Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Glee - Prom Night

Prom. Anyone who is anyone goes to prom right? WRONG. Not everyone goes to prom. There could be a hundred reasons why someone may not want go to prom. My reason why I didn’t want to go to prom – well, how was I suppose to go to my high school prom with my girlfriend?

Prom. Finding the right dress for prom is crucial right? WRONG. For me, it was trying to go to prom with my girlfriend and not getting caught by my conservative parents.

Prom. Prom is a safe place for any queer person right? WRONG. I didn’t feel safe when I went to prom with my girlfriend.

Are things ever going to change? Will it one day be ok to be “out” at a young age and not get persecuted and discriminated for being who you are?

Today I saw the Glee Episode of Prom. I cried when I saw the episode. It takes a lot for me to cry. Granted, I have been a bit on the emotional side, but I feel like I probably wasn’t the only one that cried. I actually pictured a good friend of mine, (Nina) crying right next me. I pictured her and probably so many others that saw this episode, crying out of joy for the strength Kurt and Blaine had to take that dance floor and crying for the pain of remembrance of how hard it was to go to prom as who you are. It isn’t fair to know that if you’re queer and going to the prom, you might have consequences to your actions. Funny how being who you are has consequences. For me, my consequences weren’t as bad as Kurt’s, but they were still burdens that I had to bare all because of who I am.

When I went to my high school prom, there were so many things I had to worry about. One out of the many worries was that pesky little issue of a girl going to prom with another girl. Gee, that’s not scary. I remember so clearly the shame and fear I had when I was on that dance floor with my girlfriend. I was so scared that someone was going to come up to us and tell us something horrible. I just kept waiting for that one person to tap me on my shoulder and say how sick we looked together. I was scared that a teacher or Vice Principle was going to tell us to stop dancing together because it was inappropriate. I had the fear of knowing that if something happened to either my girlfriend or I, I wasn’t going to be protected. And the shame that I had for being on that dance floor as I slow danced to a song at my own prom. Then knowing that everyone is looking at you as if you’re some sort of zoo animal on display. And then, feeling everyone’s whispers behind your neck and ears. And don’t even get me started on how the prom photographer arranged us for our picture. I had every right to feel safe and equal at my own prom. But because my relationship was the ONLY same sex relationship in my ENTIRE high school, I guess I could see how my relationship was a zoo creature on display? What was I suppose to do other than having to bare the grunt and push through?

Now, not to minimize my experience, but there are so many others in this nation that have struggled so much with the issue of being queer and going to prom. Just last year in April, the advocate had published an article about a lesbian identified girl who was taking her date to HER prom was sent to a “fake prom.” This “fake prom” consisted in her, her date and 5 other students, with her principal and teachers acting as chaperones.

Why must we conform to the traditional roles of prom and enforce the conservative views of gender identity? Is there not a way to help our youth understand that it is ok to be who you are? Is there a way to show our youth that if someone is different than you, then they are simply different than you? How do we show that this can be a safe

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