An old friend of mine recently let me know that they are transitioning and my initial reaction was ‘Goodness, you’ve picked a very hard path for yourself'. But of course it wasn’t a choice, they didn’t decide anything, it’s just their reality. From my position of privilege most of the life altering changes in my life are things I’ve been lucky enough to have a choice about. I definitely haven’t always chosen wisely, and I’ve definitely picked the hard path, often wilfully. While my options may have felt limited and the consequences dire they were still options and I owned the consequences, and positively encouraged debate to help me figure out these options.
From my position of privilege I mistook their coming out for a lifestyle choice rather than a fact about themselves that they have finally shared with me. Their only options were between the continued psychological damage caused by never living their truth, or publicly opening themselves up to having the facts of their very existence debated on the national airwaves. Either way they are being scapegoated as the latest bogeyperson, used to instil fear and division while they’re just attempting to get by, like the rest of us.
While there was no choice involved, there was a whole ton of bravery that has made me even more proud of them. So this year for pride that’s what I’m choosing to celebrate.
If you would like to show your support this Pride 2022, click here or the link below for a list of some of the charities and organisations doing great things.