It's about time.

Hello everyone, and welcome to the Haus of Rhi!
Today we're joining in on a blog hop that's raising awareness about a very important subject.

Today we're all dedicating blogspace in recognition of the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. And Haus of Rhi is joining in. This week I'll be giving away an ebook copy of "Blacker Than Black." Leave a meaningful comment on this post with a valid email address before midnight on May 27th to enter the drawing. Each comment will be counted as a separate entry (so if you leave more than one comment, each one will be a separate drawing entry). One winner will be selected via randomizer and announced here at Haus of Rhi on May 28th.

It's about time.
It's about losing the labels that discriminate and delineate.
It's about accepting that not everyone's identity will fall neatly within the definitions you create in your unique perspective.
It's about realizing that you have the right to not align with someone else's definitions.
It's about acknowledging that the boxes are illusions, that they don't exist. Just because everyone once believed the Earth was the center of the universe, or that the Earth was flat, didn't make it so. Our abnormally spherical planet continued orbiting the sun as it always has despite the proliferation and power of their belief.

Nobody--not the patriarchy, nor the feminists or even the misogynists and misandrists; not the homophobics nor the transphobics or even the cisphobes and heterophobes; not the male identifying individuals nor the female identifying individuals or even the non-binary identifying people--nobody has the right or privilege to dictate how you should see yourself.

Nobody has the right to attack you for how you see yourself, whatever your self defining labels might be.
Nobody has the right to classify you with their personal definitions. Nobody has the right to reject your self perceptions. Nobody has the right to clobber you with biologically determined veto power. It's a thing they'll try but it doesn't exist and holds no power over you.

Acceptance. Acknowledging that others are different from you and they've a right to be, and don't deserve your hatred because of it. Acknowledging that others are not less than you, nor are you less than them, simply because of those differences. Acknowledging that others should not be treated differently just because of the differences that exist--nor should you.
Tolerance. It's a thing, and there needs to be more of it.
It's about time.

How do you balance your freedom to define yourself against the recognition that another's definitions will not match yours? Have you ever felt like that difference created a disconnect? Has it ever led you to revisit your own definitions or redefine yourself in some way? Do you think it was a positive or negative influence?


  1. Thank you for taking part in the hop!

    In order to combat hatred, we must spread love. Educate others, bring awareness, because every person who has their mind opened is one person closer to a world where homophobia and transphobia doesn’t exist.

  2. Thank you for taking part in the hop! i have had learning disabilities all my life and thru a wonderful therapist who worked with me as a child i learn to be true to myself first and foremost that to be different IS normal, and to accept differences in all people

  3. I have all your books already so please don't enter me in the contest. I just wanted to express that I enjoyed your post and the timely reminder in it.

  4. @Kimberly You're very right; only with a combination of awareness, education, and most importantly, love, can we as a global community move forward into a place where hatred and inequity cease to exist.

    @Laurie Thank you for sharing your perspective and personal experience. Perpetuating the concepts of acceptance and tolerance encompasses so much more than homophobia and transphobia. It's about combating fear and ignorance and hatred everywhere. While it seems daunting, a little enlightenment can go a long way.

    @Sophia Thank you for stopping by! :)

  5. Seeing each other as individuals--that's the secret!


  6. This powerful post made we want to get up and holla! No one has the right to tell others how to live. Now, we have to make it illegal for people to impose their narrow "values" on others. Thank you!
    brendurbanist @gmail. com

  7. Rhi,

    It is sad that it is 2013 and our community is still having to fight for equality and against discrimination. It makes me think of how women had to fight for the right to vote and the civil rights movement. One day, we will be able to look back in history and see our community's struggle in the same light as those others who battled before us. I just hope that I am alive when that day comes!

    Thanks for being part of this hop that continues to grow every year.

    bcothernbooks AT gmail DOT com

  8. Thank you for the post and hop.

  9. Thanks for the wonderful post. Very poetic. I spent so many years being bullied, which led to me feeling ashamed of who I was. I've only recently started to accept who I am as a person is not going to always be what others want. But I've come to the conclusion that you can't make everyone happy, and that I need to make myself happy before I can make anyone else happy. Thanks so much for participating!


  10. You raise some interesting points about the negative impact of labels, and ask if "definitions" - self-definition vs. other people's definitions - have influenced us positively or negatively. During my childhood and into my young adulthood, those definitions matched. I assumed, because everyone else assumed, that I was a straight man, despite evidence to the contrary. Some of that evidence was buried pretty deep in my head - my attraction to men - and rationalized as a phase I would grow out of. That's a pretty common story, I think.

    When I came out as gay, there were some definitions that challenged me both outside of and within the LGBT community. The most absurd one that I often talk about is a female, heterosexual friend who suddenly believed I should help her with her hairstyling and make-up because, well, all gay men know how to do that (she would have been in big trouble if we had given that a try!). As I met other gay men, I was challenged by the expectation that I should be catty and flamboyant. Now, I think flamboyance is just fine and catty -- or at least campy humor is something that I appreciate too when it's not mean-spirited. But that's not my personality. Acknowledging my gayness didn't change that I tend to be an introverted lad, with dry humor rather than camp. I can't say that this conflict in expectations created a major crisis for me. I found pretty easily people who accept me for who I am. But your post made me reflect on these experiences, and I appreciate that!

  11. Thank you for the post.

    peggy1984 at live dot com

  12. Thank you for taking part in the hop!
    sstrode at scrtc dot com


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