What is normal?
Imagine that all humans were produced on a production line of various human production factories around the world. Would all of the non-heterosexuals just be plucked right off the conveyor belt and tossed into a pile labeled defects?
Most of us, gay or not, are raised to believe that non-heterosexuals are some sort of alternate human design (the design without the standard human feature known as heterosexuality). And this design is considered a deviation from the “normal” human design, which suggests that non-heterosexuals are defective. Or worse yet, NOT NORMAL. As far as I can tell, normal is actually a self-appointed status. Not surprisingly, there are many self-appointed-”normal” people with whom my views differ. It doesn’t matter that I think these folks are not my kind of normal because they get to define for themselves what normal is. Furthermore, these self-appointed representatives of normal are not looking for the approval of non-heterosexuals for their beliefs anyway! Imagine that – they don’t care what I think. What a novel idea.
Imagine that one day something unexpected happens in this pile of defective humans. One brave defective human being stands up, brushing herself off, and she climbs back up on that conveyor belt. She doesn’t ask. She doesn’t sneak. And she doesn’t force her way there either. She stands up confidently, moves toward the production belt, and steps back on with grace and dignity.
After all, is it really normal to pretend we are something we are not? Are we really defective, or are we just acting like it because others decided we are?
Upon seeing this brave woman reenter the world of humans with such confidence and pride, others begin to follow suit.
Is it normal to silence our truth so that other’s are not uncomfortable by the reality of who we are? Is it normal to pretend that who we love is really not an important part of who we are?
After hundreds of thousands of men and women begin brushing themselves off and steadily placing themselves back on the conveyor belt of life, the powers that be begin to realize what is happening, and in a moment of brilliance they decide, “We need these humans on the production line with the others.” Realizing, “While they are different than we had expected, it turns out there’s nothing functionally wrong with them, and because there are so many of them – they too can find happiness and joy in this life by partnering with each other!”
This brilliant discovery propels this production company into the highest tech, most elite human production company around – with human production rates at least 10% greater than their competitors. Before long, other production companies catch on, and soon, what once was considered a defect, is now embraced as business as usual. All because of one brave woman who stood up, brushed herself off, and entered the conveyor belt of life with confidence, grace, and dignity. To the extent that we believe we are not “normal,” we are not. To the extent that we believe we ARE ”normal,” we are. No one else can determine this for us, they can only determine for themselves what is normal and then project it to the world around them. Our sense of normalcy, of wholeness and self-respect, is a function of how we see ourselves, not how others see us.
Our feelings of self-worth and self-confidence grow from deep inside us where our truth resides.
We can not strengthen our feelings of self-worth by pandering to another’s truth. We will instead strengthen their self-worth at our expense! We must find our own truth, whatever that is, however that looks, and we will be strengthened by the expression of this truth.
If you do not believe you are normal, who is going to? If you do not believe your relationship is normal, who is going to? If you apologize for who you are, what you are, and the relationship you are in, who is going to view it as something deserving of respect and support? We’ve got to first take responsibility for how we treat our own relationship and figure out how to improve ourselves before turning our lens to others and holding them responsible for how we feel about ourselves.
Now brush yourself off and get back on that conveyor belt of life where you belong!