Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Silent No More

I have a friend who came out recently.

I was deeply offended.

She came out to many of her online friends in a private facebook community that I administer. Following a lengthy introspection she wanted us all to know what her reality is now that she’s made the decision to finally start to live it.

I was offended by her angst as she struggled to tell us all her truth.

I was offended by her need to suppress that truth for so long.

I was offended by the fear of rejection she articulated. I could hear her pain in her written words.

I was offended by her feeling the need to beg her friends to continue to like her for the person that she still is.


Silent No More | www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics

I was offended by her willingness to leave the community she loves if that was the consensus of opinion. That she felt others had the right to judge her and that her fate was not in her own hands, but those with whom she’s invested much of her time and energy.

And I was initially offended by the fact that she even had to come out. After all, I am not obliged to publicly announce that I’m straight. Why should she have to say anything, to anyone, at anytime?

But the more I think about it, the more I realize that this is a positive. A rite of passage. She is announcing herself not because she’s obliged to let us know, but because she’s done hiding her truth.

Besides being offended, I am also really proud and I’m not just talking about her. What she did was brave and I’m honored that she chose to speak up in this particular community of writers.

And I’m not just talking about those who expressed support in this group either. Our group is a diverse community, a microcosm of society, if you will. We are made up of those living in different states and countries, different faiths, a wide range of ages and socioeconomic backgrounds, those who are married, divorced, single. As it turns out, a few of whom are not straight either.

That FB thread is comfort food for the heart and soul.

Cordon Bleu Casserole | www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #dinner
Cordon Bleu Casserole
Cordon Bleu Casserole | www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #dinner


Again, that’s not all I’m talking about here.

Of equal importance to me is the pride I feel in my association with those who DID NOT comment. My friends who, because of their own personal deep-seated beliefs just could not offer words of encouragement.

I’m humbled by the fact that these people did not say a word. By their choice to show the restraint, maturity and compassion to keep their personal beliefs about this woman’s new and very raw struggle to themselves. I respect and admire these people as well. They are every bit a part of the solution to what’s wrong with are society as those who embrace diversity.

At this time, as I see my friend start her new journey, my thoughts logically go to the whole concept of gay marriage. If she were to choose to, would she be able to affirm a relationship in the same way afforded me?

I wrote a piece about what I think about gay marriage, I pretty much guarantee that what I say will surprise you.

Don’t believe me? What if I say that my piece starts with “I don’t believe in gay marriage”?

Read it here: Tie Not the Knot.
Baking In A Tornado signature | www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics 



PS: Looking for more of my work? 
* Please vote: the letter to my sons, The Whole Truth, is featured on the The TODAY Show Parenting Site. To vote, all you have to do is click "vote" at the top of the page.

*I'm also on the Huffington Post talking about Lightning Strikes: What the Weather Taught me About Infertility

*My recipe for Strawberry Shortcake Nacho Style is featured in Best Strawberry Shortcake Recipes on MSN: Food and Drink

*And the voting is in for the Dedicated2Life's top 100 Passionate People of 2015 and I came in at #5


Cordon Bleu Casserole
                                                                            ©www.BakingInATornado.com
 
Printable Recipe
 
Ingredients:
2 ½ # thin sliced boneless skinless chicken breast
Salt and pepper to taste
½ # cooked ham (can use deli slices)
6 slices smoky provolone
1/3 cup seasoned bread crumbs
 
2 TBSP melted butter
2 TBSP mayonnaise
½ cup honey
1/4 cup dijon mustard
1 TBSP sweet hot mustard
 
Directions:
*Spray a 8 X 11 baking pan with non-stick spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
*Melt the butter. Sprinkle both sides of the chicken breasts with salt and pepper.
*Whisk together the butter, mayonnaise, honey, Dijon and sweet hot mustard.
*Lay half of the chicken breasts on the bottom of the prepared pan.
*Spread about ¼ of the sauce over the chicken. Layer with all of the ham, followed by the cheese, then the rest of the chicken.
*Spread the remaining sauce over the top. Sprinkle with the bread crumbs.
*Bake, uncovered, for about 50 minutes or until the chicken is completely cooked.

48 comments:

  1. It is a shame in this day and age that people do have to come out after hiding who they were for so long. I have a dream that someday, that won't be a issue. And on another note, that casserole looks yummy!

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    Replies
    1. I agree that it's a shame. And yet, I think we really are making strides in getting closer to that day that we're hoping for.

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  2. Your approach is intriguing and I'm interested to read the rest of the story next week.

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  3. I have a feeling whatever you say in next week's post isn't going to be all that crazy. If I had to guess, it will still be as full of compassion, empathy, and forward-thinking as you always are. But I have to admit I'm intrigued.

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  4. That whole thread made me cry when I saw it and then your take on it brought it all up again. I admire her bravery for coming forward to affirm who she is, but I still hate that she was worried about the reactions of other people when she did it.

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    1. I had the same feelings when all this was playing out. But when I see so many people on social media, say both supportive and hurtful things, I'm so glad that not one negative comment was made in this group.

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  5. Very interesting and thanks for sharing.

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  6. As usual, I agree 100%!!!!!!!
    No H8!!!!!

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  7. I was surprised that she felt "unsafe" in this society. I suppose there are circumstances in her own life that made it difficult for her and that's sad. Congrats on being number FIVE -- that is quite the honor and a great prize on Dedicated2Life top 100 passionate people

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    Replies
    1. This society is filled with love and hate. And the internet does seem to bring the best in some and the worst in others.

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  8. I can't even imagine what it must be like to hide the true you for all of your life. On THE day when you decide to be done hiding I'd probably be on "all or nothing" mode, too. Even "confessing" to a group of friends and confidantes, you can't really know what to expect. I think.
    Does any of this make any sense?
    Either way, I am proud of her courage, and I am happy and grateful to be part of this group. Thanks, ladies, and thanks Karen, especially!

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    Replies
    1. You make perfect sense. And I agree, this really is quite a group, full of diversity and respect.

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  9. Karen, I just love you. I, too, would have been offended by this woman having to "come out". It's a shame that she felt like she had to. Too bad that she didn't feel like she would be respected and loved by her blogging community if she revealed who she loved. Thanks for writing this. Well done. Peggy

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    Replies
    1. Sadly there are still people with whom she's unable to be honest. But I'm so glad that the numbers with whom she's been honest is growing and the negativity just is not there.

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  10. Because of the circles I traveled in and the area I'm from I didn't realize that people couldn't be themselves until I began to blog. It was an education as was your post. Thanks!

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    Replies
    1. Blogging really has opened up a new world to me as well. So much positive and support, but a whole heap of negative as well.

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  11. I wish we didn't have to have the whole 'coming out' scenario. I've always felt that everyone just needs to be accepted. No judgements. But I guess it's a feature of the world in which we live. Everyone has a well-stated opinion and everyone else walks in fear of it. (Not really everyone, but you get my meaning.) I dream of a world in which everyone is simply themselves. Without the need to explain anything.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have the same dream, Diane. And I also have hope. I think we're ever so slowly moving in that direction.

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  12. I agree with Rabia. I cried when I read that thread. On one hand I was honored she chose to come out to us, but on the other hand I too was offended. I'd like to think that we as a society, and even within our little blogging community, are better than the sometimes petty shortcomings of the small minded.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think that as a society we are headed in the right direction, But as a group, I think we nailed it.

      Delete
  13. I'm glad your friend had a safe and supportive place to reveal her truth. Thanks for sharing this experience.

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    Replies
    1. I'm glad she trusted us too. It was a really great experience for all involved.

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  14. When it's a non-event, one that doesn't have to be announced, then we've succeeded as a society.

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    Replies
    1. I completely agree with you. I hope we get there in my lifetime.

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  15. One of my best friends growing up just got married last summer to her long-time partner (I believe that they got married in New York, which at the time was one of the states that has made gay marriage legal). Anyway, I messaged her and told her how very happy I am for her...for the fact that she is happy, and that she had the courage to make it known that they were in a committed relationship. She's never come to one of our high school reunions, but I think she might this year, as she said that she was finally "strong" enough. She was raised Baptist, and so was told all of her life that she was clearly going to hell (and I'm not going there right now). Point being, she lived a lot of years thinking that no one loved her or accepted her for who she is. All she wanted was for me (and those around her) to love her. But sadly, so many don't seem to be able to do that. It's like I said a couple of weeks ago...who am I to judge anyone? I have enough sins of my own.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It just seems so sad to me, people living their whole lives just looking for acceptance. What a devastating way to make so many people live.

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  16. Eloquently stated Karen.

    I'll be back in a week for sure.

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    Replies
    1. Hope I don't disappoint. This next one is a little out there.

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  17. Really interesting post. It had to be hard for her to reveal the truth about herself.

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    1. I agree. I can't imagine being that nervous to tell my friends my own truth.

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  18. Ok I have to say this, I hope there comes a time when people don't have to "come out" they are who they are and it is just accepted like those who are straight are just accepted if a person is kind, has a good heart, and doesn't go around forcing themselves on others what the hell does it matter.............we are not the ones to judge if the is to be any judgement it will be done by God when they pass one not by us mere humans.................just saying

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    Replies
    1. I wish more people realized that it's not their place to judge. That would be a great start.

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  19. I love this new aspect to your writing Karen! I love how you tackle subjects that most tend to stay away from. I am also one who believe's that no one has a right to judge someone else. There is only one judge in my book.

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    Replies
    1. What she went through, the anguish, it really hit me hard. No one should have to be that concerned about being themselves.

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  20. I am never surprised by what you say. I am just so proud of how you say it!

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  21. Even in this day and age, I have a few friends who have yet to "come out" for whatever reason. Like many others said, I can't imagine what it must be like to live with that secret day in and day out, but at least your friend was able to do so.

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    Replies
    1. I'm really so glad she did. And I love that she was met with nothing but acceptance.

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  22. I think I feel the same way you do, it's not straight or gay marriage, it's just marriage. It's sad that people have to come out at all...we should just accept and love each other for who we are. It doesn't matter who we love. As long it's two consenting adults and no one is being abused...who cares #LOVEISLOVE

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    1. Exactly, those are the two parameters; two consenting adults and no one being abused. Other than that it's no one's business.

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  23. I wish the best for your friend. Divorce can also change relationships, of course now not as dramatically as a change in sexual preference but in the future I predict it will become ordinary. FYI, chicken cordon bleu made outdoors is a bee and fly magnet for some reason!

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    Replies
    1. HA, a bee and fly magnet, definitely something I want to stay away from. I'll keep making it indoors.

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  24. I'm working late tonight and sitting her at my desk drooling over your Cordon Bleu Casserole! So hungry!

    In this day and age I am still baffled as to why so many people hate on gay marriage and gay couples. If it makes them happy who cares? It doesn't hurt anyone, and there is no reason to hate on people living their own lives they way they choose. I am so proud to say I have such a diverse group of friends straight and gay and we all accept each other all the same. Wish everyone would just have an open mind and stop all the hate and ignorance. Be accepting.

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    Replies
    1. I know. The sad thing is that those who judge others probably have gay friends too but just don't know it because they aren't a good enough friend to be told.

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