by William Van Ornum, Ph.D. on
Over at AMERICA we are having a discussion on National Day of Silence.
Regina Sewell is a group therapist who, like Stefan de Schill, has kept the art and craft of group therapy alive and prosperous in times when most therapists have shifted over to the individual therapy model. She has these thoughts on National Silence Day:
“It’s nice that more and more places are recognizing anti-LGBTQ harassment and bullying and taking steps to do something about it. People don’t consider how abusive the culture is… .It’s not just the horrific abuse that is a problem. It’s the more innocuous things like having to hear someone say, ‘That’s so gay’ or seeing graffiti that says, ‘Kill the Fags’ that make LGBTQ people feel unsafe and unwanted. And it’s not just words, it’s also the body language…looks of disdain, staring, and finger pointing (trans people especially face this) that make it uncomfortable to be ‘out.'”
Regina has written an extremely helpful book on these themes:
“News reports of anti-gay/lesbian/bisexual, transgendered violence, especially the media coverage of the brutal murders of Teena Brandon and Mathew Shepard, leave us feeling hopeless. We’re Here! We’re Here! Get Used to Us! Survival Strategies for a Hostile World provides an antidote to this sense of hopelessness by showing how LGBTQ people have successfully defended themselves against homophobic comments, threatening situations, and violence. ‘We’re Here! Get Used to Us! Survival Strategies for a Hostile World’ also includes a chapter describing same-sex intimate abuse and violence and includes examples of how GLBTQ people got out of damaging relationships. We’re Here! Get Used to Us! Survival Strategies for a Hostile World reads like a warm supportive coach that cheers readers on for their past efforts to defend themselves, and offers techniques and strategies that readers can practice and use. In the process, it helps readers come to terms with the sexual harassment and violence that they have experienced in the past and puts the blame where it should go: on the perpetrators. This is a great book for any lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered person who is tired of feeling afraid, is sick of circumscribing his or her life in order to feel safe, wants to know how to defend himself or herself, or needs to get out of an abusive relationship.”
The book can be ordered from the Regina Sewell website.