TIME Magazine Cover: Laverne Cox
Todo Mejora - Fernanda Garza
Conoce a Fer, chica Regia y una de las colaboradoras de Todo Mejora Mty, pieza clave para traer el proyecto a México.
Tú, como Fer, comparte tu historia, házte visible y comparte tu mensaje de esperanza a jóvenes LGBT. ¡Colabora con un video!
#TodoMejora: @rootobranches 🌈💜 (vía @todomejora_mty)
En ConteXto con Enrique Torre Molina
Activists and journalist, Enrique has been around TV, radio and all kinds of publications in Mexico and abroad. Here’s a new project by Servicio de Agencia, on which Enrique will present a brief of the LGBT highlights of the week from Mexico and around the globe.
Marcha de la Diversidad Monterrey‼️🌈
Reblog this to congratulate Oregon on this amazing news!
Well, little over 3 years ago, I uploaded two videos for the It Gets Better Project, which was conceived by Dan Savage and his husband (then husband-In-Canada-boyfriend-In-America) Terry Miller after a wave of suicides committed by teens and kids who were LGBT or perceived as LGBT were bullied to death. The It Gets Better Project then became a world wide phenomena, having all kinds of people participating (from regular people like me to heads of State like President Barack Obama).
Affiliates around the globe started to emerge and this past weekend, on May 17th, the Mexican affiliate was born.
So, about my two videos, one was made in english and the other in spanish. The english one was the first one to ever been made outside the USA (I was living in Vancouver, Canada at the time). The one in spanish was the first ever made in another language. Both were featured on the Bestseller book of the It Gets Better Project.
So, now that the Mexican affiliate called Todo Mejora Monterrey (as its name suggests, it’s located in the northern city of Monterrey, in Nuevo Leon State, and managed by an organisation called COMAC, which provides assistance to people with HIV and other STDs) just launched, my spanish video is featured on its website and once again I get on the wagon of activism for the LGBT Community, but now in my own country, collaborating with this new affiliate among amazing activists, in one of hardest regions to live as an LGBT. Let’s see how much noise we can make here.
Take a momento to take the pledge on the It Gets Better Project website, and if you’re a Mexican citizen or an ex-pat living in Mexico, LGBT or LGBT-Ally, and you want to contribute with a video, click here.
A video can save lives.
Gay Sex & DF
Brooklyn, Mexico City
By Alex Orue
Last weekend, a cousin of mine invited me out for drinks. He’s Saudi Arabian (a Muslim, that shops like a Jew and swears like a Catholic) and got married with a blood-related cousin almost two years ago, and like most Arabs (and like myself) he’s quite a loud mouth, so we got along just fine. This time, however, was the first we ever went out together, just the two of us. And Arab and a fag, what could possibly go wrong?
Fortunately, nothing went wrong. We went out to Brooklyn, a nice bar & restaurant in the south of Mexico City. As its name suggests, it is very New York. Great food, cool music, fabulous drinks and always crowded, it is almost certain you’ll end up hooking up with beautiful people. As for me, I was quite nervous to make some conversation up with this new relative of mine with whom I seemed to have not much in common.
The truth is, I don’t get nervous very often, specially when meeting new people or when I’m the new guy at the office. I am very easy-going and I always seem to have a conversation opener. Sometimes I talk way too much, but with my new Arab cousin, it seemed that we had to avoid many topics, like religion, politics and sex. We started talking about funny experiences and about his new baby (he and my cousin just had a baby little over a month ago. He’s the cutest thing ever!). We had several beers before he went to the point he’d been trying to ask me about: “What’s it like to be gay?”.
The bar started to get really crowded, thanks in part to a couple of girls that we’re celebrating their birthday and seemed to have invited half the city. As I started to answered, I had to almost scream my lungs out so he could hear, and of course right when I said “… guys know how to please other guys better” the music was turned down a bit and half of the joint hear me loud and clear. I knew this was a hot topic to talk about with him (that, and politics and religion, too, which we eventually ended up talking about, of course) given that he is an Arab and a Muslim. I’ve never pretended to be anything else that I am not in front of him, and he’s always known who I was right from the get-go, but we never really talked about it, why would we? We became real close but he’s never asked me about my dates or if I have a boyfriend… Until now.
I tried my best to explain to him the Born This Way narrative, and the whole Even If I Tried I Can’t Change nature of my attraction to men, but instead of trying to refute any of my arguments, he kept asking questions. The pivotal point of the conversation was when he asked me if I ever wanted to have a family, kids. As of now, I feel like I wouldn’t do it, I’d rather have a partner with whom I can travel the world, but I wouldn’t say never to the idea of having kids, either. But then he went off. He didn’t like my answer.
With the gay thing, we didn’t say much. But when I said I wasn’t so sure that ever want to have kids, he couldn’t accept it. The discussion turned into a must-have-a-family thing, arguing that if you don’t, life as an elder man will be a lonely one, "who’s gonna take care of you once you reach 80?"
He had a point. Usually, that’s the natural order, right?
At first, it seemed to me a very selfish approach to the “having kids” thing, but isn’t it how it always turns at the end? Kids looking after their parents once they’re old? He was just being honest by exposing the natural order of having a family. But I wasn’t so sure if I wanted to have kids, and being a gay man, my options are limited. I do have options, but just a few.
As a new dad, he was glowing with happiness whenever he mentioned his kid. It got me thinking about the wonders of having a child that reflects the very best of you and your partner. And as the night started to fade into the dawn, and as we left Brooklyn, it all moved me to think about the possibilities. Would I ever be any good at being a father?
Often we come across many cases where couples (usually straight ones) seem to be anything but prepared and good at parenthood. Aren’t most kids at orphanages the by-product of messy relationships? Criminals, politicians and drug addicts have kids. Could I possibly suck at it more than any of them? (That’s putting the bar a little low, right?)
My doubts about becoming a father aren’t really much about fears of being any good at it, although is part of it, but to me since I was kids it seemed that it could be an inconvenient for my plans: traveling. I’ve always wanted to travel around the world, and maybe settle down in some exotic place in my 40’s (go and try to figure out what exotic means considering I am Latino). But I guess it all comes down to see if the person I choose to be with is worthy enough to start a family, whatever the option we choose to get one. If something Dan Savage has taught me (and he has taught me a lot of things) is that being gay ain’t a limitation to your plans, whether it includes having kids or not, if anything it helps you shape your plans in a very organised way, a luxury that most straight people don’t get to experience.
This whole week I’ve been spending more time with my father at his place in the northern suburbs of Mexico City, where I grew up, in a little area called Ojo de Agua. I haven’t spent this much time with him since my parents got divorced almost ten years ago. I think we are both trying to get along and have fun together, and it’s really working. When I came out back when I was 19, he didn’t took it very well but he didn’t disowned me, either. He’s really come around and now we even talk about my dates. And as I thought my relationship with him couldn’t get any better, a few days ago he said to me “you’d be a great dad. I truly hope you don’t miss out on that experience cause you’d be a better dad than I am”.
I guess the validation from him really struck me into being open minded about my future. I’ve always been the cool uncle to all my little nephews and they all respect me a lot, sometimes even more than their own parents, but to be the responsible for the welfare of a human being it’s a whole other story. But just maybe…
Right before we left Brooklyn, my Arab cousin wanted to be convinced he had talked to me into be a father but he approached it with the idea of me having kids with a woman, to do it as Allah intended. That’s when I knew that he also wanted to talked to me into behave as straight. And as I argued that I could never act against my nature, that I wanted to be happy, he kept on saying that happiness can’t be a priority over doing what we ought to do in life. He didn’t sound so happy about his life after all.
Sacrifice? To be miserable and lie to yourself and others so you can be taken care of as you get old? Bullshit.
That’s the problem with religious people, they think this life is for suffering and making sacrifices so you could earn a piece of heaven. I don’t know if God and heaven exists, I’m glad there’s no proof about it cause it’d be a hell of life to please such a selfish and bipolar God. All I know is that what I have now is all I got, so why not be true to yourself and be happy by being good to one another, right?
I guess his background and religion won’t allow him to fully understand where I come from, who I am and what I’ve gone through to be an openly gay man (let lone what that means in this society). When I came out, I never really felt any rejection from anyone, not from friends nor from my family. I was at the hospital when his son was born and I’ve kept our relationship close because I wanna be there for my nephew, but I can’t help but wonder: will the family bond be strong enough to get pass over our differences? Or will I eventually lose loved ones along my journey, whether it includes me having kids or not?
It seems like the coming out process never ends.
Show your support for the #LGBT Community in #Russia on gayforsochi.com (CC: @Sochi2014 @Olympics)
Gay Sex & DF
WhatsApp, The New Post-It
By Alex Orue
I miss the days when meeting at a coffee shop was the regular thing for discussing, and hopefully fixing relationship issues. And by saying that I might sound like I was dating back in the 80’s or 90’s, but I’m only 23 years old, so I was only part of that habit for a short while. Text messages had been already replacing the Post-It messages back when I started dating, but many would still have the decency of meeting people to talk. But now on the iPhone-era, that’s all behind us. What ever happened with facing each other?
I’m not talking about my current situation (just clarifying, you know), but it has been definitely my experience in the past and it is the current situation for many I know, either because it’s their few resources while in a long distance relationship (but hey, Skype does exist, you know?) or because leaving a message on WhatsApp is easier than seen each other’s reactions to the issue on hand. The second one is the one that bothers me the most.
Remember when Burger broke up with Carrie (on HBO’s Sex & The City) on a Post-It? Well, may be now that doesn’t happen through Post-Its anymore, cause it’s too risky, right? You could run into the soon-to-be-dumped-partner while trying to leave the note where you know they can find it, so definitely this wonderful messaging app has given a twist to all relationships nowadays.
This thing of giving breaking news through a text (this also can apply to Facebook) has done nothing but harm to relationships. This really provides the perfect environment to the so called “fade away” trick. You know? The art of dumping people by disappearing from anyone’s social radar? Well, WhatsApp has been quite an accomplice. How many of us have gotten a “this is not working” message while at work? It messes up your whole day. It makes you lose your appetite and makes you mad you can’t do anything about it until you see that son of a bitch. But the tricky part is to see if he will give you the chance to have “the talk” you need for a break up.
It doesn’t matter if you agree with the idea that things might not be working. If someone takes the chance to get closure away, you end up prolonging the mourning and anger period for “what might’ve been”. And that’s never fair.
In the information-era, either we adapt or die. Now that we seem to be more connected than ever, in reality we’re more detached from what others might feel, need or want. We’ve become more selfish by only caring about our own safety, leaving behind taking chances on others.
Is it really more safe to only use these channels to communicate important matters? Caring about hurting susceptibilities seems to be a thing of the past, but I can’t help but wonder: By playing the same game, do we really have any shot at finding and keeping a worthy potential spouse?
Gay Sex & DF
A Brick At A Time
By Alex Orue
I have a talent. I can screw things up by not even trying.
In the last couple of post I published, I’ve talked about my current relationship and how I feel things are going. But this time I won’t talk about it directly. I’m gonna make a little introspection so I can get my head around the kind of life I’ve had so far. Which has been awesome, I’m not complaining, but in a nutshell this will show why am I where I am now. How I got here.
I came out as a gay man back in the summer of 2010. I was living in Vancouver back then. By the time I made it official, I had already gone out with guys and explored the waters a bit (well, maybe more than a bit). Got to date some amazing lovers and some others were douches. I’ve had my share, believe me.
Since I started my love life as a gay man in a very liberal city, it’s only natural that things to me come as different as it may for others, specially for those who come from more conservative places (to whom it may fit the description). This is the first time I’m dating someone from my same cultural background (well, almost the same), and given that I’m use to being in a different kind of relationships, the classical dating process it’s quite new to me. You may call me a man-hore or whatever, I don’t care. I’ve lived my sexuality as free as I have been able to, always taking care of my persona. I won’t apologise for that.
My past relationships are fond memories. I’ve learned and grew a lot with each and everyone of them. Have I endured in any one of them in a long term? Only once (a year and two months). I endured that long because things grew naturally between my boyfriend and I. A very organic relationship. I long for something like that.
Of course every relationship is different. Everyone of us is different. And even us, we can be quite different in each relationship we have throughout our lives. But how do we keep the essence of our persona alive in each one of them? What is the common denominator that all our spouses love about us? Or do each one of them find something different in us?
All I know is that I tend to be the common denominator in all my past relationships, screwing things up, eventually forcing me to terminate things before I hurt them more than I can mend. It has never been something serious (I’ve never cheated, for instance). It’s always the little stupid things that make everything complicated. May be I quit too easily in my personal life. At work, I don’t rest until I finish something. But in a relationship, I guess I get too scared of feeling stuff too soon and unconsciously I end up sabotaging it all. Always safe, always a bachelor (for a little while, thou).
But now I’ve come to realise that I do want to go beyond my comfort zone. If this relationship works out, fine. Great. If not, I know I’ll keep looking.
From possessive relationships, to open ones. From going out with closeted cases, to dating gay activists. From Kiwis to Italians. From sex-buddies to a civil union. I’ve been there. But somehow all I’ve learned has been to protect myself, even when there’s no treat.
My latest mistake, not telling I write on this blog about my life, including my relationships. Did I break a privacy rule? Definitely. Omitting is lying. And when I’m busted, I’m busted. I feel bad I didn’t mention it before, but I’m not apologising for writing per se. Doing this gives me perspective on my problems, which seem to get bigger and bigger when they really ain’t that of a big deal. This allows me to step back for a bit and see things with a better view. This is my therapy.
I will continue to do this, not hoping someone out there will read it, but rather to continue doing what I feel comes natural to me: writing.
Whether this chapter goes on or I turn the page to another one, I’m sure of one thing: I will take the best of this relationship with me.
Dating is always messy, specially if you’ve build a wall around you. That speaks about insecurities, and I’m well aware what they are but not so sure about how to handle them (see why a wall comes in in handy?). I guess “Trust” is still a working process, but I can’t help but wonder: which side of the wall should start to take a brick off at a time?
Gay Sex & DF
The Sound Of Silence
By Alex Orue
It’s been two days since I saw the guy I’m dating (I refuse to call him my “boyfriend” since we both agreed to take things slow). I’m not sure if that must bother me or not. We’ve been texting each other but I’m not sure that’s enough. Here’s the thing, if I don’t frequent the person or thing that I’m interested in, I start to don’t give a fuck.
And I think that process is just starting…
And I really don’t want that to happen. Although there’s some issues between us (an image to clean on my side, for instance), I can truly say that there’s some potential to this relationship. And Valentine’s Day is coming up and it’s just almost impossible to get around that day as a single gay.
I’m not using him to just spend Valentine’s with him. Notice that I first talked about the potential this relationship has? :P
There are a couple of events that took place today that may change the dynamics for a while: I’m going to the gym now, and the just quit his job. Let me explain.
I’ve never been a sports/exercise kind of guy. Ever. But since I’m consulting this gym franchise on social responsibility and social media, they’re giving me the chance to work out there and take the classes they offer, which are all high quality. I’m loving it. And since I’m really skinny, I think this will allow me to build up some needed-muscle and of course will help to my self-confidence (not that I need more, of course). But naturally, there’s always hot guys walking around in short shorts and thigh tank tops (let alone walking around naked in the showers and sauna. Yes, there’s a sauna, too!) and I’m only human. And remember I mentioned that Ralph and I are taking things slow? Well, that includes sex.
Temptation is at the order of the day, now. Specially with the new Krav Maga instructor (Gosh, he’s gorgeous!).
On the other hand, he just quit his job. I support his reasons, who am I to judge? He got sick and tired of working under this repressed Power Lesbian that only busted his balls every change she got. But now that he’s looking for other options, well, let’s say that who has the money dictates the mood. I’m not bothered by the idea of invite him out most of the time (gotta be conscious that he has to save money in the meantime). But at this point of the dating process it just seems like somehow it’s gonna be something to worry about, meaning, whenever we find ourselves without a job, we lose purpose, direction, whatever. He’s quite independent and I think he already found his calling (he’s a human rights lawyer), but unfortunately that’s a career that it’s not so well paid, and there’s not much of a demand (not that there’s no need for human rights lawyers, God knows we need them, specially in Mexico). I just hope he finds a job that covers his expectations. Soon.
These two things haven’t been talked at all. Not that I haven’t meant to talk about it, but rather I haven’t seen him in two days, and honestly, the text messages’ thing doesn’t really appeal to me. I rather talk things to peoples’ faces. I need to see him to know how I feel. I want to see him but all I get is static.
Sometimes I think that silence is the worse thing there is. I can’t stand not knowing or not understanding, or not receiving any signal. That only drives me crazy and makes me start to think about things that aren’t even happening. I start imagining really bad scenarios, which most of the time are totally wrong.
And to make things worse, his parents were suppose to arrive to his place this weekend, but it turns out there arrive tonight. Good for him, he hasn’t seen them in a while and they don’t come to town that often. But it looks like it’ll have to be until next week when we can meet…
Static for more than a week.
I know we were suppose to take things slow, but I can’t help but wonder: is the static between us the space we need or is it gonna drive us apart?