How I Found The True Meaning Of Family

How I Found The True Meaning Of Family

"As gay people we get to chose our family"

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As May is coming to an end and June begins, places and people will begin to show their support for the LGBT+ community as June is known as "pride month". This month is in memory of the Stonewall riots and not only fighting for equality but also celebrating love and acceptance.

While it seems like a time for everyone to come together and embrace this part of themselves many closeted people, especially in a smaller town, will never witness and experience this beautiful month in real life. They may think that this lifestyle will never come true for them, and their life will forever be a secret due to family, friends or religious issues, but as RuPaul said it the best "...As gay people, we get chose our family".

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I didn't realize how much this quote meant to me, as I come from an LGBT+ accepting family until my senior in high school as strangers came up to me one by one spreading false rumors and exaggerating stories about my friend of 6 years (which is the longest friendship I've ever had). They accused her of manipulating a boy while cheating on him with a girl. I immediately broke down into tears and felt as though I was in 7th grade again because the only person to stick up for me and tell the homophobic bullies to back off was this same exact girl. I shut down the rumors and stories immediately, but also knew that the right thing to do was present her with what is happening in hopes I did it before hate came her way.

I planned a lunch date, and after I sat in her car while tearfully telling her how strong she is and how much of an inspiration she has been to me. Then I told her the hurtful words others were saying about her and told her that I will love her forever. She not only came out but said personal information of not having the most accepting family. I looked her in the eyes and told her "we are family now." While this story ends abruptly it's purpose was to share that you can find a family anywhere even in a small conservative Texas town, and to anyone feeling lost, confused or scared of what the future hold for them due to their sexual orientation just know the world works in weird ways and you will have your true family moment sooner or later.

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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Poetry On The Odyssey: You Don't Control Me

If I could speak to my anxiety, here is what I'd say.

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Anxiety,

You have controlled my life for way too long.

My constant fears hold me back from so many things I want to be able to do.

Your presence makes me a person I don't want to be.

You make me feel scared and alone when I know that I am not alone.

You don't control me.

I am not free to be myself when you are around.

There is no use for you, and you should be ashamed for making me feel sick, nervous, fearful, not good enough.

You have been a little monster, harboring inside of me for my whole life.

Whispering "You can't do that" in my ear when I dare to get out of my comfort zone.

You don't control me.

I am fully capable of doing great things and living without you.

I have a wonderful support system of people who believe in me and help me crush you every day as you deserve.

I will be brave, be bold, enjoy life more.

This is me saying "Sayonara Anxiety."

You don't control me.

I am going to take my life back from your filthy grip.

I am going to live the life I've dreamt of.

I am going to be adventurous and take risks.

I am going to be myself.

You don't control me.


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