Step Back

Alyssa - Colchester, Vermont
Entered on April 30, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: tolerance

We’ve all felt it. The judging eyes that burn holes through our bodies, making us want to melt into the walls in order to escape it.

We put others into categories not because we know them, but because n the millisecond that it takes for our brains to process their presence we automatically characterize them as something they probably aren’t, because of the way they look or act.

I had my first girlfriend during my sophomore year in high school. After years of pining after the wrong people I was ready for something new. And when my friend said he was setting me up with someone he thought I’d like, I wasn’t expecting to be cuddling up to a girl by the end of the night. Yet there I was. And I was happy. I kept trying to stay true to myself but it scared me to discover that I could feel this emotion for both sexes.

While some people accepted it, others were brutal in their evaluations of my character once this news spread. Gossip, talk of sacrilege, and speculations floated through the school.

This is where I learned that it can be nearly impossible for people of the same gender to be affectionate without having to question themselves. I don’t understand why society makes such a fuss out of it. If you as society don’t like it, then don’t engage in it, don’t surround yourself with it. The people who are trying to rid the world of tolerance would be much happier if they lived their own lives, instead of trying to live mine for me. If I don’t like the song on the radio I turn it off, I don’t complain about it. What is the use in that? If your religion doesn’t like certain lifestyles, while it preaches not to practice, it also tells you to leave the judgments up to your God. By pretending to know best what God is saying, I believe you are putting yourself on a pedestal you have no claim to.

I’d like to think that I am not one of those judging peoples, and that I am more laid back than most when it comes to acceptance because of the experiences I have had.

So I believe in tolerance. In respect for yourself. In being proud to be you no matter who “you” are. Similar to the idea of doing what you love because you love it, you have to learn to live your life in the way that is best for you and let the rest of us do the same.