Dear Helpline Callers,
I thought for a long time about whether I should write this letter or not. It seemed a little odd to. At the same time, I knew there were things I wanted to say and have you know. And I’ve decided that what I wanted to say to you was more important than my insecurities about how it might be received.
What I want to say is thank you for calling. As odd as that sounds, thank you for calling. I wish you didn’t have to. I wish you weren’t going through what you were to have to call. But you are and you called, so thank you. I’m thanking you for taking the first and hardest step of self-care. I know how extremely difficult it must’ve been to admit to yourself that you needed help, to reach out, and then to admit to someone else those very things and share your problems and arguably your most vulnerable times. It’s not easy. In fact, it’s tremendously tough. It can feel embarrassing to share your secrets, or uncomfortable to do it to a stranger, or awkward because you feel you might be the only one going through what you are, or absolutely any way else. But you did it anyway. You called and I’m so happy and thankful you did because that means you also realised your strength.
I know the fragility and the strength in being the one to call. The fragility comes from human being and to be alive. It comes from living life, being faced with problems, and admitting that you need help from others. We are fragile human beings. But the strength? The strength comes from realising that there is absolutely nothing shameful or embarrassing or wrong about that. It is unquestionably a normal thing to have problems and to need help. Human beings were not meant to live in isolation. We were not meant to navigate life on our own. We were meant to seek company, life around us, to help each other, and live with love.
Regardless of whether you realised your strength or not, you showed it by calling. And I’m so proud of you that you did. I’m so thankful you did. I hope that one day you realise your strength consciously and fully. There is equal strength in needing help from and helping others. There is undeniable strength in being alive, in being human, and in being you.
Whether you believe it or not, you are strong. And I believe in you.
A Letter Per Person
Dear No-Voters (SSM),
Listen, first of all, thank you for reading this. You know, a lot of people who are stuck in their opinions tend to be extremely against reading the other side’s arguments so I really commend and appreciate you for taking the time to read this post. It shows you’re willing to listen and are a little more open-minded than those who share your opinion.
If you’re a yes-voter, well, welcome. Hopefully you agree with what I say, and if you do, please like and share so we get the results this country so desperately needs.
I’ll go back to addressing the No-Voters since that’s whom this letter is dedicated to. I don’t know why you’re against same-sex marriage but put quite bluntly, I honestly don’t need to know for me to tell you it’s not a good enough reason. I hope that my brutal honesty hasn’t made you close this tab. I’ll tell you why your reason, whatever it may be, isn’t good enough to vote no.
Written with help from my Christian, Muslim, and Jewish friends
Let me begin by making clear that it does not matter to me what religion you practice. Whoever you seek help from, pray to, and worship is none of my business. Whichever religious text you abide by is none of my business. Wherever house of worship you visit is none of my business.
With that said, your religion, your god, your holy text, and your leader at your house of worship may be against same-sex marriage but that does not give you a pass to enforce that belief onto others. I understand that many religious followers believe you are doing God’s work by spreading their ideologies, leading you to think religion is a justifiable reason to vote no. But I need you to understand that what you’re actually doing is not God’s work but in fact, playing God. You are playing God by dictating who can love whom, who can be married to whom, who can live their life the way they want, what is wrong and what is right. These are things that only God, in any given religion, has the power, authority and right to do. It does not matter what your God believes or deems is right because only He/God can dictate and impose that belief onto people.
You might disagree with me but you would be wrong because by voting no to same-sex marriage and citing your God as the reason, you are literally restricting people from expressing themselves, preventing them from living their lives, and condemning them for being who they are. But you, in any religion, do not have the right to do that. Only God does. And regardless of what religion you practice, playing God is a sin. It is extremely disrespectful and offensive. It is wrong and put childishly, you’re going to hell or whatever hell-equivalent you believe in.
Now the question is: is it okay to be and vote against same-sex marriage as long as I don’t push that belief onto others?
I can’t force you to vote yes because ultimately that’s up to you. But I will say that by contributing to a choice that condemns people from living their fullest lives and loving whom they want to love, you are still contributing to a group that is playing God. So in the end, you are still using God as an excuse.
Religion is not an excuse to deny all forms of love and life. Your God and religious text are not free passes to control other people’s lives or dictate what is right or wrong. Believing that is devastatingly demeaning and disrespectful to the religion and God you praise.
A Gay Person Was Mean To You
Why is them being gay the only detail you pick on?
Think about how many straight people you’ve met. How many Caucasians do you know? How many men are currently in your life? Women? How many people with black hair do you know? How about tall people? Are there any football fans in your life? Were all these people nice to you?
If someone with any of the attributes I just listed was mean to you, would you be against them and their entire way of life? If your Caucasian friend cancelled on your plans without an explanation or an apology, would you be against all white-people? If a black haired girl who was a fan of football didn’t help you out with something, would you be against everyone with black hair, all women, and anyone who liked football?
I’m going to assume you said no. (If you answered yes, you’re racist, sexist, and just a very hateful person and I encourage some serious self-reflection. Also, you must be very lonely.). So I return to the main issue, if a gay person was mean to you, why is them being gay the only detail you pick on? Was it a man? Then why are you not against all men? Were they tall? Then why aren’t you advocating for shorter doors? Was that person wearing Nike? Then why aren’t you boycotting Nike?
Really take a moment to think about it. Why do you attribute their rudeness, their mean action, to them being gay? Why are you so certain that their sexual preference led them to be rude that you want to punish them by denying their rights?
If you can’t think of a legitimate reason (hint: there aren’t any), you’re just looking to hate. You’re just projecting your hateful nature onto them being gay. So stop. And seriously, if try to argue that no straight person has ever been mean to you, you’re lying. Stop looking for reasons to hate.
Being Gay Is Unnatural
Who are you to say what’s natural and what isn’t? If you think just because there are more straight people than gay people that the former is natural and latter not, you’re very wrong. With this “majority goes” attitude, it would mean being a woman, being blonde, having blue eyes, and living outside of Asia are all unnatural.
Majority does not, has never, and will never mean natural. Majority changes depending on how you group whatever you’re measuring. So if you think you’re not in the minority of some sort of classification, you’re severely mistaken. Furthermore, homosexuality isn’t something you can accurately measure. A person can identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, asexual, and a member of the LGBTQ+ community without coming out and blatantly saying so. Just like a person can be straight without saying, “Hey all, I’m straight.” Plus, a lot of people in the LGBTQ+ community, can’t or are afraid to come out so aren’t included in these inaccurate measurements despite their very certain and important existence.
Also, to put into quick and simple terms, albinism is a rare, minority trait (as far as it’s been measured, and it’s a more accurately measurable trait than homosexuality) in all living things yet any time an albino animal is discovered they’re often seen as adorable, a novelty, and are loved instantaneously. What’s up with that?
I Don’t Want Kids To Be Raised Gay
Straight parents, did your son turn out to be a daughter because he had a mom? Did your daughter turn out to be a son because she had a dad?
Does your sweet baby-girl hate monkeys because she was raised watching The Powerpuff Girls beating up Mojojo every week? Does your strong boy turn into a robot every so often because he grew up watching The Transformers?
Maybe you don’t have kids:
Did you, as a woman, ever wear pants as a kid and see your dad wearing pants too and decide to go after woman just like him? As a man, when you were a kid did see your dad shaking hands with other men as a kid and then go around shaking every boy’s hand because you just couldn’t resist the urge?
Did you, growing up with straight parents, ever get confused as to whether you were supposed to be a woman like your mom or a man like your dad because regardless of your or their gender, they were both human?
Gay people don’t make others gay. Straight people don’t make others straight either. There are plenty of straight parents with gay children, so you can’t argue that those kids were raised one way or another. Gay people might help those who aren’t sure of their identity become surer of it, but they did not determine whatever conclusion they came to. To simplify (to an extreme), it’s kind of like how tall people don’t magically shrink because they hang out with shorter people but often times become aware of how tall they are (but the shorter people did not make them tall).
If you made it this far, thank you. I know how hard it can be to read arguments you don’t agree with so I really respect and appreciate you for taking time to do just that. I hope that maybe I was able to make you reflect on your reasons against same-sex marriage and hopefully, change your mind. If I didn’t address your reasons here, leave it in the comments and I’ll respond with why it’s not a good enough reason to vote no. At the end of the day, voting no, regardless of the reason, is an act that denies another human being’s rights. That is not okay, it never has been and it never will be. I love and stand with the LGBTQ+ community and will always fight for their rights. I hope you will too.
A Letter Per Person
When I think about my career path, there is a specific group of people I want to thank aside from my family and friends. That group is the authors that gave me a boundless childhood. I found my love and talent for writing when I was in fourth grade and have wanted be an author since. That is all thanks to you.
I consider myself extremely lucky that I found what I wanted to be at such a young age when most people my age now are still deciding. Of course, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with being unsure and trying different directions, it’s always so important to keep looking. What I’m saying is, I’m glad that I was able to work on what I love doing as soon as I could: writing. In my late teens, I decided I wanted to use my writing to help people and better the world so I went into a journalism degree instead of English or literature. I don’t regret it. It introduced me to a new world of writing.
But this post isn’t about me; it’s about you, the authors. I owe you all so much for writing those books, telling those stories, whisking me away into those worlds, and giving me those adventures. Without you and your writing, I would’ve never known the joys of reading. The joy of meeting characters so quirky they could exist only in words, the wonders of travelling into fantastical world while not moving an inch, and the crazy idea that maybe I can create such adventures for myself too. You gave my childhood imagination, a world beyond my playground, my school friends, my family. You gave me one world after another, all of which I loved and still love, sometimes even more than the one we are in now.
Authors, you are the reason why I have this blog. You are the reason I was able to grow as a writer and person, why I stuck with writing all through these years, and the reason I want to use it for the better. For the better what? Everything and anything. For the bettering of a child’s imagination, like you did mine, for the bettering of social injustices, for the better of myself, for the better of absolutely any and all. Authors, you have inspired me beyond all the worlds ever written about and will continue to do so with every story you tell. Everything I’ve ever written and will ever write is all in debt to you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
A Letter Per Person
Dear Birthday Well-wishers,
It’s crazy to think that I’m another year older. Every time this day rolls around, without fail, I think about the people in my life. It’s safe to say the best part of my life is the people – past, present, and future.
The most interesting aspects of my birthday this year is that I was wished for three days. Considering I live in one of the earliest time zones, I’m usually the first to wish others on their birthday. But this time around, I had friends living a day behind me wish me a day early, if that wonky string of words makes sense to you. So in their time, they were wishing me two day before my actual birthday. Now I don’t know if that was on purpose or a miscalculation but it made for a prolonged birthday so I’m very thankful! Not to mention, they remembered my birth date without Facebook reminding them! What a true gift!
On my actual birthday, I had an influx of messages on my Facebook wall, in my inbox, and even a few photo posts. How endearing. One of the things I love most about birthday wishes is that you can see the personality behind the person who wrote them and who I am to them. It really doesn’t matter if it’s a one-line wish or a paragraph detailing our childhood shenanigans, they warm my heart because it shows they care.
The day after my birthday all of my friends who live a day behind wished me well! Again, nothing but love. And it showed me just how blessed I am to have so many people who think about me to some capacity, even if it’s just once a year, all across the world. I have a friend to visit in every continent, a place to stay on any trip, and new memories to make wherever and with whomever. It is a blessed feeling.
So my birthday well-wishers, if you’re reading this, thank you so much for reminding me, year after year, how well-loved I am. Without you, growing old wouldn’t be so fun.
A Letter Per Person
Dear Hometown Homies,
Oh, how awkward. I feel a little embarrassed writing something so sentimental but I know you guy need to hear this. You probably know already, friendship can be such a strong, unspoken bond, but I really love you guys. I don’t know what I’d do if I had never met any of you or if we stopped being in each other’s lives.
Seriously, you guys basically raised me. We went through the happy-go-lucky elementary phase to the awkward teenage phase when MSN was life to the best high school years anyone could’ve asked for. Some of you guys moved away and we lost touch but we all somehow found our way back to each other. Even now that we’re continents away for jobs, college, and overall adulthood, our friendship never fails even if we don’t keep in touch and when we go back home it’s like the years apart never happened. We always meet each other halfway, no matter what.
I wouldn’t be who I am today if it weren’t for you guys; and I really, really like me. I owe you all so much for that. Each and every one of you has influenced me in your own individual ways. Whether we bonded at the kindergarten milk-breaks or high school house parties, the flood-resistant fields or IB cram classes, Skype calls or sleepovers, you guys are the place I call home. I could never ask for a better group of people to be in my life because I know y’all are as good as it gets. Let me tell you now, I’ve met a lot of people in my lifetime and befriended many but I have never met a crazier, more comfortable, and loyal bunch like you guys. You guys are the ones I’d pick to jam out to old school hits, the ones for crazy adventures, and definitely the ones to reunite with year after year if we aren’t already living right next door. Hand to heart, y’all are irreplaceable.
I hope you know all of you have an open invitation for whatever event I might have in my life. And I’m always here for you, even if we don’t talk as much, even if we’ve met other people, and even we spend more time and space apart. We’ll grow old together and talk about how far we’ve come. No matter what, you guys are my family. I love you guys so much. Homies? HOMIES!
A Letter Per Person