Johann De Joodt
Johann De Joodt
2 min read

Having spent 18 years in Conversion Therapy, fighting my sexuality, and trying to fit in with the world of dichotomy, I reached my tipping point realising happiness for me was in bright shade of hot pink, and Rainbow. Dr. Robert Schuller in his book ‘Turning Hurts into Halos, and Scars into Stars’, encourages the reader to bravely face their fears and past. So I did just same, painting the scars from my past hot pink, and becoming the Out & Proud Star that I am today.

During the years of fighting my sexuality, living in constant fear and depression, I was suicidal. I felt like I was the only person that was Gay and Christian in the entire Global Village. Since I have made amends with myself, shunning self-hate and embracing the person I am, I have studied counselling and have been a phone counsellor for 7 years with QLife with the aim to help others embrace their differences and be and love who they were meant to be.

I established the Facebook Page ‘Wear a Rainbow Ribbon everyday (WaRRe)’, to show our brothers and sisters that they are not alone and are loved, because suicidal thoughts could happen any time, and anywhere. Seeing someone wearing something Rainbow, to show support and solidarity, no matter how small this gesture, may help someone not feel isolated and that could be enough to change their mind and save their life.

I have turned my scar into a star by speaking out against people who think being gay is a lifestyle choice and everyone can be straight, in doing so mentally abusing and ostracising my community with their rhetoric of love the sinner and not the sin.

I use my Facebook Page to speak about accepting and loving ourselves for who we are. Because it is not a choice, I wouldn’t have chosen to be miserable, all the time beating my self up trying to be someone I’m not and never could be. We can’t control how others act, feel, and think about us. However, we can control how we act towards ourselves. By Wearing a Rainbow Ribbon every day, I feel we could save lives from self-hate and encourage self-love. We are all beautiful people like the rainbow in the sky.

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