by Tera Bryant
LGBTQ+ Parent Columnist
Spring always motivates me to focus on goals and self-improvement. Lately, I have wanted to expand my writing experience and learn new skills. So, I reached out regarding a guest post with a family-focused website in our area.
And at first, I was excited and hopeful. I had been so blessed with The Gayly in my life. To find a place where I could write about real life issues as a gay parent and not sugarcoat it is rare.
When you focus on a niche that involves parenting and children in Oklahoma, and you identify as LGBTQ+, it is certainly going to come with a few doors firmly shut.
And I never thought of that in my excitement of expanding my writing prowess, until just after I sent them proposed articles. I realized that often when it comes to writing for “mainstream media” especially in the Bible belt, my subject of choice would likely limit where and how I could reach out, with my voice and share the message of rainbow families and their unique struggles with a broader audience.
We see this played out on a larger scale in the media when it comes to silencing the voices of the minority and oppressed to push divisive agendas meant to stroke politicians’ egos and not ease the burden of the people for whom they serve. Unfortunately, we sometimes let that fear keep us from pursuing what we truly desire.
Facing the fear of discrimination within oneself and pushing through it is painful, uncomfortable, and healthy growth. As parents, we must remember that no one can diminish our voice if the message we are speaking is based in a loving truth. I know it’s hard. I promise you that I do.
Every time you apply for that promotion, switch careers, join a new playgroup, or tell your story and share the uniqueness of your family, you will hear that voice of fear speak up. It will tell you that you don’t want your dreams, that everyone is judging you, that you are not worthy, but that is where you must balance your own mental beliefs with reality.
In reality, I know that there are a lot of factors that come into play for publications, I am just barely a writer, and I will continue to reach out and find others willing to lend me a stage to use my voice. I will continue to push through that uncomfy, nerve-wracking feeling that comes to us all.
So please remember, if you’re feeling out of your comfort zone and you’re even a bit scared as you try to move forward in an area of your life, you might be onto something great. Facing the fear of discrimination within will give you a deep internal strength if you’re willing to endure the painful growth it requires.
Many blessings to all the beautiful rainbow families this spring. May the renewal of the season renew your heart and minds and encourage you to find a small way to face that fear of judgment within, with confidence and knowledge that you are indeed on the right path.
Copyright The Gayly – March 12, 2019 @ 1:20 p.m. CDT.