It’s been a great experience to be able to present before so many diverse groups over the years on LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer). Some groups choose to attend my presentations while others are “volun-told’ (for those who haven’t had it happen to them, it is a term is for those who volunteer to attend because someone in authority makes it impossible for them to not attend), so there is a huge variation in people’s desire to be a part of any training. Some level of resistance is true for groups all across the country.
Through each training, I try to find some way that the training resonates with each person. Yet, each time I learn something new and grow in my understanding of what concepts and stories reach people and how they reach them. When presenting at corporate events, I’m typically invited by an LGBTQ person who wants to provide an educational experience for their colleagues. Without fail, I hear that those who invited me learned something from the event where they thought they’d merely be coordinating. That is because the concept of gender and sexuality is more complex than most of us ever consider. Even people who are a part of the LGBTQ acronym don’t necessarily know about the other identities within the acronym. There are also countless stories from attendees no matter where I speak, who share with me that their families are coping with this issue. The results of having more education and an increased cultural competence is not only positively affecting people’s work life, but their home life as well.
The bottom line is that we all have a lot more in common than we think. This education helps people add more pieces to the LGBTQ puzzle and helps them fit more of puzzle pieces together.