Posts

The Prevention of Suicide Through Unconditional Love

You are not alone, if you want to talk to someone then you can contact:

  • Carafriend Telephone – 0808 8000 390 FREE – Free from landlines and most mobiles: 3, EE, O2, Virgin and Vodafone

  • NIGRA – 07719576524 and we will ring you back to take the call charges

LGBT Christmas

LGBT Christmas

Reprinted from THE BLOG:

The Prevention of Suicide Through Unconditional Love | Chloe Hollett, J.D.

No parent who has lost a child to suicide ever predicted it happening. Parents and caregivers with LGBT children: Please face the sad truth that your son or daughter may be eight times more likely to attempt suicide. The holiday season, celebrated in a religiously- and politically-charged climate, is difficult for many, but to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender persons they are extra challenging. Unconditional love strengthened me, and it may provide the same for your child.

After devouring the offerings of Thanksgiving, while still seated at the table, time came to fulfill a family tradition born of my mother’s early ’90s new age focus on the importance of sharing our feelings. We each awkwardly crammed a year’s worth of gratitude into a 30-second impromptu monologue. When the warmth of the spotlight focused on me, I disregarded the patience of the less emotionally in-touch family, so obviously seated in frustration, let the estrogen flow, and offered a rambling exposé on how each of them contributed to my happiness. I saved my mother for last, articulating how her always steadfast and unqualified support is to what I owe my successes. After concluding my long-winded response, she reflected appreciation by sharing how, when meeting another parent, she tells the account of why, if not for her, I might not be alive today.

As those that know my mother will attest, she, in only the best way possible, sees no boundaries with whom and in what manner she should interact, paying little attention to social normative behavior that interferes with meeting her goals. So, when she says every mother, she literally means EVERY MOTHER she encounters. From the unfortunate woman tending the checkout at whichever retail establishment she finds herself, to her seamstress that barely understands a word of English, to random women at the mall with strollers that seem to beckon her to approach and offer unsolicited motherly wisdom. When mentioning her children to new acquaintances, in what I suspect is a personal campaign to educate the planet on gender psychology, she shows a glamorous photo of me at a highfalutin event, and, after allowing a moment for remarks on owing my looks to her, quickly swipes to my senior prom photo and proudly exclaims, “she was my son.”

Growing up in the overcrowded town of Conservative-Christian-White-Middle-Class-America-Ville, I struggled down the road of self-discovery. Challenged by typical teenage concerns, confused by my sexuality and gender, and appalled by my future as a non-conforming oddity, I plummeted into an inescapable pit of despair. This hopeless struggle climaxed when I scaled the rafters of our garage, tied one end of a rope around a beam, and the other around my neck. With intentions of sealing this chapter, after saying my tear-filled prayers for forgiveness, I realized I could not do it. The thought of my mother suffering the agony of discovering my lifeless body was the only thing preventing me from jumping.

Not until the drive home from the Thanksgiving dinner was I able to ask my partner for her take on my mother’s sharing of my story, and inquire into whether it served any purpose. Resolutely, she said, “It describes how a parent’s love can so dramatically impact the lives of their children,” and that my mother has assuredly affected the futures of many families. I only understood my mother’s pride in this narrative in terms of her joy for how much I love her, but seeing it from this perspective taught that my mother’s love for me was what fostered my love for her, and what inspired me to change my course that fateful night.

The tools necessary to tackle all life’s challenges are not standard equipment, but generally developed through experiential learning. If repeatedly we fail to overcome an obstacle, giving up may seem like an option. The clichéd understanding of suicide as a permanent solution for temporary problems aims to undermine its viability with logic, yet it presupposes clarity of mind. Depression, chronic and situational, distorts rationality, preventing sight of this decision’s obvious shortcoming. However, this consideration of permanency extends beyond the one suffering, and reminds us of the tremendous responsibility for those within our influence.

This account makes no assertions about the relationships among parents and children that have taken their lives. Although suicide is not seasonally dependent, the festivities may bring many LGBT persons more dread than cheer. Reflect on your relationship with your child this holiday season. A parent’s assurances of unconditional love can be the difference between life and death.

Further reading:

DVD Reviews

Drink Me (DVD Review)

Starring: , ,
Director:
Running Time:
Certificate:
Release Date:

Last year Richard Mansfield brought us the odd but sometimes effective The Secret Path, and now it’s the turn of his husband, Daniel, to direct a gay-themed Brit Flick, Drink Me. Both movies share being on the verge of the supernatural, as well having as a love of somewhat perplexing horror, but while Secret Path was set in the past, this is a more modern affair.

Andy and James are a couple living a pleasant suburban life, which seems to offer everything they’d want. However when Andy is made redundant their financial stability comes under threat and they decide they need to take in a lodger. The arrival of the sexy Sebastian puts increasing pressure on Andy and James’ relationship and major cracks appear, especially as Andy gets increasingly paranoid and suggests that a series of disappearances may have something to do with the man staying in their house.

Sebastian meanwhile is a mysterious figure, flirting with both of his landlords and perhaps hiding a deeper, vampiric secret. [Read more…]

Hidden Away (DVD Review)

Starring: , , ,
Director:
Running Time:
Certificate:
Release Date:

Rafa is a teenage boy on the verge of becoming a man, who’s starting to realise that maybe his friends are jerks (and racists), something that becomes especially acute when they begin to pressure him to get with girls, which he isn’t interested in.

Then he meets Ibra, a young Moroccan immigrant, who he knows his friends wouldn’t approve of but who he feels drawn to. They spark up a friendship which may be leading to something more. However Ibra’s precarious situation begins to take precedence when it becomes clear the Spanish authorities want to deport him, despite the fact he’s underage and has nobody to go back to. [Read more…]

Silent Youth (DVD Review)

Starring: ,
Director:
Running Time:
Certificate:
Release Date:

Marlo (Martin Bruchmann) is a young man wandering around Berlin when his hand brushes against another guys’ as he crosses the street. Marlo decides to follow the man – even though he doesn’t seem to be sure why – who eventually approaches him and introduces himself a Kirill (Josef Mattes).

The film then follows their next few days together, where both men seem to want to fully connect but aren’t sure how. As they hang out Kirill reveals stories of how he was beaten up while visiting his grandmother in Russia, as well as the issues he has with his family, while Marlo attempts to understand and connect to this man he has an undeniable attraction to, even if neither have acted on it with a guy before. [Read more…]

Gay Parenting

Dear Heather Barwick, Don’t Blame the Gay Community

Republished from Huffpost Gay Voices

Posted: Updated:
SIDNEYSWITZERMOMSONETIMEUSE

Gay community, I am also your daughter. My moms raised me from birth. The only dad I had was a sperm donor who was anonymous. I was raised in a wonderful family. The only ignorance I have faced was from those who felt a father is necessary in raising a child. I have worked for years educating the gay and straight community alike that my family structure is just as good for raising children as any other, so I feel the need to respond to Heather Barwick, a daughter of gay moms, who believes her family structure (my family structure) was detrimental to her upbringing.

In her article on The Federalist, Heather explains that her mom left her dad when she was 3. Not only does she openly admit that her father “wasn’t a great guy,” but she says that he abandoned her after the divorce, and that her mother’s new same-sex partner didn’t fill the spot of her father.

I want to first say that her feelings about her father are legitimate. However, they are not relevant to the argument that she needed a father in her upbringing. As with many children of divorced parents, she didn’t feel like the new replacement for her old parent was suitable. Regardless of gender, she wouldn’t have felt like the new person dating her mother would have been what she needed. What she felt she needed wasn’ta dad but her dad.

As for Heather’s mother, I do agree that she made a mistake in failing to consider her daughter’s feelings. But this has nothing to do with her sexual orientation. Heather was surrounded by negative man haters. She also had a mother who didn’t make her feel like she could talk about her feelings. Had her mother been heterosexual and acted this way, it would have been equally detrimental to her child. The environment her mother put her in, the people and attitudes she exposed her to, and her failure to acknowledge her child’s needs are likely the causes of her detriment.

At the age of 12, I joined a travel softball team. Having experienced hateful comments on a previous team, I asked my moms if it would be OK to keep the gay thing under wraps. Though they’d been out of the closet for nearly 20 years, they were full-heartedly supportive and gave me my time to “come out of the closet.” They admitted years later that they were secretly hurt by my wanting to hide them, but they knew that they had been given time to come out, so I should be given the same courtesy. They listened to their daughter’s insecurity about having gay parents and supported me. It wasn’t long until I got some self-confidence and stopped being upset by negative comments. I just needed some time and understanding parents.

When Heather’s mother and new same-sex partner made her feel like her feelings were wrong and she didn’t have a voice, it was not poor gay parenting. It was poor parenting, period.

Parents, gay and straight alike, parent poorly sometimes. Kids who come from heterosexual parents may have parents who, they feel, don’t listen to them. They may even have parents who are abusive. Heather had an experience with a messy divorce, a dad who left her, and less-than-adequate parenting that happened to be done by two women. She’s now seeing a great parent in her husband and assuming that his great parenting can only be done by a male.

Heather, you may be looking at your lovely family and think that your husband is an amazing father, and I’m sure he is. This doesn’t mean that you can discount my family structure because of the lack of structure you were raised in. There are plenty of dysfunctional families led by a mother and a father, and there are plenty of wonderful families led by single parents, grandparents, same-sex parents, etc.

I have no hole to fill. I am lucky to have two wonderful parents who love me. I don’t “desperately need a daddy,” because mine didn’t leave me. My parents support me and have surrounded me with a great community of LGBT and heterosexual people who are positive role models. There were no man haters in my community. My parents listen to my concerns and do their very best to help me. I have two loving parents who taught me about the ignorant people who will hold up those “Gods Hates Fags” signs and didn’t let me worry about it, because I was taught that those people were closed-minded, ignorant, full of hate, and in no way worth my tears. I was encouraged to be patient and educate, but not to be bothered by them. I have two parents who raised my two brothers and me as independent thinkers who have their own voices.

So please, Heather, in regard to your less-than-adequate upbringing, don’t play the “gay card.” Your parents may not have supported you, but do not put the blame on my family’s, or any other LGBT family’s, structure. Your family being dysfunctional had nothing to do with your mother being gay. It had everything to do with having a father, a mother and a stepmother who all failed you as parents in some way or another.

You are right in that there are hard topics that need to be talked about. Divorce is a hard topic. A parent leaving you is a hard topic. Being surrounded by negative role models is a hard topic. As a young girl, you were abandoned and raised in a negative, man-hating environment where you felt you couldn’t speak, but this does not give you the right to strike out at the gay community as a whole.

Talk about how your parents didn’t parent correctly to whatever excess you please, but do not make a blanket statement about gay parenting simply because your family is dysfunctional and an abandoned little girl inside you is hurt.

2015-03-19-1426784491-7604551-18691_10151189133311482_1757713230_n.jpg

Do we need more sex education?

sex-ed-1 sex-ed-2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

According to PETER HITCHENS FOR THE MAIL ON SUNDAY in March 2010, sex education does not work and it is a ‘lefties’ plot against society and the family.; and Tory MP for Shipley, Yorkshire, Philip Davies, states it is a parent’s job to discuss sex education with their child not a schools!
So what does Sex and Relationship education aim to do:

SRE aims to equip children and young people with the information, skills and values they need to have safe, fulfilling and enjoyable relationships and to take responsibility for their sexual health and well-being.
SRE aims to contribute to behaviour change, including reducing unprotected and unwanted sex, and reducingsex-ed-3 harmful behaviour, including sexual offences such as assault and abuse

I t would seem therefore that in itself, SRE cannot do what the ‘government’ wants i.e. reduce unwanted pregnancies and also reduce sexually transmitted diseases. If society wishes this to happen then a radical change in all of our attitudes needs to take place. We must be open with our children and teenagers, and lead by example. How can we possibly ask children and teenagers to not explore their sexuality in a responsible way if we have government ministers and other MPs jumping in and out of other peoples beds, and having sex with people who they are not in a relationship with – and this includes paid for sex.

A healthy sexual appetite is part being human, but being responsible in how we mane it comes with education and openess.

sex-ed-4

Further reading:

NIGRA Wishes Everyone a Merry Gay Christmas

 

The members and followers of NIGRA wish everyone a wonderful, and safe Christmas.  Be safe, and remember to look after others when you can.