Violet - Rainbow Touchstones
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[00:00:00] This program is brought to you by pride in zero.com. When I was nine, I remember my father saying to me, he may not be living with us much longer. And I said, Why is there and he said, Your mother and I disagree on things. She thinks it gave me a nice. And I asked, What's that? I don't understand. And he said, mean who love other mean? But didn't Jesus say we should love each other? I asked. No, no, not like that means kiss each other. [00:00:34] And I was like, [00:00:35] oh, and that was my introduction to homosexuality. My depression started up when I was about 11. I was ruthlessly bullied at school, there was something about me that didn't quite fit. Because I spoke clearly, they would come up to me and say, Are you English, and then pretty soon it turned into you gay. It was my first experience of people pointing the finger. My mother really tried to be there for me. But there was so much stuff that I couldn't actually say to her because I felt confused and didn't know what kind of response I was going to get. When I was 12, I started having my first sexual dreams. They were of me wrestling with my friends. And I'm waking up think, oh, that's wrong. But it was something deep within me that I had no control over. I guess my relationship to gayness had moved significantly since my father first mentioned it, I'd gone from, I can't see what's wrong with it, to feeling deeply worried and anxious and ashamed about what was going on inside my head. And then in six education class at intermediate, the local health nurse talked about with dreams. She said, sometimes you might even dream about having sex with your male friends. This doesn't mean you're gay. [00:02:05] It's just a normal part of growing up. [00:02:08] And I just remember this incredible sense of relief. Oh, I'm not gay. [00:02:15] But those types of dreams kept happening. [00:02:19] So I became increasingly homophobic over my high school years. I suppose that was active repression, fighting the homosexual thoughts in my mind. I started smoking cannabis, always felt anxious. And I found it very hard to go to school. At the same time, I began to take part in workshops run by my church, [00:02:41] a big part of those was about examining [00:02:44] yourself. And I think I was starting to see the critics. I was sort of living two lives, there was a part of me that sort of tear away loose cannon, self destructive person who was really miserable, and had suicidal thoughts on a daily basis. And then there was a part of me that needed to maintain an appearance of kindness and sanity by being this amazingly responsible person who the church group loved and adored. So after leaving school, I held down a few jobs before going on to the unemployment benefit. And then because of my depression, I moved on to the sickness benefit. For two years, my doctor kept signing off my benefits until one day she said, things need to change because you're not getting better. I was 21. When I agreed with her that I needed medication to help stabilize my moods. I'd stopped doing drugs and drink a couple of years before and was really anti medication. But the doctor gently convinced me into trying a very low dose of antidepressants. That had a profound effect on me. Within days, my anxiety about things come down. And I could start looking at my self again, part of the mid stage was to take away the bumps and depths, so that I could start learning how to manage my emotions in a healthier way. I went to an out gay counselor who gave me the opportunity to talk about what I was experiencing. The more I talked about it and acknowledged it, the more Okay, I felt about being me. I think ultimately, my mental state was because I had been repressing myself for so long. I spent years beating myself up and beating parts of me into a corner. It took quite some time for things to come right out a couple of relapses and major crashes along the way. And even now, there are still times I get unhappy. But I now know that I have the ability to take command of it and make it past before it gets into more serious depression. A big part of my story is about being true to myself. developing a sense of pride and stepping beyond my fears
This page features computer generated text of the source audio - it is not a transcript. The Artificial Intelligence Text is provided to help users when searching for keywords or phrases. The text has not been manually checked for accuracy against the original audio and will contain many errors.