Saturday, March 24, 2012

Dear 15 Year Old Me...

A lot of people who know me, have NO idea that I went through some really vicious bullying as a teen, and I decided to take part in a project called "Dear 15 Year Old Me: Letters of Hope for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Teens" , and I wanted to share my (long) letter to me here, in hopes it might help someone else... *possible triggery*

Dear Lori,

I know things are terribly rough right now. I feel so bad for you, that every weekday right now carries such an overwhelming feeling of dread and confusion for you. I know you're afraid to go to school, I know you feel sick every morning and you think it's hopeless… like it's never going to stop hurting to face each new day. I know it seems like the taunts will never stop…the things other students, even teachers say to you; "amazon", "dyke", "freak", "linebacker", "lezzy", "why do you look like a lezbo?", "why can't you just stop trying to be different, and try to fit in?", "do you just like pissing people off?" It seems like it will never stop, and that no one sees how sad you are all the time – or that they do and just don't care. That girl that just spit on you as you walked past the water fountains, the one who likes to slam your locker door against your head when she walks by you, the guy that walks behind you every time he sees you, yelling insults at you and making everyone else laugh, the girls that sneer at you when you walk into the bathroom and then laugh at you, the coach that asked you if you like to check out the other girls in the locker room, the teacher that told you when you reported a physical assault, to "work on fitting in and to stop going out of your way to be different" … none of them know how kind hearted you are. None of them know how much your family loves you, and how much you love them. They don't know that you've known you were different since you were a very small child. They don't know that you want so badly to be normal. To have friends. They don't know how badly you want to be able to enjoy Friday night football games, and be invited to parties. To walk through the halls smiling and laughing with a group of friends. They don't know that you skip lunch and go hungry most days because you're afraid to sit in the lunchroom with them. Or maybe they do know, and are just that heartless. I don't want to believe it's that though. I want to believe that deep down they're decent people, who just don't get it. But these next few years, as hard as they are for you, will pass quickly. I know you want to end it all most days right now, I know you feel like it's the only thing that will stop the pain. But you have NO idea how wonderful the future is going to be! Not long after you graduate, you'll move away and find a wonderful community of people who will accept you with open arms. You'll fit in… you'll be invited to parties, you'll have a big group of friends who'll laugh with you, not at you. You will start to recognize yourself in the mirror and know who you are. Sure, you're still going to go through some hard times, but you're going to have so many more good times than bad. You'll learn that you aren't the only one like you in this world, and that there is a path to the person you've known you were since you were so little. You'll meet other guys like yourself and you'll travel all over the country meeting people like yourself and you'll become who you were meant to be. And that little girl you dreamed of when you were little, the one you wished you could meet, and fall in love with. Guess what? She'll find you, a little later than you would have liked, but she'll sweep you off your feet and you'll swear you're caught up in a real life fairy tale. And she'll bring a whole family with her! You'll have kids that love and adore you, and make you smile and laugh every day. You'll be excited for the future, you'll feel like a King, and you'll look back on these years with a touch of sadness, but more than that, with pride. Pride in yourself for being a survivor, and for not giving up. You'll realize that these things made you stronger, and that you'll draw on it for inspiration to help others, and to educate other people, so that maybe someday, no one else ever needs to write this letter. You're going to grow up to be a good man, a happy man. You'll grow up to be so thankful that you didn't allow them to push you over the edge. So hang in there, keep your chin up and be proud that you're being true to yourself and not trying to fit in. Not only will it get better… it will be AMAZING ♥

Love, Mike

1 comment:

  1. Terri J. - HoustonMarch 26, 2012 at 12:13 PM

    Whoa. Powerful stuff. Thank you for sharing this letter - it must have been hard to write but I applaud you for sharing something so deeply painful - and I think it will help others who have dealt with, or are currently dealing with the same thing. Peace to you.