DISCLAIMER: I am not singling anyone out in this post, nor am I angry at anyone. However, I want to explain why suggestions are not always easy to implement. Please do not be offended by what I say, and I always love the suggestions and comments y'all leave.
Each time I rant about stupid bigoted Alabama politics or something with my family or whatever situation I speak of, someone and generally more than one person, suggests that I move. Moving away from here has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember. When I moved to Mississippi for graduate school, I did get away. I lived in Mississippi’s most progressive city, or at least it was progressive in the circles I was in. However, circumstances brought me home and I've been trying to get away again since.
I have been working on this for five years, and it's one of my many failures in life. I can't seem to make it work, and I can't just pick up and move. For the past five years, I have been underemployed, and now I am unemployed. All of that means that I was living paycheck to paycheck and now I wonder what will happen when I get paid my last paycheck at the end of this month. Unemployment should kick in, but it will be just enough to pay my current bills (I hope). Moving will take two things, which I currently don't have: a job elsewhere (or a job at all for that matter) and money.
I am not a risk taker. I really never have been, which means that I am not going to drop everything and move to a new place without a job. I'm not even sure that if I get a job elsewhere I will be able to afford to move, but I will pray that my family will help me get on my feet somewhere else if it's for a good job. Poverty fucking sucks, and it keeps sucking you in deeper and deeper. I have talked about my money situations before, and I do believe one day it will get better. Right now though, the future is hopeful but also pretty damn scary. So it's easy to say move away from Alabama, but the reality is not so easy.
There is also something else to consider when people suggest that someone move away from a less than welcoming environment. Some people have reasons for staying. I have a boyfriend here, and the dynamics of leaving him is not something I want to discuss on this blog, that will remain private. Just know that he wants what is best for me. Also, my family is here, including my niece and nephew. Those are things that would make me very sad to leave behind, but things I could live with. But there are other LGBT individuals who have much stronger reasons to stay. Maybe they take care of a sick family member. Maybe they work for a civil rights organization. Maybe they can't imagine living anywhere else. There are so many reasons why people would want to stay in Alabama, reasons that outside of this state, people might not understand, but it doesn't make their reasons less important. Therefore when I rant about issues in Alabama, I am hoping for a better place not just for me, but for the whole LGBT community in Alabama.
Any of us who dealt with bullies as children, or even as adults, know that there are times when you need to run away, but there are also times to take a stand. If we don't take a stand, then the bigots win. They cannot win. We have to continue fighting, and even if I leave Alabama, I will continue to be interested in Alabama politics and the rights of the LGBT community in Alabama. I still keep up with what happens in Mississippi because I did live there for ten years, and I keep up with Louisiana because I have wonderful friends there.
So my point is, it's nice to say “move” but the reality is not so easy. It's more complicated than that.