Part 2: Ups and downs of friendships … My own story ….

Just because you don’t have closure and want an explanation doesn’t mean you haven’t moved on. Just because you talk about something that has happened in the past doesn’t mean your dwelling on it and not able to move forward. I think people have a misconception about how something affects you and to the level it affects them. So obviously I am thinking and reflecting on the “issue between me and an old friend”. So because I talk about it according to some people it’s not moving on and it’s affecting me so deeply”. I don’t believe that’s the case. I am making new friends and establishing new and healthier relationships. I am purging who I believe are vile people from my life and putting more energy into those who really do care about me first. I am living my life and moving forward. I talk about it possibly for two reasons 1) it is my way of handling it and 2) It is a reminder for me of how I do not want to be treated.

Don’t let anyone make you feel ashamed of your actions. As adults we know the consequences of what we do. If we don’t than there may be some deeper issues going on that we won’t address here such as Developmental or mental health concerns. I myself do not suffer from either and this week I ranted about my ex BFF. I used the indivials name in a rant and said some things which I believe are true but shouldn’t express aloud. Do I take any of it back, no because I knew what I was doing and why I did it. Was it right? Yes and No. Was it right to put someone’s name out, not really. I simply could have done what I had always done and that was to make the name private or continued to refer to them as my ex friend. I chose not too out of anger. At the time of the posting my Facebook friends list had 325, and only 4 people who knew of this individual and 2 of those don’t even care. Should I have thought about those two friends? YES, I should have thought about how it would affect those individuals. Why, because those relationships shouldn’t have had to listen to a rant about a mutual friend. I think that is the only thing in the whole situation I regret. What is done is done. I am though reflecting on every relationship now and how relationships work. You think at age 34 you have it all figured out but you don’t.

I want to tackle the thoughts in my head about conflict in a group of friends. How do you handle it? I think there is no right or wrong way really. I think the situation sucks and no matter what you have to choose sides. There is no way to really get around it. If it’s something small than obviously it is something that you can get over and not choose sides but for a situation like I was in I think you do have too.

So to recap my situation, gay boy meets straight girl, gay boy and straight girl become BFF’s, gay boy is always there for straight girl, straight girl appears to be there a lot in the beginning for gay boy, girl meets straight boy dates him and they break up, gay boy steps up to pick up the pieces, gay boys world crashes down (family problems boyfriend problems) and straight girl decides to no longer want to be friends with the gay boy but doesn’t tell him, straight girl grows distant, gay boy talks to mutual friends and gay boy is still confused, gay boy confronts straight girl and she says everything is ok, gay boy knows it’s not, gay boy tries two more times, gay boy pens a letter, straight girl never responds for 5 months at which time she does and says “eh were not friends get over it”, gay boy hears from a friend who heard from straight girls friend she simply woke up and decided she didn’t want to be friends. Now rewind to when straight girl got dumped. Her boyfriend at the time woke up and decided to dump her, as a group of friends we all took straight girls side and decided that what he did was wrong. Fast forward again and guess what the group doesn’t think what straight girl did was wrong at all. In fact no one address anything with gay boy until he flips out on social media. How wrong is that?

I am not making this blog to throw anyway under the bus or single anyone else out. I am simply expressing my thoughts on the subject matter. That is what any blogger would do; we take from our own lives and write.

So back to the point, in certain situations you have to take sides. In this case it was wrong that my friends never stood up said hey “Hey what so and so did was not right, if they felt like the friendship was over considering how close you were they should have said it to you”. Now mind you we all work in social services and therapy, so you’d think we could all communicate. I think they all should have said to me “I am not picking sides because your both my friends but I think it was wrong and I would hope so and so would talk to you”. Now did I hear this at all from anyone, “NO”, I only heard this from people outside of the little circle of people who knew us and the situation? I am not saying they are bad friends or bad people but I think the situation was handled wrong by everyone involved. And now that I am writing this I think they chose a side. They chose my ex friends side. Why do I think that? Well because again no one ever said to me that what they did was wrong. They only really talked about it when I went off, and then I was the wrong person. I know parts of what I did was wrong but where is the accountability for the ex BFF. In my letter penned to them I in fact mentioned how I take accountability and always have for my actions and in the letter wrote how they never seemed too. Now we knew each other so well I could tell you that they never took accountability.

Now I am in the middle of wondering who I am friends with and who I am not friends with. I have sent out messages to the mutual friends with one responding and one not responding. Do I continue to find out or let this all go. For me I think if someone asks you a direct question you should answer. I don’t think taking days to decide is appropriate. I mean if you need a few days than the response should be, “hey I got your message and I don’t know where we stand but give me some time”, now that I find to be super respectable. I think about a relationship I have with a co-worker. We talk like BFF’s and fight like siblings but when we feel we need to express something to each other we do it respectfully even when it may be hard to do. Now that is how all relationships should handle conflict. In this case with a few of these people I am not sure it can be done.

I am at a crossroad where I can go right and be ok and where I can go left and still be ok. Both paths will get me where I need to go but one has my friends with me and one doesn’t. And why I say that is because this situation will not stop me from doing what I want to do. It may only stop me from having certain people on my side. Am I upset if I lose a friend, of course? I don’t just allow anyone in my life. I have learned a long time ago that family is who you’re born with but you choose your friends meaning you choose like people and choose people who compliment you. So those relationships have a value to them that is a bit different than your family. Especially when your gay and come out in the late nineties.

Did I handle this situation right, who knows? Who can really determine how one handles something? Did I may be hurt people unintentionally. I think so. Do I apologize for that part, of course I do. Have I moved on, depends on your definition. I think I have. Especially if I am writing this because for me getting it down on paper (so to speak) is how I do it.

Whatever happens now happens. I wish everyone the best even the ex BFF. I just wish people were more inclined to see the whole picture too and include my feelings. I know where I am going and where I have been. I know my own rights from my own wrongs.

 

 

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My 5 steps to surviving a break up!!!

I am no expert but I have been in my share of relationships and have had the difficulty of moving on. After some time I realized that this was really the best way to survive a break up. This is my 5 steps but it has been able to help me a lot even in friendships as well.

Step 1)

The first step in surviving a break-up is not going out with your friends and finding a new man. When your sad and lonely and feel like crying picking up the phone is great. Phoning that number one girlfriend/boyfriend to help you cope isn’t a bad thing, but don’t fall for the line “to get over someone get under someone”. This actually can be damaging to your already fragile self. After a break-up you need to mourn. A part of your life is ending. Even if the person was toxic and they were bad for you it doesn’t mean that it hurts any less. Crying is the best way to help get out emotions. While you’re mourning the loss of your relationship take the time to think about some of the positive. Just because it’s ended doesn’t mean every minute of every day was bad. This type of reflection is good because it helps you to understand things a little bit more. We often miss the signs or overlook them when we are wrapped up in other things.

Step 2)

Pick up a new hobby or go back to an old one. At this point in your life I bet you and that person who just broke your heart spent a lot of time together. You need to fill that time up. Some people look at this as a distraction which it could be but if you are mourning and looking to move on you don’t want to have too much time on your hands because you will fall into depression. Doing things alone is great because relationships are about two people and often times we lose ourselves in relationships. Getting back to you is important. I was in a 13 year relationship and there were aspects of my life I lost and when we separated I spent time getting back to those things. I started to read and write again and I even started playing the guitar. All these things are things I can do alone but were things I found pleasure in and things that help to distract me in a healthy way.

Step 3)

This is the most important step. DO NOT FALL INTO DESTRUCTIVE BEHAVIORS. Now some may not see this as a step but it is. You need to be aware of things you’re doing and why you are doing those things. During my 13 year relationship we broke up many times. It wasn’t until the last time I followed these steps did it make it easier and I feel like I survived. Most of the time during our breakups, I would go back to old lovers or old behaviors as a way to distract myself. This was damaging to my self-esteem because those old relationships ended for a reason. I was going back to something familiar but something toxic. In the end I ended up back in the relationship I left and in a cycle. Not only being aware of going back to old relationships but staying away from destructive behaviors is important. Going out with your friends is great to get out and socialize, but waking up drunk day after day isn’t healthy. Going home with a different partner may satisfy an immediate urge but you’re only hurting your self-esteem in the long run. During this stage continuing those new things you were doing and spend time with healthier relationships in your life.

 

Step 4)

Work through your feelings. Now that you’ve started to really move on and you’re doing new things and staying away from bad people and behaviors it’s time to really work through things. You’ve done a lot of mourning but have you dealt with your feelings. In my experience professional help is good. I saw a therapist for 3 months after a bad break up. I was able to process a lot and I was able to find patterns in my relationship and previous relationships I needed to work on. Although the break up might not have been your fault you can learn a lot during this stage of healing and moving on. Get deep into your feelings.

Step 5)

The final step is not jumping into a new relationship but to start dating again. Put yourself out there. The perfect person isn’t going to fall from the sky. In fact the saying goes you have to kiss a lot of frogs to find your prince/princess. Don’t hold back, remain open. Closed off people attract negative people. Have you ever remembered times where things happened when you weren’t looking? That’s because you were open and not closed off. People can sense when you’re closed off. It gives off a negative vibe.

 

Break ups aren’t easy in fact the demise of any relationship can be hard. Making sure you go through the motions is important. Don’t ever hesitate to reach out to family or loved ones for support either and when in doubt seek professional help. Even if it’s temporary you’ll learn a lot about yourself.

 

Ups and downs of friendships … My own story….

It’s actually very common for friendships to end. The main reason is usually you’ve simply grow apart. This can make it challenging when you were once joined at the hip. What makes the end of a friendship hard to swallow is the closure aspect. How did the friendship end? Did it end with an argument over differences or was it an abrupt ending? Sometimes you actually do not even know why a friendship ends, it just does. Whenever something traumatic happens to us we tend to need closure and in some situations though we are not able to find closure.

I recently went through this with one of my friends. The months leading up to the fallout were confusing times because I had reached out several times trying to mend the relationship. Here my story and maybe you can relate to it.

I had this friend who moved here from out of state in 2013. We instantly hit it off and became instant friend spending every Monday together getting margaritas at our favorite place. On Thursday we ventured out to different spots in the city. With her being new to Chicago and not knowing anyone and me struggling with other relationships we certainly leaned on each other. After about a year or so I moved away to Nashville and the friendship didn’t end. In fact we got closer and were each other’s rock. I decided to move back to Chicago 6 months later and we picked up where we left off. In fact we got even closer after she went through a terrible breakup with her now ex-boyfriend.

It was at this time our friendship really shifted. For months after her breakup we became inseparable spending 3-4 nights a week hanging out and having sleep overs. We even discussed moving in with each other. We would make plans to go all sorts of places but mainly bars and restaurants because we loved our cocktails. We ended up scrapping the idea of moving in with each other to avoid issues in our friendship. A decision now I am so grateful for.

Around the summer of 2016 we both moved into the same neighborhood and both started new jobs. We kept saying to each other that our new lives were going to be so much better. She was doing a lot better after her breakup and even started dating again. We slowly started to see less of each other but still hung out 2 times a week. I actually was feeling a bit overwhelmed with our relationship and how much time we were spending together so I had a conversation with a friend and decided to scale it back just to protect our friendship. I wasn’t trying to disconnect, but further develop this new life I was about to have. I wanted to put myself out there and she wanted to put herself out there.

Right before I moved tragedy struck at home and in my own personal relationship. Now more than ever I needed a friend. Numerous attempts to reach out for help to get through this tough time were made but I never felt I received the support needed. I was taken back because a year prior I was her rock when she needed it but why she my rock. I understood we both had new lives and that we both were overwhelmed with our new jobs but things got worse when in the fall when a second tragedy struck in my life. At this point I needed her. I would reach out and receive nothing. In fact I even had three conversations prior to our later winter fallout where I tried to explain how I needed support. Our hangouts now had become every other week with and the final two months of our friendship we saw each other 3 times. Of course I had become extremely confused and upset. I didn’t understand why my “best friend” wasn’t there for me when I was there for her and I made sure I tried to tell her this. In very early Jan I decided to write a no send letter. You know one of those letters where you pour out everything and safe it for yourself.

Well…. I didn’t save it for myself. In fact I sent the letter via email to her. At that moment I knew that this could either be good or bad. I thought it would go good because she always said communication was her thing. She loved being able to talk things out. I witnessed this first hand. I also witnessed firsthand though that when she is in the wrong she will not take accountability and find a way to blame the other person. It’s a defense mechanism. I’ve seen it in her relationship with her ex and with her family. So I was not sure how my letter would be received.

After two weeks of no response to my intense letter I decided to write another. In both letters I took some accountability for the distance in our friendship. How could I not. I understand I am stubborn and I understand I can be a pain. I also didn’t want to come off like I was attacking her character although her character at this point wasn’t a very good one.

The second letter fell on deaf ears and then was followed up with a text.

“Happy Friday, I hope all is going well and I hope we can talk soon. Let me know if that is something you want to do”.

I was hoping at this point I would finally get an answer. There was no attack on her character and definitely no sign of me being upset. I was but I was ready to bury the hatchet. I didn’t want to ever establish the same relationship again with her but I did want to at least be able to pass each other in the streets without a feeling of animosity or tenseness.

To my surprise but not my surprise I didn’t get a text back. In fact the airwaves were silent. I grew to be very furious with her and at this point demanded an explanation. How do you end a friendship with silence? How do you treat your friend with such blatant disrespect? I was there for you when you needed it most and now that I needed a friend you are nowhere to be found.

At this point I was suffering some health issues and going through it alone. I wasn’t dying or anything but I did need surgery and I needed a friend. Someone who lived close who could help me out and I didn’t have it. I remember feeding her cat and spending time at her house when she was away because that’s what friends do. Now I didn’t have that friend to return the favor and I was sick and needed help. After I had to have a major surgery, again not life threatening but life changing I decided to write one more letter.

To my surprise I finally got a response. And it was the weirdest and most hurtful response ever. As I mentioned earlier she would either accept fault or find me to be at fault. At boy was her response all about her and how I am a horrible person singed “Please don’t ever contact me again and have a nice life”.

Now we all know that was the worst response and ending to her very short and very non apologetic email for everything. It infuriated me and me being the person I am decided to respond and let her know that now I was coming for her character. I wasn’t rude and mean but I pointed out that this did reflect badly on her and her character. How could it not? She handled the situation from the start completely wrong. How could the one person who I was so close to not respect me enough to apologize or help me understand what happened. Was I being too needy when I was going through a tough time or was she simply using me and had moved on? I would hate that she used me but when I reflect back on her previous relationships I started to see a pattern. In fact she would make comments about mutual friends where she would say “So and so is a great friend because they will do whatever I want”. Now this is shitty to say about a friend but that was her.

I will never know why she grew distant because she doesn’t want to have anything to do with me. We have mutual friends and I don’t ask them if they know anything because I don’t want to put them in a situation but I do know she has shared her side of the story with them because they have mentioned small details to me. The only person I want to know the story from is her. I feel our friendship owes me that. I also like to think that if I did something wrong I could work on it for future relationships. She for sure needs to know because our issues seem to be a constant theme in her life. She was the one who had mentioned that to me previously during one of our conversations.

What I have learned from this experience is that friends come and go. You have times with friends that are intense and others were they are distant. I have also learned that sometimes great friendships even best friends don’t always live up to your expectations. Sometimes they disappoint you but you should never keep that to yourself. I don’t regret my letters or my many failed conversations with her because in the end the relationship was turning toxic and she turned out not to be the friend I thought she was.

I feel that moving forward I learned a great deal about friendships from this experience and about myself. Moving forward I know the kinds of people I want in my life and I know the kind of person I want to be in other people’s lives.

 

Fear amongst us

The last two weeks have put fear in  the hearts of the American people. Besides fear is confusion. We see what the president is doing and for some we are baffled and for others we see praise. What the media and the rest of the world needs to show us is the information needed to understand. As a tax paying American I want to know why, how and how much this is costing the country. We are in debt up to our heads and we are using our weapons as if they are toys. I understand that their are threats to us and our allies but I felt safer under the Obama administration that I do under Trump. His actions seem to be a way of intimidation. I’ve been having conversation with friends and colleagues and we are all worried and living in fear. Our generation hasn’t seen a war that we all feel is about to take place. For over a decade we have heard that we may be heading into WWIII but it wasn’t until recently that I started to believe it. Where do we go from here and how do we prepare the American people for it. In the 80’s in school I remember drills but I have not seen or heard anything about that and as an adult I don’t have a school desk to hide under so what do we do.

 

That’s all for today’s rant……

weight loss and health ……

My struggle with weight began when I was around ten years old.  I always was an underweight child. When I was 10 I started to slowly pack on the pounds and by the time I was fourteen I was overweight. At that age I am finding my own identity and beginning the journey of adulthood. I hated the way I looked and I hated everything about myself. During the summer of freshman and sophomore year I started to do whatever I needed to loose weight and ended up doing things that were unhealthy. I restricted the amount of food I ate and than worked out like crazy. I started my sophomore year extremely thin and with a very unhealthy eating pattern. This continued all through high school until I was 18 where it progressed to guilt over eating. That guilt turned into binging and purging. I struggled for years with anorexia and bulimia. In my mid to late twenties I finally stopped. I started to exercise and started to gain weight. Because I didn’t do this slowly or with doctors advice I quickly packed on the pounds and it wasn’t until I 30 when I started to realize I pushed and exceeded 200 pounds.

At my Heaviest weight of 255 on my 34 birthday I realized I couldn’t do this anymore. Its 4 months into the new year and I am now 222 pounds. I am learning new ways to eat and exercising. I lost a considerable amount of weight after being diagnosed with diverticulitis and a colon resection due to the severity of it. That with being diagnosed with diabetes in 2015 and back surgery in 2011 I realized I needed to make changes. I don’t know very many individuals my age with these health issues. I am not saying people aren’t sicker I am simply saying these things that I have encountered are making me want to make changes. These changes come with a lot of struggle too.

Weight and body image is prevalent in our society. It really is a driving force behind everything. It is sad that it has come to this and the impact is causing stress. Not only do I sit and struggle personally but I always wonder how my weight effects how people view me professionally. Does it even hold that much weight. Some say it does while others say it doesn’t. For me right now my goal is to be healthier. I don’t want to focus anymore on how people view me. I want to be happy for myself and have the energy and life in me to do what I want to do.

And so ends my post for today….

Stay healthy and stay strong..

The road to recovery ….

In January of this year I went to the hospital for severe lower abdominal pain. Since about 2012 I’ve had a lot of stomach pain and problems but no diagnosis. In January this pain was something I never experienced before and went to the ER, I spent three days in the hospital doing test after test because it turns out I had diverticulitis. Now in the past all I ever heard of was diverticulosis so I was confused. After listening to the doctors and reading up on it, my case was pretty severe. In the hospital I was waiting to see if I would need the surgery as an emergency or if we can plan it. Luckily I was able to postpone until mid March. By doing this the risk of a colostomy was lowered. Fast forward to now, it’s been just about a month since surgery and I’m not feeling better, some of the symptoms have subsided but I have new pains and possible ulcers. I’ve lost 30lbs which is good but I’m so tired and can’t eat.   I’m off work and spending a lot of time alone. It’s going to turn out that I’ll be on medications for awhile and there’s a chance I won’t ever have normal GI functions going forward. My surgery left me without 1/3 of my intestines so my body is having a hard time adjusting. I keep my fingers crossed and pray every night that tomorrow will be a good day. I’ll just have to take each day as it comes. 

To be the best me I have to do me…

When I created this blog/site the idea was to update it weekly. I wanted to have a blog with substance and facts. Well I still want that but I also want to update it more often and have it as a conversational piece and an outlet, place where I can just express myself and allow you to be a part of my world. As 2017 gears up to me a life changing year for me with the loss of friends, gains of new friends and shift my own personal growth and development, I am hoping that by the end of this year I can look back at this post and say “Wow I am a new me”.

What I plan on 2017 being for me is a lot of change. I have surrounded myself with negative people and have surrounded myself with people who bring me down. That I am stopping immediately. I plan a life style change which encompasses better eating habits and working out. I am 34 and have Arthritis, Diabetes and IBS. These three diseases and disorders take a toll on the body and if I am not taking care of myself it can lead to other issues so I plan on taking control of my life and making health a priority. I plan on traveling more, if that is in the country or outside of the country the planet has a lot to offer and I need to take advantage of that. With that being said, I live in Chicago, one of the greatest cities in America. Despite the media’s portrayal it isn’t a war zone. It has its challenges but it is getting better. I plan on focusing more on the jobs and career goals that make me happy and find a balance between them. I have a degree in Counseling and my LPC and plan to utilize that as my primary source of income but I also like my side jobs outside of the field and I plan to maintain that and the balance it brings to my life. I want to see my family more and spend time with the people I love. I have been so busy with school that I have missed out on a lot.

Life is too short and too great to let it slip by. I don’t want to be complaining I’m broke or lying in bed all day watching the world go by. If my time was spent at home in front of a TV because I wanted to save for a great big house or new cars or other things that do not allow me to live I would be living a meaningless life for myself. If that is your thing I am ok with it, but it isn’t how I want to live, I want to live life to the fullest.

To be the best me I have to do me.

 

Arthur

My New Years Goal and personal motivation !!! 

Like everyone else I decided to make some New Years resolutions or goals. I’ve done this the past few years and last year for the first time I took it seriously. I made 8/10 goals. This year I made 8 !! So far so good, I am working on each. What I learned last year when I was creating them was that they needed to be realistic. Too many times we have an end result in mind and fail to realize the steps that it takes can be the hardest part. Some of my goals last year were to make it to this years goals. I decided to have a big end goal in sight for myself and my 35 birthday and last year was how to I get Halfway there. That’s how last years goals were set up !!! This years now get me to the other half !!! I guess the reason I decided to share this was that if you want to succeed remember to focus on the little steps to get there and not the end result. Celebrate the small accomplishment and small steps you’ve made. It will motivate you more. 

Tragedy: The Reason to get out and vote

You don’t forget tragedy. In fact when tragedy strikes you find reminders of it all around. Sometimes when you think you’ve forgotten something happens, someone says something, and you remember all over again.

On June 12th, 2016 49 people lost their lives along with 53 people being badly wounded. It was one of the largest terrorist attack/hate crimes carried out against the LGBTQ community here in the US. It shook the community and shook the entire country. Both because it was a terrorist track as well as a targeted hate crime.

I remember waking up to check my phone around four in the morning and noticed several messages on my phone. Facebook had been blowing up and my notifications were in plenty. I started skimming through it in horror, shook, and fear. I knew that this was bad. Especially when I saw familiar names in my feed discussing that someone I knew was missing. I couldn’t do anything but watch on Facebook. It was four in the morning and this was how I was starting my day. As I turned my phone over I tried to go back to sleep. Images of what I thought happened, images of my friend, and images of myself in a club were in my dreams. I can tell you that for several weeks after this occurred every time I went out someone was asking me to stay in. A friend would tell me, “Just watch movies tonight”. I refused and went out, but I was watching. I analyzed everything around me. I noticed every person, every exit, and every second of every minute for some time after.

I was afraid. I was upset. I was also sad. I had many questions going on in my mind. Why ? How ? And even Who ? Answers came eventually. Some right away and some took time. The answers though didn’t erase what happened and the answers will not stop this from happening.

Attacks and mistreatment has been going on for decades towards the LGBTQ community. On June 28th, 1969, police raided a bar in New York that lead to the Stonewall Riots. It was this event that sparked LGBTQ activist organizations to form. Within six months two organizations formed in New York and within a few years they were across America.

On June 24th, 1973 the Upstairs Lounge Arson took place. Until Pulse it was the largest attack on the LGBTQ community. Thirty-two people lost their lives from fire and smoke inhalation when a man set fire to the upstairs lounge.

January 1st, 1982 John Hanson and Rick Hunter were beaten by Minneapolis police outside of a bar. While being treated for injuries in the hospital, staff reported and testified that the police mocked and called the victims names such as “faggots”.

On December 31st, 1993 Brandon Teena was murdered for being transgendered. Her story later became a movie titled “Boys Don’t Cry”. The horrible acts of violence she endured before she was murdered are tragic and unnecessary. A story of my generation that I cannot forget.

Matthew Shepard on October 7th, 1998 was beaten, tortured, and tied to a fence for being gay. He passed away on October 12th. I was 15 at the time, struggling with my own identify. This was a confusing time for me and this event silenced me for years to come.

On January 28th, 2005 Ronnie Antonio Paris, just three years old at the time, died of brain injuries. His father, suspicious he would grow up gay and a sissy, decided to take matters into his own hands. It is suspected that prior to the fatal attack he had been hurt several times before, all because he was suspected to be gay.

From 2005 the number of attacks, murders, and crimes against the LGBTQ community has increased.

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National Coalition of Anti-Violence Prevention

This is just a snippet of incidents that have occurred. What took place on June 12th of this year has to end. How does it end ? It starts by advocating, standing up for what you believe in and also voting.

With this being an election year it is more important than ever to get out and make your voice heard. Which party stands with you ? Which party stands for the rights you believe in ? What party has your and the rest of the countries best interest in mind ?

Is this a political post ? It’s a historical post on LGBTQ and Political post. We need to be reminded of the history as well as make a decision on who we elect. Where does my candidate stand on gun control ? Terrorism ? And LGBTQ issues ?

I never forget what happens in history especially when I am effected first hand. I do think about what I can do. Does my vote really matter ? It does, even when you don’t think it does. Voting is an American right. In the earliest of times only the rich voted. Only those who owned land voted. Every minority group has fought for the right to vote. You should go out and do so.

I am not saying that tragedy will stop if you vote. I am not saying that these things won’t still occur. They still might ? I am saying though you can do your part to help make changes and those changes only occur when you go out and make a difference. If we had tighter gun laws, better criminal and terrorist watch laws, stronger supports from political figures we could see less of this happen.

Internet, Social Media, and Relationships …..

Before internet you communicated with you friends and family in person or by the telephone. Even before that you would write them letters and hang out together. Since the internet though keeping up with your loved ones has gotten easier. But has it also hurt relationships ?

I can say that I have experienced an increase in the people I stay connected too. I have closer relationships with people that I have had in my past. I even have met new people abroad and in my home town. This has just been my experience. I have also seen the other side to this as well. I have seen people easily get hurt by the internet and other means of social media. I have seen relationships destroyed by a picture or a post by a friend or family member that has been taken out of context. I have also seen people bully other people or groups of people. I think the internet is a great means but only if we use it wisely and not to maliciously.

I am not saying we need to censor what we say or post. I am saying though we need to be cautious. Could what I am about to say offend someone ? Am I mad or upset while I am posting this ? Is this how I am going to feel tomorrow ? Too many times we react and later wish we can take it all back. Unfortunately with internet we can’t always do that.

I think about romantic relationships too. How many times have you heard or been mixed up in a situation where your partner says, “Why you liked their picture”. When that happens though you have to question not the actions but what else has gone on in the relationship before.

Has social media has hurt the way we meet people we date. Before you would approach someone or be introduced. Some people say that online dating apps make people more superficial. Swipe right ? or Swipe left ? It’s the same though in person or at a bar. You approach someone for the same reasons you swipe right or swipe left. There is not really a difference. It’s really just how you use it.

The way we communicate needs to be personalized and tailored to what works best for us. I don’t think one way is better than the other. I think it just means we have a little something to work on and be cautious of.