The difference is normal

La différence, c’est normal

I came out when I was 16 and have always known that I loved men for as long as I can remember. I suspected that my family, friends and everyone around me would accept him very well. But why did I wait so long to come out of the closet and why did I burst into tears after telling my parents? Simply because of the fear and fear of judgment. From the same thoughts that always bounced around in my head before I took the plunge: "What if things don't go as planned? What if I lose people who are dear to me? "Because as a teenager you want to please everyone, you want to be popular, have as many friends as possible and" fit in. " And unfortunately, homosexuality is not among the highly valued characteristics of the image of a good popular football player. I always postponed this announcement until later, I slipped the problem under the carpet. I must have done it when I had no choice, it got too heavy and I didn't want to stop loving whoever I wanted.

It was such a relief, less weight on my shoulders, it had to come out. It was one less barrier to be myself. I could finally be who I fully am, without having to keep my thoughts or feelings to myself for fear of being judged. “Coming outs” should not exist. It is not a choice that we make and have to announce. We don't wake up one morning making this decision the same way a heterosexual doesn't decide to be straight. I was born gay as I was born with brown eyes. It’s that simple.

It was a difficult step to take, but I have no regrets. I was fortunate to have an open-minded environment that accepted me for who I am. But this is unfortunately not the case for all today. The suicide rate is on average 4 times higher among the LGBTQ + community than among heterosexuals. The general mental health figures for this population are all the more deplorable.

The problem is not with us. It comes from the fear of judgment that some have in the face of our difference.

But it's okay to be different, we all are.

Just accept it.

Jean-Christophe