners in to the family home. I am writing about this because I want to show anyone who is going through this and is still in school that you’re not alone all those things that are stuck in the back of your mind keeping you up at night may not happen they are built out of fear . Secondary school does come to an end if you can just get through the few years you will be there life gets so much better, it was only after I left school that I realised this.
I went to U.C.C and made amazing friends I joined the LGBT society in my first year and by second year I was running the society since then I have been to pride parades all over the country proudly marching alongside other LGBT people no longer afraid to be who I am. The message behind this piece is things really do get so much better all you have to do is hang in there, there are people you can talk to such as Gay Youth Wexford who will do whatever they can to help you through the fear. Just remember you’re not alone and if you need reminding of this just read my story!
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