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Validation Is Not An Outside Thing

Letters to Our Queer Youth

By Lily SéjorPublished about a month ago 3 min read
Top Story - June 2024

Hey Baby,

Can we start by taking a second to celebrate the fact that you are here today? Yes! For some of us, it’s a small victory on life that we get to claim every time we wake up. You and I both know we haven’t always wanted to be here. Choosing to stay is a victory. So, congratulations but also thank you! If you are anything like me at your age, I know you are rolling your eyes, right now. But give me a second. It’s a little sappy—I’m aware—but I believe that at every point in life, we all have something to contribute. It doesn’t have to be huge. It can be a simple word to a person who needs to hear it at that very moment. So there you go.

I want to tell you something, real quick, about relationships—family, friends, people who claim to be allies and people who will pop into your life as you open yourself to the world.

Your family and friends are supposed to be your first community. Sometimes, people don’t understand and are not willing to learn. Please, always remember that where they stand in their beliefs has absolutely nothing to do with you. It only provides clarity about who they are, not you. Committing this to memory now might save you later (as in save your life).

I don’t mean to get all dark on you but there is a particular kind of harm that plagues queer youth. Most baby queers struggle with the desire to be seen as their full selves, to be accepted as who they are, to be loved. We are supposed to get that from our intimate communities but it does not always work out that way. This is where I want you to be extra careful.

People who have walked this earth longer than you can and do recognize that unfulfilled desire. Sometimes, although they may present themselves as queer, or allies, they do not necessarily have the best of intentions. To make sure you are always safe, never put your validation in the hands of others.

I could make this next part poetic and nice but I don’t want to take the chance of being misinterpreted. When you do not get the love and validation you crave from the people who are supposed to give it to you, aka your intimate community, you might be tempted to allow other people in because they’re queer; because they say Hey, I see you. You are normal. You’re beautiful. Come, I’ll show you around. You might be tempted to do things you’re not necessarily willing to do because you don’t want to get cut off from this world they are introducing you to.

Ditch them! Yes baby, never be afraid to ditch a bitch*.

First, this world is yours. It already belongs to you and it is what you make of it. Your world is queer because you are queer. No one can ever close that gate in your face, because bay-bee, you have the key.

Second, you’re not the first person they try that with and you will not be the last. They hunt down baby queers. And that is exactly as creepy as it sounds.

Third, and last—I’m back with the cheesiness but it’s true—if you learn to love and accept who you are, if you believe that you are enough, you will not need external validation to move about this floating rock in space. The world is unfair and it is full of shit but that’s why we have shovels, essential oil sprays and glitter. We always manage to create our own, beautifully scented and well-designed little corners.

Oh… and a little something extra for my neurospicy girlies*: if a man tells you to come have tea at his place, he doesn’t mean tea… I’m not saying it happened to me… but I’m not saying it didn’t. 👀I’m just saying.

Love, from the favorite aunty you did not know you had!

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(* I mean both in the gender neutral way)

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This piece is in a part of the QVV & ViM Pride month challenge. Find out more over here:

RelationshipsPride MonthEmpowermentCommunity

About the Creator

Lily Séjor

Lily is really not the best at describing herself, so she'll put this down for now and circle back when (if) she's inspired. For now, she wants you to know that she's your verbose friend who rarely knows what to say.

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Comments (15)

  • J. Delaney-Howea day ago

    a lot of truth in this piece. Thank you for taking part in our challenge.

  • Judey Kalchik 4 days ago

    I think you could make this into a series of several letters, and I bet they would be eagerly anticipated and read. Kind and true without being scary. This is great.

  • Powerful and poignant message for our youth to hear, and to be fair even some of us older, but new to this world Queer peeps! Thank you for writing and sharing this amazing piece! 🩷

  • Congratulations on having your story featured as a top story on Vocal! This is a remarkable achievement, and it's clear why your work has received such recognition. Your storytelling is truly exceptional. The narrative was not only compelling but also beautifully crafted, holding my attention from start to finish. The way you developed the characters and plot was masterful, making the story both engaging and thought-provoking. Your unique voice and perspective shine through, setting your work apart. It’s evident that you poured a lot of passion and effort into this piece, and it has certainly paid off. I look forward to reading more of your incredible stories in the future. Keep up the fantastic work! Best regards, Dr. Jay

  • ROCK 27 days ago

    I wish I could coerce my young adult to read this. It said so much in an easy and forward way. Thank you for sharing your support to the community.

  • MrZabiabout a month ago

    Great

  • MrZabiabout a month ago

    Superb

  • MrZabiabout a month ago

    Amazing

  • MrZabiabout a month ago

    Lovely story keep uploading

  • Andrea Corwin about a month ago

    I loved the line “ditch the bitch!” I do not like it girlfriends call each other that word. However when someone is nasty, then yeah, ditch the bitch.

  • shanmuga priyaabout a month ago

    Congratulations 🎉 on top story

  • Jonathan Apolloabout a month ago

    Words like these make me settle and feel secure with us becoming the uncles and aunties (I was going to say "elders," but we ain't that damn old! 😂) I hope the gaybies find this!

  • Raphael Fontenelleabout a month ago

    Great advice. I think everyone young or not needs to read this. :3

  • Kingsley Gomes, PhD.about a month ago

    Wow, Lily! This is a powerful message. It's so important for young queer people to hear that they are worthy and deserve love, no matter what. I especially loved the part about creating your own "beautifully scented and well-designed little corners" of the world. That's such a positive way to frame building your own chosen family and finding your own space to thrive. The advice about validation is spot on too. It's so important for young people to learn their worth isn't dependent on others' approval. This is a message that needs to be heard. Thank you for writing it and sharing it with the world!

  • Oneg In The Arcticabout a month ago

    Gosh so much goodness and important advice in this. "The world is unfair and it is full of shit but that’s why we have shovels, essential oil sprays and glitter. " <3

Lily SéjorWritten by Lily Séjor

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