This is a term I learned recently. It was said jokingly about my blog.
I don’t hate straight people. I used to be one. (Anyone get the Mrs. Doubtfire reference? You are my people if you did.)
I do feel a certain type of way about heterosexual individuals who are not aware of their het-privilege and then become defensive or deny when it is pointed out to them.
I am very aware of my white privilege. I also have felt the gut instinct to deny it exists because it is uncomfortable to sit with it.
It’s likely not hate you are feeling from me. It’s an uncomfortable niggling in your gut that you have heterosexual privilege and I am ripping the band-aid off and making you look straight at it.
It’s human nature to deny that you are “better” than some one else. Especially when you’ve used the privilege to your advantage without even being aware you were doing it. Especially when you haven’t used your privilege to help and advocate for those without it.
Heterosexual privilege exists. Trust me. It exists every time you make plans for a vacation. Do you ever consider your safety? When traveling within the United States do you ever wonder if you can travel to South Carolina or Alabama because you might not be welcome there? I do. We literally don’t travel South unless it’s directly to a friend or family member.
Have you ever held your breath when a stranger starts admiring your kids and you are not in a totally safe place, and they mention their “Mommy” and you wait for your kids to correct them and say, No this is my Mama, Mommy’s not here. Giving away your secret. I have. I have exhaled in relief when my kids didn’t mention that they have two Mom’s and then later felt a deep sadness that they will have to hide this at other times in their future.
Have you ever left a job because you couldn’t be “out” about your partner? I have.
Have you ever lost clients or customers because of your sexual orientation? I have.
Have you ever been asked about your sexual relations leading up to pregnancy? I have.
Have you ever been unable to marry the person you love due to your genders? I have.
Have you and your partner ever been harassed at bars or in a restaurant by another male who thinks ‘you just need a dick in you both’? We have.
Have you ever had a bible shoved in your face to show you how you’re going to hell? I have. Three times. By three different people.
Have your parents ever called a homeless shelter and told you to go to one, and that you have two hours to pack a bag and get out? My wife has.
Have you ever known some one who has been physically assaulted by their parents when they came out to them? I do. Too many people. Injuries included dislocated joints, broken bones, and black eyes.
The list could go on. Your privilege exists because you have not had to experience any of these things in order to love who you want to love.
Me pointing this out is not “straight hate”. It’s Queer love. My yoga instructor always says, “Sit with the uncomfortable. Move through the uncomfortable.” That’s what I encourage every one to do when examining your privilege. Put away the defensiveness and denial. Acknowledge it exists. Stop perpetuating the idea that it doesn’t. Stop perpetuating the idea that anyone pointing it out spreads hate.
I’ve said it before. I have a homosexual agenda. It’s to show everyone that my marriage and who I love doesn’t define who I am. Who I am defines who I love.
My agenda includes bringing light to an issue that has been stuck in a closet in the dark for far too long.
Straight hate probably exists in some Queers. It doesn’t exist in me. But the knowledge that more hetero’s need to acknowledge their privilege…that does exist. That mission of mine won’t stop.
If that’s not something you can handle…probably read a different blog then.