The pressures of being a teen these days are enormous. The amount of work needed for good grades as well as a balanced social life can seem completely overwhelming. Imagine then, being a gay teen in a world of little to no acceptance. Not only are you pressured to be something you’re not, you’re hated for what you are. I can’t imagine going to school every day only to be met with harsh words and actions. To be constantly bullied is harmful, and sometimes people just need a place where they know they’re accepted.
That’s why I’m so glad my school and many schools around the country have the GSA (Gay Straight Alliance) club. The GSA is basically a place where gay teens and those who love and support them can meet and discuss their feelings. My school’s GSA serves as a safe-haven for the constantly bullied gay teens at my school.
The GSA participates in related events and causes such as the Aids Walk and the Day of Silence. The Day of Silence is just that, a day where a student willingly chooses to not speak in order to bring attention to the bullying and harassment of LGBT students. So far my school has successfully participated in this event without harassment or inconveniences.
Our GSA meets every other Wednesday. We have a president, a vice-president, a treasurer, and many other titles like any other club at school. Each meeting we have a few minutes devoted to allowing students, even those who are straight, to speak openly about harassment they’ve seen or experienced. We then discuss how it made them feel, and provide suggestions on what to do or how to act in situations where they or someone else is being harassed. To know that there’s a group of accepting, loving people to listen to you is one of the best things for a bullied teen. We take pride in our tolerance and acceptance of others, and we devote our time to listening to bullied teens who just need to be heard.
I’m extremely proud to be apart of a group of people who are so caring and accepting of others. I hope that we’ll be able to be that supportive family gay teens need in their daily lives. For in a world of intolerance and bullying, sometimes we all need a safe haven. I believe the GSA helps create a safer, more accepting school environment for struggling teens, as well as to help them know they aren’t alone.