The trouble with normal

This is something I wrote in Feburary 2013. I’d like to share it.

Normal seems easy, common, correct, non-threatening. It can feel like “why would anyone want anything else?” Problem is it leaves no room for experimentation, no space to grow and change, no leeway to explore. Because no two people are quite the same. Bundling the, for most unimaginable, range of relationships and sexual expression into a prepackaged ‘this is what people want’. There are so many decisions overriden by this. Infinite possibilities left unexplored. There is very little room for personal choice when a ‘normal’ holds such sway.

We live in a society scared of itself. Seemingly unable to accept difference, disability, experimentation, varied life paths. Respect, compassion and understanding are deemed radical, as if we are not all part of the same world, as if we do not share resources, as if we do not have our common and individual triumphs and failures.

We would trust in our opinions of experiences and ideas that we have little knowledge of, rather than go out and observe and participate. Assume the worst of people we do not understand, expending no time to gain that understanding.

I believe we all must have the right, and ability, to make our own decisions based on experience. Real experience, real options. Not prepackaged, not filtered, but the full spectrum, without interference. Similar to the idea of freedom of speech, the responses to expressions are the way to show agreement or not, rather than pre-screening and restricting the possibilities.

Respect, not loathing. Compassion, not suspicion. Understanding, not fear.