For a long time I have not been able to accept myself or my own sexual orientation. I started to like girls when I was 7 years old, I didnt realize it then at the time. My first girlfriend was in the 6th grade. When others found out about me they judged and treated me terribly. We broke up becuase of this. From then on I would keep my thoughts and feelings about the same sex to myself.
In the 8th grade I fell in love with my best friend. We dated but she didnt want anyone to know because she knew her family wouldn’t be accepting. We unfortunatley didn’t last. I dated another friend of mine and she came out. At times I have identified myself as bisexual. Then at other times I’m not sure anymore.
My family on my Mom’s side isn’t accepting. My Mom is bisexual, though and she understands. Today I am accepting of myself. I know I can’t please everyone and I can’t choose the way I feel. I tried to believe I didn’t like girls but I know I do. Things get better. I have learned to accept myself and love myself. This is why I Give A Damn.
I’m Taylor. I’m straight. I’ve never had any doubt that people should be created equally no matter who they love, what they look like, or what their beliefs are.
I’ve always gone by a certain motto, that if it’s in someones life, and they aren’t hurting you, there is no reason to discriminate, and no reason to basically hate them just because it isn’t your belief. I’ve never understood how a parent could be so cruel, and throw their own child out because of who they are. Don’t you tell your child “be yourself”, or “no matter what you do in life, we’ll love you”?
I have had no experience with this, and I never hope to. But I’d like to say to those kids, and people out their that feel like your families don’t care, or have shunned you, that it gets better. Family isn’t only blood deep, its about people you care about. I care about you, we’ve never met, but if we ever did, I care. I give a damn about you, and your equality, and I always will.
I am a bisexual woman. I have been in a relationship with one of the most wonderful women I have ever met, for a couple of years now. Up until my early twenties I had only been with men, which felt very natural to me, and never even really thought of being with a woman. At a certain point, I did think about it, and it didn’t feel unnatural to me. I have never struggled with my sexuality or my feelings toward either sex, it just is what it is, and I have found that I have loved people based on who they are as a person, not their gender.
I also come from a very conservative Christian home. My family has been part of our church for two generations so, needless to say, my family is a part of the fabric of the community there. I was never taught to hate anyone, but I was definitely under the impression that gay was not “okay” for me. My parents have met gay friends of mine and it was never an issue, but I was aware that they voted Yes on Prop 8, so I knew where they stood. I am thankful that they managed to successfully raise two open-minded children, despite their attitudes and the attitudes of the church.
Ironically enough, my parents are convinced that my sibling and I have been indoctrinated by modern culture, while they are the ones who tune in to a well known conservative news channel for a couple of hours every evening.
Recently, my parents “outed” me. I can’t blame them for being shocked and upset – I expected it. In fact, I expected it to be a lot worse than it was, but it was bad enough. They were filled with disapproval of my bad moral choice, read me bible verses condemning homosexuality, and while they reiterated that they love me, even now, four months later, I’m pretty sure they are still in deep denial.
My mom still likes to mention, “When you marry a nice man one day.” I am taking it day by day, but it is a very intense process, as I don’t wish to ruin my relationship with my parents, but it will have to change. To think that they would rather me live a lie and turn my back on the greatest love of my life so far, just so that it looks good to the rest of my family and our church friends, is devastating.
I know in my heart that God loves us all equally. Unfortunately, throughout history, the bible has been used inappropriately by cultures and a lot of churches to rationalize and mask their own hateful agendas. I am thankful that I have not turned by back on my faith, because it is one of the things in my life that is helping me to deal with my life at the moment, having just “come out” to my parents and some friends.
I have prayed for years for clarity and guidance regarding my sexuality and my faith and the position I am in with my family and church community, being a bisexual woman. What happened? I was finally put in a situation by my parents where I had the chance to stop lying about my relationship, and I took that opportunity.
Since coming out, I have met several wonderful Christians who have a deep, deep faith, and who truly strive to live by Jesus’ example that Love is the greatest thing of all, and I have found a church that is all-inclusive and is still rooted in the teachings of Jesus. I would encourage people to not give up on their faith, for the bible reads, “Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.”
There are all-inclusive faith communities out there if you look for them! My hope is that one day my parents, family and friends can celebrate me for who I am fully, otherwise, they’re going to miss out on a wonderful part of their lives.
Went I first met my girlfriend I was truly happy. I’d been searching for years for the right woman for me. I finally found her at work, of all places. She would come down to get food from the deli where I worked and one day a mutual friend came to see me with her. We hit it off and I asked her out and she accepted. Our relationship blossomed from there.
In 2005 we had a small civil union ceremony in Connecticut. After that things changed, she was acting like she wanted to tell me something major. I just brushed it off until one day when she said, “I don’t feel comfortable as a woman, I feel that I am a man.” This blew my mind and I was confused on what to do. We talked about it and she had top surgery a year later. I had a rough time adjusting to all those changes that came and were yet to to come.
I realized you need to support all the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people no matter what. We have many friends who are transgendered and in the community.
Growing up, I saw gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered and questioning people marginalized, shut out, and excluded. This bothered me a great deal. I knew they had done nothing wrong. I identify as a straight woman. When I married my husband (a straight man) in 2005, he had three daughters that I was about to raise. I asked him, “How would you feel if one of your daughters were a lesbian?” He replied, “That would be awesome!” I knew then that he was a good person.
While none of our teens has come out to us, we have raised them to believe that being gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered is absolutely okay. Hopefully soon, we will become a foster/adoptive family. It is our goal to provide a permanent, safe home and an accepting, caring family for a gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered teen. Some people think we are crazy for this, but we don’t care what they think. This is definitely a challenge in rural western Illinois. It is not exactly an accepting climate all of the time. But our family feels we are up for this challenge.
I am Aaron. I’m 30 years old and am proud to be an openly gay man. I was adopted when I was one from the country of India and have lived in Wisconsin ever since. My mother passed away when I was ten. I grew up in a religous household but an open minded household as well. My parents were democrats. At the age of 18 I came out of the closet. My dad took it harder than I expected. Probably because of our age difference. He was 68 when I told him. It took him about two years, but has come around and has been a really supportive parent.
The thing that has impressed me the most has been my friends. Where I live in Wisconsin, is a very conservative small republican city. When I moved to Oconomowoc when I was 18 I didnt know how people would react. Suprisingly everybody was very open minded. I have the best friends a person could ask for. My friends have come to the gay bars on numerous occasions with me even though they are straight. And I’m not just talking girls. For my 29th birthday 48 friends came out to the bars with me. Some of those guys used to be very homophobic, but they have said to me that before they met me they had sterotypes of gay men and once they got to know me they realized I was just like any other person. And I love my friends and know they have my back no matter what!
Okay….this, I suppose, is my story.
I had recently broken up with my boyfriend (on and off) because he thought we were actually more like friends, since he was too shy to be romantic, and apparently he wanted me to make the first move.
Anyway, it had been a few months after I kissed my best friend Britney, and I was confused about my feelings towards her. I had written down my feelings, describing how much I missed her since she moved to another school, how much I wanted to hug her, how much I wondered how she kissed again.
Well, my mom discovered it and she sort of…freaked out. She thought Britney and I were going out, and she started to cry.
After and hour or two, I helped her understand what I was feeling, and she told me she was scared, since she thought lesbians have abusive relationships sometimes. I wondered if that was true, or if she was just wanting to keep me the way I was,
I have discovered that I am straight, but I still have trouble keeping emotional and sexual intimacy from clashing in my mind.
I give a damn, you know why? I give a damn, because I don’t want girls to be afriad to tell their parents who they ARE. I give a damn, because I don’t want some girl to kill herself over what her mother said about her coming out.
I might be straight…BUT I GIVE A DAMN!
Since high school I knew I found men more attractive than women, but I never knew how to tell my parents how I felt. So for years I put on a front! I would oogle women, and put on a show for the Victoria’s Secret commercials, etc. And to add to my feeling the need to put on a charade, my parents weren’t lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender friendly.
One day, I got the brave idea to tell them about myself. Naturally, my mom panicked and tried to figure out if there was an easy solution. She asked my if I thought I needed to talk to a counselor, so I agreed to see if it would work and maybe help my mom to cope. After about 2 months of talking to a therapist, I felt no different, so I told her that I felt normal and didn’t need to go anymore. I spent about 6 more years in the closet after that feeling trapped! I thought about leaving home in the middle of the night and never coming back or even committing suicide to escape my misery.
In April of 2012, I met a friend of my sister, who is a good friend of mine still to this day. We fooled around and then talked about it in an inbox thread on Facebook, only for me to forget to log out of my account and my mom to get on the computer I was using and find it! My parents and I talked for what seemed like forever that night, but they came to accept me for who I am and I know that they still love me now as much as they did years ago.
When I was 18, I decided that it was time to come out to my mother. I had been fighting with my ex that night, and being that mothers know all, she knew something was up. So I told her.
That lead to a week-long fight, where neither of us talked to each other. That was, however, after she had lectured me on how; 1) God does not agree with what I am doing, 2) Our family will not agree, and 3) How much of an embarrassment I will be to the family. I let her reasoning get to me, and for her, I tried to change.
You would not believe what I went through the next few years of my life. If coming out wasn’t hard enough, trying to deal with a family not accepting you just added on to it. I dealt with my pain in the way many people do; partying, sex, all that. However, I reached a point where I decided “Hey, I am better than this!” So, I have decided to give my coming out another go.
I know that I have a wonderful family; they just have different beliefs than I do. And who am I to tell someone that what they believe is wrong; I have heard that all my life! I have siblings who back me continuously and know that I will make a great man, gay or not. I am 23 and about to give my coming out another go. Wish me luck, and I’ll keep you updated.
I am seventy-one years old. I am female and I grew up in a very small town in Appalachia. My parents gave me to an aunt and uncle when I was three years old. I grew up in poverty, across the street from a Baptist Church and next door to the pastor. I can’t remember when I didn’t know I was gay; and I can’t remember being told anything except it was wrong.
I lived in a tiny closet of my own making, I told no one else. I never even heard the word ‘lesbian’ until I was 18. I tried very hard to conform. When I was twenty-one I met a bisexual woman. We had an almost ‘innocent’ relationship. I was fired from my job as a stenographer in a mental health clinic when our relationship was revealed. She attempted suicide and received treatment for depression. Think about that, I was fired for being gay from a Mental Health clinic!
I moved to Atlanta, Georgia and buried myself in the straight community. I met a wonderful man, and grew to love him. He asked me to marry him and I told him about my ‘gay’ life and he said it didn’t matter. He loved me and I certainly loved him. After 16 years and one child, we got a divorce. Although I had been 100% faithful to him, he had not been so with me. He remarried within weeks of our divorce. I buried myself in the ‘gay’ life.
After four years as a ‘player’ my company was sold and the new company moved me to Nashville, TN. I began to question my life choices. I wanted to be married, I didn’t like the life of a ‘player’. I withdrew into myself and spent a whole year without having sex.
Then I met a wonderful woman who was also closeted. I was her first lesbian lover and her last. We have been together for 27 years now. We went to an attorney and had durable powers of attorney drawn up, wills made and wear rings. We are married at least in our own minds. My grandchildren call her Nana and although we have never ‘come out’ (at least until now), we haven’t really tried to hide our relationship. Both sets of my parents died without knowing and that’s okay. My siblings know and for the most part accept us as a couple. One of her sisters acknowledges us as a couple, the others never got the chance.
Being gay has nothing to do with being a good person and should have nothing to do with having a good life. I now have a good life and wish every struggling young person could also have one. It has been a long painful road to get here but it was worth the journey. I wish no one else would ever have to endure the pain of the journey but just be themselves and be happy.
Get informed and get involved. Register to join the campaign and let us know you give a damn about equality.
Spread the word about equality. Watch our damn videos and share them with the people in your life!play
Share your story with us and the people in your life. Tell us why you give a damn about equality!play
For most of us, our families provide the one place where we can be ourselves and know that we will be loved and accepted, no matter what. Our families are our support system, our source of strength, our home.