Are you a heterosexual? Feeling discriminated against by a persecuted minority? Perhaps we should take a moment to be grateful for the ways being heterosexual makes life easier, even when we don’t recognize it.
In honor of the recent call for #HeterosexualPrideDay, I’ve compiled a list of ten benefits you, too, can enjoy from being heterosexual:
- Your relationships are depicted in complex, varied, and approving ways in all mainstream RomComs. Actually, pretty much all mainstream movies ever made.
- The government sanctions your relationships with easy to use marriage forms and rewarding tax breaks.
- Your ability to adopt is not hindered by your sexuality.
- There is a 0% threat that you will be violently targeted for being heterosexual.
- Magazines, comic books, and the vast, vast majority of publications offer multiple public representations of your sexuality, both fictional and nonfictional.
- When you tell people you’re in a heterosexual relationship they are uniformly supportive (at least about the heterosexual nature of the relationship).
- An entire wedding industrial complex is designed to depict and celebrate your relationship.
- With the exception of statistically unlikely fertility issues, the process of making babies and starting a family is unquestionably easier.
- You don’t have to explain your relationship with your kids to others when you go out in public as a family.
- You don’t have to stress about “coming out” to your family, you never have to explain why you are heterosexual, and you don’t need to defend yourself against people trying to convert you to a different sexuality.
I love heterosexuals. Some of my best friends are heterosexual. My husband and I definitely support the lifestyle.
However, if you’re demanding special recognition for being heterosexual, you are reeeeeeeally not understanding the power and privilege that heterosexuals have relative to LGBTQ+ folks.
There are a host of reasons why people feel compelled to specially celebrate the lives and struggles of LGBTQ+ folks. Unlike heterosexuals, they aren’t surrounded by images, laws, and social expectations that support their sexuality. In fact, you don’t really ever have to think about it at all. Identities are often formed when people come together to support each other against a world that is hostile to them. If you are among the fortunate 90%, you don’t need a special day to celebrate the awesomeness of your sexuality or lifestyle – every day is your day.
Gay pride isn’t about being proud that you’ve accomplished gayness, it’s about survival, community, struggle, and the triumph of love and self-love over social conformity and despair.
So what are you celebrating on Heterosexual Pride Day? Instead of pride, perhaps we should focus on gratitude that we don’t bear the struggles others have to face daily.
Don’t invent oppressions. There are plenty of real ones out there.