I’ve never read the book, “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus” by John Gray. Other than the explanatory subtitle of “The Classic Guide to Understanding the Opposite Sex”, I know nothing about it. But the title has always been humorous to me.

You see, I’m not from Mars or from Venus. And I’m from both Mars and Venus.

I don’t fit in. Never have. Never will. What I was born with mixes everything up. It has from the beginning, or at least as far back as I can remember. I’m a vagabond.

It can be difficult, lying to everyone, all the time. “All the time” means every single moment of your entire life. “Everyone” means loved ones, friends, acquaintances, people you walk by on the street, and yourself.

No, thanks. I’ll take the truth, please.

Except the truth is rejected. Rejected by your loved ones, your friends, your acquaintances, by the people you walk by on the street, and even – especially – by yourself.

So the guilt builds. Men are from Mars, but you’re not. Women are from Venus, but you’re not from there, either.

Then comes the astounding self-revelation: You’re not from either but you are one of the rare number who have a lifetime passport to both. You may like Venus better than Mars, but you speak Martian. Or maybe you like Mars better than Venus, but you also understand Venusians.

Okay, then. I’ll never be from Mars or from Venus. That choice was lost before I was born. I’m not to blame for that, regardless of what the Martians or Venusians think and say, or how they act. They say – sometimes shout – “You’re not from Mars! You should be ashamed to pretend you are!” Or they say – sometimes shout – “You’re not from Venus! Don’t be disgusting by trying to be!”

And they’re right to say I’m not a Martian from Mars or a Venusian from Venus. I’m in between them.

Which makes me a human from Earth.

#HoldOnToTheLight is a blog campaign encompassing blog posts by fantasy and science fiction authors around the world in an effort to raise awareness around treatment for depression, suicide prevention, domestic violence intervention, PTSD initiatives, bullying prevention and other mental health-related issues. We believe fandom should be supportive, welcoming and inclusive, in the long tradition of fandom taking care of its own. We encourage readers and fans to seek the help they or their loved ones need without shame or embarrassment.

Please consider donating to or volunteering for organizations dedicated to treatment and prevention such as: American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Home for the Warriors (PTSD), National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), Canadian Mental Health Association, MIND (UK), SANE (UK), BeyondBlue (Australia), To Write Love On Her Arms and the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.



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