Stories about: healing

Content warning: This article discusses conversion practices.   What you can’t pray away   I   Sometimes I dream of someone coming up to me in the street; someone I vaguely recognise from the past. They point at me and say, “You.” In that weird way dreams have of collapsing whole timelines and unrelated ideas …

Content warning: this article discusses depression.    In 2015, I forgot who I was. Like a reverse Wizard of Oz, the world suddenly went from vibrant colour to black and white. I felt as though there was a storm cloud behind my shoulder. Joy was being sucked out of my every move.  Depression wasn’t a …

My hairdresser says there’s a different kind of freedom from living out of home, and I finally understand what he means. Since moving out, I’ve recognised a part of my identity that’s come as a surprise for me. Even though I’ve been attending queer book events at the library, and have two copies of Guidebook …

Content Warning: This article discusses domestic and family violence, and police violence.   On 28 May this year, Australia’s inaugural LGBTQ Domestic Violence Awareness Day was launched to highlight domestic, family and intimate partner violence in LGBTIQ communities. On the surface, this campaign seems to be championing a cause none of us would dispute. Its …

Billy-Ray Belcourt (he/him) is a writer and scholar from the Driftpile Cree Nation. He won the 2018 Griffin Poetry Prize for his debut collection, This Wound Is a World, which was also a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award. His second book of poetry, NDN Coping Mechanisms: Notes from the Field, was longlisted for Canada …

In 2019, I managed to get myself out of a situation that was onerous but not uncommon. It involved a man who I thought was the love of my life. I knew many individuals to exhibit the traits he displayed throughout our relationship. However, I was unaware of just how typical my experience was for …

It’s a universal truth that breakups, and being broken up with, suck. In this heteronormative world, we’re often told that you can’t be friends with your ex. But when queer friendships can quite literally be a lifeline, it’s hard to resist the urge to attempt to reconfigure and recontextualise relationships that were once exclusively sexual …

Writing through trauma

Content warning: This article discusses sexual assault, institutionalisation and trauma.    I have found the experience of writing and performing my work about my trauma of rape and institutionalisation a healing process. Someone on Facebook, who had not spoken to me for about two years, messaged me out of the blue and said, “I’m trying …

Content warning: This article discusses sexual violence and ways of healing.   Dear Queer Survivor, I am a queer woman working in research and community work with LGBTQA people who have experienced sexual violence. I wanted to write to you to share some hope and words of wisdom from a group of queer and trans survivors …

Content warning: This article discusses rape, trauma, and ways of healing.   A year ago, I was raped by two men I went home with after a party at Sydney’s Vivid festival. Afterwards, I denied my trauma until I finally hit breaking point. Something within me felt wrong, and that feeling hasn’t changed even now. …

Content warning: This article discusses sexual trauma.   Around a year and a half ago, after experiencing sexual trauma in a relationship, I thought I would never enjoy sex or masturbation again. I couldn’t bear the thought of kissing someone or being touched in any way. Even non-sexual touch triggered panic attacks. I thought I …

I want to tell you something about being quiet. I want to tell you about the four weeks I spent at an artist residency in rural Finland. I want to tell you about the forest and the lakes and the summer evenings when the sky went a different shade of blue but never darkened. About …

Sexuality - Gender - Identity