I’m Not Gay And I Don’t Hate You

This is just a little blog that just a few people read on a regular basis.  I know I won’t reach hundreds with my thoughts.   And they are just thoughts, and opinions.  I will be lucky if I have tens of people read this and relate in some way.   Though I’m just one, I’m one like many.   I get up every day and do the best job I can at living and being a good person.   I don’t know how to fix the world, but I know how to not be a problem to it.   It’s really pretty simple.

I don’t hate.

I try not to inflict problems in to this world and in to other people’s lives.   It just doesn’t seem like the right thing to do.

Today was another shake me up kind of day.   I am sometimes so naive it surprises me.   I don’t get other people’s hate.   It shocks me.

Every time I see it.

I check out a lot of news sites through out my day.   Though I like to keep informed I’ll be honest enough to say I don’t fully understand all of the items of living that news agencies deem necessary to report.   Politics bewilder me.   Finance and budget problems astound me.   Hate overwhelms me.   I was stunned today when once again I went from news page to news page and found that yet another child had killed himself.  Because he was bullied.  I didn’t read the story at first.  I saw his picture.  I saw his picture many times before I read his story this evening.   Here’s what I saw when I looked at his picture:

I looked at the pictures.   I couldn’t see by looking at this face what there was about him that would threaten someone(s) enough to bully him.   Hate on him.  Drive him to suicide.

When I finally got to read the story I was surprised to read he was gay, or questioning his sexuality.   Yeah, I was surprised.   What is it about  a 14 year old boy questioning his sexuality that  makes it  reason enough to bully him, call him names, and make him feel like he does not belong?

It’s a simple enough question.

I’d like an honest answer.

I’m not gay.   I do not have a clue what this child went through.   I don’t understand what he went through.  Not because I’m not gay, but because I’m not him.  I didn’t know him.   But I can’t fathom a reason why this child’s sexuality, or more likely, his developing sexuality, was a threat to anyone.   Anywhere.

I kind of get the concept of bullies.   Bullies, by nature, bully out of their own fear.   I’m no expert.   It’s just my opinion.   But bullies do not try to learn or come to an understanding.   Bullies don’t seem to have that brain cell that tells them “you don’t have to understand or even like it, but it’s not hurting you, so it’s okay to be different”.    Along with the absence of that brain cell-they have lost, or never got, the “acceptance” brain cell.   Along with a few other brain cells.

I just don’t see why this child was hated by anyone because he was gay.  Or might be gay.  Or wondered if he was gay.   How is that a threat to anyone?

In the past month I have been a bit fascinated by the Chaz Bono story.   Why?  I’m glad you asked.   Because I don’t get it.  I have watched Chaz give some pretty open and honest interviews.  I’ve read some things Chaz has written.  I have read and listened to people support Chaz, and people be so hateful towards Chaz that it scares me.  The biggest surprise to me while watching and reading all of the information out there?   Why are people so scared and hateful of Chaz?   Chaz comes across in these interviews as thoughtful, kind, considerate and just down right nice.   What in the world is there to be scared of?

I am pretty sure a lot of people go back to the bible to support their fear.   I’ve read a lot of criticism saying “it’s not right”, “it’s not what God intended”, etc….   I don’t know the bible well enough to throw quotes at you.   But I get one basic concept, maybe two.   First, it’s God’s job to judge.   Second, love is God’s foundation.   Not hate.   And even if God has an issue with anything I don’t remember Him appointing a single one of us as the hate monger.   Like I said, I’m not a bible scholar but I’m pretty sure He does not call us to take up arms as hate mongers and torment our children and those of us who we perceive as different.

There is not one of us exactly like another.   Not one.   Our thoughts differ.  Our feelings differ.  Our perceptions differ.

People hate.   And hate is a choice.  Yeah….that one’s a choice.   It doesn’t matter what you believe or agree with.   What you don’t believe or don’t agree with.    What’s the point of all of the hate?   What, exactly, is the point?

I’m not gay and I don’t hate you if you are gay.   I don’t hate you if you’re straight.   I don’t hate you if you question your sexuality or don’t care to have any sexuality.   I don’t know even a fraction of you walking this planet.   But I can promise you this, you and I?   We are very different.

Please don’t hate me because I am different than you.

To Jamey’s family, my sympathy’s for your loss.   God bless Jamey and all who loved him.

66 thoughts on “I’m Not Gay And I Don’t Hate You

  1. As always, so very well said. What a sad catalyst to your thoughts. Such a beautiful face, such a tragic loss. I’m with you-I don’t hate. Not only is no one worth burning over, it is a horrible feeling and I’ll not let it touch me.

    Like

    • I just can’t imagine that child’s pain that this is the route he chose. That this, was better than being here. That others could be so hateful and inflict such pain.

      Like

  2. I do not claim to be a Bible expert either, but 2 things I know for sure…..There is a God, and “you” are not it……if we all could live by these truths, what a different world this could be!

    Like

  3. Bullying is such a huge problem and has been for many years.
    It can start in any grade including kindergarten. I know because my daughter was bullied quite frequently in kindergarten, and the school she went to tried to sweep it under the rug, To me its a sad reality to know that I, as a parent can’t protect my child all of the time from the people who may hurt her mentally or physically. I feel really sad when i hear stories like this young mans. Hate fuels a lot of dangerous fires. So sad. So very, very sad.

    Like

    • I’m sorry your little girl went through that. I’m sorry that a kindergarten aged child (any child) even knows what bullying is. Sad is that it is still happening. If children are still being bullied, those bullies are going to teach the hate to their children. Your little girl can be part of the change, part of the cycle buster. I hope she is happy and well. Thank you Martie.

      Like

  4. I have to say your blog touched me… I am a Nigerian in Nigeria and I’m glad to be one of the “tens” that you’ve touched. I’m so sad someone would take his life over bullying. I can’t comprehend it but it kills me. I’m not an emotional person but I read this boy’s story and cried.

    What could have been done… If just ONE staff in that school supported him he could have been fine. HE CRIED OUT FOR HELP AND NO ONE LISTENED TO HIM! God it makes me so mad… This very cute boy with a big heart has gotten his life cut short because of sheer ignorance and stupidity.

    I’m a Christian and rather devout one too but I have gay friends who struggled in Nigeria to come out and I know how hard it was but I was there every step of the way… Its not my place to judge or condemn.

    Thank you for this post… It makes the pain easier.

    Like

  5. Sarah thank you for sharing your thoughts. From what I’m reading the parents were trying to help. They talked openly with him, and they got him help to talk through this. I’m not sure what the school did. Unfortunately the child seemed to be telling his parents things were “better” when they weren’t. How painful this is for all of us. If only we all would stop the condemning. I hope your friends are doing well. I hope we can all work together to eradicate bullying, and hate. I have high hopes, don’t I? But if we can dream this, we can do this.

    Like

  6. It’s ridiculous that people fear the differences between people. They take that fear and turn it into hate because they struggle to understand. Great blog and great message.

    Like

    • Thank you Maggie. Isn’t it sad ? I understand people ‘not understanding’, I even understand people ‘not agreeing’. But why do those things have to turn in to hate?

      Like

  7. The saddest thing to me about this boy is that he could not see past that moment.

    I suspect that the bullies who tortured him were not raised right. They were not raised by parents who demonstrated that prejudice and tormenting are intolerable. I’m not blaming the parents completely…there are perfectly decent people who turned out fine despite crappy parents, so it works both ways. But I do think that all parents have the responsibility to raise not just tolerant children, but compassionate children.

    I want to hug Chaz Bono every time I see him. Seriously…he didn’t have to go through this change to find his inner balls…he already had them. To all the people who think he’s a freak or pervert or whatever…do they really think he’d have gone through all of this for kicks? For fun? Turn upside down everything he’s ever known? NO! His soul is exposing itself through layers of flesh. That’s all he’s fighting…cells, not soul.

    I hope ALL kids get into the “It Gets Better” campaign and start suporting each other. From a formerly buck-toothed, braces-wearing, thick glasses-sporting, acned-skinny-boobless geekette who got pushed around, threatened and called names in grade school, it gets better!

    Like

  8. Hate is definitely taught. My child was not taught hate. Never saw it. I took her to daycare in another’s home when she was 2 1/2 and when she returned she told me “I hate you”. I could tell she was repeating something and had the angry little face to go with it. Of course she had no idea what that meant. But somewhere else, someone else, had taught my child something very bad. It still makes me sad. 😦

    Like

  9. That is a powerful blog. I have shared it with my own network. If only we could all grasp the truth behind improving this world as you have: “don’t hate”. The two great commands of the bible are to “love God” and “to love each other”. That is it. Love is an absence of hate. We need to teach our children to love themselves and others, to not hate, to not act out of fear and ignorance, whether it be homophobia, xenophobia and so on. This blog is an inspiration. I feel terribly sad for Jamey and his family. Sadly though, there are other kids out there who are experiencing the bullying that he did. If adult could lead by example and not have these hateful homophobic campaigns, then maybe other lives could be saved.

    Like

    • Shane-thank you for reading, and commenting. I am in full agreement with you. Hate is taught. I’ve seen it. I’ve seen the absence of hate in many children, thanks be to some very strong parents who have built a network of support and love with other like minded parents and extended support systems. It’s wonderful to see accepting and loving children who wouldn’t know how to say hateful things to another child-because they’ve not been taught to do it. I worry for the other children (and adults) who feel hated and ostracized. As humans we are created to be social. If the only “social” you know is full of hate…we see the results. And it affects us all. Again, thank you for reading, sharing, and being part of a positive way of living.

      Like

  10. Hard to accept that some people finds satisfaction in the suffering of others. Bullying is so sad because it oftentimes involve young ones. What would the bully further become in the future? The bullied? May we be very concerned not only on our kiddos being bullied but the possibility of them being a bully. My prayer and sympathy goes too to Jamey’s family and those who suffer the same.

    Like

    • Bended I don’t know how I missed this TWO YEARS ago. I’m sorry. I agree with you. I worry not just for the child who is bullied, but the child who does bully. And what the future holds for all. My prayers and sympathy still go out to them. I cannot imagine their suffering.

      Like

  11. well said. this whole story about jamey taking his life is horrible. it scares me.
    those bullies killed him. how can that not be illegal ?
    i can’t believe he’s dead, he was so beautiful. i feel awful for not knowing about him when he was alive, for not talking to him or helping him. i don’t know him or anything i just can’t believe he’s dead and gone forever.
    rest in peace, jamey. paws up forever<3

    Like

    • It is horrible. I believe we can still help Jamey, by helping everyone who feels like he does. He was right in saying to others that it does get better. If only he had believed it for that one moment. We need to try and hear other’s pleas. So that moment does not go by unnoticed. Thank you for reading and joining the discussion.

      Like

  12. Excellent last para, Colleen. It broke my heart, reading this story – and of course, it wasn’t a one-off. It is just SO tragic. So tragic.

    This is a great post, and a very respectful close. And love the title – that’s why I clicked on it.

    Like

    • Thanks Noeleen. What a horrible thought that still gives me worries…there are more kids, and adults, like Jamie. They are so tormented and we don’t even know enough to help.

      Like

  13. Colleen, I never really got the chance to know you, but now I know what a great person you really are. I was so touched by this that it brought a tear to my eye. I know what it is like to feel different, i am gay and I have learned to deal with the Hate that some people feel towards us. I am blessed to have a loving family, most that do not understand what it is like to be gay, but still love me for who I am. I have found love, love that is no different then most of the straight couples I know. Love is a feeling that the heart feels not a choice that the brain makes.
    Thank you for sharing your well spoken thoughts

    Like

    • Dear Anonymous, and I do mean “Dear”… You are an inspiration to me. I remember you VERY fondly. And though our interactions in life were “brief” you actually taught me quite a bit about courage, tolerance and acceptance. I have counted you as a friend since you trusted me enough to tell me about your life. Thank YOU for reading and taking the time to comment. I can’t tell you how much that means to me. I love what you said about love: “Love is a feeling that the heart feels not a choice that the brain makes.” That is so true. God bless you!

      Like

  14. I’ve learned that we can only see the world through the lens of our own beliefs about OURSELVES. Whenever we criticize, bully, or whatever…we are directing it at ourselves. We’re just not aware of it. This boy looks beautiful to you because you have good thoughts about yourself. Anyone else looking upon it with any other thought must look inward to discover how they feel about themselves.

    Like

  15. You spoke my heart and mind here. Beautiful…and sorry for the loss of that one child (and perhaps the bullies are lost children, too?)

    Like

  16. Reblogged this on The Chatter Blog and commented:

    Jamey Rodemeyer’s birthday is today. Every time I hear about bullying or children in emotional crisis I think of him. I hope someone, some where, had a change of heart after reading his story. Or other stories like his. And stopped hating.

    Like

  17. Your choice of words honor this boy’s life, Chatter Master. Perhaps “delightfully written” is a wrong choice of words for this, but those are the words that come into mind right now…

    Like

    • Thank you Koji. I was so stunned by this. And when I realized last week that his birthday was today, I wanted to remember him. And those like him, who feel so tortured and tormented. And his family, how are they doing? I didn’t want to remember the tragedy of his death. I wanted to remember he was a child-forever now a child, to his parents, a sibling, a grandchild, a friend.

      Like

  18. Great post and so beautifully said. There have been many bullying stories about young men where the bully is in fact frightened by his own repressed sexuality. So much fear and hatred incubated by a society that still doesn’t support difference. It’s not a choice, you are what you are.

    Like

    • We are what we are. Exactly. I do understand that people may not fully grasp or “understand” other’s. That’s okay. But, why hate? I don’t get it. Shouldn’t our differences be prompts for discussion and discovery? Thank you Animalcouriers.

      Like

  19. Great post, CM, and a good way to honor Jamey. I am often shocked by other people’s hate, too. I think that might be a good thing, that we can still be shocked. It’s better than being jaded and accepting of it.

    Like

    • Thank you Robin. I don’t ever want to be accepting of hatred. I re-read this a couple of times before reposting it. And sadly, these stories are still happening. But I hope that someone, has changed. Great change can start with one small step.

      Like

  20. I believe hatred, anger and bullying are cries for help. I’ve looked at and felt my emotional pain and seen how sometimes I’ve wanted to inflict emotional pain back on someone else because I didn’t want to be the only one feeling pain. We begin acting like bullies when we are young. I think parents bully their children even in ways one wouldn’t perceive as bullying. I was bullied by an older sibling and I bullied my younger sibling. Any form of teasing is bullying even if one says they are kidding. We accept beliefs about ourselves from others at a young age and we hold onto the beliefs until we have someone tell us different. I went to my 30th high school reunion two years ago and spoke to a classmate whom I believed acted like a bully. She said she was bullied at home and so she had to have someone to bully and therefore her classmates. I also see how we put labels on people and we identify with the labels…this does not support us because these labels do not describe our true being of love. I believe each of us was created from Love. I pray for Jamey and his family as well as the students that bullied him.

    Like

    • Thank you FeelingJoy. I agree with your sentiments. The bullying comes from an internal reason for certain: pain, suffering, and often times learned hate. I don’t think we are born with hate. But we can quickly learn it. Or, sadly, in many cases with young children I don’t know that they understand it as much as they mimic it. I hope there has been change and growth in those who were involved in this. And hopefully it prompted change in others.

      Like

  21. people fear what they do not know and that makes them aggressive. Our difference whatsoever, this is what makes our charm, our attractiveness. Without these differences the world would be sad. On this earth, nobody Ability to judge or condemn, only God.
    Although there is, let’s proud of what God gave us and live with what we have. 🙂

    Like

  22. Thank you for highlighting a story I was not aware of. Society can be so cruel and discrimination of any sort (and I speak from first-hand experience) can destroy the will to fight back.
    The ‘bullies’ get on with their day leaving the victim to relive the torment over and over. If they knew the impact would be even care?

    Thanks for telling the story so well

    Like

    • Hi Tetraplegic Bhoy. This child killed himself in 2011. I preferred to remember him on his birthday instead of the day he killed himself.

      After his death his sister went to a school dance where some of the children started a chant during a song to remember her brother. A kind chant of his name. Then other children started to say they were glad he was dead. Some of them, obviously did not care.

      But I wonder how many of those children, or others who truly heard this story, did hear. And then thought about what they have said to others.

      And it’s not just children.

      Thank you for talking about this with me.

      Like

  23. Very well written Colleen! It seems as though there is always an issue like this that needs to be dealt with. Like racism, it takes courageous people to stand up, talk about it and educate others. I don’t know why it can’t come naturally to people to just be nice to each other. But thank you for being one of those people who is standing up and talking about this and educating people. My husband and I sit down and talk to our kids a lot about people’s differences and how we embrace everyone. I really hope everyone does this with their young children so this next generation will be more excepting.

    Like

    • I applaud you and your husband.

      The wonderful thing about differences? Is it does add color to our lives.

      And being different does not mean we have “agree” with a difference. Or “get it”. It just “is”. And where is the harm in that?

      Thank you!

      Like

  24. These stories are heart breaking. The really heart breaking part is that there are so many more stories like this one that we don’t hear about. There are so many more children like Jamey suffering in silence. I applaud the schools who are enforcing anti-bullying policies and making anti-bulllying programs a focus for students. I hope it’s enough, but as parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. it is up to us to instill good morals, values and compassion in the children we come into contact with on a regular basis. And most importantly let these children know we are always here for them no matter what they are questioning or struggling with because we love them for who they are and everything that makes them whole.

    Great post, well written, sad, touching and heartfelt. Thank you for eloquently expressing what many of us are feeling.

    Like

    • Thank you for your feedback LittleMissWordy. I do worry that the schools are over burdened with parenting as well as teaching. I agree with you that as parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and other roles in children’s lives we have a responsibility to them. We have to be the foundation of their lives.

      I don’t want to, but must, imagine the thousands of kids out there who feel like Jamie did (for a multitude of different reasons). And even knowing this…you and I don’t know how to reach out right this moment and help one of them who is contemplating, or acting, as Jamie did. It is an extremely difficult thing to contemplate. But we have to.

      Thank you so much.

      Like

  25. Very poignant and straight from the heart. I don’t understand it either. So much fear of differences; so little recognition how we are all alike on so many levels. As humans, we have a long way to go…

    Like

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 )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google 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 )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.