A Nationwide movement is taking hold and telling LGBT youth that life get's better. The focus is LGBT youth, but the message is a universal call for suicide prevention! In moments of darkness, don't give up - reach out - believe that holding on will result in a better day.
I recently visited relatives in Florida and heard an unexpected story. A cousin, Michael, whom I did not know, died last year. His dad and step mom shared his story with me and I felt they were searching for understanding. Michael was gay and believed they did not accept him. His death was a slow suicide. "He never gave us a chance", they said.
I am certain many of the friends and family's of gay youth who have chosen to end their lives face similar pain. What could they have done?
In my own experience as a lesbian, I now know I often did not give friends and family a chance. I believed I was not accepted and could not be accepted so I did not let them know how painful their words and actions were. I climbed into a dark hole. I was lucky because friends and family reached in and found me where I was. They loved me. And while they may have had a difficult time understanding LGBT issues, they opened their hearts and minds in a way that let me know they valued me!
It Gets Better is an important campaign to do that. No matter if you are gay or straight, you know dark times. What makes the difference in those dark times, is the love and support of family and friends - even if they do not completely understand the issues. It's about saying "You have value" and "I believe in you" and "it will get better".
I am joining the "It Get's Better" campaign. In the coming months, I am collecting video from anyone who wishes to give a message to LGBT youth or anyone who needs to believe beyond darkness. I am looking for positive people willing to give a positive message. Please contact me if you are willing to participate. Visit www.itgetsbetter.org to see videos and understand the background behind this project.
I'm here to tell you - It get's Better! Even in Venango County - Out in the Silence.