My name is Manel, 21 years old, from Tunisia, English major, and I am gay.
Most of my friends know about it, my mother knows it, and one of my teachers already suggested the idea of me being gay, and I confirmed it. (not that my appearence gives it away, I am just a normal girl).
I am a feminist, a socialist, and I am thinking of starting a debate in Tunis (Tunisia's capital) about the post-revolution political reaction to homosexuality.
I just want you to know, that I am a normal person, I have choices, I made decisions (some of which I regret), I took audacious steps, I made life plans, and today, I am in no position for complaining.
I just want people to know that being gay doesn't mean being psychologically deviated, or socially handicapped. As long as you make efforts to support your decisions, people would find it harder to stand against you.
I came across this website two hours ago, I read some topics, and I immediately decided to be a member. I love each one of you, I support each one of you, and I wish all of you the best. But above all, I sincerely ask you to stand up for who you are.
It doesn't mean to be totally open and go around publically announcing your sexuality (I myslelf don't have the guts to do so sometimes) but the least you can do is live your life to the fullest, be a good person, and enjoy you decisions.
I wish I could meet all of you, unfortunately the arab world is wide and large, but somewhere within my heart and soul, you exist as a supporter and as an inspiration.
Some may think that they have to escape their countries in order to live, or stay out of sight, but don't let fear stop you from living in the place you belong to.
I lately read an article about gay men who were sent to prison in Egypt for their sexual orientation. I, from my place here, denounced this act, virtually and in real life, and I wish others would raise awareness of this at least virtually.
Don't let anyone put you down, always know what to say, and always be with people who support you and deserve being with you.
Finally, I just want you to know that this message is just and introductory one, I am definitely going to come here more often, and I wish I get to know each of you on an individual level.
Stay Awesome! .