Figure Out What You Can Do for Queer Youth

1 Oct

The events of the last few weeks have been a wake-up call. Every time I hear about another queer child we’ve lost, my first thought is that I wish I could have been there. What’s sad is that I couldn’t have: I, like many queers I know, have no real connection to the queer youth community. What that means is that any kid in trouble wouldn’t know how to find me– and that is no one’s fault but mine.

The recent queer youth suicides are a tragedy and a crisis. But unfortunately, LGBT youth have long suffered disproportionally high rates of depression and suicide. Countless other tragedies will continue to go unreported if nothing changes.

Queers, are you doing your part as a member of our family? I know I haven’t been. These are our kids and siblings. There are so many organizations out there that could use your help. Support the awesome Trevor Project suicide prevention hotline for queer and questioning youth seeking counseling or fighting depression: 1-866-488-7386. Create a video for Dan Savage’s It Gets Better campaign- or better yet, find a way to tell your story to a kid who really needs to hear it. (NYU students, let’s find a way to reach our local GSAs.)

Straight friends and allies, do your queer friends know you support them no matter what? (Are you sure?) Parents, are you your child’s advocate? Principals and teachers, do your students know that cruelty is intolerable? Those of you who pray, if all of your prayers were suddenly answered tomorrow, would the world change at all for LGBT youth?

Queer kids, you are our family and our future, you are loved, and it does get better.

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