I always thought that if I would deny who I really was and where I came from people would accept me. And I was right. They did accept me, and they liked me for the person I wasn’t. I made a lot of friends and I could see that I made them smile and proud and they all loved me. I had everything they could wish for. That was the moment where I thought that I would rather have something than nothing. It was wrong. I was unhappy with myself because I was living a lie and not only because I’m gay but also because I pretended to be someone I really wasn’t. I know that there are people out there who think it’s easy to grow up in a country like Holland and to be gay. But in fact it’s not. I didn’t even know that lesbians existed! First I thought it was only in my head. I started to ignore the feelings and thoughts that I had through my teenage years. And last year I watched The Real L Word. I thought the phrase “I Choose Me” was lame and stupid but only because I didn’t know what it actually meant and because I was afraid. I was afraid of letting go of what I’ve actually never had and embrace everything I got.
After visiting “Our Fifteen Minutes” things have changed and I still feel that I’m going through changes in my life. I have been talking to women around the world and I’ve learned a lot from each and every one of them. Like Faith, we all know Faith. I mean there is NO WAY that you can sign in on Chatroll without her noticing it. But beside being a jokester she can also be a good listener. And I’m sure I speak for all of us if I say that Faith has added something in everyone’s life. If it’s not advice or a listening ear, then it’s laughter. I remember the first time I talked to Faith. The first question Faith asked me was a shock to me because nobody had asked me that question before. She asked me if I was gay. And because my answer took too long she answered that question for me. And like I said she is a good listener, because the only advice she had for me was as simple as “You have to find yourself a girl because you are SO gay”! That was the first time I started to think about what “I Choose Me” meant to me. It wasn’t about hurting others or pretending to be someone you weren’t, it was about that you decided to have that something rather than nothing on your own way. I’ve lost some of my friends along the way because they decided to choose themselves just like I did. But I can say with pride that I am who I am and that I’m not hiding anymore. “I Choose Me” is a quote to live and die by. It is a quote for everyone. And the greatest thing about “I Choose Me” is that it doesn’t define you as a gay person, it defines you as a strong person who is willing to stand their ground for what they believe in.