Straight. Bisexual. Lesbian. It’s been an unasked, asked question since I arrived in West Hollywood almost 20 years ago.
When I came to work at La Fuente, a drug and alcohol rehab center, I was surprised by the assumptions and comments made by people in and out of my community. Here at La Fuente, I am able to be a Light and hold space for people who are transitioning, questioning, or not. I get to celebrate and lift those who, like me, have been marginalized, misunderstood and tossed aside. I get to be on the front lines of addiction and help people find recovery as I have.
So it’s been a struggle at times to not clap back at people who want to be accepted for who they are but question or judge or just won’t accept me for who I am. Especially in my own community, even among colleagues. I am a queer woman of color. It is an energy, not a gender that I am attracted to. And when I married a him. . . well people patted me on the back and thanked me for being such a strong ally TO MY OWN PEOPLE. I’ve been told that I’m either in the closet and haven’t made the leap or been dismissed as not being a part of my community because I chose a him.
For the most part, I just want to identify as a human being here to love and to be loved. But for the purposes of connection, I have found peace identifying as a queer woman. A queer woman who has spent the majority of her life-fighting stereotypes. Fighting inequality. Fighting for the rights of others to be seen as who they are, yet to this day, I’m still having to fight to be seen as who I am.
Written by: Christina Simos – Program Director La Fuente Hollywood Treatment Center
Image credit: ivanovgood at Pixabay