Why You Should Never Give The Advice That 'It's Just A Phase'

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woman posing in front of neon sign

By Ashley Allison

I was talking with my dad recently about some pretty serious things. I told him my sexuality was changing, and the first remark he made was that it was “just a phase.”

Honestly, this response seriously irritated me.

Sure, people go through phases in life. But I feel that this is more associated with something like your favorite color or current celebrity crush — not your sexuality.

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This past year, I’ve become more accepting of the fact that I am not straight. And that I’m okay with it, even though certain friends and family members are not.

Do I really care what their opinions are on the matter? Not at this point. I stopped trying to please them and fit a mold that made me feel trapped.

If I can give you any advice, it’s this: The next time a friend or relative tells you that they need to talk about something serious, don’t brush the topic aside and say, “It’s just a phase.”

In our minds, we’ve been prepping this topic (whatever it may be) for months or longer, and we considered various ways to approach it so that we feel accepted.

It’s not a phase when someone decides to make a major life change.

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One time that I know a majority of people will remember is when Britney Spears shaved her head. Everyone thought she had lost it and was going to need “help.”

I can only imagine how hard it is to be in the spotlight and feel the everyday pressure of all the choices you make. Hell, I would’ve shaved my head too if I experienced that amount of stress.

So, instead of making comments like that, we should be embracing the change that someone decides to make. Whether it is short- or long-term, that person is choosing to be different in some capacity to make themselves feel more like them. And there’s nothing wrong with that.

I dye my hair, get tattoos and piercings, and it’s not a phase. On the other hand, I was obsessed with "Twilight" when I was a teenager — that was a phase.

But being bisexual is not. Big difference.

For those who feel the need to ask numerous questions when someone decides to change things up, realize you may not always like their answer.

Or, to take it one step further, the person does not have to explain why they’re making these changes.

We live in a world where everyone is judged for literally every action they take. So, if you’re not willing to deal with someone “micromanaging” your life when you make choices, then have the same respect for others.

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Ashley Allison is a nurse, author and writer for Unwritten who focuses on relationships, health and wellness, and family.

This article was originally published at Unwritten. Reprinted with permission from the author.