“Suicide is getting very common, and I don’t want to take my own life, I want to live my life” says Darren in ‘Prejudice and Pride’ the documentary about LGBT travellers
Promising to be a powerful radio documentary, ‘Prejudice and Pride’ examines the issues that LGBT travellers face, their experiences of coming out and fears over coming out.
Mental health is a prominent issue for LGBT travellers, with travellers six times more likely to commit suicide than non-travellers and LGBT people more likely to suffer from mental health problems.
The radio show which will be airing on Newstalk this Saturday November 26 at both 7am & 10pm gives six gay travellers the opportunity to discuss areas including the importance of support from family members and friends, homophobia, substance misuse, self-harm and suicide.
In a teaser for the show, gay traveller Darren shares some of his story.
“Hi I’m Darren. While being a gay traveller was difficult at the start because I thought I’d be disowned and I thought my family would kick me out and want nothing got to do with me.”
“When I was eighteen I start realising that I was gay. I just turned nineteen I was looking around I was seeing all other gay people being happy and being theirself, and I was stuck in the closet and I couldn’t be myself. I couldn’t take it any more, and I took an overdose. My mother found me.
I landed in hospital over the overdose. They were asking the reason why I did it and I was like “‘Oh, it was just I’m depressed.'”
“Four weeks after my first overdose I had a relapse and I took another one.”
When the psychiatrist asked Darren why he tried to take his own life twice he told him that he was gay.
“So I sat down and I explained to the doctor that I was a gay traveller and explained to him. And he was like ‘Well I’m behind you 100% if you want me to help you with your family to talk about it.’ So I said no.”
“A couple of months on my uncle passed away of suicide as well.”
“Then I was like no I can’t be living a lie any more. Suicide is getting very common, and I don’t want to take my own life, I want to live my life.”
Given A Voice
The show’s creators talk about the six contributors to the documentary, explaining why they chose to exclude a voiceover.
“In ‘Prejudice and Pride’ we hear from six travellers who identify as gay (including their only female contributor, who refers to herself as “gay”, not “lesbian”),” they said.
“The producers wanted to create a platform for LGBT+ travellers to break the silence, and speak for and of themselves – so there is no voiceover, and there are no contributors who do not identify as both LGBT+ and as a traveller.”
Silence And Resistance
In the two years spent creating this documentary, the producers were only able to make contact with eight travellers who identify as gay – only six agreed to be interviewed, while three requested that their stories be spoken by actors.
The producers encountered silence and resistance trying to create this documentary insisting that if it wasn’t for the support and bravery of the people who agreed to take part they wouldn’t have been able to make it.
Check out this sample of the show on lead producer Maurice Kelliher’s website.
Prejudice and Pride airs on Saturday November 26 at 7am and again at 7pm on Newstalk.
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