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I’m not talking about Lady Gaga’s little monsters fandom, I’m talking about the huge ugly monster who keeps dragging members of the LGBTQ+ community out of the closet yelling “GAY!”, “homo,” “tomboy,” “shibams,” or “bakla” when issues arise. Really? It’s the 21st century, you should know by now that sexual orientation and gender identity has nothing to do with personality or even with someone’s mood. Sure, maybe that Tony Labrusca incident made you angry, but that doesn’t give you the right to question his sexuality or out him. His sexuality had nothing to do with his actions. #DictionaryTime Look up: Ad hominem

You’re NOT a doorman.

You have an amazing gaydar is it? So what? If anyone wants to be out, you will be presented with that information. If they don’t want to be out, stop dragging them out. Even if you witness them with the same sex or you find out they are transgender, stop opening that closet door for them. They’ll come out when they want to.

It’s NONE of your business.

If you’re one of the many people who don’t like talking about their sex life in details and in public, it’s the same for members of the LGBTQ+ community. We don’t need to tell you who we sleep with and how we do it. Wait for it, we might actually volunteer this information.

If you have your own pace, we have ours too.

Finding out who you are and that you’re different from the socially constructed norm is scary and confusing, but it doesn’t mean we’re trying to fool anyone. It will take anyone days, months, or even years before they could actually be comfortable [believing] who they are, much more accepting.

It’s not a joke.

Calling people “gay” or “homo” and making jokes about their sexuality based on what you have “witnessed” as their behavior doesn’t make you funny. It just makes you a homophobe and a prejudice. It’s not funny at all.

Coming out is NOT for the benefit of this society, it’s NOT an invitation NOR is it a warning sign for you, dear.

Coming out for most LGBTQ+ people is for their own benefit. Sometimes we need to say it out loud so we can hear ourselves accept who we are. We’re not out to get you. We’re not going to convert you. Here’s an advice: If you’re secure with your sexuality and/or gender, no matter how one person twists and turns this earth, you will not give in to their flirtations. You will actually need some level of attraction for that sort of thing.

There are DANGERS in outing someone.

You have no idea what could be waiting for them at home when their parents find out the truth. Plus, the backlash of bullying, violence and sexual harassment one member of the LGBTQ+ community would have to endure because of this information about them. If they aren’t prepared to be out, they might suffer these “consequences” society have made ready for them. This might lead to mental health disorders or suicide.

And here’s a special one to the LGBTQ+ community: Set an example. Protect our community and our members. Not because you’re part of the LGBTQ+ community means you have some kind of special privilege to out anyone. You know how hard it is, you’re not doing anyone a favor. Don’t give others license to mock our community by being the firestarter.

Slac Cayamanda is an out and proud transgender man. He is a performance poet. A transgender life advocate. Communications Officer to Pioneer Filipino Transgender-Men Movement (PFTM).

Illustration by Madel Crudo

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