Thursday, October 07, 2010

It Gets Better

(NOTE: I'm sorry that there won't be much today about knitting. I don't often veer off topic these days, but this is something I feel like I ought to write. I'll return to the usual yarn-based tomfoolery in my next entry.)

My last post, in which I suggested via t-shirt that persons unspecified should do something anatomically impossible to themselves and repeat from asterisk, has been up rather longer than intended. The plan was to follow up with something considerably chirpier, since bad moods are just that–moods. They pass.

The chirp has been pre-empted, however, due to a recent spate of suicides by young gay people.

This is not a new problem. Nor, sadly, is it uncommon. Suicide is the third-highest cause of death among Americans aged 15-24; and studies published in the past 15 years by the Federal government and the American Journal of Public Health suggest that youth who identify as gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender are two to three times more likely still to attempt to kill themselves.

It’s probably the lurid nature of the events leading up to the death of Tyler Clementi, a Rutgers University freshman, that have pushed the problem out of the pages of specialty publications like our own, dear Windy City Times and into the mainstream media. Tyler Clementi’s private life was surreptitiously streamed onto the Internet by his roommate, who also Twittered to let the world know what he was doing. Tyler, distraught at his abrupt outing and the subsequent torment by his peers, jumped off the George Washington Bridge.

Tyler was one of at least nine young gay men known to have taken their own lives in the past few weeks due to anti-gay bullying.

As a result there have been, and continue to be, statements made by high-profile types–Ellen DeGeneres, Tim Gunn, the cast of “Modern Family,” etc.–under the theme I’ve used as the title of this post: It Gets Better. The message is simple, short, and (one hopes) effective: it may seem like life isn’t worth living, but don’t give up just yet. As you grow older, it gets better.

I’m certainly no celebrity, but I’m adding my squeaky voice to the chorus on the off chance that it might, in a small way, help somebody somewhere sometime. Who knows? Maybe there’s a gay kid out there who’s suffering at the hands of his classmates because he’d rather knit than kick soccer balls. And maybe he wandered in here after Googling “garter stitch” or “toy elephant.”

If you’re reading this, kid, it’s for you.

I know what you’re going through. That’s not an empty statement. I mean I know exactly what you’re going through, because I walked a mile and then some in those leaden sneakers when I was your age.

Thinking about suicide? So did I. In fact, I did more than think about it. I tried it.

It wasn’t my idea.

I was egged on by quite a few authority figures, the ones who seemed at the time to run the world. They weren’t my parents, I hasten to add. I got lucky in the parental department; they didn’t always understand me, but they always loved me.

They–my bullies–were mostly teachers and school administrators. You see, I went to this really, really awful little private high school devoted less to academics than to promoting the veins-in-your-teeth cult of virility. It was no place for sissies, and if they suspected you might be a sissy they did their best to beat it out of you.

I was only there for two years, but the life lessons they taught on a daily basis have always stuck with me. Here’s a small sampler, verbatim, including the language they felt was appropriate to use in front of schoolboys:

“We have to believe gay men choose to be gay. Otherwise we would have to admit that God makes mistakes, because there is no sorrier mistake than a bunch of faggots.”

“If my son turned out to be gay, he’d have two choices. He could shape up, or he could get the hell out of my house before I shot him through the head.”

“God created you to be a man, and to fuck women. If you don’t fuck women, you’re not a man. If you’re not a man or a woman, you don’t fit into creation and the sooner you leave it the better.”

“Frankly, if I was a gay man I’d shoot myself. I mean, I’d be going to Hell anyway and I might as well get on with it and skip over dying from AIDS.”

(Isn't it funny, Mr. Roberts? I don’t remember anything you taught about biology–you were a lousy teacher, so that’s no surprise. Yet I remember so much of what you said with shocking clarity.)

Day in, day out for two long, painful years, I drank it in. I remember being flabbergasted at how often our teachers could work jabs at homosexuality into topics you’d think were completely unrelated. I was 13 and hitting puberty hard, yet I swear I was less obsessed with dick than they were.

Usually these barbs were volleyed at all of us, a general exhortation against the evils of buggery. But on especially bad days, they were aimed pointedly at me, the designated class pansy–while the other boys listened and smirked.

That led directly to problems with a classmate who decided after one such lecture that he was going to prune me, the mutant bud, from the Tree of Life with his own hands–since that’s what God, the saints, and the faculty wanted. I appealed for help to a couple of teachers and to the dean, all of whom told me I was on my own.

If you’re going to act like that, they said, you deserve what you get.

Sound familiar?

Now, I was brought up to be a good kid and respect authority. And authority was telling me I was a horror in God’s eyes, and ought to bump myself off.

So I tried it. Not successfully, obviously. And not right then. I have a strong constitution; it took years for their poison to reach my vital organs. But it was probably bound to happen sooner or later.

It might not have if somebody, anybody, had been there tell me what I’m going to tell you.

People–teachers, parents, classmates, pastors, whoever–who call you a mistake are wrong. Totally wrong. Completely wrong. Wrongeddy-wrong-wrong.

You’re no more messed up than the straight kid in the next chair.

When they say that your nature is unnatural, they do not speak from wisdom. They are either misguided themselves, or they know better and are deliberately lying to you. Either way–you don’t have to listen. In fact, you shouldn’t. In fact, don’t.

I know. They appear to hold all the cards. They can force you to run laps, sit in detention, do punishment homework. But you have my solemn promise that this is temporary. One of these days you’ll be out of there, and such petty power as they possess can no longer touch you.

Hang on. Don’t let them keep you from pushing forward, because what’s waiting for you beyond is quite wonderful. It’s not all couleur de rose, but it’s so much better than what you’re going through right now.

There are ways to get help. The Trevor Project is a good place to start. You don't have to be desperate, either. Better, in fact, to seek a little support before you are desperate.

(And in the meantime, if you don’t know how to knit, please consider learning. It’s a marvelous way to keep calm, knitters are wonderful people to gather ’round you, and nothing says “piss off” to the bigots like a really amazing hand-knitted scarf.)

351 comments:

1 – 200 of 351   Newer›   Newest»
LoriAngela said...

Life is not a simple pain. We must be loved as we are. Without hope there is nothing. Your words are strong. I will pass them on to my knitting teenaged daughter to share with her friends of all ilks.

Karen said...

Franklin, I love you. You are wise, you are funny and you are a knitter without equal. xxxxxxxxxxooooooooetc.

Chris said...

Posts like this give me hope for the future of this country. Thank you.

Sophie said...

thank you. all kids deserve love and support, especially at that difficult and complicated time.

i am so sorry and sad for the pain that you were forced to endure by those hateful bigots.

emmelisa said...

Bless you, Franklin. And thank you.

CarrieA said...

Thank you for sharing Franklin. Thank you for using your 'voice' to speak what so many of us feel. And thank you for being you.

jokir said...

I feel your heart in your post. You're truly an un-mistake-able person and I feel it would be an honor to know you.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry for what you had to go through and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for trying to make it better for those after you. No one should have to endure this hatred.

Kate

Diana said...

The most empowering words I ever came up with saved me from the incessant verbal abuse of my first husband. A very simple statement:

"You saying it, doesn't make it so."

Learn those words, and it gets better. Bless you Franklin.

Eileen said...

Succinct and true.

Cat Bordhi said...

Franklin, your post is profound and courageous and clear. May it be read by everyone at your former school (so glad you provided the link) and may it provide solace and strength to many, many young people who are being lied to by cowards.

Geom said...

Thank you for posting this. There are too many people saying hateful things to children (and adults, for that matter)... the more people who speak against bigotry, the better.

Laura said...

You are a shining beacon to all those young men who are being suffering because they are gay. You are wise, witty and wonderful (and you can make me laugh out loud). Never change. Thanks for wearing your heart on your sleeve.

mary said...

Franklin you once again proved how wonderful and special you are. Love you!!!

Julie said...

You are a wonderful role model and "it gets better" is a great mantra. Thanks for a great post.

cestvrai said...

It hurts me to hear all these stories like yours. Thank-you for showing how it does get better.

Amy Lane said...

*bows in your general direction*

*goes off to write some fiction, in which horrible people who pervert education and abuse their teeny-tiny powers in such a horrific way, come to awful and appropriate ends*

You are a much better person than I am, Franklin-- and I shall pass this on to my students. Thank you.

NJTroy said...

I am so sorry that you went through this. I live in NJ, so right now I am living in the middle of the discussion about what is happening at Rutgers. My oldest son is a freshman at Michigan State, so all the news there is of what is happening over at the University of Michigan which in its own way is horrifying as well. I cannot tell you how frustrated and angry and most of all heartsick these incidents have made me and everyone else I have spoken to. I am incredibly glad that you now know that it gets better. I only wish I knew how to help young gay people know that sooner.

Anonymous, too said...

AMEN, BROTHER! (And did you rig the word verification? Mine is "blessed"!)

Too many kids -- gay, straight, bi, trans, and "none of the above" -- commit suicide because of the hell bullies and bigots put them through.

Kids, if you're reading this, there IS help out there. Things DO get better. Hang in there.

AsKatKnits said...

I have tears in my eyes after reading this powerful post, Franklin.

May this post echo out, shedding a brilliant light on bigotry everywhere.

Thank you for so eloquently sharing.

Anonymous said...

thank you for this

marie in florida
mym on Ravelry

Laurel said...

Aw, Franklin. Thank you for your powerful post. I am so sorry you had those experiences--and my heart goes out to anyone experiencing something similar today.

I would just like to say that pretty much every post of yours delights me, at the same time that I'm constantly amazed by your skill and warmed by your love of knitting. You are a gift to the world and, even though I don't know you personally, I am so glad you're here. I hope every other person who might be touched by your words realizes that they are a similar gem waiting to be seen (even if they currently feel more like a pearl before swine).

Heather said...

Franklin, I've been trying to start this comment for a while, and I'm having trouble coming up with how to say this, so I'm just going to go for it:

Thank you.

This whole explosion has been an emotional rollercoaster for me. It's stirred up a lot of old memories and the emotions that went with them. I'm very happy that this issue has become something that we're no longer "keeping in the 'family'" but I'm also devastated that it took something this extreme to make it happen.

And no matter how many times I've told myself that it wasn't my fault, and that "they" were the ones who were wrong, and that it HAS gotten better for me....Reading your post has made me feel a lot less alone. So thank you so much for writing it.

Diane said...

Franklin, thank you for sharing your experience. My 13-yo nephew just told his parents he's gay. I hope he doesn't have to experience any of that but I worry for him.

L said...

Love (1000000000)

Alwen said...

Hey.

As I started reading this post, my kid walked by, saw It Itches in the sidebar, and said, "Ooooh, I want to read that again."

So if you hear silly kid giggling, that's my son.

How is this relevant? I was a weird kid, who sat at the weird table in the library. I never expected to live this long, because it was so stinkin' lonely.

But it did get better. I found somebody who thought weird was interesting. Eventually I married him.

It got a LOT better. Now I don't care if some people think I'm weird. There are a whole lot of people who disagree, and I'd rather hang with them anyway.

Anonymous said...

AMEN!

spider (ravelry) said...

thank you, franklin.

having moved from a more liberal country to the us a while ago, i am shocked almost weekly about the homophobia that is so visible.

just today there was an editorial in our paper that made my blood boil. a teaching intern should have "circumvented" the question whether he was married, instead of saying it was illegal to marry a man.

things will get better. thanks to people like you.

Renata said...

Thank you for this post. (And for providing the links.) I hope, no, I know that you have helped someone through your words. I'm very glad it got better for you.

Lisa said...

You, Franklin, are an amazing man. I will pass this on to as many people as I can. When I stop crying. Bless you.

bettlejuice said...

Thank you for being you , for posting on this topic. I was very moved by your words. draw up a rainbow ball of yarn with needles bumper sticker for my car.
cheering you on in Jacksonville,FL.

sprboston said...

OH, Franklin, I think you're so succinct and articulate and your raw honestly is unsettling at a time when we need to make others unsettled. The status quo needs to be questioned. Those in "control" need to be questioned. I hope someone reads this and your words strike a chord and that someone, some where understands that things will get better.

I love you!

oxypetala said...

REPRESENT.

Marji said...

My rage at what was done to that young man still leaves me incoherent.

Jamie said...

Franklin, your comments were right on the money. Thank you.

I have reason for hope, despite the sad case at Rutgers. I work with a high school here in California that services low income kids that will be the first in their families to attend college. Over 90% are Hispanic. Hispanic congregations are, in general, as homophobic as many African-American ones are, so the GLBT kids rarely receive support from their spiritual advisors. Their school is different -- they have had a GLBT club for years, and the kids who have come out at school are not ostracized.

In my experience, most young people are not homophobic, even if their parents are (national surveys support this). I tried to reassure my heart-broken college-age son after Prop 8 passed (anti-gay marriage) that by the time he has kids, if not sooner, much of this will have passed.

In case it matters, my son is not gay or questioning (just feels deeply about the issue). It's the biggest issue he has been campaigning for Jerry Brown against Meg Whitman for California governor (she was the #1 individual donor to the "yes on prop 8" campaign, just behind the LDS church).

Lauren said...

Thank you for your courage and strength to share. May what happened to you and so many other young people never happen again.

Rachel R. said...

Thank you.

Fujiyamamama said...

Thanks Franklin.

h3dakota.com said...

When I hear stories like the one you told here, my faith in humanity dies a little... but at the same time, the fact that you have put yourself out there to help today's youth to know that It Gets Better restores it too. We love you Franklin - thank you.

Noreen said...

So glad you didn't listen and do yourself in, Franklin. There would have been a big hole in the world without you.

Yvonne said...

Thank you, Franklin, for sharing these difficult & heartbreaking moments. For the life of me, I cannot understand how or why some people are so cruel. (Maybe that's why I like my farm animals a lot more than many people.) I am so very glad that you are still here, and I hope that your words reach many. You are a treasure.

Lisa in western MA said...

Amen! And thank you....

Alexander the Great said...

Thank you to Franklin and thank you to all those who commented. Unfortunately, I went through a very similar situation when I was in high school only 5 years ago. The support all the commenters have shown is phenomenal and I can only hope that things in the US get better through the help of people like you.

Glen said...

Hi Franklin. Thank you for putting this up. They're not my experiences verbatim, but close enough in many ways. It's hard.

I hope you don't mind, but I'm linking this article as my post for today.

Cadi said...

Great post!

sunnysideellen said...

Thank you for writing this. If we all make an effort for more understanding, tolerance and kindness maybe we can make a difference. I hope so!

Sarah said...

Franklin, I am crying for the 13 year old boy who had to endure what you did from people who were supposed to care for children and not poison them. I admire your strength and hope your words can help others.

FugueStateKnits said...

Bravo! one of my fantasies is a "true God squad" that follows these bullies and beats the holy shit out of them. Because really, that's what they need. Really.

Janice said...

Thank you for the strong powerful words. Words everyone should be able to read and share. You are a very special person for this posting. I so appreciate the chance I had to meet you 3 years ago.

Cathy said...

It grieves me to live in a world where intolerance and lack of understanding cause such tragedies. But at the same time, I adore living in MY world where one of my Facebook friends, Michael, asks "so who's your Facebook friend Franklin and could you introduce me?" (I need to reply - "learn to knit first!"

B. said...

Man, when I was young it didn't even occur to me that "homosexual" was a thing I could be. I was a person, right, and I had interests and things I was excited about, and I had friends; and "homosexual" was someone who was so single-mindedly focused on sex that they would identify themselves only with respect to whom they wanted to fuck. Homosexuals didn't have interests or friends! (Thanks for that insight, conservative Catholic education!)

So I didn't know what to call myself, I was just a girl who didn't want to sleep with boys and who daydreamed about other girls in absolute secret. No lie, I had a fake diary with fake daydreams about boys that I could bust out when my friends wanted to gossip. I would have been hounded terribly if the secret had gotten out. It was bad enough getting called "dyke" by other girls in my class who used it as an equal-opportunity, all-purpose insult—every time I had a flash of panic because maybe someone found out—I can't imagine what would have happened if they had known.

Anyway I'm ten years older now and can also report that it gets better. I discovered that I do like some men sometimes and I'm now in a heterosexual relationship, which means that it got much much much better for me, so much that I feel a little sick thinking about it. It takes a lot of work to undo all the poisonous things you get taught as a kid, though. I hated myself for a long time.

Jen said...

Every "it gets better" speech I read breaks my heart...not as a gay, not as a straight, but just as a person.

I do not understand how people can do this to one another.

FiberQat said...

Thank you. Very well articulated. It's awful what you went through. I'm glad you're here.

The most moving experience was seeing a gay youth chorus sing at a national chorus convention in 2004. At the time they were the only gay youth chorus. By the next convention in 2008 there were 8. It was the support of adults that made them feel they could stand in public and say This is who I am.

For those who learn a child has come out, be there for that child. Knowing that an adult cares and assures that one is safe makes so much of a difference.

Shanny said...

I want to give 15-year-old Franklin (and really, every picked on gay kid) a big hug and tell him that he is exactly as he should be. thank you so very much for sharing your story!

Carol Kamin said...

It's really remarkable that fear continues to drive such hatred. We need a day of mourning for these kids.

Anonymous said...

Franklin! I found your blog only a few days ago. All of your assorted talents impressed me so --
your lovely knitted items are truly amazing--you are so much more advanced than I am,and I have been at it for over forty years. I have laughed so hard at your hilarious blogs; just adore your
style of writing. I guess I have not read anything serious you wrote until this one. (Between working full time in busy office, and having maybe an hour a night to read your blogs, I guess I have
read only the really funny ones, and do indeed plan to read everything you have written!)
These suicides are so sad, but this is nothing new. It just seems we as a society have reached a point of criticism and rudeness and feeling qualified to "condemn" people for being what they are. It is so sad that so many cannot appreciate each individual for his
talents and good qualities and not worry about the superfluous things like sexual orientation or skin color. We seem to hunt down and decimate those who are different from our opinion of...well, those who are not a mirror image of us.
I am so glad you wrote this, and plan to share it with all six of my grandchildren, as well as the responses by other bloggers. They
have been raised to be kind, and generous and tolerant; they must also realize the horrendous consequences that unkindness can yield. Thank you so much for sharing your experiences, as well as all the beautiful things you create. Bless you always.

fern said...

Thank you for this post. It was wonderful.

Liz G. said...

I love you to pieces! And am glad all of your pieces waded through such crap to get you where you are. Fabulous You!

Amy said...

To those, please, hang on.

Joy said...

Beautifully put Franklin. I was sooo lucky as a teenager (in, of all places, the Chicago suburbs!) I had a peer support group of other gay teenagers, a gay (in retrospect I hasten to add - I was obtuse then) school social worker who made it her business to give us self-esteem and backing and a family who was supportive and understanding. I wish I could give every gay and lesbian kid on this planet the same acceptance and nurturing I got back then (I graduated H.S. in 1973.) And, even if high school was okay, it STILL gets better!

Cat said...

What a great post.
Sometimes I am so ashamed for people who feel the need to pick on others, torture others because they are different.
I don't give up hope that things get better. We all need to work on that.

Amy said...

I am so joyful that the young man you describe became the man you are today: clever, creative, so funny, such an amazing knitter, a truly astounding person. We are all children of this universe, and all have our place here together. While I know it gets better for each individual as the years pass, I truly hope it gets better for the world as a people and that we become more accepting soon.

sabrina said...

You're right. It does get better.

If anyone is at the vigil by DePaul tomorrow and you see someone in a rainbow Noro Evergreen shawl... that's me, getting better every day.

Morwynne said...

Thank you.

steptrig said...

You make this world a better place every day you are in it. I'm so glad you stuck around.

morethan2stars said...

Thank you, beautifully said. My coming out was late enough that I didn't get bullied for that (just for being different). My wife and her friend/prom date however were told by the school adminstrators that other kids wouldn't throw rocks at them if they didn't act that way (paraphrased). So, yeah, I'm immensely glad that my Vicki is still around - she tried to take herself out of the world long before we met. Her friend Scotty made it too, somehow. I think that they, too can attest that it DOES get better.
LOVE!!!
xoxoxo
Angelina

Lynn in Tucson said...

Bless you. The comments, as well as the post, give hope.

Anonymous said...

two summers ago, my husband and i went to visit my sister in wrigleyville. we got there right after that most important weekend. it was wonderful to see the aftermath of the parade and the peace that everyone seemed to have. five years ago, my favorite weekend in my hometown of new orleans was denied my favorite of all celebrations, decadence, because of katrina. i am constantly amazed at the resiliency of the human spirit to come back from an emotional beatdown and have fun and show that certain groups will never be eradicated because of human stupidity. one year, we will be with you to march and support and love- all of us together. until that happens, my love and support.
bywatercyn, now in nashville. (where you are always welcome to visit and have a place to stay with a professional chef in residence!)

Kellie said...

Dear Franklin,
all of this nonsensical hatred breaks my heart. As the mother of a 5 and a half year old boy, whom I am about 90% certain will prove to be gay as he matures, I have been shocked at the level of hostility my son has already faced at such a tender age from both adults and other children. Lucky for him the only ambitions his parents hold for him are to be happy and healthy as whatever unique individual he becomes. We role-play how to deal with taunts from other kids about his strong and enduring preference for non-'masculine' play/toys/colours/sports/dress-ups, and have been amazed at his ability to judge social situations for 'appropriateness' in this regard. A helpful skill to have given some of the attitudes we have encountered; as a not-quite-4 year old attending a 4 year old's birthday party in his favourite Cinderella dress-up (which he alternated throughout the party with a 'feminised' bumblebee costume) the birthday boy's uncle refused to include him in any of the party photographs whilst he was wearing “girls' stuff” and after we left raged to our friends holding the party about what crap parents we were!!!

I'm so glad you chose to stay. Our sons and daughters need voices like yours in the world.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this, Franklin. I heard a piece on NPR today on this same topic. It breaks my heart to think that those of us, including myself, who so enjoy and admire your work, your wit, your talent and your humanity might never have gotten to know you, all because of such blatant and misguided hatred. Your message is a powerful one for us all. I am hopeful that by sharing experiences such as yours and shining a light on this particular form a bigotry, we truly have a chance at making the world better for those who come after us.

PatQ said...

As the proud mother of a gay son I salute you and say Thank you. No one deserves the pain you and other young gay men go through. It's time to stand up and say "Enough".

Emm said...

Thank you for this post, Franklin. Your strength of character shines forth in every word you wrote. The world is a better place with you in it. Glad you stayed around.

Sioux B said...

Dearest Franklin,

Thank you for your moving and uplifting story. I find it instructive that out of that repressive and repulsive environment, you emerged a strong and powerful gay man. Your parents had a lot to do with it, I'm sure, and they are mightily proud of their son. I would be, that's for sure.

I believe that with time, everything gets better. You get stronger, or more able to adapt. Your bullies are no longer in power over you. Things change and so do you.

Ashley said...

Thank you for sharing this non-knitty piece of yourself with the world. I'm so glad things got better for you, and I hope (so, so much) that things keep getting better for everyone out there. And I really, really hope that eventually, no one will notice or care whether my 4-year-old nephew wears muddy jeans or frilly sandals to preschool. Thanks for helping make that happen.

Cinnamon said...

You've made me laugh for years, so I guess it's time you made me cry as well. As an ally in this fight, I thank you for voicing this and I truly hope that some young person reads this, sees the awesome person you've become, and musters the strength to keep fighting. Cause not only does it get better, you're not alone, and not everyone is awful. Many thanks. Many.

GreenPea said...

Thank you for writing this. It is one of the most important things that people can read.

Jaimee Drew said...

Thank you for posting this. It is truly important to keep talking about this.

MsAmpuTeeHee said...

You're awesome.

Fr. Sean Lotz said...

Although I love all your blog posts, I do not normally comment, having little constructive to offer. But I really think this should be the most-commented-upon post of all. Thank you. Your experience in high school makes mine seem pretty dull by comparison. I'm glad you survived. I pray some one kid reads what you wrote and survives also. Hang in there, kid! It really does get better.

Abbeysmum said...

Thank you for a wonderful post.Thank goodness you had supportive parents.
A few quotes from my Grandmother...
1. "Just what exactly are they so afraid of ?"

2.with all their blustering hatred "who are they trying to convince ?"
(that being gay is wrong)

I hope the online knitting community will be very vocal about this subject, to media and all over the internet.
Smoking is fast disappearing by public opinion, maybe bigots can be treated with the same intolerance

Jennifer in MN (formerly ChiTown) said...

Bravo, Franklin, Bravo!

Relliurad said...

Ok, just deleted a long comment where I got a bit ranty about the idiot teachers and stuff, but I'll replace it with this. Bravo for your words. I hope the mongrels that spewed that crap at you at school end up with something painfully itchy and embarressing. Thank you so much for your blog.

julie said...

What a wonderful message to share! Thanks.

SusieQ100 said...

Franklin, you are so wise.

livnletlrn said...

Thank you, Franklin. Your eloquence, talents, and spirit continue to amaze me. You are an outstanding role model for the kids who need to hear your words.

Sweet Camden Lass said...

{{{hugs}}} I entirely agree.

Anonymous said...

This is a simple message of support for your wise and compassionate words on a complex and important topic. Thank you! I am ... gkgreen (ravelry)

Marcy said...

Well said, Franklin. Thank you. A very worthy addition to the "It Gets Better" movement. Have you considered doing a YouTube video version of this?

Kathy L. said...

GREAT post, Franklin. Thank you for putting this out there for anyone who can read it and gain some comfort and inspiration from your experiences.

Anonymous said...

Dear Franklin
I am appalled and horrified by what you went through, and what other young men and women are experiencing.

Thank you for this post - I read your blog regularly but rarely comment. I would like to think that here in the UK no teacher would be able to get away with what was said to you (although I'm not 100% sure about that).

The UK would certainly appear, in general, to be more accepting of people's differences, although there are certain elements of 'society' that are not.

If your post has saved just one young man or woman from taking their own life then it has been more than worthwhile.

Thanks again - for being there and for being you.
BarbiW
x

Souhair said...

Franklin - I'm so sorry and sad for the treatment that you received. Thank you for sharing your story. You are indeed a Boddhisatta.

Jean said...

I wonder about the dreadful Mr Roberts' own sexuality -- surrounded by all those smooth-cheeked adolescent youths. Perhaps the saddest note of the sorry tale is there.

Bless you for writing this.

Love

Betsy said...

It seems so simple to say...can't we all get along? We have come so far from tolerance here in this country that I don't even recognize it anymore. Unfortunately, we are failing our young people...be they gay or black or Muslim or short or bald or whatever...somehow we have come to a point in society where it is not ok to be something other than a Ken doll looking Christian. Frightening.

There needs to be more Franklins in this world just to say and act "It's ok to be who you are." And life does get better...as soon as you acquire the ability to say FU to anyone who doesn't like you for who you are.

Thanks for this post Franklin.

Jody said...

Bravo, Franklin. You are a bright hopeful voice in this often miserable world. I'm trying to devise a way to get you to come to Vassar to create a knit along! You are needed!

J. Kwiatkowski said...

Thank you for participating in "It Gets Better". I hope the chorus grows louder and drowns out those revolting groups that are trying to make political hay out of these tragedies.

Abbie said...

Serious, yes, but it needs to be said, loudly and often. Thank you for your voice. Thank you for being you.

Frenchkitten said...

I am sorry you had to go through this Franklin. Lots of hugs to you and any other kid/adult who is struggling out there. There are many of us out here, straight or gay, who are fighting to get you the respect and dignity you deserve. Peace.

chellebelle said...

Once again I bow down to your elequence. These stories have haunted me lately. And truly it is not just to gay young people that this message is for, but all young people.. my children are high functioning Autistic/Asperger's and these young people are also targeted heavily for bullying because they are very different/uber geeks and tend to be very high risk for suicide. One of my oldest boys best friends tried to kill himself at 12 years of age. I continue to tell my kids that the idiots that say childhood is the best time of your life are lying, to hang on and we will get through this mess of teenagery stuff together.. no matter what. Thank you for sharing your experience and I am personally so very happy that you are still here with all of us.. I cannot imagine a world without you.

Anonymous said...

Amen, my brother. I wish I could go back to grade school, find all the administrators who thought it was a fine thing to have a kid stand up in class and ridicule them about what made them "different" and smack them. Hard. I am glad that our smart people have come forward, using the power of the internets for good, and hopefully, somewhere, some kid won't have such a bad time. Bless. Gwyn in Chicago

Lori said...

for all of his 6th grade year, my son was in a horrible foul FURIOUS mood. he stomped around, he bit everyone's head off. at the end of the year, he came out to me. for the entire year, he'd been wanting it NOT to be true because after all, who wants to be kicked and called names? everything rotten is "so gay" and who wants to be that? (and all this in texas, to boot.)

every time another gay kid kills himself, i'm sick for days and want to slap every small-minded person i run into.

(and p.s. it did get better for my beloved son, too.)

jennifer.auroradesign said...

You are the best kind of man Franklin. Thank you for writing this.

LaurieM said...

What were your parents thinking, letting you go to that kind of school?! Did they not see you were in pain there? I'm so glad they loved and supported you, and I'm sure they did the best they knew how.... but still.

I guess as the parent of two teen-aged boys, I'd feel horrible to find out later that my sons were going through such a torturous experience and that I was blind to it.

rosemary said...

Franklin, I'm so sorry you had to go through that. As a straight person, I'm deeply saddened and embarrassed by the behavior of your teachers and classmates. Thank you for sharing your experiences and for reaching out to the young gay community - these suicides are tragic and utterly preventable.
Love & peace,
Rosemary

Jennifer said...

Oh, man. Here I was, checking out my Google Reader for a little light reading with the baby before breakfast and found your post. Seriously though, thank you. It's easy, even with recent events, for me to look at the LGBT people I know, all of whom are happily married (this is MA) or in committed relationships and say that it isn't bad, that things have changed. I taught high school, and heard lots of comments by kids, but there was at least an awareness that what they were saying was wrong. And I don't think I ever heard a derogatory comment made to someone who was actually gay/questioning. The amazing teacher who led the school's GSA club certainly helped with that. It's important to remember that not all schools and teachers are as supportive or caring and there are kids and adults out there who are hurting. Thank you.

Patricia said...

Thank you for your very powerful words. As a Christian, I'm heartsick over the hate of some. I'm heartsick that people can get a message so completely wrong. I'm heartsick that those misguided hateful people come to paint to image of what I believe -- you know, that God is Love and no one gets to judge others and ultimately, there is a God and I'm not Him.

I love you -- and I mean that. I love that you write so well and hope that your words will help anyone who struggles with who they are when surrounded by those who don't (and won't) understand.

I wish I could go back to the teen Franklin and show you that those people are/were so wrong. I wish I could give you the contrast to that horrible 2 years (and the years later while purging that bile). But since time travel isn't possible, I will promise you, my friend, that I'll do my part:
1. I'll continue to share my understanding of truth that includes love and not hate.
2. I'll raise my son (who is 7 now and will someday, God help us all, be a teen) to love and accept all those of his age. I'll teach him that we are all people first, created by God, in His image, and declared good. By the simplest logic -- to be cruel to one of God's creation is to be cruel to God Himself.

There is no good way to end this comment, but to say that I love you -- I tell people that you are my secret boyfriend, so secret you don't even know you like this one girl. But the truth of the matter is, I think the world is a bit happier; a bit better off; and a bit more fun because you walk on it!

Anonymous said...

I cried when I read this post. There have been years of people being deprived of who they are because of the rules society has let them to believe. My mother is gay, she married a man that she did not love so that she could move out of her catholic parents home. She left my dad when she was 45, secretly for a woman. She is now 62 and has been in a relationship for several years and still continues to hide who she is from her parents in fear of dissapointing them. My sibilings and I are constantly re-assuring her that it's ok to love who you love. I always try to believe that our society has changed and that the generations to come will not have to deny who they are. Thank you Franklin for speaking out, one voice at a time we can change the world.

Lacey said...

I love you Franklin Habit. Really I do. Thank you for this. I cried. A lot. I'm not a poor, confused, tortured teen, but I have been there too. You are right; it does get better. It gets wonderful sometimes. I am a teacher now and I heard a teacher at a meeting of writing teachers talk about journal writing. It was all good until she talked about the things that could come out in the writing that were dangerous. This is what she said: You have to be careful and tell them not to write what they wouldn't want everyone to know. If you get a trouble kid, or GOD FORBID someone who is discovering he's gay, you'll have trouble.

Yes, God Forbid he's strugglig with being gay because she wouldn't help him, hear his voice, or give a damn about his struggle. That's what she implied to me as a fellow teacher. The horror of this story is that she's been a teacher for over 25 years and is STILL in the classroom! This insidious hate is learned through little actions, little comments, and it's everywhere.

Liz said...

Isn't it arrogant of "Christians" to think that God makes mistakes? Missed that section on the Golden Rule? If we could end hypocrisy...
Thank you for sharing, and thank you for your work. My days are happier because of your illustrations and words.

Elizabeth said...

I looked at the end of this post for the "love(1)" button. (Ravelry too much?) Thank you!

Syd said...

Thank you

Caroline said...

Well said. Life does get better and it's hard to believe that as a kid. What I worry about is that America does not always seem to be getting better.

MIB said...

Amen and blessings, Franklin. And for anyone who is troubled and looking for reassurance, it really does get better, whether you're gay or, like me, from an abusive background. It does get get better.

The Foggy Knitter said...

(((((((((((hugs))))))))))) to you Franklin and to everyone else out there who is hurting

I'm so so sorry xxxxxxxx

Melanie Gardner said...

I almost cried. Hopefully someone who needs this reads it. I have family members who are probably emotionally damaged right now due to being gay and having been raised mormon. It is a sad world sometimes.

Anonymous said...

Hi Franklin,

I love you!! Thank you for being the person you are and bringing joy, hope and humor to so many.

KatDee99

Ann Phipps said...

I have no other words than "thank you".

Donna said...

Franklin - Thank you for the words that you wrote. I know that any young person that reads your post will be moved and helped. Please continue to use your experiences to help others. You are what the world needs.

tadlewog said...

Hey Franklin - i'm totally in your boat. (not to the same historical experiences, but similar)

I used to run an LGBT Helpline that was staffed by volunteers.

thanks for bringing the attention to the knitting masses. :)
I love showing my middle-school students you and your blog when they say "boys don't knit!"

Gail (nosenabook) said...

Thank you, I'll do my part to spread around the news: it gets better.

quietdanmn said...

Thank you so much for sharing this very personal account of your experience. Thank you for having the courage to share AND to continue on and for being a voice for this important effort.

There is far too much hatred in this world, and if this effort can open more people's eyes to acceptance and tolerance, we'll all be better off.

Through your words and life, you prove over and over that it does get better.

Bravo to you!

Kris said...

Great post. It's not just gay youth who suffer from discrimination and bullying though - it's also youth who are perceived to be gay, whether they actually are or not.

yarnorgy(Bethany) said...

What a beautiful post. Thank you for sharing that.

Christopher said...

My friend Terra has a six year old son named Zach. Terra believes that no matter what, Zach should have a happy childhood. Whether he wants to paint his fingernails, twirl a baton, or play with his pet rats she supports the person he is meant to be. He may grow up to be gay or he may not but at least he will not be shamed into living a lie.
I went through the same gay issues as Franklin and it does get better, but at the time it was such a lonely place to be.

woollywoman said...

AMEN

Anonymous said...

Thank you, from a mom who doesn't want to see anybody's kid hurt.

Kara said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kara said...

As a big sister who watched her youngest sister struggle with this very thing I thank you. When she came out to my parents in high school they were very supportive, but it didn't stop others from ridiculing her and her scars from cutting herself are permanent evidence of how painful it was for her to just be herself. I don't want anyone to ever have to hurt inside like that. And people who hurt others because of their sexuality are coming from a dark place, full of hate and fear.

I'm sorry about what you went through. And I'm sorry to every member of the LGBT community who has to deal with people who spew hate. I hope one day we will live in a world where we won't hear stories like Tyler's ever again.

Jamie said...

I heart you Franklin. You are an amazing brave soul. Thank you.

Mrs.Spy said...

Beautiful post.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this post. I'm struggling with making my nephew understand that high school is a phase to live through, not a destination.

Cara said...

Kid, if you read this far, I hope you're hearing in these comments how many people are on your side - even if you haven't found them yet. Some of them people you'd probably never expect. Some day you may find yourself living next door to a married, thirty-something, mother who heads to church several times a week (a church where you'd be welcome, though it may take you awhile to realize that). And it may turn out that she loves you, enjoys spending time together, appreciates your unending willingness to dog sit and melts at your adoration of her new baby. (And weeps grateful tears when you use your skills, honed on nieces and nephews, to give an exhausted Mama a break.) Or you may be the friend she and her husband met at a political event and instantly connected with. Or maybe you will be the wonderful assistant who not only became indispensable to her at work, but a friend beside whom she proudly marched when the times called for it. Or... the list goes on. There are lots of us out here who hope you hang in there and become a kick ass adult, because we will value your friendship and gladly give you ours.

Katy said...

Another lurker who loves you. Rock on, Franklin.

Francoise said...

Franklin, Thank you for this very moving post. I read it last night, had my husband read it, and needed the evening to process.

I understand first-hand the power of hateful words. I was the freak kid in HS with a leg brace and crutches. It truly does get better. I am sorry for your pain, Tyler's and all the children who feel that there is no way out. We need to teach acceptance of all people. Thank you for your powerful words.

AgTigress said...

Franklin's deeply moving post, and the many comments above, all express wisdom, empathy and compassion.
So who are these vile, screwed-up people who glory in inflicting suffering on those whom they decree to be 'unnatural'? How do they get that way, deriving perverted pleasure and satisfaction from abusing those who are different from themselves?
It is extremely depressing. I am old enough to have seen a huge change for the better in social attitudes towards homosexuality since the 1950s, but even in our 'civilised' countries, there are far too many people who are still living with a medieval mind-set on that (and some other) social issues.

Gail said...

Thank you Franklin. Written from the heart.

kathy said...

thank you Franklin...I hope everybody out there gets to read this and take comfort in your words.

kathy

Nicole said...

Beautiful post. Thank you. It is every bit as beautiful as the gorgous sweaters.
And don't forget, knitters have two weapons handy just in case it comes down to defending oneself.

max s. said...

I'm in tears...thank you for your wonderful post. It really does get better :)

Jeanne said...

Bless you Franklin

NJ said...

Great post! I do think it gets better as you age. I started seeing my hairdresser 20 years ago and in the small town we lived in he seemed to not fit in. He was shy and quiet. 20 years later he's opened two shops in the larger but small city down the road. For the most part he's happy but would be happier if he could meet that special someone.

I think society is becoming more accepting but it is distressing to hear gay bullying still exists. And even more distressing the results of this. I had thought young people were much more accepting than people of my generation.

Bonnie said...

I can't seem to find the right words.

Thank you. You're right. Bless you.

Michelle said...

I'm normally a lurker but I had to come out and tell you what a great blog post this is (I'm sure it wasn't the easiest thing to write but thank you!). I'm sorry that you or anyone else would ever have to hear such awful things.

KnitNana said...

Excellent post, Franklin. I lost a dear friend years ago, because his parents were like your teacher. I mourn him to this day.

Thank you for being you.
(((hugs)))

Kayten said...

Brilliant. You are wonderful. That is all.

Ami said...

So well said. Franklin, the world would be such a vastly poorer and less interesting place without you. It feels like we as a culture have lost our basic respect and appreciation for one another as human beings, but words like yours are reason for hope.

plumbum said...

Like so many others, there were tears in my eyes as I read this.

It can be a harsh world in which to be "different" in any way. You are right. Things do get better. We grow , we learn, and so long as we survive we arrive eventually in a world where "different" is actually quite interesting and a thing to be proud of.

Me? I'd hate to be common or ordinary :-)

I am just sad that much of my difference these days is in my scarring.

Keep on telling it like it is.

Alyse Middleton said...

Thank you for being part of the chorus of voices that are stepping up, and letting kids and people isolated everywhere that there can be a better life out there. When I read about Dan starting the "It Gets Better Project" I thought it was a great idea and hoped a few people join in.

Going to the project's site and watching the 1000s of videos that people have made is a huge inspiration.

Queen of Swords said...

I really want to click your love (1) button. Thank you for the great post, and /hugs from a complete stranger who thinks the world of you.

EileenW said...

Thank you, Franklin.

AnneMarie said...

Well said. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, thank you, and thank you.
-- Gretchen

imjustlori said...

Franklin, I wish all people could be as well-spoken, and open-minded, and open-hearted as you are.

And even more, I wish all good people with these traits had the strength and courage to stand up as you have and support our youth.

Brooke White said...

Thank you for offering these words! So often our stories go unshared and the loneliness only grows. I admire your bravery in sharing your story.

Jenn C. said...

Thank you for posting this. I can only hope that it does help someone someday.

I went to a Catholic school too, and while I never saw anything there that sounds as bad as what you experienced, it was appalling to me some of the crap they spewed towards the gay community. I can't even imagine how it felt to have that actually directed at you.

Speaking as a former bullied kid, I can say that it absolutely does get better, when you move on into the bigger world and can find the tribe that you fit into. SO much better, you can't even believe it.

I'm glad you were able to escape their poison and become the interesting and charming man that you are. The world is better for having you in it.

Anonymous said...

So much love

Anonymous said...

So, how do we go about eradicating the fear that is at the core of the problem? ALL bullying and prejudice arises from fear.

But fear of what, exactly? And, until we figure out what there is to fear, we shall continue to spread fear from generation to generation.

Thank you for sharing your experiences, and helping to eradicate fear.
MBelford

Sahar said...

I know my brother. His words do not surprise me (though I profoundly appreciate them, and him). In fact, I read this post and nodded a lot, proud of the person he is (and always has been to me--an ally, a friend, and a mentor). What made me cry (in a good way) was the outpouring of kindness and good wishes and thanks in the comments. It's so nice to see so many people love one of the people I love best! Thanks to all of you.

Susan in Dulwich said...

Well said Franklin, I'm glad you did.

Tallulah said...

Thankyou, Franklin. For the post and for sticking around to write it, as well as for being who you are. I'm glad to have the chance, especially now, as a mother, to ensure that it does indeed get better, day after day.

Little Miss S. said...

I read this and cried a bit. Thanks.

Woodswoman Extraordinaire said...

So eloquently stated. Thank you!

Deana said...

Rock on Franklin!

Helen said...

So many commenters have said what I'd have said -- and yet I can't shut up.
Thank you: thank you for saying that right out loud here on a popular blog; thank you for sticking with us despite the horrific emotional abuse you received; thank you for all the joy you bring every day -- and thus thank you for turning that shit into fertilizer in to wonderful creativity.
I join the ranks of the many who love you.

Bonnie (aka Knitsiam) said...

I'm sorry, but thank you. Well said and Amen!

carpoolknitter said...

the teenage years are hard enough to survive even without this sort of intolerable cruelty. every time I hear a horror story involving abuse of young gays, I want to shout out to each and every lonely unhappy gay youngster out there, "YOU ARE NOT A WRONG PERSON! THEY ARE THE DEFORMITIES OF NATURE, NOT YOU!" Those who willingly cause unbearable pain to youngsters with differences, particularly the adults in a position of authority, are the ones who should not be tolerated by society. Keep shining your light, Franklin. Your voice reaches so many.

Helen said...

Oh -- and one more thing...
How is it that all of those catholic priests/Christian brothers could condemn the boys in their classes with diatribes against "pansies" and "faggots" and then take them into their offices, ask them to drop their pants so that they could spank them with brushes, or sexually molest them... all in the same day? Were they trying to punish themselves?
(I know that there were and are many wonderful, loving, kind, supportive, amazing Catholic priests teaching kids, but there seem to have been a shocking number who well.... weren't)

Susan said...

It is so sad that we cannot just love one another and be done with it.

Susan said...

It is so sad that we cannot just love one another and be done with it.

Anonymous said...

Franklin -- I love you for writing this! Thank you!

geekknitter said...

Franklin, you humble me and you break my heart. Thanks for this.

HL said...

It is always difficult to realize that adults in this world can be wrong when one is a kid seeking guidance.

Thank you for sharing with those seeking kids your informed opinion.

Sue J said...

growing up is hard enough, without the verbal and emotional abuse because of sexual orientation!!
Thank you for surviving, and for speaking out.
Love ya Franklin!!

Kitty Mommy said...

Thank you for reminding me that, just when I am completely fed up with the horrible things that human do to one another, as an adult I get to pick which humans I let into my life. You are a reminder that there are other good ones out there.

Guernseygal said...

I'm lost for adequate words - your eloquence says it all. Bravo! (and you made me cry dammit!)

Anonymous said...

Bravo! This is why we all love you so very much.

You reckon Mr. Roberts was in the closet himself? That asshole!

Ida said...

I am sure there are many who will find hope in your post. I'm sorry you had to experience such shameful behavior--especially from authority figures--but the strength you gained will benefit others.

Knitman said...

You brought back my school days with amazing clarity. I have never actually shared about it in that depth because I really didn't think I would be believed. Suicide was more than once suggested as an option for me. One priest actually said that Jesus would forgive me for killing myself but not living the life of a pervert.
Thankfully for me, I recovered from all this and I have a very good life and a 30 year marriage to another man. Back then I did not believe that life could be good.

Fiona said...

Funny thing, timing. I just read your wonderful post as I get ready to go out and party at a PANN event,(www.pann.nl) here in the Netherlands. They are a group who support and promote young people coming out and integrating in society. There cannot be enough of such organisations.
I attended a private Catholic girls school in Australia, and it was a long road to get to where I am now. As a no-longer young person, very comfortable now with my bisexuality, I add my voice to the concept of 'It gets better'. Indeed it does.

Phro5gg said...

Franklin, If you had a love button on your blog I would be pushing it.

Mary said...

Thank you, Franklin.

scifiknitter said...

Oh, Franklin... I am moved. YES, YES, YES to everything you say, especially to the amazing handknitted scarf. NO, NO, NO to the thought that this is the way things must be.

MonicaPDX said...

love(is love)

::hugs::

Angie said...

Thank you Franklin! You are my Hero!

Krystal said...

There will be a vigil tonight (Oct 8) at DePaul - details are on yelp.

Cynthia said...

Franklin, thank you.

christina said...

Franklin,
Thank you.
Thank you for being you, for being strong enough to be a voice for all those who are still finding theirs and those who have been silenced forever.

I unknowingly watched my Godfather die of complications from HIV/AIDS in the early days before the really good drug cocktails came about. He had the "flu" and stayed in the closet until after his death. Only then did he allow our pastor to tell us what really happened and who he really was. It broke my heart and has stayed with me.

I wish he was still here so I could tell him being gay would not have changed a thing with my nuclear family. We had a pretty good feeling that he was and it didn't matter. He shouldn't have died alone. I wish he would not have felt like he had to.

I know that having an illness is not the same as taking oneself out of picture. However, no one deserves to feel so much hate that they can not live being who they are.

The world is a better place because you walk in it, Franklin.

Harriet said...

Thank you, Franklin. Your post, and others like it, give me hope that our country has not run completely off the rails.

Laura47 said...

Thank you, Franklin, for adding your voice to so many others. You are a gift to the world of knitters, and you speak from your heart in such a powerful and genuine way.

The irony, of course, is that the abuse was taking place in a school named after a man whose life was devoted to kindness to outcasts.

Deborah C. said...

Thank you for saying this; I believe that it can't be said enough. What you went through is just surreal; I can't conceive of how terrible it must have been.

I can only hope that some good comes out of the tragic incident at Rutgers.

Erin said...

Amazing post, Franklin. Thank goodness you didn't let them defeat you.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful post! To claim that a gay person is a mistake is the blasphemy. God makes no mistakes.
Thanks for being so brave, you have been a source of laughter and inspiration to me and many others.

Shine on!!

Samina said...

As one human being to another, thank you for this post. Life it too short & precious for any type of intolerance & institutionalized bigotry is the very worst of all.

Joanne Crofts said...

Thank you for sharing your experiences and your pain. Thank you for being brave enough to directly call out those who allowed it to happen. And thank you for echoing the message, It Gets Better.

I, too, am living proof that life gets better after school bullies, after getting older, after struggling against those who would hold one down.

Michelle said...

Franklin, your post if powerful and moving. Thank you for writing this. You are an amazing person, and undoubtedly your message will empower and help someone, somewhere.

Marina McIntire said...

Oh, thank you! I just can't tell you how much I appreciate your courage and your honesty. Thank you for being here.

Llamabean said...

Thank you, thank you for sharing and making people aware. Thank you for being a strong enough man to push through the harsh words and hate. I have many strong men like you in my life and I hope they know how imporatant they are to me. You have made me want to remind them. Thank you.

Gerri in St Paul said...

I'm glad you made it through. I wish it hadn't required so much. It never should have.

I'm trying to figure out how to direct attention to this, so the value of your post expands exponentially.

The archbishop here just got an anonymous donor to fund an DVD, against even civil unions, mailing it to all registered catholic households. A wonderful women is collecting them to create a work of art, to try to do something to change hurt to healing. She was fired for it but is carrying on. http://www.dvdtoart.blogspot.com/ One group is collecting them to return and encouraging donations to causes that we should be spending energy on. If we all speak up, maybe it will get better faster. At least youth hurt by adult behavior could see some adults working on their side.

My work verification is mench, close to the mensch you are.

Sarah Hauschka said...

Thank you, thank you. Your comments and those who have commented on them need no further ones from me. You all have said it all. Love, Sarah

Joycers said...

Thank you for posting and sharing your experience for all the web to see. Very well said. Thank you.

Nina in the Northwoods said...

Thank you for your eloquent post. i am terribly sorry for the hurt inflicted upon you by those morons. I hope they learn tolerance someday.unceshot

«Oldest ‹Older   1 – 200 of 351   Newer› Newest»