Does YouTuber Onision give out the worst advice for gays, or what? Last week he was telling gay guys who want to ask someone out on a date to prepare to get their asses kicked (under the guise of “be safe, everyone!”). And now he’s telling youth that might be questioning — or rather, discovering — their sexuality to shut up about it, lest your friends and family ditch you in droves.
The worst part about Onision isn’t his advice; it’s that he actually means well and thinks these tips are worth taking.
He doesn’t want gay kids to get their faces bashed in by the intolerant. That’s a nice sentiment, and one we share! But here he is, an openly heterosexual straight man, telling young people who think “you’re bisexual or gay may just be a part of that process [of confusion]. … But to tell everyone that you’re interested in the same gender, to me, is incredibly premature, and it’s unwise. Especially when telling them could change your relationship with them for the rest of you life. Please, think about it for awhile. Really reflect on whether this is really your development. Or it’s actually legitimate. Either way, you probably should wait until you’re at least living on your own.”
Know what message that sends? Stay in the closet until you’re fully miserable and living a lie.
Yes, sexuality is something we experiment with, especially young people. But pulling the curtain over your questions and curiosity is, any psychologist will tell you, damaging. Not every kid will grow up in an accepting home, and there’s reason to shield your sexuality if it will leave your homeless or with a black eye from dad. But we’ve always found that being honest with the people you trust — i.e. your friends — will help identify which relationships are worth keeping “for the rest of your life.”
Take Onision’s advice about your safety. Don’t take Onision’s advice about feeling shame.