LGBT folks call each other family. This is because we often lose our blood relatives when we come out. This leaves a wound that even a chosen family won’t entirely heal. We search for affirmations that we are lovable and worthy of acceptance.

It wasn’t until recently that I understood why having a chosen family is preferable at times, if not all the time. While the love of our family is always going to be in the back of our mind, a chosen family only sees the new you. Your old identity and shortcomings are knicks, scratches, and dents in a beautiful treasure…highly valuable petina. They don’t remind you that at one point you weren’t well put together. They don’t care that at one point you held a gun to your head or swallowed poison. They don’t think your a flip flopper because you tried every religion in the book, in one week.

They don’t care about the time when you were 16 and hit on one of your friends and got rejected then tried to pretend it was only a joke. Even though you both knew when you sank to your knees you were completely serious. They think its funny when you tell them you were terrified of Chucky, pee’d the bed a little to late in life, had earaches that hurt so bad you couldn’t think.

No, your chosen family doesn’t give a shit about your past and you don’t care about theirs, except to listen to it lovingly while they emotionally bleed just a little.

But your blood relatives though, oh…they remember everything. Reinventing yourself with them is impossible, especially when they simply don’t believe in you. To them you’ll always be this that, never were good at such and such. Even when you do overcome the stigmas of their beliefs, then your just a fraud. Faking some new phase.

I got news for all my peeps out there, Jesus talked about this 2000 plus years ago, this isnt anything new. You can reinvent yourself right this minute and never look back because there are those of us out there who only see how bright you shine.

There are folks like me who see your past as a the past. Baby, its done and it wasn’t nothing but phase, to get over. Now, were over it honey, talk about it all you want. Go ahead, reminisce and remember the embarrassment or anger or whatever, but all I see is you, right here right now and I promise, that’s all I’m ever gonna see.

To them, your unstable.
To me, your finding you and I’d be honored to help.

Doesn’t matter if your gay, straight, cis or noncis. I got you.

With Love
Jeff Utnage