‎30-40% of Homeless Youth Identify as LGBT

I saw this link on the Bakersfield Gay and Lesbian Center Facebook page this morning.

Young, Gay And Homeless: Fighting For Resources – NPR

I was a homeless gay teen.  I was kicked out of the house when I was 15 years old for not wanting to visit my mother in the hospital.  I was homeless for 6 months wondering day-to-day when I was going to get my next meal.

I was homeless again when I was 17 years old because my mother rejected me for being gay.  She confronted me about being gay then 2 weeks later kicked me out of the house.  She made me choose between being gay and being her son.

I know what it’s like to be homeless so I understand this story more than anyone in the world.

This article says that there are 3,800 homeless teens in New York City and only 250 beds.  I have a solution if anyone will hear me out.  Anyone who identifies as Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual or Transgendered or even a PFLAG member can invite them into their home to stay with them for a short time.  Help them get their GED (if they didn’t get to graduate high school) and help them find a job.  After 3 months they will have enough money saved up to get their own apartment and it will all be because you helped them.

When I was homeless the second time around, the Salvation Army church helped me but they weren’t allowed to know that I was gay because if they found out, they would have kicked me out.  Being rejected once by your family is one thing but then to be rejected by the church is devastating.  If we are going to tell them that it gets better, we need to prove it by showing them that it gets better by helping them.

Think of it as adopting a child, because they are still children after all.  These children are teenagers but they are still children whose childhood was taken away from them.  Give it back to them by helping them get off the streets.

And you parents, you should be ashamed of yourselves.  Waiting until their 18th birthday to kick out your own child just because they are gay.  Especially around the holidays.  SHAME SHAME SHAME!  You kick them out of the house because your religion says that it’s wrong.  So abandoning them is right?  You think they are going to hell?  So you think that God will approve of how you treated your child?  Think again.

Bike Trail Home?

Now before I get nasty comments on this I would just like to say that at age 17 I was homeless for 10 months, 1.5 months after my 17th birthday all the way until about 1.5 months before my 18th birthday so I know what it’s like being homeless.  That being said here you go…

So I’m riding on the bike path last week and I stop at the Manor St. rest stop which has about 4 cement benches, 1 of them has like a bus stop roof so if it’s raining you can sit in there out of the rain.  2 of them have no cover and those 3 are all in like a half circle (see my bike cam video at the end).  Then the 4th bench is separate from that little half circle, more like across the “street” hehe.

Anyway, so I’m riding the bike path last week (as I said lol) and I go to the stop and it’s dark because the sun hasn’t come up and I see this darkness over by one of the benches.  So I don’t go around the half circle and sit in the middle like I normally would, instead I just pull in on the other side and sit on the bench at the end.  I look over and see a face staring at me.  It’s a homeless guy in a sleeping bag next to the bench but on the ground.  I sat there for my 10-15 minute break and then leave.

Next day he’s not there and then the next time I go there he isn’t there but the sun has already come up and it was the day after Michael Jackson had passed away.  So I go sit down on the bench and as I’m taking off my helmet I can see in my helmet mirror this guy all of a sudden standing like 15 feet away from me, staring at me.  This kinda freaks me out because he wasn’t there when I stopped and when I sat down, almost as if he teleported there lol.

He slowly creeps towards me and is now in front of me and I know that he’s the guy sleeping in the sleeping bag over by the bench and I’m not quite sure I trust him.  He has this scar on his neck from having his throat slashed.  I’m not sure what that was all about but I’m going to give him the benefit of a doubt.  He comes up to me and starts talking about Michael Jackson and I sat there talking to him about all the recent deaths and about how MJ is getting all the attention while Caradine, McMahon and Fawcett get no attention.

So anyway, after about 10-15 minutes I’m ready to go so I said well breaks over and start getting my gear back on, camelbak, gloves, skull cap, helmet, earbud’s and I look in my helmet mirror and he’s back where he was when I first spotted him.  Standing 15 feet away from me, arms folded, staring at me.

The last 2 days (yesterday and today) I could see him in his sleeping bag, I’m leaving really early and so I get there before the sun even has a chance to come up.  But I’ve decided I’m not going to take any chances.  Instead of stopping there and sitting down I’m just gonna go through that tunnel and go about maybe 1/4 of a mile away and rest there.  I’m having to rest standing up now which kinda bites but that’s fine, I’d rather have to stand then worry about having my throat slashed.

Now, as I said above about being homeless, I know what it’s like and not everyone should be judged based on their scars and I don’t want to judge “the content of his character” as Martin Luther King Jr. would say but at the same time I really don’t know this guy and I’m not taking any chances.