“It Gets Better” is a realistic message for gay and lesbian people living in the western world, where society is increasingly accepting of sexual diversity. But in some non-western parts of the globe, survival as an LGBT person is all but impossible.

Wendy Gritter of New Direction, Canada, has filmed a message for those gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning young people for whom the message of the It Gets Better campaign isn’t realistic or helpful. That’s not to denigrate the campaign, which Wendy has supported. It is to say this:

We want to say to those who are coming to [freetobeme.com] from areas which are not gay-positive — in fact, that are in very anti-gay contexts, where this is not a conversation, where there is much discrimination and prejudice, and perhaps violence, and perhaps danger — what we want to say to you is: Be wise, be careful, but know inside your own self who you really are, and that you are cherished, you are valuable and you are loved. And know that your voice matters. There are LGBT advocates all through the world, who are working very hard for the human rights of all people, including those who are sexual minorities. Maybe someday you can add your voice to that community saying, “If we diminish anyone’s rights, we are all diminished.”

Watch the video below:


The message comes via New Direction’s Free to Be Me website, which Wendy says has experienced increased traffic from non-western countries.

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