Kevin Miller, Asexual
INVOLVEMENTS AT OU:
Brick Street Jugglers and Athens Wargamers
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO BE OUT?:
Being out, for me, is important for visibility. If people don't know any asexual people, then they are far less likely to know about it as an identity or delve into learning about it. The whole of the LGBT community is a voice speaking out for those who are having an important aspect of their character misunderstood or scrutinized by others. Being connected to the LGBT Community helped me become more comfortable and confident about my identity and has been a large step forward towards better understanding myself and others.
WHY ARE YOU PROUD?:
I am proud because of the sense of self-liberation it has brought me. It is a step not only towards acknowledgement by others of my own sexuality but perhaps even an entire community. By being out and proud, I am able to make my best attempt at making what can be a very confusing concept more tangible to others.
WHAT WAS THE MOST DIFFICULT PART ABOUT COMING OUT?:
About Asexuality: What made it most difficult to me was a complete lack of knowledge and, even worse, the dismissal of the entire concept. I repeatedly have to try to relate an identity that people can have a difficult time grasping. It is worse when I relate it as best as I am able to no avail -- it is either lost on people, or they refuse to believe me. People sometimes say that there's something very wrong with me. They tell me that I'm lying to feel better than others or just to get attention. People look at my differences and make me out to be less than human. It can be absolutely heart-wrenching.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO OTHERS WHO COME OUT?:
Do it. It can very well be difficult, but one more person who is out is one more voice for a growing community. It can be a moment of excitement and dread, but in doing so; you will help yourself feel like you're not lying to yourself. Start with good friends, and then move on to family members. But, in the midst of excitement, try to pace yourself. It can be a lot of information for some people to take in. Also, in the end, remember it is another important part of you -- you need not feel uncomfortable being you. You will be one more step towards others feeling comfortable about being themselves.
THOUGHTS FOR NON-LGBT PEOPLE ABOUT LGBT PEOPLE AND CONCERNS:
I ask that they be willing to listen to what the LGBT community and Asexual people have to say. You do not necessarily have to agree with these communies, but at least do us a favor and consider a different point of view. Put yourself in the place of someone in this community. Imagine what it may be like for you or a friend who may be too intimidated to come out. Educating yourself and showing empathy will help immensely with progress. Important issues are being presented, and it will take effort from all sides to have them acknowledged.