Silent No More | Teen Ink

Silent No More MAG

December 22, 2007
By Anonymous

“Is he gay?”
"I think so.”
“Yeah, I'm pretty sure.”
“Ask him.”
“Hey, are you–”

The last period bell cut off the cacophony of fresh gossip. My ears burned with embarrassment, and I walked away as quickly as possible, feeling clunky and awkward. There had always been rumors about my sexual orientation, but the painfully straightforward questions made me cringe. I tried to shrug off the girls' malice as ignorance, but I became preoccupied with thought. My blood rose with anger as I heard their laughter in the background. Inhibitions blinded, I rashly shouted, “Some people are so rude!”

“You f-----t!”

“Wow! I haven't heard that before. You have to be the wittiest people I've encountered.”

This would have been a perfect response if I had said it aloud. In reality, as a shy, easily embarrassed freshman, I had yet to stand up for myself, let alone defend my sexual orientation. I wanted to tell someone what had happened, but I was too embarrassed by the situation. I had experienced gay jokes and “playful” comments before, but the hateful word those girls had used felt like a knife in my chest. A myriad of insecurity, second-guessing, and self-denial ­silenced me.

After weeks of agonizing and hiding the secret, I promised myself that I would never be silenced again. Gradually, I came out to my closest friends, then my sister, and finally my parents. With their support, I grew more comfortable, and I saw changes in my disposition. My face no longer reddened at the mention of homosexuality, and instead of slouching away from intrusive questions, I proudly proclaimed, “Yes, I am gay.”

It is difficult for me to pinpoint the moment of my epiphany, but as I gained confidence, I was finally able to face the ignorance and homophobia in my school. I spoke up with authority, and people began to listen and respect me. They recognized that I was not weak because of my sexual orientation and that I would not degrade myself with silence.

I became a leader in my school, and during sophomore year, I joined the Gay-Straight Alliance. My participation has helped me accept myself and forgive those girls and the others who have hurt me with their ignorance.

Hate is unproductive. I've learned that I cannot hold grudges or become bitter toward people who try to hurt me; their hate comes from misinformation and ignorance. My experiences have helped me to better understand homophobic people and to see the good in many of them.

My trials have been a blessing in disguise. Though I was knocked down, I built myself back up with clear goals and responsibilities. I now have two objectives: to provide a safe community for gay students, and to educate those who harass us.

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This article has 102 comments.

Paty said...
on Apr. 1 2016 at 9:47 am
I feel bad with this kid!

on Mar. 30 2016 at 1:36 pm
Brendan1530 BRONZE, Grandville, Michigan
1 article 0 photos 2 comments
congratulations on coming out. that must have taken a lot of courage, especially after how those girls treated you!

dylllllllll said...
on Mar. 30 2016 at 1:34 pm
dylllllllll, Wyoming, Michigan
0 articles 0 photos 2 comments

Favorite Quote:
Death is innevitable

good job

kalienichoel said...
on Feb. 19 2016 at 8:33 am
Your ability to overcome makes me happy.

Fiestygirl24 said...
on Feb. 19 2016 at 8:17 am
0 articles 0 photos 2 comments
This is a really good story. Courage is a thing a lot of people lack. Keep writing.

prettymystic said...
on Feb. 11 2016 at 12:20 pm
prettymystic, Atl, Georgia
0 articles 0 photos 9 comments
You're amazing, keep writing

CianaB GOLD said...
on Jan. 27 2016 at 4:53 pm
CianaB GOLD, Kennett Square, Pennsylvania
12 articles 0 photos 34 comments
I wish I everyone had the courage to stand up for themselves. This is well written and I admire you. KEEP WRITING!!!!!

RatherNotSay said...
on Nov. 21 2015 at 1:38 pm
Beautiful. If everyone had even an ounce of the courage you have, the world would be a lot brighter. You're amazing, keep writing. Peace.

on Nov. 5 2015 at 8:29 pm
Thefanatasticagirlie101 SILVER, Euless, Texas
6 articles 0 photos 59 comments

Favorite Quote:
"The best love is the kind that awakens the soul; that makes us reach for more, that plants the fire in our hearts and brings peace to our mind. That's what I hope to give you forever." ~The Notebook

This is a very well-written, thought-provoking piece of writing. I love it, I support you all the way. Be a leader, not a follower, ad be who you want to be, no matter what others say.

on Sep. 21 2015 at 2:43 pm
PasaPrincessa, Easley, South Carolina
0 articles 0 photos 2 comments
you're full of courage, and i love you.

NeonInfinity said...
on Sep. 9 2015 at 12:23 pm
NeonInfinity, Oxford, Alabama
0 articles 0 photos 1 comment

Favorite Quote:
Life is what you celebrate. All of it. Even its end. -Joanne Harris

Thank you for writing this! This is amazing. I can't wait to see more of your work!

Lanimal SILVER said...
on Aug. 30 2015 at 10:58 pm
Lanimal SILVER, Thornton, Colorado
7 articles 0 photos 43 comments

Favorite Quote:
"It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves."
-Edmund Hillary

I so admire your confidence and ability to learn how to love yourself. Please continue to write! This article was amazing and I look forward to reading more of your work. :)

on May. 27 2015 at 4:16 pm
Scribbler16 BRONZE, Hartland, WI, Wisconsin
1 article 0 photos 6 comments
I hate when people do this, this is why I told my friends first.

on May. 23 2015 at 9:54 am
Katyaini SILVER, Greater Noida, Other
9 articles 0 photos 85 comments

Favorite Quote:
Life is like a chocolate covered chilly....

Some succeed because they're destined to;
Most succeed because they're determined too

Accepting the way you are is like the hardest thing in life of any teen, You stood up for yourself and that's something very brave and admirable. TFS

julie wagner said...
on May. 20 2015 at 2:12 pm
julie wagner, Potsdam, New York
0 articles 0 photos 1 comment
You can now tag other users by using "@".

on May. 19 2015 at 3:36 pm
AshleySD BRONZE, Campbell, California
1 article 1 photo 90 comments
I think that you criticized this article perfectly, for you gave constructive criticism and remained positive.

on May. 18 2015 at 2:55 pm
AshleySD BRONZE, Campbell, California
1 article 1 photo 90 comments
You can talk to me if you need to. I want to help any way I can.

on May. 18 2015 at 2:54 pm
AshleySD BRONZE, Campbell, California
1 article 1 photo 90 comments
They do have the right to judge someone. What they don't have is the right to not be judged by their judgement.

on Apr. 24 2015 at 2:46 pm
Justagirlthatwrites GOLD, Brunswick, Missouri
17 articles 0 photos 22 comments

Favorite Quote:
"If you are going to bury the past, bury it deep. Shallow graves always give the dead"

- These Shallow Graves (book)

Thank you for writing this..... This gave me courage, I get made fun of for a different reason though.....

on Mar. 17 2015 at 10:46 pm
VidsVids14 BRONZE, Sandy, Utah
1 article 0 photos 1 comment

Favorite Quote:
"What if I fall?
Oh, my darling, what if you fly?"

So proud of you, it must've taken courage to do this!