I Rebel Against the Culture of Exclusion

breaking_chains-208145743_stdI live on the margins because I cannot conform to a culture that demands repression, suppression, and oppression in order to belong, a culture based on exclusion of self and other. My deepest rebellion is against the idea that we are not acceptable in the fullness of our complex humanity. I have been rebelling against the oppressors of our humanity since I was a teenager and recognized that what mainstream culture was selling did not resonate with what I know to be true in the depths of my being. Humans are beautiful in their fullness. Living from a place of wholeness is the healthiest for body, mind, heart, and soul, and wholeness means embracing the parts of ourselves we experience as broken.

I’ve learned that when people don’t like me it’s because I tell the truth about what is real rather than hide under a polite veneer of conflict avoidance. I’ve lost jobs and friends because I am unable to pretend that we don’t have big hard feelings as part of our experience. At first this was a big hit to my confidence. But now I’ve decided I’m ok with it because a leader worth supporting or someone who truly cares for me wouldn’t ask me to exclude a piece of myself to make them comfortable.

I tell the truth about what is real because I love and accept every part of this being human. I love your gifts and I love your neurosis. I love you smiling in the bright light of day and I love you sobbing as you sit on the bathroom floor in the dark. I love you when we have a deep conversation and I love you when you can’t look me in the eye. I love you when you are satisfied and I love you when you act out because your needs aren’t being met. All I ask is that you meet me at the table without violence to be real together and find solutions for conflict that come closest to meeting all of our needs.

I understand that this thing called life is both beautiful and brutal. I know that most humans are both good and broken people. I know every self destructive behavior is based on an unmet need, likely a need that was not met by the people who were supposed to provide nurturing and care. And I just want to be real about it. I need to be real about it. We need to be real about it. We need to cast off the shackles of a culture that says we have to repress ourselves and oppress someone else in order to belong. We need to create and nurture spaces where it is safe to be brave and be all of ourselves.

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