two syllables that make any queer kid in-or-out of the closet feel nothing less than
unequal to the rest of society who feels comfortable in their own cisgender skin,
who feel safe walking down the street holding their partner's hand just because
they have different genitals.
i was sitting with my friends in the gym we were talking about the curriculum when
"shut up Faggot."
it was my best friend at the time, red hair.
red hair who forced me to come out to her, which by the way, is not something you
red hair who told me she didn't care whether or not i was gay or straight or anything
else that fit under the giant rainbow of terms we classify as LGBTQ+.
red hair who was truthfully, the first person to accept me for being who I was,
the first person to make me feel more normal than ever.
red hair, who was also the first person to call me that.
my content expression dropped as i looked up to see her's morph
into a shocked, apologetic one.
i quickly covered up my vulnerability with a fake smile and it's cousin, the nervous
she opened her mouth but let no words come out before Goldilocks jumped in with
her own opinion on a subject she knew far too little about.
"it doesn't bother her, she's laughing. isn't that right, Faggot?"
well no, you see? that's not right.
because for the next week or so i sat up at night thinking about whether or not there
was any significance to my existance in the first place.
after all, there's so many people out there who are against homosexuality, and me
existing was just another inconvenience to the so-called 'straight pride'
that they didn't need.
and no, it's not right that for the next month i bit my tounge everytime Goldilocks
continously used that word to describe me as if it were as meaningless as any of
the other playround insults we all threw at eachother were.
and no, it's not right that when i finally stood up to her and told her to
SHUT THE FUCK UP
that i get punished for it, and she walks away with nothing after making me fear her
presence because how much i feared hearing the word that made me feel
so fucking worthless.
and no, it's not right that by trying to help myself, i lost those friends.
i lost Goldilocks.
i lost red hair.
i lost some of the only friends i had, because i couldn't handle losing my mind and
my happiness over a slur.
and finally, it's not right that whenever i see them in class, whenever i see
the peacock pattern that coats Goldilock's backpack, or whenever i catch a glimpse
of red hair walking down the hallway,
i regret speaking up.
i regret being me.
i regret losing them.
it's not fair because nobody deserves to be called something like that,
especially by someone who has no idea of the struggle members of the LGBTQ+
community go through just to even accept themselves.
nobody deserves to be called that, especially by a friend.
because genuine friends won't call you The Other 'F' Word.