There’s so many reasons to write this article but you might be surprised to hear that the whole idea of ‘coming out’ was never my intention, as it’s something I did long ago and no longer see it as necessary, as we continue to integrate society towards a view of better equality and diversity.
Unlike so many others, I’ve been privileged to be brought up in a family and work environment where my sexual orientation never became a big issue. However, looking back, I wonder whether my own attitude towards it was the true enabler?
Its called Love, Simon. If you’ve not heard about it then where have you been? I was lucky enough to get a last minute ticket at its advance showing tonight (02 April 2018) and witnessed everyone leaving the cinema in a sea of tears… of joy.
This film is based on the book by Becky Albertalli called ‘Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda’ and follows the story of Simon Spier, who falls in love with an anonymous classmate, then battling to balance his friendships and family, whilst dealing with the threat of a blackmail stunt that would reveal his sexual orientation to everyone.
In 1998 (at the age of 16) I had the inevitable conversation with my own Mother about my own sexuality. She quickly taught me that it wasn’t an issue and shouldn’t dictate how I live my life. I grew up in a mainly single parent/child family and was blessed to have such an amazing set of friends, grandparents and aunties/uncles around me too.
Sure, I got teased in school and college but can you honestly say that you weren’t? Children can be so cruel and I throughly believe that I am the stronger person today because of it.
Guess what? I went on to achieve success.
In 2009, I had the opportunity to live a dream and lead the way to career success with Talk Staff Group, where acceptance of my sexual orientation has never been a problem.
I stopped ‘coming out’ to new employees very quickly, after I realised that it didn’t make a difference to our relationships. We’re all people, have different tastes (did I mention I’m a vegetarian?) and no matter what I say or do, I’m encouraged by the support of my work family who don’t judge me based on my sexual orientation.
How quick are you to judge people in your organisation? Would you treat anyone differently because of their tastes… not to mention their sexual orientation?
The world is changing and I’m pleased to hear that employers around the world continue to push our boundaries in a positive way. That said, there’s many people out there that think harassment of others, whether it’s because of their sexual orientation or something that makes us different, then that’s not ok!
We’re all different, we’re all unique and together we are stronger.
I hope I’ve inspired you, as much as I was inspired to write this and ask that you share my story.
Edit: Just incase – It’s never my intention to offend anyone with this posting. I genuinely appreciate the hardship of others and offer my support to anyone struggling, to help where I can.