Thursday, March 11, 2010

Gay Teens and The Rabbit Hole

Anyone who is an adult can remember how difficult the teen age years can be. How many times has the question been asked “ What time in your life would you like to relive”? Many would say “My teenage years” in a heartbeat. For many in the LGBT community it is a time wrought with depression, loneliness and even hopelessness. Sometimes even to the point of attempting or succeeding in a suicide attempt. I myself tried when I was 16. Not a time one would go back to under any circumstances.

Today The ACLU filed a lawsuit on behalf of Constance McMillen, 18, a lesbian student at Itawamba County Agricultural High School. Details of which can be read here . Constance, along with all of the students at her school will not be going to prom because she asked to go to the prom with another female student. The School promptly told her in not so many words “Do so at the risk of being thrown out of the prom”. They then quickly canceled the prom for everyone. Thus the lawsuit to correct such a disgraceful abuse of authority by the School board.

It is frightening to know that the majority of teen suicides are attempted by gay teens. Most cannot reconcile their emotions and fears with what to many is a situation without hope. There is hope however,but we who are supposed to be role models and teachers need to make sure that help is accessible.
There are countless teenagers who are facing the discrimination that Ms. Mcmillen is facing. It is important for them to know that there are resources for them. Here are a few:

My hope is that the media will continue to report on cases such as Ms. McMillen’s and thereby bring much more needed attention to the plight of Gay teens. Perhaps if we focused a bit more on our children, instead of what is happening in a celebrities bedroom, life would become much more less of a challenge to these young people. I commend the stars like Cyndi Lauper , whose True Colors Residence for gay teenagers will be opening in NYC in the fall of 2010. Hopefully others will support these teens, many of whom become homeless after being kicked out of their homes. Some of whom turn to a life of drugs or even prostitution in their utter despair. It’s time to end what suffering we can. Please do what you can to help a teen, with whatever help you can give. Maybe one day life for gay teens really will be a trip to Wonderland.

Understanding and caring go a long way.

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