daily want

Seventeen things you have to learn for yourself
as a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning, Intersex, Asexual, Pansexual
or otherwise Queer youth
by the time you are seventeen.

One is that the first Pride was a riot
I don’t mean that it was full of laughter, or that it was some grand party
where everyone spiraled up to dance among the stars
because the only glittering that night
was broken glass on cobblestones.
The first Pride was a riot
on the backstreets of New York
and they never tell us
that night
we won.
The only protest
in a decade full of turmoil
where the cops had to hide out in the bar they raided
and run from shouting rioters
who fought to reclaim the only patch of ground they had ever claimed as theirs
the first Pride was a riot,

and two, around the same time it took place
it was a debated topic in the gay community
whether or not they should say
that they weren’t mentally ill

which, three, homosexuality was removed
from the American Psychiatric Association’s list of mental illnesses
in 1974
congratulations
all it took was a vote to declare that, whoops, we were never mentally ill

except, four, there are still teenagers being tortured today
in what some dare blaspheme as “therapy”
used to destroy their self-identity
in the hopes of making them normal.
except, four, the queer community still carries overwhelmingly high rates for poverty and homelessness and depression.

Did you know that, five,
over half the children forced into conversion therapy
commit suicide?

And six, that lesbians
were regarded as “hangers-on”
of the movement
by much of the gay community
before the AIDS crisis?

Because it turns out, seven can wear a rainbow on your shirt
and still be a bigot.
There are people who stick rainbows in their ears
or wear them on their fingers
or slap them across their cheeks in badges of defiance
and will still hate you for the color of your skin
or the size of your thighs
or your gender
or the way you like to kiss two or more genders
or none of the above.
Don’t ask me why this happens
it just does
I think it might be that we’ve all been taught to hate ourselves
for so damn long
that we don’t understand what to do
in a space with no hate.
Or maybe it’s that the space seems too small, because

eight, there are people who will tell you that you are not enough
that you do not reach the magical benchmark of “gay enough” to pass through the gate even
especially
when you are some flavor of the rainbow other than straight-out gay.
eight, this is bullshit
eight, those people are bullshit.
eight, you are enough.
eight, there is always enough room.

nine, there is no overarching “homosexual agenda”
sorry
we’re all kind of flailing along in here trying to figure out some way to make it work
when most of us have nothing in common
except that society looked at us in different ways and decided we didn’t fit
so we could all go be misfits together
under one big rainbow flag

but just so you know, ten, there are plenty of other flags
there is one for you, I promise

and eleven, misfits may not all need the same things
but we need to stick together, especially in a world where

twelve—refer to point seven—there are lesbians who hate other lesbians
for having the audacity to be born in a body
that everyone looked at and saw “boy”
which brings me to

thirteen, there is so much to understand.

fourteen, you need to understand
because we need to stick together
and to stick together we do not have to be the same but we do have to understand
and it will be hard because
you were probably thrown into this world with no warning because

fifteen, being queer is not genetic and we are not unique among minorities
in that we collect our heritage through broken bits of history and research in a world constantly working to make those misfit bits go away
but we are unique in that when we try to prove our legacy
we can be laughed down
or re-erased
or flat out ignored
but I swear to you
you have a history as old as Alexander the Great
as beautiful as Sappho
as dignified as Abraham Lincoln
and as proud as Eleanor Roosevelt.

But even with that behind us
sixteen,
they have always watched us die.
because even though the bystander effect is bullshit, sixteen
Kitty Genovese was a lesbian, sixteen
Ronald Reagan is a mass murderer, sixteen
our children, your brothers and sisters and  siblings of all stripes and all colors and sexualities and genders are being murdered
through neglect
and rejection
and hate.

Sixteen, there is an entire generation of gay and bisexual men
missing from history
because the government chose to do nothing
when they were dying by the thousands.
sixteen, we died from the disease and died from going back into the closet and died for staying there and died for coming out,
sixteen, they laughed at us because they believed god was punishing us for daring to love,
sixteen, ashes of your forerunners rest on the lawn of the White House because
SIXTEEN, THEY HAVE ALWAYS WATCHED US DIE.

SEVENTEEN
you are allowed
to be angry.
You do not have to be one of the nice gays
or one of the nice trans people
or sweet or kind or educate the rest of the world in something less than a yell
you are allowed to be so furious it scalds your bones
at the way we are forgotten
and passed over
at the way, as soon as June becomes July
we are expected
to go back to dying in silence
and mourning our dead
and kissing all alone
when no one can be offended
at the sight of us.
You are allowed to be angry
and scream down the stars
to shatter like broken glass at your feet
because you know what?
The first Pride
was a riot.

—  October 11

part of me hopes adult harry james potter is knowingly currently apparating here and there and everywhere without a proper apparition license because he never actually got one and no one at the ministry wants to be That Asshole™ that brings it to his attention

Things disassociation makes you do:

You will totally space out while your friends are talking.

When someone jokingly says “wake up” you might have an anxiety attack because you aren’t sure if you’re awake (and to my lovlies reading this, yes you are awake, you’re breathing and moving and alive).

When you ARENT disassociating, one of two things will happen:

-you’ll feel completely numb and unattached; not dissociating, more just not feeling

-EVERYTHING IS HYPER REAL AND ITS spinning BECAUSE IT’S SO INTENSE AND YOU NEED TO SET THINGS DOWN (tbh I call this disassociating even though it’s technically the opposite. It’s losing a grip on reality.)

Disassociation makes you:

very sleepy very fast

Feel like you have NO control over your limbs

Hear silence as an actual thing so bad that it hurts your ears

Actually freakishly well able to imagine exactly what you look like from across the room because tbh you feel like that’s exactly where you are, watching your body

feel like your surroundings are super small or super big or just different

Seriously, you will forget objects and people that you’re familiar with. I’ve had to stroke my pencil case for like, ten minutes to understand what I was holding during an episode.

See people’s faces blurred or not at all. Also might see missing parts on people or see extra parts, the scariest of all.

You might have hallucinations as a side effect.

You will CONSTANTLY be questioning reality.

Your grasp on time is zip. A day flies by in two seconds and an hour is three years and aghhgaKSJ

You might feel very, very small, physically, or incredibly huge. This is related to seeing yourself from across the room, I think; a different point of view.

During an episode, if it is bad enough, you will lose your balance and topple over and sometimes, everything is too dream-like for you to have enough control over your body to be able to get back up.

People’s compliments and good wishes tbh like? You’re so numbed out and just not there most of the time that you hardly process them.

You lose your train of thought easily because you feel like reality is constantly shifting, like it would in a dream.

Books are very hard to read because the words keep moving and swirling around.

Those jokes also that are like “You’ve been in a coma wake up blahblah”? THOSE WILL USUALLY SEND US INTO A FULL BLOWN PANIC ATTACK DO NOT SAY THAT EVER TO SOMEONE WHO DISASSOCIATES,

That’s all I can think of atm but if you disassociate, please feel free to add more. I want more people to understand this because it’s taking over my life badly.

And sweetheart, if you do disassociate, here’s your daily reminder that you do exist. That’s your heartbeat beating in there, it’s YOU breathing that air with YOUR lungs, YOU are thinking and breathing and thriving and alive and awake.