“If I were Muslim, I’d kill myself.”
No, that’s not what was said. It was: “If I looked like him, I’d kill myself.”
The speaker was my favorite uncle, commenting on an overweight man, across a hotel pool. Considering how much self-talk I had engaged in to convince myself to be seen in a swimsuit, visiting my California relatives, I absorbed this pronouncement in shame and silence, trying desperately to hold onto shreds of self-worth.