IGTV Show - Coming out in a homophobic culture - Como e' la cosa Series
Updated: Aug 28
>Full Episodes on IGTV tab @LissaNgS_
I have seen Richard before at the Chinatown while I was growing up back in the Dominican Republic, the Chinese community was practically small so we kinda knew each other, but we did not talk until we both found out we lived in Boston back in 2010.
Richard's friendship has been a blessing in my life, he had a lot of uplifting words and was very positive, at the time I was at my low point in the depression. Fast forward he was also a big help for me and my family to be able to stay in Boston.
I admit I was once ignorant about Homosexuality, I, just like him, grew up in both cultures, Hispanic- Latino and Chinese, where there are stigma and phobia in this subject.
On our IG Live talk, he confessed to me that he as well as ignorant about it even though he was gay. He used to blame everyone for the way that he was, very feminine, he said they didn't act this way, people would not bully.
Something that he followed saying "Why do I have to change?", the ones that need to change are the ones hating, harassing, hurting, and bullying others for being who they are.
I live by this quote "DO whatever you want, if it makes you happy and it doesn't hurt anyone".
He knew since always he always was, but because how he was raised, he tried to suppress it, he tried going out with a girl at 14yrs old, and he just couldn't do it.
I will never understand him, but something I have learned is that doing something that doesn't feel like me, it drains me.
Living in Boston, he met his soulmate, Joe, whom he learned so much from and he is grateful for. And that he is very proud to say that they have been together 5 years strong and will be getting married as soon as COVID-19 allows them, he joked that the government is not with the phobia, COVID is, LOL.
Richard is a very religious person, once he went to a talk where a girl spoke about being "healed" from being gay by God. Everyone found out that she was fraud paid by the Republicans to preach this at Harvard University that's liberal, but this got stuck in Richard's mind. He wondered if what this girl preached was true, what if he truly was able to "cure" himself and that him being in love with Joe, was just a temptation from Evil.
Joe decided to go to the protest to support those that are actively protesting. Richard seeing that Joe had so much love in his heart, and reminded of the bond they share, he became very clear that Evil was absolutely not involved in this.
Richard has received a lot of love and support, from families and friends, however, it saddens him that not all of them support or would support him, some have said they won't attend his wedding and this is the reason, why he hasn't shared with the ones that he knows, are "old school".
He happily said, that regardless of that, coming out of the closet was the best thing he has ever done. It was freedom, he could finally be Richard.
Another thing he shared that I preach it religiously is: "Your worth is not based on your title, education, house, car, money. You are valuable because you are a life"
This is very personal to me, I will share that I have had people close to me, not by choice, that judged me, disrespected me and interacted in a very condescending way with me because I do not have a college/university education. That because they were doctors or had a master's in business they could treat me like less.
I was raised and constantly reminded that everyone is the same, they are people just like me. And that they all deserve respect. My mother always told me this and both my parents were an example of it. Damn, I'm having a moment now, I'm so proud of my parents, they weren't perfect, but I am who I am because of them. Of course, I make my own decisions, but without all these values and morals they taught me, I'd probably have made other choices and think differently.
BACK to Richard :).
We talked about how even though this matter does not affect you directly, the fact that you lack education, is ignorant, and choose not to deal with it, automatically makes you part of the problem. "Sure, there is still no motivation to do it. But in what world do you want to live where you are happy and everyone else is miserable" -Richard
"I have always been afraid of that part of my life. The Dominican side so I suppressed it. And be able to speak about it in Spanish with someone like you it's incredible, it means a lot to me <3" -Richard
I, of course, had to tell him how much I appreciated him for opening up with me and for all of us that might need to hear this story.
I will share with you something that happened today that inspired me to write this article.
In one of the highlights on #reels @comoelacosa Instagram, I mentioned that if anyone is going through not being themselves because they are afraid, that I hope this story gives them strength, to find people like us that look to understand and don't judge, and gives love to talk it out. That they are not alone.
Someone today opened up with me, which I am so honored, this person is someone I have known for years, and I remember them dearly, this person decided to share their story #anonymously and you all know, this is something I understand because it's what I am doing with MentallyVR.
I am honored, truly, and I am very proud of this person for taking another step closer to being who that person is. Everything is life is a process, this person is still in the middle and we will hear from this person not being on the other side where everything finally is great, we will hear while this person is still struggling with this.
This person thanked me for allowing them to be themselves, that this allows them to feel free, no mask, just them :)
I'm doing research and figuring out how I can protect this person's identity, we will record a video talk and I will blur their face? change their voice? What are your thoughts? any tips? I definitely want to have the voice changed so the audience can listen to their perspective and connect, and understand better.
Any tips for video editing will be appreciated! :)