Overcoming Fear of Travel, Part 2

Part Two

I’ll get lost.

Yes, yes you will. I got lost constantly. In pretty much every new city I went to, and I was sometimes in a new city every day, I got lost. The good news is that after the first few times, you stop panicking about it. I’d pause, realize I didn’t know where I was, and look around for landmarks. I would try backtracking. I would politely ask a shopkeeper where the train stop/nearest landmark/major road was. Eventually, something would work. I learned to give myself extra time and walk more slowly so I could pay attention to where I was going when I headed in. I learned to be patient with myself and others. I also learned to carry a snack and water, as being hungry and thirsty when lost makes everything worse.

I’m too old/young/disabled/insert your reason here to travel.

Listen, people older, younger, more disabled, more obviously queer, more everything than you have traveled. This is really about two things: safety and access. Both of those have the same answers, which are knowledge and community. If you have concerns about being able to get what you need, or about your safety when traveling, look things up first. You don’t have to go somewhere with rocky streets and narrow doorways if you’re in a wheelchair. You can travel in places that don’t have dire travel warnings for women. You can avoid countries where being queer is illegal. But you can also choose to use your community to expand your options. Perhaps you have a couple of buff friends who would be happy to cart you and your chair up and down steps, or someone knows the one accessible hostel in the area. Maybe it’s safe for women to travel if they are inside by dark, or if they travel in a mixed-gender group. Can you ask those dykes you just met if they’ve ever been to a country you really wanted to see? You could discover that, while being gay is technically illegal, no one cares in the big cities and no one asks in the small ones.


What fears do you have about traveling? How have you overcome them? Share in the comments!


About Melissa ra Karit

I'm a queer, poly, genderqueer Witch. I'm a sex-positive feminist, an activist, and a writer. I believe that when we attend to our individual good, we approach the world with good in our hearts and change the world for the better. Opinions expressed here are solely my personal opinions, and do not represent the views of any organization with which I am affiliated.
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