Bullying: It Never Gets Better, But We Do
I'm glad I was bullied. There, I've said it. I've broken the politically correct cardinal rule; yes, Lady Gaga is gagging right now.
Now, I didn't enjoy it at the time. I was terrified, of course. I cried at night. I spent days in actual terror. I was young, blond, white, and wearing green Dolphins shorts, leg warmers, and a lovely chiffon dance top with a leotard to an predominately minority inner-city school. The fact that I was gay was third on the bullies' list of things to target me for: I was white first (not many kids were in my school), then really poor, then gay, a three-way bullying extravaganza, and lots to be "ashamed" of at school.
So why am I happy about it? Because I'm me. You see, I like being me. It's been a blessed life. I have the best friends in the world. I had the best husband anyone could ever marry (even though we couldn't legally do so when he was alive). As for my career, in my terms, I'm still struggling, trying to make it, but in the world's terms, if you look at all I've done -- working at number-one radio stations, doing TV, interviewing presidents, walking the red carpet at every award show in town, releasing albums and music videos, making the first round of Grammy nominations, and on and on -- well, to many, I've made it.