It Gets Better: Google Employees

Uploaded by betterintech on 19.10.2010

>> CYNTHIA: Hi, my name is Cynthia. I work in the strategic partnerships development
team at Google. >> ERIC: Hi, I'm Eric. I'm a system administrator
at Google. >> SCOTTIE: I'm Scottie. I work at Google.
I'm from the Chicago suburbs. >> RANDY: My name is Randy Reyes. I grew up
here in the San Francisco bay area. And I currently work at Google.
>> SHAUN: I remember when I was younger, I had four brothers, which it's not easy to
be gay when you have four brothers because there's like so much masculinity in the house.
I remember sitting in my bedroom when I was younger, laying on my bed and just feeling
this dread in my chest, like knowing someday I have to tell my family or I have to tell
somebody. And that alone was enough to terrify me.
>> MICHAEL: I grew up at the dinner table, hearing conversations about how gay people
should die of AIDS, how gay people were less than, you know, straight people. And it really
caused me to not feel very safe at home. And at the same time, I didn't feel very safe
at school either. >> ERIC: Then I went to a public middle school
and high school, and it was full of jocks. And I didn't know any gay people. I was the
token computer nerd so I got picked on all the time for that, much less being gay.
>> MARCO: There were days where I was pretending to be sick just because I was too afraid to
go to school.
>> TAMMY: I'm a transsexual woman. I grew
up in rural Canada in really conservative surroundings, rather conservative family.
Went to a pretty conservative school, and when I was growing up, it was all about conforming,
fitting in, and doing what's expected of me. I was never even able to think about issues
like my gender identity or sexual orientation, until I was--until I grew up. In my high school,
it was fit in. >> WEI: I went to my senior prom, of course,
with a girl--or two girls actually. It's a messed up story. And I remember after dropping
them off, I drove away, drove to the side of the road in my car. And I started crying,
just thinking about how screwed up everything is, trying to figure out what the hell I'm
going to do with my life. >> MARK: I didn't know what to do or who to
reach out to. And I was scared of getting hurt. And I was so depressed that I was even
thinking about hurting myself. >> ANDREW: You're sitting in your house, it's
a small town. You can't--you feel this magnetism, like you're never going to get out, you're
never going to go anywhere. And it really draws you in. And you feel like there's no
hope, that there's no one who will ever understand you. I'm a software engineer now at Google.
I--and I just want to tell you straightforward that things get so much better.
>> JOHN: For me, it got better when I got to college. When I got to college, I met many,
many, new people. And some of them, I found out, were gay and they were quite happy. And
there were--a lot of them were quite successful. >> NICK: Even when my family couldn't be there
to support me because they didn't know that I was gay or I hadn't told them or even after
I came out and things were still kind of a little difficult with them. I knew that I
could really rely on my friends. And that's where they became my family.
>> LAURENCE: For me, things really started to change in the last two years of high school
when we could, you know, choose the subjects that we wanted to study and choose how we
want to just spend our free time, so I could really start exploring the city, exploring
different sides of myself. >> MICHAEL: When I went away to college, I
was able to define who I was. There was no back story. I really felt like I could come
alive and be expressive. >> SCOTTIE: And as you sort of grow older,
as you leave high school, you are not going to be under the control of those bullies anymore.
You're going to be in control of your own life.
>> TAMMY: It got better when I came out, when I was able to tell my friends and family that
I'm still me but I'm not quite who you thought. When I was able to say "I'm transgender."
>> SHAUN: So the thing about things getting better is it doesn't just happen once. Like
it's not one day you wake up and you go, "Oh my God, things are better." Things keep getting
better over and over, and in really small ways. Things got better the first time I said
to myself, "Okay, I admit it. I'm gay." Like that was a huge step. Things got better the
first time I told a friend, and now just somebody else other than me knew. Things got better
when I stood before my brother and it was like the hardest thing in the world to say
to admit it. And I couldn't even get through the sentence. And I started crying, and he
gave me a hug. And he just, like, almost laughed at me. It was actually really an awkward situation.
But he almost laughed at me and just said, "Yeah, it's okay." And he gave me a hug.
>> RANDY: If I could tell myself, at the age of 14, what I've wanted to have heard from
an older person is that it does get better and that you deserve that. You deserve an
awesome education. You will be loved by somebody. Somebody will love you back.
>> MARK: I'd say, "Don't worry so much about the labels or the definition or the exactly
or figuring out precisely what you are or who you are or who you may be."
>> CYNTHIA: Back in middle school and high school, you know, I thought it was maybe just
me and, you know, a couple of other people I knew. But I didn't realize that there were
all these great resources out there, you know, lots of youth centers or LGBT centers. And
I wish I sort of knew that. And maybe I would have reached out to those groups and realize
that, you know, there are other ways of dealing with family issues, especially within Asian
communities. >> JOHN: Well, when I was a young teenager,
if someone had told me that, "In 10 years, I would be living in California or that I
would have a boyfriend," both of those things would seem equally strange and impossible.
So the truth of the matter is, is even if you think you know everything that's going
to happen in your life and that you're able to predict all of these terrible sad depressing
things that are going to happen, you really never know when or how quickly things can
get better for you. >> JOEY: There's nowhere to go but up. This
is temporary. And like all of the stuff that you are experiencing at school or the stuff
you're going through, tons of people go through that. But it's definitely not worth it to
not persevere through it. It'd be really bad for you to want to end your life at that point,
because it's so early on and there are so much more to life.
>> MARK: So if you're thinking as a teenager that maybe hurting yourself is going to be
a good way of getting out of the pain, don't do it. Just think of yourself being a little
older, maybe not 40, maybe 25. But think of yourself coming back and telling you that
it's going to be okay, because it is. >> SHAUN: Whether in your personal life, in
your friendships, at work, things are getting better really quickly. Stay here to see it.
>> JOEY: Just don't do it. I don't know what else to say. It's just--it's going to get
so much better if you hang on. >> MARK: It's going to get a lot better.
>> CYNTHIA: It really gets better. >> NICK: And it does get better.
>> JOHN: If you don't hang on for just a year more or a couple of months more, whatever
it may be, you might not get to meet your best friend, you might not get to meet the
person that you'll spend the rest of your life with. So just hang on and you will.