Monday, October 17, 2011

Author / Experience Diversity

Author / Experience Diversity

I have always considered myself a very accepting person when it comes to different cultures and life choices. I try not to judge people for who they are or what they do with their life. If it works for them, and they are happy, then good for them.

Not too long ago, I attended a conference that opened my eyes to lifestyles I’d heard/read about but never really experienced firsthand. Doms and Submissives, polyamorous marriages, bondage. I realized I have led a very sheltered life. I have read about people in Dom/Sub relationships, and how some Doms will make the Sub act as their end table, or will make them eat out of dog dishes. I was fascinated at this particular conference to see a Sub being led around by a leash.

I never expected to be shunned for being straight and monogamous. I consider myself to be friendly. When I come out of my shell, I will talk to anyone. And more often than not, people respond to my smile and the gesture. However, at this conference, I had two people shun me when they found out I was straight and married to my high school sweetheart. I couldn’t understand why that would bother anyone.

There are so many different cultures, races, and lifestyles out there…so many I am ashamed to admit I know nothing about. Though my parents raised me to be accepting of everything, to never judge a person simply by the color of their skin, I remained ignorant to how they lived.

I still choose to accept that everyone makes their own choices in life, that just because they are different than me doesn’t make me better than them. It’s a lesson I think everyone needs to remember. No one will love everything that you do, or believe the same way you do. If that were the case, this world would be a boring place.

The next time you find yourself crinkling your nose at the oddness of the person you see wearing a fuzzy bunny costume hitting on the 6’6” cross dresser on the corner, take a breath and remember: they probably think you are just as odd.

Love yourself for who you are, and everything else will fall in line.

Johanna Melaragno- Editor

Crimson Rose


Vonnie Davis ~ Romance Author said...

Oh, wish I'd gone, too. I need some more research. Diversity and understanding are great things, if they float both ways. Interesting blog post.

Kellie Kamryn said...

It is interesting at the other kinds of lifestyles people lead. I don't judge anyone else for they do and appreciate it when people reciprocate in kind. How anyone chooses to live their life is their choice. We don't need to understand - just accept.
Great post!

Carlene Bacchus said...

Good for you for attending. Also keep in mind that every group has a few purists--if you don't measure up to their 'standards', then you aren't jack. LOL Take it with a grain of salt!

Mona Risk said...

I have to admit I am often shocked by the things I see. I can't accept them if they break the moral values I was taught.I respect people's freedom, but I believe that a certain reserve and decency are needed in this world.

Marie Tuhart said...

Johanna, good for you for keeping an open mind. Interesting how these people judged you for being you. From what I'm learning from the BDSM community this usually isn't the case. Thanks for sharing with us and reminding us how diverse our worlds really are.

Mackenzie Crowne said...

Johanna, you attend some interesting conferences. LOL I have a similar background to yours and probably would have had a similar response. However, having worked in Manhattan with an artsy group for years, I've met people from many backgrounds and found that deep down people may be different but they all have the same insecurities.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Love yourself for who you are and everything else will fall in line. How very true.

And how wonderful we are all so different. Now it's just the tolerance parts we have to work on.

Nona Raines said...

That sounds like a fun conference! It's a shame though that a few people looked down their noses at you for your choices in life. Guess it goes to show that narrow-minded people can be found anywhere! Even in places where you'd think they'd be most accepting!