It is well known that gender discrimination is a major issue among the LGBT community. Having studied it as a topic for my thesis I know how tough it is for the community to have to live life in a heteronormative world. There are a lot of obstacles that spans the entire life of the individual from childhood to old age such as coming out, finding acceptance, getting hired and even availing of public services. All these just because some bunch of individuals failed to fit in one of society’s constructed categories of gender.
Unfortunately not much people seem to notice that gender discrimination can exist among heterosexuals as well. Let me tell you my story.
My life has been so difficult lately and my sophomore year in med school doesn’t even begin until after three weeks. For weeks now it has felt like every hour is a task for me to get through. To think about what must be done to enjoy the day is draining in it itself.
I’ve been deleting my old tweets from my personal Twitter account for the past two days. The decision came by impulsively as I was considering a fresh start or perhaps a life with less social media accounts to handle. Facebook, Messenger and Telegram are the three apps that take a significant chunk of time because class announcements and group conversations are held. It’s impossible for me to uninstall the apps without getting the ire of group members on group projects or getting behind on class matters.
I was also deleting tweets because I was no longer comfortable with most of my sentimental thoughts open for my followers to view. I became highly conscious of what others might have to say about my old tweets.
I opened my account and went all the way to the oldest set of tweets that could be loaded. Scrolling through the tweets somehow brought some sense of nostalgia. I remembered exactly how the conversations with my friends went five to six years ago. It suddenly made me think of that specific set of friends.
Anyway I read on and made some discoveries about my past self. I honestly can’t remember possessing these traits but the tweets were there. I was honest and vocal, but I figured my past self could have learned to filter words. Or maybe he could have just shut up. I can understand that my past self was only being transparent and valued being truthful but aaaah reading those tweets now feels so wrong. I could sense growing tensions in my old conversations between my friends that I never noticed before.
I was also noisier and more talkative before. I always had insights to offer which sometimes didn’t make sense. I was always talking and talking and talking so much to the point that my friends would no longer even reply to the tweets I directed to them.
It’s easy to understand that I was so immature and insensitive.
Fast forward to more recent tweets (2014-2015), I guess I became more mellow. My tweets were constructed more carefully now and with consideration to what others could feel. The habit was developed until my last tweet in 2016. Since then I stopped voicing my sentiments and began reading on what my followers had to share instead.
Now here we are. You know, I’m so thankful for that specific set of friends. I thank them for being more mature and for dealing with my immaturity effectively. I thank them for not cutting me out of their circle. Honestly it’s a miracle that I’m still good friends with them up to now.
Alright, enough with the drama and on to my final thought. It’s so easy to overlook our old behavior and think that we were never toxic to people at some time in our lives. Sometimes I think it’s because we never have any intention of being toxic so we place ourselves in an illusion that our friends are totally fine with what we do to them. It’s nice to know that we have good intentions for our friends but I see now that sensitivity goes a long way, especially when we want to develop and maintain healthy relationships.
Looking ahead I know this isn’t the best of myself. There will always be something to address within the self. Now I can say I’m more receptive to people’s emotions and sensitivities but I can go too far with my jokes. Again there will always be something to improve on. It’s a constant process.
Someday I am going to be better than my current personality and that’s what I’m always aiming for everyday: To be better than who I was as early as I can.
I know it’s quite late but this is what I felt as I was writing down this post sometime in January this year.
I made it. Oh my goodness, I actually survived the first semester with good grades. I’m definitely happy but something’s missing.
April 7, 2015. I was watching a TV show when I felt a sudden urge to check my school’s online portal for grades. I had been uncomfortable the past few days because my grade in Organic Chemistry, a subject I found difficult back then amidst hours of studying, was due for release. For days I had been praying hard for at least just a passing mark but it was not meant to be. I sulked about it for days because my applications for med schools were going to be affected and it was already the second time I flunked a class. I was so hurt by everything. My intentions were sincere and I was left wondering if my prayers just fell on deaf ears and if there really was a God in the first place. Continue reading
Med school is coming up in a few months and there are two things that I can’t stop thinking day by day: getting over the anticipated demoralized phase and the adjustment phase Continue reading
Yesterday I received an email from one of the medical schools I applied to, the Ateneo School of Medicine and Public Health (ASMPH). I was able to qualify for the interview phase, but was unable to make it to the final list of accepted applicants for the coming school year.
I immediately made a letter of appeal for reconsideration after seeking advice from a current professor in the ASMPH. I submitted the letter to the Admissions Office on March 13, 2017 and I regularly called their hotline to get updates. I was informed that decisions on appeals will be emailed personally as soon as the committee has a decision hopefully by April 5. On my second call, I was told that they will probably email decisions to those who appealed (not accepted) and to those who were waitlisted (accepted, but placed on the waiting list) at the same time. Continue reading