Well, hey there!
Even if I’m not religious, my family has always being religious. I have always being different, because I have like this sort of open minded mentality, and that’s how I have always been since I was little. Then I reach this age [15, 16 in December] and well I have never had problems with my sexuality, since I have admitted to myself I’m bisexual, and in my point of view it’s okay. Almost all my friends know I’m bisexual, since I have admitted it to them, and some of them don’t find anything wrong with it.
Then one day, I had absolutely decided to tell my parents, so I decided to start, like, casual, you know? I told my mom about an artist that had declared himself bisexual, and how a friend of mine had reacted to it [say she was totally crushed, and yadda yadda] My mom was like: Of course! What were you expecting? And she started to talk about how disgusting gay, bisexual, and so on…were. Of course, I didn’t tell her what I was supposed to about my bisexuality. My father reacted the same, and also my little brother. In a way I was like, okay, I don’t care I can keep on living like this.
But then, you know, It really started to bother me, that perhaps I am wrong after all. That perhaps I shouldn’t like women and man alike. Seems like I still have some religious prejudices over myself. Something I really hadn’t expected, since I believed I already had passed the questioning stuff. It started to bother me what people may be thinking about me once again.
Of course, in some part of my life I picked some of the worst habits, and what’s worst about them is my age, and stuff. Lately my life has been following the motto of “live fast, die young”, which is something that is making me worry, but I cannot quit, or at least not yet. Of course, relieving stress is something we all want; the way in which we achieve it is different, and in my case, smoking and drinking seem to have become my best friends. I have been smoking for sometime now, perhaps 3 or 4 years, I’m not so sure.
While I smoke, sometimes stress fades away, as well as I smoke myself away. While drinking I really could care less of what people may say about me, of course, In my half drunk state sometimes I have done something of which I’m sometimes ashamed, or sad with myself. And all of this is getting the best of me. I can sometimes barely concentrate in school. And some little things like that.
From the other side, I have always believed suicidal people are foolish, since giving away your life wont solve anything, and stuff like that [I lost a friend long ago, and well, we both kept a diary in which we once wrote how we saw ourselves in the future, and she barely reached 11 years…which makes me in a way see how easily us as humans can vanish forever, and how much we should appreciate life…] But lately seems like a not so foolish idea, which only make me feel even more stupid, even considering it makes me feel bad with myself! I still believe I’m not in a depression, nor am I suicidal!
Well, any way, just passing by to drop this little mess [from Mexico] which in a way looks as messed up as my life right now. Don’t mind my lame English, please
Letter submitted by:
Thank you for writing to us in what we perceived to be very well-spoken and thought out English! The issues you brought up of family, religion, and self-doubt are issues that we hear about in these letters from across the United States, and also Latin American and around the world. These are universal challenges with being a 15 year old LGBT person. We have many thoughts for you.
First of all, you should be proud of yourself for having maintained in your life a more open-minded attitude. That is something that takes courage and perseverance, particularly if your family and religious upbringing is different from your own attitudes. We urge you to stay true to yourself. You are probably aware that your feelings of bisexuality were not a choice – they are probably the way you have felt since you became a teenager and started turning into an adult. That is because sexual orientation is a natural part of who we are as individual people. If your family and religion and personal beliefs include God, you can see this unchosen nature of sexuality as a sign that it is God who made you bisexual. It is a part of who you are that you had no choice in, and one that you need not feel bad about or ashamed of, even if your family and their religious practices see it as a sin.
We think the way you have gone about everything so far is very smart. Because at age 15 we typically rely on our parents for almost everything, it can be dangerous to come out to them if they are not going to be supportive or might throw their child out of the house or be abusive in some way. It was wise for you to test your parents reaction by talking about the artist. This is a technique we advise many of the young adults who write to us to use. You are also right when you noted that you don’t have to tell them now – you can keep waiting and keep living with your secret.
We undertand that it can be emotionally painful and lonely to hide such a key aspect of your identity from your family. However, know that as you get older and as you become a more independent adult, you will have better skills to have conversations with them about bisexuality and to convince them they can continue to love you even if they don’t accept the idea of bisexuality.
What worries us the most right now is that these issues are causing you a lot of stress and you feel the need to “live fast” though bad decisions, alcohol consumption and smoking. You’ve noted that sometimes you are doing things you are ashamed of when drunk, and that its getting the best of you – even hurting your concentration in school. We know how all these problems weighing down on your can even make you rethink your attitudes about suicide. We are glad you don’t feel suicidal and we hope you will continue to see suicide as not a good way to deal with how to make your life happier and more fulfilling. We know it can be hard to stop smoking and drinking because those activities can take emotional pain away.
If you have access to a therapist in Mexico, we suggest you find a way to visit one and talk to him or her about how these feelings are bothering you. If your main issue is finding a way for your family to accept who you are, you may want to contact the group Familias Por la Diversidad Sexual, which is a Mexican organization that gives support so that families can learn to accept their gay or bisexual sons and daughters. You can check out their website here: http://www.familiasporladiversidad.org
It may be useful for you to get in touch with some parents who work for that organization, who can offer you ideas about how to safely come out to your family and get the emotional support you deserve.
Please feel free to write back to us any time about your progress.