With every fiber of my being, I wanted to be normal. I wanted to be accepted. I wanted to be OK. I wanted people to look at me and know me and smile and wave and think, there goes a good guy. I wanted to live a life that is acceptable by the general society. I had these thoughts and things I wanted. But it wasn’t normal, and I knew what normal was, it was what I was told how everyone else lived. It was what I saw on TV. It was what I was taught about at school, so for forty years, well over half my life, all those thoughts were put away. No one else had them. Only me, and I had to hide that.
I did, very well.
Until I got tired of it and I began to accept who I was. But I am also tired of being thought a creepy old man because I talk about sex. I am tired of feeling that I am broken, or sick because of the thoughts in my head that never leave. I hate it when my family wants me to “Just not talk about those things” or might be embarrassed if their friends found out. I am hurt when I loose friends when I talk about what is really important to me, and I am saddened beyond expression when I hear the whispers behind my back that I should be avoided. All the people who keep saying “No”, “Don’t”, “Shhhh”, “No one wants to hear that” are supported by everyone it seems. It must be true. I want to be Normal.
But it is not me that I want to change.
I am free to speak on unacceptable subjects to people who who are interested in what I have to say. I enjoy teaching to people who want to learn what I know. I am willing to accept people who have different interests as long as they accept me and mine. I do not engage in activities with people who do not actively tell me they desire and enjoy those activities. Why am I not Normal? Why is this not Normal? Why is sex, any kind of sex, abnormal in this society, something to be hidden, of which to be ashamed, not for “polite” people?
This is an important Ted Talk and you should listen to it. Let us work so more people can be normal.