Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
Crisis: 40 Stories Revealing the Personal, Social, and Religious Pain and Trauma of Growing Up Gay in America Hardcover – September 1, 2008
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
If you’re the author, publisher, or rights holder of this book, let ACX help you produce the audiobook.Learn more.
Top Customer Reviews
First, you can manufacture a false and increasingly neurotic self that must lie at all costs, to all people, all the time, merely to survive. You must compartmentalize your public and private lives, deny what you know to be true about yourself, and vigilantly censor yourself in everything you do, say, and feel. Living this way leads to mental, physical and emotional exhaustion, self-hatred, suicidal ideation, cutting, and chronic frustration. This first scenario begs the question, "how long can you deny who you really are?" As one contributor put it, "the closet is a terrible place to live."
But there's a second option. You can let down your guard and live spontaneously as your true and authentic self. But in this scenario you face catastrophic losses in your church, synagogue, family, job, school and community. For some gays, living authentically comes at an unacceptably high price. Among religious believers and before God, could you live with being called an abomination who ought to be stoned to death (Leviticus 20:13) and who will suffer forever in hell? Would you be willing to risk full and final rejection by your family? How well do you think you could endure daily taunts and physical abuse at school? Do you think you'd risk your career for the sake of authenticity? Nor is honoring your true self psychologically easy: "The only way I survived as a gay man," writes one person, "was by embracing everything I was taught to hate about myself."
I was deeply moved by these short (4-5 pages each), simple, and intensely personal stories. They're organized around four themes: religion, family-community, work and school.Read more ›
In doing so, it provides a valuable reminder that religion can, and often does, play a different role in human life and human communities--a liberating rather than oppressing role. This study suggests that, in order for communities of faith to move from oppression to liberation of gay human beings, they must begin to know actual gay human beings--as human beings and not as stereotyped threats to Christian morality. The book's most important contribution is its first-hand accounts that permit people of faith to hear the stories of gay brothers and sisters and to see the faces of gay brothers and sisters.
Through all of the stories in Crisis there runs a common thread: the thread of shame, depression, isolation, overcompensation, and fear of rejection and failure that gay persons all too often encounter as we claim our identities in a culture (and in religious communities) that reinforce these negative self-images. The stories in Crisis document well the hard work required to sustain self-worth in a culture so unrelentingly negative, a culture in which the the name of God is too often used to create obstacles to gay human beings claiming their identities.Read more ›
To me, this is the heart of the crisis discussed in Gold's book. It reflects the verbal abuse of gay young people by those who have a responsibility to love and support them. It also reflects the perverted teachings of many churches - that gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (GLBTQ) youth are not worthy of respect and love.
The forty short autobiographical sketches that make up the bulk of Crisis largely show over and over the oppression experienced during their formative years by these gay men and women. All of them finally overcame their religion-based oppression. Most are now highly respected leaders in their chosen professions. Still, their stories reveal the years of fear and shame they - and so many others like them - experienced in their most formative years.
Many young gays are not so lucky. Many suffer total rejection by their church, schoolmates, and family, and are left to fend for themselves at a vulnerable young age. They suffer both verbal and physical abuse simply because of who they are. Too many are lost, through murder and suicide. Is no one ashamed that their words have cost these young people their lives?
Crisis stresses the need for acceptance and support of all our GLBTQ children. Parents, churches, schools, and politicians must recognize the grave harm they do not only to the GLBTQ youth themselves, but also to their families and friends.
It is Mitchell Gold's expressed hope that families, church leaders, politicians, and school authorities will read his book. There is a desperate need for all of them to act to eliminate the violence inflicted on the millions of American GLBTQ teens by the very people charged with protecting them.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Had to buy this for an LGBT anthropology course I was taking. Has some heartbreaking and truly enlightening stories that definitely aided in our class discussions. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Jeremy Outinen
not a happy read...but gives an accurate picture of what life is like for these kids....should be a must read for parents and friends of GLB folks.Published on November 19, 2013 by A. Walter
The book was easy to read because the essays were short and for the most part interesting. I found it inspiring and sometimes painful. Read morePublished on June 11, 2013 by Matthew W. Green Jr.
Crisis, is a book about overcoming suffering, growing through prejudice and teaching those around us to take a look at popular beliefs and examine how those beliefs affect and harm... Read morePublished on November 27, 2011 by John R. A. Shannon
I really enjoyed this book, stumbled upon it at the library. I could relate to many parts, especially the attitudes of churches. The only part I didn't like was the lack of women! Read morePublished on February 28, 2011 by Catherine M. North
This book was timely when published in the late 1990s, and in the rash of teen suicides from bullying because of perceived sexuality, it rings particularly true today. Read morePublished on November 29, 2010 by Harold D. Hughes
I LOVED this book. I think that absolutely everyone should read it for a better understanding, knowledge and compassion for others.
VERY GOOD !!! Read more
Excellent experience. Book shipped quicker than expected. In my mailbox the next day. Book was used but in excellent condition.Published on February 26, 2010 by Mick Williams