Just under a week ago I witnessed some of my colleagues speaking in an incredibly homophobic manner. The words weirdos and freaks were used among others. It’s not the first time I’ve heard this kind of language from them and I’m fairly certain it won’t be the last.
I did ask them why they felt that way and the response I got back was a repeat of what I’d already heard, at this point I fell silent and walked away. I felt I couldn’t say any more because I couldn’t cope with the personal attacks that may have followed.
I ranted on Twitter how it upset me and how I’d taken it quite personally. I had some wonderful support from people, a huge thank you to those that did, but I also got some grief for not acting on the incident more.
Let me explain this a little more. I am not ‘out’ as a bisexual person in my real life. Partly this is because I’ve never had a relationship with another woman so don’t feel qualified to label myself. Partly out of fear, scared how people will react to me, family ties that would be broken, friendships that will be lost. I am in a monogamish relationship with Sir so I am invisible too. Some may argue I’ve made my decision to be straight. That is untrue. I miss and really crave being with another woman, it’s not easy to squash my feelings and pretend they don’t exist, in fact as time goes by it becomes harder.
Speaking out and putting these individuals in their place would have probably revealed I’m not just defending people who identify as LGBT+ but that I’m also part of that group. I unfortunately don’t have anyone in the work place to report this behaviour to and multiple requests for meetings with our human resource representatives are yet to be acknowledged. That aside, these comments are coming from people in management, I would be the one pushed out of the door in a time where losing my job is not a viable option.
I’m sorry that I couldn’t do more, I truly am but honestly I don’t know where to turn or how to make this prejudiced behaviour stop.