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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Identity » Lock Away the Stereotypes

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Author Topic: Lock Away the Stereotypes
Stephanie_1
Scarleteen Volunteer
Member # 36725

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So many times in the world every day stereotypes restrict people from being themselves, and being comfortable in doing so. Sometimes the stereotypes come unintentionally from friends and family, while other times from a complete stranger or as intentional comments. I know I’ve had my moments when it seemed easier to just ignore those stereotypes, even when they hurt me very personally, because I wouldn’t have to face reactions and comments for speaking out against them.

Recently I sat down for a long discussion with my boyfriend to explain to him that while I hadn’t been ready to open the closet door just yet, I’d known for some time that I was attracted to both women and men. I’ve noticed since this time, and beginning to tell some of my friends as well, that I am more painfully aware of some of the comments made - both with purpose and accidentally that are not only offensive to me, but often so very off base from the truth. Of course it’s much harder to reply to comments made in real time, and it also at times opens up the opportunity for more stereotypes and discrimination.

Sometimes ending some types of stereotypes and discrimination comes from people realizing that what they say or do is hurtful, even when they didn’t realize it before. It can come in the form of words in verbal language, or through people speaking out in forums online – and sometimes all it takes is a little bit of learning and an offering of the truth. What are some things you with you could say to others when you hear a comment being made? Whether the person meant to stereotype/ offend/ hurt with what they’ve said or how they’ve reacted in a situation or not, what types of things do you wish you could say?

EX:
Just because I *can* be attracted to both men and women, DOES NOT mean that I am attracted to everyone that I meet. You’re not attracted to every girl/guy you meet, so why does it make sense that I would be?

(After a discussion with a friend) No, I don’t need to be fixed as I’m not broken. I’m the same person I was before I told you, now you just know a little bit more about me.

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"Sometimes the majority only means that all the fools are on the same side" ~Anon

Posts: 3429 | From: Pennsylvania | Registered: Jan 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
eryn_smiles
Peer Ambassador
Member # 35643

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I've heard too many stereotypes. One that I particularly remember was when a friend said to me, "They're so desperate. Every lesbian I've ever met has come on to me". I wasn't out to her and I wish I could have said "Well, *we're* not *all* into you!"

It's just a really conceited comment. Probably the other 99% of lesbians that she knows just pass her by in day-to-day life and go about their business.

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"Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation and that is an act of political warfare."

Audre Lorde

Posts: 1326 | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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