How do deal with the anxiety of possibly being targeted in a hate crime when out in public as a member of the LGBTQ community?
Last Updated: 09/30/2019 at 12:09pm
Anna Pavia, psicologa psychologist counselor
Licensed Professional Counselor
I feel my work as my personal mission and I love it. My work with clients is nonjudgmental, supportive. I am a very good listener. I use several approaches. Amo il mio lavoro.
Top Rated Answers
As someone who identifies as queer, I know what it's like to be anxious about the possibility of being targeted if, for example, you're holding the hand of someone of the same gender while walking down the street. It can be nerve wracking! You end up spending more time worrying about what people might think of you than you do enjoying yourself while you're out and about. On the bright side, however, the likelihood of being targeted in a hate crime is significantly lower than you might think. When I'm nervous, I try my best to think about who I am as a person, and about how I am not ashamed of being who I am, and I remind myself that hardly anyone in that particular public setting cares about me at all, just like I don't care about them. The worst that usually happens is that you might have someone make a face at you or cross the street to avoid you. You'll be alright!
Support is very important in these cases. If you feel anxious, you can try to surround yourself with people that make you feel safer in contexts where you don't feel comfortable. And you can make sure that someone always knows where you are and you can easily get in contact with them om case of need. This can make you feel safer. It's normal to be scared, though I know it's frustrating, but support can make you stronger. You're not alone!
I would suggest seeking professional help with this issue from a certified and trained counselor or mental health professional.
You can stay huddled in a corner for your whole life but will miss out on a great deal. We have to be brave, no matter the consequences, because there is nothing greater in the world than being who you are and loving who you love. Start by going out in public to areas that you know are safe spaces for LGBTQ folks, then broaden your circle a little more every time you go out. Take a buddy as "security". Talk to your friends and family (if you are out to them) about your fears and what they can do to help you combat these fears.
I'm dealing with this problem myself. I personally find it much easier to leave the house with somebody so I'm not alone. Over time though you will realise that out in public most people simply don't care about what you're wearing or what you look like.
People will always hate and resent things that are foreign to them. But always remember you have human rights. It does not matter what sexuality you are in at the end you are human just like all of them and you have your rights.
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