Tuesday, June 30, 2009

For All Of You, Yes You Are........

This one is for the girls whether lesbian, bi, transgender or questioning, don't ever let anyone tell you different.....

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Pride arrives at last...........

Set to Heather Small's song "Proud"

Today is the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. It is also the day that many communities around the world celebrate Gay Pride with parades, parties and gatherings.

Pride, to me, is the day I commemorate the fact that I am no longer ashamed of who I am. I am no longer living in fear that others may reject me because of it. I now embrace this part of me as much as I now embrace life itself.

I have come to realize, at long last, that all of who I am is a gift from God, and it is GOOD!

I am no longer ashamed.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

It Takes More Than 3000 emails............(continued again)

This post has taken a different tack from what we originally imagined, LOL. About what it has taken to maintain a relationship for nearly 3 years while living 2,653 miles apart.
So this is really part three of the beginning of it all. This is the post you are all panting for we know........We are enjoying reliving it as much as you are all reading it.
(LOL, we thought (briefly) about putting lots of details but then decided we didn't want our blog to come up on the porno search engines, lol.)

That first kiss. I know it still comes to my mind often. It was every movie kiss I ever saw and it felt exactly how I imagined a first kiss would be and should be. We just stood there kissing, holding on to each other until the world stopped spinning.

I never knew a kiss could be so powerful. It is so true, the rest of the world disappeared and it was just Rebecca and I, together at last!

I remember undressing her slowly, admiring her naked form, leading her to the bed, laying next to her, letting my eyes linger over every inch of her, just soaking in her beauty. I never wanted anyone as much as I wanted Lorrie in those first few moments, and that is oh so much more true even today.

It was all so easy, so natural, so the way making love was meant to be. There was no awkardness, no clumsiness, no "this is kind of gross" feelings...LOL. OMG, making love with this woman was and is the most natural and amazing thing in the world!

The want, the desire, the passion that had all built up over the past weeks of emails and phone calls and day dreams was allowed to FINALLY flow freely from both of us!!! It was and still is absolutely amazing the way Rebecca can make me feel from the tips of my toes to the inside of my soul!!

Nothing ever felt so right to me as being there with her, making love to her, and it was really love by then, so much, much more than just sex. I was one with her, I knew every movement and every reaction before she even had it. I felt as if I had touched her soul and I knew she had touched mine. I could not get enough of her. I still can't.

It was so much more than sex! Just sex wouldn't have left me laying next to her wondering where she had been my whole life. There was and still is such a connection that is difficult to put words to, it is amazing! I had never felt anything like that and I couldn't wait to make her feel that way again and again and again and again...oh, you get the idea!!

My whole world was wrapped up in her until finally, she had to go back to her hotel to get ready for her training. It was nearly 5:30 am and it seemed like only minutes had passed.

It really did feel like a matter of minutes, but it was about 9 hours!!! ...and yes, damn...I had to go to a training class in the morning (or in a couple of hours, lol). How was I going to do that when all I wanted to do was stay there with Rebecca and learn more about this wonderful and amazing woman that made me feel things physically and emotionally that I had never felt before!!

I drove her to her hotel in nearly total silence. I suspected she wanted to see me again, (duh) and I sure knew I wanted to see more of her. Lorrie told me what time the training was finished, and I asked her if she wanted to do something later on that evening. She told me she had to make sure the other person from work didn't already have plans for them, (one of the men she worked with was also taking the training, but Lorrie told him an old friend lived in Reno) and that she would call me when it was finished, and yes she wanted to see me again, I could join her and her co-worker if I wanted to. Of course I did. I drove home in a wonderful haze and finally fell asleep for a few hours, dreaming of seeing her again.

Lorrie called that afternoon to tell me that her co-worker had discovered "Blackjack," and was going to play all night (Yea Reno!!!) so she was free and wanted come over again. We spent the evening together, only this time managed to venture out for a very late dinner. I got us lost downtown for a little bit on the way home. I have lived in this town for more than 20 years and two days with Lorrie and I didn't know which way was up!!!

But I knew I was madly in love with her. Yes, the So Very God Damn Rational Rebecca had fallen head over heels in love by email, phone and two short nights together. I knew she was going home in three days to her children, husband and lived 2653 miles away. Obviously I had lost my mind. But it was just my heart I lost after all.

Continuing.......(Lorrie and the kids are off for the weekend, so don't get too impatient OK?)

(You may read the continuing story of More Than 3000 emails - 2000 phone calls by clicking on Part I, Part II and Part III and Part IV)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

It Takes More Than 3000 Emails........(continued)

(You may read the continuing story of More Than 3000 emails - 2000 phone calls by clicking on Part I, Part II and Part III and Part IV)

From the beginning of our correspondence, Lorrie had made it perfectly clear what her motivations were, she needed to find out what it was like to be with a woman, that she was married and wished to remain so, that once she got this out of her system, she would then be able to live the rest of her life happily heterosexual. And she emphatically stated that she was honest with her husband about everything. And she was. He did know pretty much from the start what was going on.

Yes, I wanted sex, sex and more sex!!!! LOL! I was just in the beginning of trying to figure "me" out. Even though I had known for years that I was attracted to women, I really thought that if I just had this experience I could get back to living the so called "normal life" that I had chosen so many years before. Little did I know that just by getting to know Rebecca on the phone and through many, many emails it had already turned into so much more than just sex! I only knew this woman from a distance and was already so attracted and connected to her!

And yes, I did tell my husband pretty much everything. I'm sure I left a lot of the details out, but he knew what was going on.

My motivations were a bit more fuzzy. After reading her first emails, I liked her a whole lot. I wanted to at least keep in touch with her because we shared so many of the same experiences. I liked talking to her on the phone too. I did accept that maybe we would just be friends for a while or even for the rest of our lives, but really we would just be friends in the end. When we started talking about the sexual side of things, I knew I hoped there was a possibility we were going to be intimate, I really found myself extremely (totally, completely and entirely) attracted to her, but it still was never really guaranteed.

I wouldn't say I thought it was a guarantee that we were going to be intimate, but I did think there was a very great possibility!! After all, we had talked about it and wrote about it in great detail...and there was definitely a big spark present!!

It certainly bothered me a lot that she was married and that she lived so far away. I told Lorrie that part of the relationship was entirely up to her, I would not make the first move in that direction. I never wanted her to feel pressured by me into sharing her first time. She let me know right from the beginning that if we did, it would be short term, maybe two nights out of the week she was to be here.

Me make the first move...yikes!!!!!! LOL! Sexually I don't think I had ever made the first move before, but maybe that was because the previous moves were being made towards men. I knew I wanted to make the first move! I knew I couldn't be intimate with Rebecca and then just walk away and never talk to her again. I figured we would maintain some sort of long distance friendship. Wow, what a long distance friendship and much much more it turned out to be!!

When she walked into the bar, immediately, the electricity between us was palpable. My brain did start to work finally and we started talking. The time in the bar is a blur in my mind, I remember being so nervous, I could barely look at her after she sat down, afraid she would see too much in my own face and scare her away. I know we made small talk about how great it was to finally meet each other and had another drink. All the wonderful things about her in her emails and phone calls were definitely there in person, making the crush I had on her already deepen. Finally, all I was really doing was hoping and waiting for her to ask to go back to my place.

So I asked her if she wanted another drink, praying that she would say no, let's go....

I don't remember much of the small talk either. I think we were pretty much the only ones in the bar at that time, it was early in the evening. I remember remarking that Monday night football was on already; back east it wouldn't be on until 8 or 9pm. (6pm Reno time) I know we talked in the bar for about 20 minutes or so and then when Rebecca ask me if I wanted another drink, I said.....

"No, I think I want to go to your place...." I caught my breath, at last, "OK, let's go"

There had been many smiles and smirks (smirks? I smirked? I thought they were very meaningful looks, damn, just smirks.......) and looks that made me think that maybe Rebecca was ready to go too! (Oh YEAH BABY!!) We made our way to the car and took off for her place. This I will never forget....we both put our elbows on the console in the middle...our elbows touched...OMG, the electricity I felt go through me was absolutely amazing!!! It wasn't at all like static electricity, it was as if lightning struck! And it struck hard!

My place was about 15 minutes from the Airport, (within the city of Reno everywhere is about 15 minutes from the airport, I kid you not.) I made it in 5. Once we were in the door, I got nervous again, I wasn't all that experienced in this sort of thing myself, so I asked her if she wanted some wine? No. I asked if she wanted tea? No. I went to pour myself a glass of wine, thinking that I really should kiss her, I want to kiss her very much, when I felt her hand on the crook of my arm, I turned, looked into her eyes, smiled, and then she kissed me....

Lightly at first, and I returned it in kind, then we kissed more intensely and that's the moment when the rest of the world dropped away, time stopped and there was only Lorrie and I, our passion and our need remaining...

(yup, leaving you hanging again...while we talk more about exactly what to say next)

To be continued again..........

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

It Takes More Than 3000 Emails..........

Lorrie and I have talked about blogging about what it has taken to maintain a relationship for nearly 3 years while living 2,653 miles apart. (that's door to door by the way according to Google Maps) Wow, that is a long way away!! But there are so many times I can feel you right next to me!

We thought it might be fun to tell you how it started and what it has been like from both points of view.
Lorrie's text in blue
Rebecca's text in dark purple

The Beginning

Lorrie and I began communicating with each other after she sent me an email on Friend Finders. I signed up to meet lesbians in Reno without going to the one gay bar I knew of at the time, I hoped to
make friends and maybe find someone special, I didn't know at the time that I would meet my true love, my partner and my soulmate all at once.

Since Lorrie was from PA, not Reno, her email went to my filtered folder, I saw it there and was going to delete it. But I read it instead.
(I have thanked Rebecca many times for digging me out of her filtered folder!) Her feelings of being attracted to women all her life, that she was married, had never acted on it, could not deny the feelings any longer was eerily familiar. I didn't know how many of us were out there at that time, I knew about me, and had heard stories of women leaving their husbands to be who they really were before, but I didn't KNOW any one else. So I emailed her back. And she wrote more to me.

Yes, I know you are all thinking why was Lorrie emailing women in Reno. Well let me reemphasize the line above; I could not deny the feelings of being attracted to women and I needed to act on them! I don't think I am alone in the thought that I had; if I just acted on this desire and "got it out of my system" I could somehow find a way to be happily heterosexual again. Don't all laugh at once!! And after all, a business trip to Reno was the perfect opportunity. OK, we are both a little embarrassed how we met, can you tell? LOL. But not sorry at all....

Our first few emails told each other about ourselves. Our families, her husband, my ex, our kids, our jobs. She told me she would be flying to Reno on business in about 6 weeks. Lorrie wanted to know what it had been like for me with my first woman, when did I first have feelings for other women, you know, all the usual things two women talk about. I really liked her already from her emails, she was open and honest, friendly and warm, they were like a lot of her posts actually. I felt like we were right there talking, face to face. It was easy to say I would like to meet her when she came to town.

Rebecca's story of her first experience with a woman is a pretty good one, she will have to tell all of you sometime, lol! I think NOT, I don't even remember it anymore anyway....

We started talking on the phone shortly after that. Well, it was more Lorrie would talk and I would try to answer at first. I didn't used to be much of a phone talker. I seem to need to look at someone to really talk to them. But Lorrie was a trooper, constantly asking me questions to draw me out. Telling me things about her life and what she liked to do, so I could answer her in kind. It wasn't that hard really, right from the start, she could make me laugh. Just the way she looked at life and things, it was so much like my own sarcastic sense of humor. The humor got me talking back to her and finally she got me to the point where it is so easy for me to talk to her about anything, on the phone or in person.

Now, can any of you believe this?! Isn't it hard to believe that the woman that can go on and on in her blogs (not that that is a bad thing and it IS very educational)(educational = boring...) would only give me one or two word answers to my questions at first! So then I decided I would go to the interview technique of asking open ended questions; you know, like "so Rebecca, if we ever get to meet face to face, what would you like to do.......to me?" OK, so I didn't ask that question until at least the third phone call, lol! (Yeah, that question shocked me too, she seemed so.....so proper!)

I couldn't wait to meet her in the weeks before she was to arrive. When we started emailing I had just moved into my new tiny apartment, and I had only kitchenware in it. I had been trying to furnish the place but was also wanting to fill it with things that I would love so I was taking my time, I was sleeping on the floor, had no where to sit, my dresser was still cardboard boxes, I had the laptop hooked up and a TV.......you get the idea.

Now, I had to move my furniture schedule up, and after all those phone calls, emails and questions, I figured the first piece of furniture I better get was a bed!

We really did hit it off on the phone. It was (eventually) very easy to talk to one another, about everything and anything. We had had similar experiences in our marriages and dealing with heterosexual sex; but we also had wonderful conversations about our kids, our jobs, our hobbies...just anything that came up. I could not wait to meet her in person and it had turned into so much more than just a possible hookup with a woman.

So yes, the phone calls were nice but let me tell you the emails took a turn for the hot, hot , HOT!!!!! I think if we dig out some of those old emails we could write a very juicy lesbian romance novel!!

Sooooooo THE DAY Lorrie was to arrive was upon us. I cleaned the apartment, went and bought some pink roses and got ready to meet her. I put the roses in water, took one out to give to her and left.

I was as nervous as could be, we had decided to meet in one of the bars in the hotel she was staying at later that evening after she landed. I got to the hotel early, and discovered the "bar" was really in the middle of the casino floor, LOL. OMG NO WAY!!! I called her up, and she asked if I could find another one that was more private, she was getting ready and would be down shortly. (I am not big on casinos so I didn't really know the place very well.) I hunted around and found one that was good sized and hardly anyone was there at all. I called her and let her know where I was, bought a drink, and sat down in a lovely oversized easy chair to wait. For about 20 minutes. Sweating. Will she show up? What if she changes her mind, chickens out? OMG what the hell am I DOING HERE???

The days before leaving for my business trip to Reno I could almost not contain myself. I felt like a little girl going to Disneyland for the first time! I kept having to remind myself that I was going there to go to a training class for some silly robotic system at work and not to finally meet this wonderful woman I had been talking to and getting closer and closer to for weeks now.

I tried to amuse myself on the plane ride out west; I even took my sons old Gameboy along. Nothing would take my thoughts off of meeting Rebecca, seeing her face to face, being in the same room with her!

After I made it to the hotel, I showered and started to get ready for our big "date". I was so nervous. I briefly, very briefly considered not going down to the bar. I remember looking in the mirror and saying to myself "Lorrie you really like this woman and already have a good relationship with her; just go downstairs and have a good time!"

Once I walked in the bar and saw Rebecca waiting for me in the big comfy chair with drink in hand and one waiting for me (yes, of course she knew what I liked to drink, we had talked about it) everything just fell into place. EVERYTHING JUST FELL INTO PLACE!!!

And then this tall, amazing blond walks in, and I know it is her, she's here, SHE SHOWED UP! I could feel the biggest smile ever form on my face when I saw her, and then my brain lost it.... OhIhopeshelikesmewhatifshedoesn'tstandupstandupshakeherhandnogiveherahugwhatshouldIdoohhelp!!!
We are leaving you hanging right here.....to be continued of course!

(You may read the continuing story of More Than 3000 emails - 2000 phone calls by clicking on Part I, Part II and Part III and Part IV)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

6 reasons to forgive yourself

I ran across this on the Huffington Post last night while the boys were having an all night RIFTS gaming party type thing with 6 of their friends, it is by self help gurus Ed and Deb Shapiro.

I don't know about the rest of you but I sure have a problem sometimes forgiving myself about things. I am my own worst critic. I have learned how to forgive others and even cut ties with people that continue to hurt me, but not so easy for when it is me beating up myself. Amy, whose blog, Making Space, had wonderful thoughts on "not touching the hot stove anymore."

So I think I needed to really see this last night. I wouldn't normally read a post like that on the HuffPo, but they titled it Dinner With Monica Lewinsky, lol. Well.......I HAD to read that! I am glad it wasn't really about Monica after all.

1. We are not who we were yesterday
Within the space of seven years every cell in our body dies and is reformed, our thoughts are constantly changing and our feelings come and go. We are literally not the same person we were a minute ago, let alone a day, a month or a year ago. As we are no longer who we were when we did the deed, so we can bring forgiveness and hold our past self with kindness and compassion.

2. Forgiveness is not the same as forgetting
Inside us is the equivalent of an airplane's black box: everything we have been through is logged in, whether we are aware of it or not. So forgetting something is not really an option. No matter how hard we try, it will always be lurking around the corner, waiting to drag our emotions down again. On the other hand, forgiveness accepts the presence of the dreaded deed, it looks it full in the face and says, 'Yes, I know you. Now let's have tea together and get to know each other a bit better.'

3. We can learn so much from our mistakes
By getting to know who we were we have the chance to learn from what we did. We can become our own greatest teacher by seeing how mistaken we can be, even when we fully believe we are right. Mistakes show us we are human. If we do not acknowledge our blunders then we are not only blind to our own failings, but we are also much more likely to repeat them.

4. I am ok but I don't always get it right
Forgiving ourselves is not the same as forgiving what we did. A bad or rotten act is just that, and no amount of forgiveness will change it. But nor does constantly blaming ourselves. For instance, Monica made some obvious mistakes - but to continually blame herself will get her nowhere fast. What we can do is to really accept what we did while forgiving that part of us that was unaware of what we were doing or how it would impact other people; the part that just doesn't always get it right.

5. Accepting ourselves, warts and all
When we do something wrong or hurtful we tend to beat ourselves up, to try to find redemption through shame, remorse, and even self-hatred. "I am such an idiot," "My stupidity ruined everything," "I am a hopeless human being." Forgiving ourselves is the opposite. It is a radical acceptance of ourselves just as we are, mistakes and all, so that we can know ourselves more deeply and honestly. And because, in the long run, it is only through such self-acceptance that we are free to love and laugh again. Remember: Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly!

6. Letting go of the drama queen
This is one of the hardest things to do, but holding onto the story and the details of that happened is actually like a smokescreen that clouds our mind and stops us from seeing that we are more than the event, that whatever we did is not the whole of us. We can put the story down. We do not have to hold on to it, or keep repeating it in our minds. We can say: "I made a mistake, but I am not the guilt, I am not the mistake, I am not the failure, it is not the whole of me."

Forgiving ourselves is an ongoing process. Every time we criticize or blame ourselves for being hopeless, useless, wrong, stupid, for all the self-dislike and self-denial, for believing we deserve the bad things that happen, that we must have done something wrong to be so abused, for thinking we should have known better, that it was all our own fault, that we were asking for it, for rejecting ourselves, for abandoning ourselves, for ignoring or denying our own needs and feelings, we can simply say, "I forgive myself." We do not need to create more guilt, shame, or blame--the world has enough already.

Here is a little practice you can do. Sitting quietly, aware of your breathing, silently repeat, "Whether through my words or my actions, if I have created suffering for another, I forgive myself. If I have created suffering for myself, I forgive myself. May I be happy, may I be filled with forgiveness and love."

So glad PA Senator John Eichelberger is Allowing Us To Exist

Have seen this on a number of places today: PA State Senator John Eichelberger, who introduced a bill that would amend the Pennsylvania constitution to define marriage as being between only a woman and a man, told Philadelphia radio station WHYY today that gays are “They're [gays] not being punished. We’re allowing them to exist, and do what every American can do. We’re just not rewarding them with any special designation.”

Keystone Progress, has created a petition demanding an apology.

Below is a partial transcript from the show:

Leach: How would he [Eichelberger] want to encourage stability in gay couples?

Eichelberger: I wouldn’t. I mean they can practice whatever sexual activity they like to practice, but there’s no reason to give them special consideration. We don’t give them special consideration in Pennsylvania for any reason. Why in the world would we allow them to marry?

Leach: How would he want to encourage stability in gay couples?

Eichelberger: There is no reason to encourage that type of behavior in Pennsylvania.

Eichelberger: That comes back to the definition of family and that’s where we differ. We can call all kinds of things families. I mean, we can say a 3 party marriage is a family, or 7 or 8 people or marrying younger and younger children these days .

Host: Are you saying that by their very nature homosexual relationships are dysfunctional?

Eichelberger: [Pause] Ummmm. I guess I would say that. I would say that.

Eichelberger: This changes the definition of marriage, allowing same-sex, and then like I said, 5-10 years from now it’ll be polygamy, marrying younger people, it’ll be whatever…It won’t be a 6 year old, it’ll be a 15 year old, then it’ll be a 14 year old, then it’ll be a 13 year old.

Leach: Should our only policy towards [same-sex] couples be one of punishment, to somehow prove that they’ve done something wrong?

Eichelberger: They’re not being punished. We’re allowing them to exist, and do what every American can do. We’re just not rewarding them with any special designation.

It is worth hearing the entire broadcast as State Senator Daylin Leach, a Democrat representing Montgomery County, who has introduced a bill to amend the Pennsylvania ban on same-sex marriage to offer “full and equal marriage rights” to same-sex couples, voices wonderful truths.

cross posted from Blogging For Truth

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

What are the Odds?

Remember when you first realized you were gay. Remember thinking…. I am married….I have a family…… Why did it take me so long to figure this out?…. I must be the only person going through this.

Of course we all came to realize that we were not the only ones going through this. We found numerous message boards, blogs and support groups online where we found support from complete strangers that have grown to be friends.

Imagine finding out that somebody in your own immediate family is going through the same thing!

Whenever I would get together with my sister-in-law (I will refer to her as Gail), we would discuss generalities of what was going on in our lives but rarely discuss specifics. Finally one day we decided that we needed to go out for drinks and tell all! I told her that my story would blow hers out of the water. She laughed and said “No way, mine will beat yours hands down!”

I had a suspicion of what her story was as I always thought her husband (I will refer to him as Dan) was gay. So I figured we both had pretty much the same story but with a gay husband as opposed to a lesbian wife…

Well, I was right! We met for drinks and Gail announced that “I have a boyfriend and so does Dan!”.
I respond with “I have a girlfriend!” (At that time my H didn’t have a girlfriend.)

So, what are the odds that in the same family two couples could get married, have families and then have one spouse realize many years later that they are gay? (By the way, both Gail and Dan and H and I have been married for 19 years…we got married within 6 months of one another.) I would have to say the odds are not great…but it happened.

It has been wonderful confiding in Gail. Even though she is on the opposite side of the situation in her relationship (the straight spouse), she has been so supportive and we have had some great times going out and telling all! We have been able to be each others therapists and the only cost has been a lot of drinks and a lot of laughs…..along with a ton of understanding!!!

My ten cents on the Dallas Principles

I don't know if our followers have seen the Dallas Principles or not, but they seem to have caused quite the commotion in our community when they came out. I received an email shortly after they were posted on the web so I went and checked it out, I read it, and here is what it said:
On May 15-17, 2009 in Dallas, Texas twenty-four thinkers, activists, and donors gathered to discuss the immediate need for full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual transgender people in the United States. Collectively we prepared The Dallas Principles.

The following eight guiding principles underlie our call to action.

In order to achieve full civil rights now, we avow:

1.Full civil rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals must be enacted now. Delay and excuses are no longer acceptable.

2.We will not leave any part of our community behind.

3.Separate is never equal.

4.Religious beliefs are not a basis upon which to affirm or deny civil rights.

5.The establishment and guardianship of full civil rights is a non-partisan issue.

6.Individual involvement and grassroots action are paramount to success and must be encouraged.

7.Success is measured by the civil rights we all achieve, not by words, access or money raised.

8.Those who seek our support are expected to commit to these principles.
Looked good to me so I signed up. Nice principles to blog by, to remember as I write to my state and federal representatives, you know, principles to be activists by.

So what is there to cause a commotion about? I guess some folks wondered why they weren't invited to be part of the 24, some were offended that the 24 took it upon themselves to do this, rather uppity don't you think? Others wanted to know why this wasn't put up somewhere for us to vote on and others don't like the way some of the 24 have fought for our rights in the past, and some didn't like that they weren't all from Dallas.

After reading some posts and comments, I had to pause and think this through for myself.......and then do what I love....research. In researching, I found out that the 24 see each other at activist functions, email and communicate. They all agreed not much was getting done by the big money LGBT organizations, they had all noticed that our grass roots efforts were getting far more accomplished with far less money. And yes, some of them were from organizations that haven't gotten much done in the past. So, they decided to meet and talk about it. They met in Dallas, (if they had decided to meet in Reno, they would be called the Reno Principles. They might have picked Philadelphia, cause The Philadelphia Principles sounds kind of Constitutional and has a nice freedom like ring to it, but I digress.)

No, they didn't put them to a vote, but then we would all still be arguing about them and wanting our personal favorites in there to this very day. It would be 2010 and we would still be debating them. Face it, that's how it goes isn't it? I don't know what else could have been added frankly. And maybe they figured no one else was jumping on this idea, so why shouldn't they? Hell I blogged once about these very things on The Blend, (no, I didn't invent the ideas,) but then I sure didn't do anything to put them into action did I? They did, they didn't just say we should do this, they acted on it.

Now about those pesky activists who were on the wrong bandwagon for a while. Well, maybe they saw the light? I hope so. I would like to think they now have something to remind them if they ever feel like going that route again. If not we can remind them.

Now here is where things could have been done a little better (in my humble opinion), if you go to the website, what I have copied and pasted is pretty much what you will see there, plus some quotes and a couple of videos, if you click on the Click Here, you go to the sign up page. There, you have signed the Dallas Principles. But it doesn't tell you anything more really. "was that it? Now what do I do?" But there is a whole lot more to those principles, more gets explained if you would have clicked on the PDF link. But I have learned from experience, that link doesn't get clicked on because folks think it is just the 8 principles and they clicked to sign up and away they go to another page that still just has the 8 main principles. Just like I did. The first time I went to the page I never even saw the PDF link. I never saw it until today actually, and I clicked on it. My first thought was, why wasn't this on the front page all along?

That PDF link leads you to the whole document. It is 3 pages long. The whole document gives you a better idea that their intention was not to form a new organization, but to pull together all of the ones already out there plus us independent types, under one set of guiding principles. To encourage those of us that use the new social media to get the word out on rallies, protests or what else we might be organizing.

So, because you all know I love the long posts, here is the WHOLE Dallas Principles without clicking anything else:
(And if this isn't enough on the Huffington Post, Lane Hudson explains it a little more.)



President Obama and Congress pledged to lead America in a new direction that included civil rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans. We now sit at a great moment in our history that inspires the nation to return to its highest ideals and greatest promise. We face a historic opportunity to obtain our full civil rights; this is the moment for change. No delay. No excuses.

Nearly forty years ago, a diverse group of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people stood up to injustice at the Stonewall Inn in New York City. In doing so, they submitted themselves to bodily harm and criminal prosecution. Their demand was simple -- equal protection under the law.

Still today, full civil rights has eluded the same community that rioted forty years ago. Instead, untold sums of resources have been spent to divide our nation and turn our lives into a political football.

At several junctures in American history, the stars have aligned to deliver the promise of equal protection under the law to those previously denied. At this unique time in history, our nation must once again exercise the great tradition of making its people equal.

Justice has too long been delayed. A clear path toward full civil equality for the LGBT community is overdue and must come now.

Using fear and misunderstanding to justify discrimination is no longer acceptable in this nation. Those content with the way things are will be judged harshly by history. Those who do not actively advance these ideals or offer excuses will be judged just as harshly. Those who attempt to divide our community or to delay and deny action on civil equality, waiting for the right moment to arrive, will be held accountable.

We reject the idea that honoring the founding principles of our country is controversial. We believe in the inherent human dignity of all people. No longer will we submit our children, our family, our friends and ourselves as a political tool for any Party or ideology. A new day has arrived.


The following eight guiding principles underlie our call to action. In order to achieve full civil rights now, we avow:

1. Full civil rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals must be enacted now. Delay and excuses are no longer acceptable.
2. We will not leave any part of our community behind.
3. Separate is never equal.
4. Religious beliefs are not a basis upon which to affirm or deny civil rights.
5. The establishment and guardianship of full civil rights is a non-partisan issue.
6. Individual involvement and grassroots action are paramount to success and must be encouraged.
7. Success is measured by the civil rights we all achieve, not by words, access or money raised.
8. Those who seek our support are expected to commit to these principles.


Being united by common principles and engaging in united action, we will achieve the following goals:

1. DIGNITY AND EQUALITY. Every lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender person has inherent dignity and worth, and has the right to live free of discrimination and harassment.
2. FAMILY. Every LGBT person has the right to a family without legal barriers to immigration, civil marriage or raising children.
3. ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY. Every LGBT person has the right to economic opportunity free from discrimination in employment, public housing, accommodation, public facilities, credit, and federally funded programs and activities.
4. EDUCATION. Every LGBT child and youth has the right to an education that is affirming, inclusive and free from bullying.
5. NATIONAL SECURITY. Every LGBT person should have the opportunity to serve our country openly and equally in our military and foreign service.
6. CRIME. Every LGBT person should enjoy life protected against bias crimes.
7. HEALTH CARE. Every person should have access to affordable, high quality, and culturally competent health care without discrimination.


1. We demand that government officials act now to achieve full civil rights without delay.
2. Our organizations and individuals need to develop a collaborative and revolutionary new organizing model that mobilizes millions of supporters through emerging web and phone technologies.
3. All LGBT individuals must accept personal responsibility to do everything within their power for equality and should get involved in the movement by volunteering, giving and being out.
4. We will hold elected officials and our organizations accountable for being transparent and achieving full civil rights by active participation when possible and active opposition when necessary.
5. Our allies need to be proactive in public support for full civil rights.
6. Every government measure that quantifies the US citizenry must permit LGBT individuals to self-identify and be counted in every way citizens are counted.
7. We demand that the media present LGBT lives in fair, accurate and objective ways that neither include nor give credence to unsubstantiated, discriminatory claims and opinions.

If you haven't joined or didn't understand it before, you can Click Here, and sign up if you want. You don't even have to do anything else at all. Just let your voice be heard in one more way that you want full equality.

“To be afraid is to behave as if the truth were not true.” - Bayard Rustin

Monday, June 15, 2009

The Annual Boob Squishing!

Now don't you think that if we have to subject ourselves to an annual squishing of our boobs, at least the woman handling and arranging our boobs on the plate should be required to be hot and sexy!!!! This should be a job requirement for a mammogram technician :)

Pride Challenge: Stonewall 40 Years Later

Kelly, who has a blog called Rambling Along, has a yearly Pride Challenge....The idea is to get as many bloggers to post his picture and write on the theme.
This year's theme is Stonewall, 40 years later.

Before Stonewall, 49 states outlawed homosexuality and at least two states could imprison or send you to a mental hospital you for your entire life for being openly gay. Those two states were California and Pennsylvania. If you were gay at the time, not only would you fear arrest, but you could be fired from your job, denied housing and services at businesses, there was no way you could adopt a child if you were out, no way anyone would legally recognize your relationship. There was one church that you could attend that was affirming, and only if you lived in Southern California: The Metropolitian Community Church who's first service was a gathering of 12 people in Rev. Troy Perry's living room in Huntington Park, California on October 6, 1968.

Since 1969 we have made strides but there is still a way to go. Let's look at what has been accomplished and what needs to be done:

Workplace discrimination protections:
In 2009 there are currently 12 states and Washington DC that prohibit discrimination in the work place, based on sexual orientation and gender identity. They are: California, Colorado, District of Columbia, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.

There are 8 additional states that prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation in addition to those above: Connecticut, Hawaii , Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, and Wisconsin.

There have been 5 state courts, commissions, agencies, or attorney generals that have interpreted the existing law to include some protection against discrimination against transgender individuals in Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Massachusetts and New York. Bringing the total to 20 states that offer some protections against discrimination in the workplace.

There are 30 states that allow your sexual or gender identity to be used as an excuse to fire you.

There are 6 states that issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples: Connecticut (2008), Iowa (2009), Maine * (effective Sept. 2009), Massachusetts (2004), New Hampshire (effective 1/1/2010) and Vermont (effective 9/1/2009).

One state recognizes marriages by same-sex couples legally entered into in another jurisdiction
New York (2008)

5 states and Washington DC with a law providing the equivalent of state-level spousal rights to same-sex couples within the state: California (domestic partnerships, 1999, expanded in 2005), District of Columbia (domestic partnerships, 2002), Nevada (domestic partnerships, effective 10/1/2009), New Jersey (civil unions, 2007), Oregon (domestic partnerships, 2008) and Washington * (domestic partnerships, 2007/2009).

One state provides some statewide spousal rights to same-sex couples within the state Hawaii (reciprocal beneficiaries, 1997).

29 states with constitutional amendments restricting marriage to one man and one woman: Alabama (2006), Alaska (1998), Arizona (2008), Arkansas (2004), California (2008), Colorado, Florida (2008), Georgia (2004), Kansas (2005), Idaho (2006), Kentucky (2004), Louisiana (2004), Michigan (2004), Mississippi (2004), Missouri (2004), Montana (2004), Nebraska (2000), Nevada (2002), North Dakota (2004), Ohio (2004), Oklahoma (2004), Oregon (2004), South Carolina (2006), South Dakota (2006), Tennessee (2006), Texas (2005), Utah (2004), Virginia(2006) and Wisconsin (2006).

States with law, not amendment, restricting marriage to one man and one woman. (11 states) Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Minnesota, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Washington, West Virginia and Wyoming.

To protect our LGBT Youth, there are 9 states and Washington D.C. with laws that addresses discrimination, harassment and/or bullying of students based on sexual orientation and gender identity: California (2002), District of Columbia (2001), Iowa (2007), Maine (2005), Maryland (2008), Minnesota (1993), New Jersey (2002), Vermont (2001/2007), Washington (2002/2009) and Oregon (2007).

There are 4 additional states with law that addresses discrimination, harassment and/or bullying of students based on sexual orientation alone. Connecticut (2001), Massachusetts (2002), New York (2003), and Wisconsin (2001).

There are only 3 states with school regulation or ethical code for teachers that addresses discrimination, harassment and/or bullying of students based on sexual orientation. New Mexico (regulation), Pennsylvania (regulation) and Utah (code of ethics).

There are 21 additional states that prohibit bullying in schools but list no categories of protection. Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.

There are 17 states that do not protect our children from bullying in any form.

Hate Crime Inclusion
12 states have a law that addresses hate or bias crimes based on sexual orientation and
gender identity. California (1999), Colorado (2005), Connecticut (2004), District of Columbia (1989), Hawaii (2003), Maryland (2005), Minnesota (1993), Missouri (2001), New Jersey (2002/ 2008), New Mexico (2003), Oregon (2001/2008), Washington (1993/2009) and Vermont (2001).

19 states that have a law that addresses hate or bias crimes based on sexual orientation alone are: Arizona (2003), Delaware (2001), Florida (2001), Illinois (2001), Iowa (2002), Kansas (2002), Kentucky (2001), Louisiana (2002), Maine (2001), Massachusetts (2002), Michigan (2002-data collection only), Nebraska (2002), Nevada (2001), New Hampshire (2002), New York (2002), Rhode Island (2001), Tennessee (2001), Texas (2002), and Wisconsin (2002).

There are 19 states that do not have hate crime laws that include LGBT

States where same-sex couples can jointly petition to adopt statewide. (10 states and D.C.) California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon and Vermont.

States where same-sex couples have successfully petitioned to adopt in some jurisdictions. (2 states) Nevada and New Hampshire.

Same-sex couples are prohibited from adopting in Florida, Mississippi and Utah. State courts in Michigan have ruled that unmarried individuals may not jointly petition to adopt. Florida is the only state that explicitly prohibits all GLB people, whether individuals or couples, from adopting. On Nov. 4, 2008, Arkansas voters approved a statutory ban on adoption and foster parenting by unmarried individuals cohabiting with a sexual partner.” State courts have ruled that second-parent adoptions are not available under current law in Kentucky, Nebraska, Ohio and Wisconsin.

There are 38 states that either do not allow adoption or have not ruled on out LGBT persons to adopt, but have no prohibitions.

14 states and the District of Columbia have passed laws that provide protection from discrimination in housing – only 4 include transgender persons.
California (includes transgender), Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota (includes transgender), Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico (includes transgender), New York, Rhode Island (includes transgender), Vermont and Wisconsin

36 states allow landlords to discriminate against LGBT persons.

Our progress at the federal level: (Courtesy of Bill Clinton and upheld by Barack Obama)

DOMA The defense of marriage act. The following excerpts are the main provisions of the Act:

Powers reserved to the states:
No State, territory, or possession of the United States, or Indian tribe, shall be required to give effect to any public act, record, or judicial proceeding of any other State, territory, possession, or tribe respecting a relationship between persons of the same sex that is treated as a marriage under the laws of such other State, territory, possession, or tribe, or a right or claim arising from such relationship.

Definition of 'marriage' and 'spouse':
In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, or of any ruling, regulation, or interpretation of the various administrative bureaus and agencies of the United States, the word 'marriage' means only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife, and the word 'spouse' refers only to a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or a wife.

Op Ed at AWOP on DOMA and Obama

: Don't Ask Don't Tell, you can die for your country but you can't have sex, you can't get married and you can't tell anyone. Even if you follow these guidelines, if someone rats you out, you get a dishonorable discharge. Over 75% of the American population believes this should be overturned, allowing gays to openly serve in the military. President Obama is one of the 25%

"Sexual orientation will not be a bar to service unless manifested by homosexual conduct. The military will discharge members who engage in homosexual conduct, which is defined as a homosexual act, a statement that the member is homosexual or bisexual, or a marriage or attempted marriage to someone of the same gender." - "The Pentagon's New Policy Guidelines on Homosexuals in the Military"


Today, there are thousands of gay affirming churches and temples across the United States, you may find one in your area by searching:


Pride, to me, means I am no longer ashamed of being gay. I am no longer afraid to be who I am. It means I am free to feel for the first time in my life what true love is and to be able to return that love fully and know how it manages to transform one's whole life. It means that while I am still healing, still learning, I am no longer afraid of what the future brings. We may not be treated as full citizens of the United States, but we are already, we just need to come together and tell the ones who don't know it yet.

For the history of our community and those who have gone before us, visit the Gay, Lesbian, Bi-Sexual, Transgender And Queer Encyclopedia Online.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A Roman Holiday

One of my favorite movies of all time is Roman Holiday, it also stars two of my favorite movie actors; Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn.

If you have seen this movie you know that it is about a princess visiting Italy, who escapes her boring, tiresome duties by sneaking out of her country's embassy into the city of Rome to find freedom for a night, though it turns into several days and nights.

Gregory Peck, playing a newspaper reporter finds her asleep on a park bench and ends up taking her home with him to sleep off what he thinks is a drunk. Later on he realizes she is the princess whom her embassy has said was sick. He thinks he is onto the story of his life and all the usual love story, poor boy, princess stuff follows.

Except it wasn't the usual story to me, mostly because of the performances by Hepburn and Peck. It wasn't the usual story because I so identified with the part Hepburn was playing and how she played it. I saw the embassy as society, and the princess as embodying the emotions, dreams and desires of us who do not fit societies norms.

You could feel her angst at being thrust into a position that was not one of her choosing. She is required to attend state dinners with bearded old men and their wives, she is constantly told how she should act and what to wear, even her pajamas are chosen for her. Her whole life is laid out for her, and her own thoughts and feelings are not taken into consideration and are even discounted.

The real personality of the princess is revealed on her "Roman Holiday." She is playful, funny and a free thinking young woman. But in the end she returns to the embassy and accepts what is expected of her. In the 50's there couldn't really have been a different ending for a movie.

How very much that is a reflection of my life growing up. How many of our lives were laid out for us and we didn't even know it. And we weren't even princesses. We were told either directly or indirectly that we could go to college if we wanted to, and maybe even have a career, but that we would eventually find a boy to marry and have children. Settle down and have a life. That was just the way it was going to be. There was no other way. Some of us might have snuck out the window like Hepburn's princess, and then returned to the embassy, wiser, sadder but grateful for a moment of freedom, but I wasn't brave enough to do even that.

I was thinking about this movie the other day because I ran across a quote by Audrey Hepburn - "I came out of the war [WWII] thankful to be alive, aware that human relationships are the most important thing of all - far more than wealth, food, luxury, careers or anything you can mention"

Ms. Hepburn had been in the Netherlands when the Nazis occupied it. Her mother and father had divorced in 1935. Both parents were members of the British Union of Fascists at that time.
During the war she suffered malnutrition and developed a life long case of anemia. She saw many of the atrocities of the Nazis first hand, including the trains taking the Jews to the camps, and yet she never became bitter towards life, instead using her money and influence to help people and especially children, all over the world worse off than she.

Friday, June 12, 2009

I'm still Alive....and still in Love!

Yes, I still exist....Life sometimes seem to take over doesn't it and there doesn't seem to be time to sit down and blog. And when there is time to sit down and blog, I end up sitting down and falling asleep!

Busy with work, things have picked up quite a bit in the lab after a slow winter. And now we are going through a reorganization so it will be interesting to see how everything works out with that.

My daughter was confirmed at church the end of May. It was a wonderful day, a nice church service followed by a family picnic at the house. She has grown up to be very beautiful and responsible and I am so very proud of her! Last night she started her first official job as a busser at a local fine dining restaurant; so I'm hoping for big tips for her because she sure likes to shop! Her lacrosse season recently ended and now field hockey practices have already started again!

My son is still keeping me busy running back and forth to his gymnastics team practice. He still loves it and he gets stronger by the week. Looking forward to watching him compete in the fall!

The last day of school is on Wednesday. This is the first summer I am not hiring a college student to hang out with the kids. I can't really call it babysit because the last couple of years I think she was being as much entertained by my kids as she was doing the entertaining; although she was there to break up the fights from time to time. So now I will see if it is possible for my 10 year old to listen to his 15 year old sister. It could be a long summer...

I am so looking forward to a little over five weeks from now...being in Reno with Rebecca!!!! For an entire seven days!!! OMG!! It is hard to think of anything else!!! Seven days together!!! For those of you that get to see your girl everyday, hold her everyday, talkto her face to face everyday, make love to her whenever you want, sit beside her and watch TV, eat dinner together and go to sleep together every night....don't take it for granted...enjoy it..enjoy each other every minute of every day!!!

I also have a trip to Vegas in August with friends and a wedding in the Outer Banks in September to look forward to!

So as busy and tiresome as life sometimes gets, there are still many many good moments; we just have to remember to slow down and enjoy them because sometimes the best moments happen when we least expect them!

The Not Yet Ex's, The Ex's And The Kids, part IV

This series hopes to explore what our husbands and children go through when we decide to come out of the closet. Click here for Part I, Part II and Part III

All of our experiences in coming out have things in common as well as many differences, just as we have a before and after, our children also have a before and after. When we changed our lives, the lives of those closest to us were also changed forever.

As each child is different and in a different place, I think it might be best to listen to the voices of the kids themselves in this:

The first comments are by Abigail Garner, author of: Families Like Mine: Children of Gay Parents Tell It Like It Is. The following is her answer to "Isn’t it confusing and complicated for a young child to have two moms or two dads?"

Only when people tell them it’s confusing and complicated.

When my nephew was five, he was talking on the phone with my father and said, “Grampa, you weren’t home yesterday when I called so I talked to Grampa.” For my nephew, it is completely normal and acceptable to have two grandpas in one house who love him dearly. It gets complicated when a teacher, a friend, or a friend’s parent says, “That’s impossible. You can’t have two grampas in the same house. Which one is REALLY your grampa?” This situation happens time and time again for very young people who are not confused by the love that comes from their family. Speaking from experience, the younger children are when they learn a family member is LGBT, the more accepting they are.

What I knew as a child and what I still know is that I was always wanted and always loved by the caring adults who raised me. I have never doubted that for a second. To a child, there is NOTHING complicated or confusing about having parents who love them.

The struggles that typically come from having a LGBT parent are not because the parent(s) are LGBT, but because the children hear messages everyday that remind them that plenty of people question the validity of their families. This is understandably wearing and frustrating, but it is not the result of parents being LGBT. It is the result of living in a homophobic society.

Most of the quotes below are from queerspawn.community:

Juliana, whose father came out in 2005, believes her family lived a lie for decades.

James, my own son, also became angry at the lie because he felt that he and Kevin were not born of love but simply as a cover for my own sexuality. Kevin just hated the divorce.

Ryan Enschede, 34, was an adult when his parents divorced and his father came out as gay. “I think growing up I missed a male heterosexual role model, and I think I missed the role models of parents in a good relationship,” he says. “I think my growing-up experience has contributed to my adult feeling of being an outsider in our American culture.” Still, Enschede enjoys the vibe of being around gay men and maintains optimism about the power of queerspawn to transform the world. “We’re a large enough group to have some clout,” he says. “Our mere existence as a visible active group could force social/political change within the gay world which supports gay families, as well as the Religious Right world which condemns it.”

Cassie - "My name is Cassie, and my mom came out when I was eight. That I knew of, at least...she was out for some time before then. My parents divorced at that time and my mom moved to Vermont with her partner, Bridgette, who is still her partner now. They've been together for almost 12 years now, and they are my real parents more than my step-mom and my dad ever were.

I myself am bisexual, but that has nothing to do with my parents influence. I have a younger brother who was only three when my parents split, and he basically has been completely raised by two women, and he is straight. I also have a younger sister, who is asexual. :P I am active in the gay rights community - I wrote an essay about it on Fictionpress, and I talked to the Vermont senator at the time before civil unions were legal about my family and why I did not think it was fair that they were not able to get rights.

I think we're like any other family - I just happen to have been raised by two women instead of a woman and a man."

Ryan - "As a child of divorce I know how heart-breaking it is for family, friends and the kids. I remember when my biological parents divorced - mom and dad - when I was about 9. My grandmother died and my dog was run over by a truck passing by. Can we say trauma. The divorce seemed to be the one thing that I could fix, there was hope.

What I didn't know was that there was much more going on under the surface. They had fallen out of love. And mom had moved on. Soon after Mom met Sue. Mom and Dad had been together just about 10 years, Mom and Sue have been together 22. Mom followed love not gender. The two need to be separated when we look at gay divorce. The big difference is that kids are protected in a legal marriage. What happens when our parents fall out of love and then the courts fall out of recognition of their relationship."

Chelsia Rice, who grew up in a lesbian-headed family gave the following speech at a marriage equality rally in Portland, Oregon on Valentine's Day 2005:

What wasn’t easy is how society dealt with my family and how same-sex families are still treated today. The opposition says that if same-sex marriages are legally recognized, “Schools will be forced to teach that the homosexual family is normal.” Well, if the schools would have even come close to recognizing my family’s existence in a classroom - it would’ve made my life a lot easier. But, because we had to remain closeted to remain safe, it took me 13-years to meet another kid with lesbian parents. And when she approached me at school and told me she had lesbian mothers too, we celebrated and we instantly became friends. But regardless of knowing someone else, I still had no one to help protect me from societies scorn; I still had to defend myself from a barrage of bullies.

And it wasn’t just my peers – who often made spectacles of me in classes by passing notes and spreading rumors - in grade school, the PTA gathered to warn other parents that my mother might teach them how to be lesbians resulting in a huge loss of childhood friends who were no longer allowed to hang out with me, spend the night at my house, or come to my birthday parties. And when Measure 9 was on the ballot in the early 90s, even some of my high school instructors posted YES on 9 signs in their classrooms and on their desks. I even had one teacher who made us listen to Rush Limbaugh during lab. Not to mention, our house was vandalized several time during that election year.

Did I feel resentment and anger toward my family and society? Absolutely. Would I change a thing? Never.

Resources for coming out to your children and resources FOR your children:

COLAGE on coming out to your children COLAGE is a national movement of children, youth, and adults with one or more lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and/or queer (LGBTQ) parents. We build community and work toward social justice through youth empowerment, leadership development, education, and advocacy.

About.com Lesbian Life, How To Come Out To Your Child

How It Feels to Have a Gay or Lesbian Parent: A Book by Kids for Kids of All Ages

And PFLAG, Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays

Would I have come out still, knowing what I know now? About how it might have affected the ex and the kids? Yes, absolutely. I know I could not have staying in the closet any longer, but I think it could have been handled a lot better if I had taken the time to find things out first. Or had even known where to begin to look for answers.

What everything comes down to is: the real damage seems to come from influences outside of our control. The beliefs of others, and their comments we and our children hear from peers, the media and other adults who have negative opinions about LGBT folk hurt us all on so many different levels.

The best we can do is to do the best we can everyday, and try to remember that in the end, love always defeats hate....

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


I think I need a break for a day or two before the post on the QueerSpawn is finished, LOL. No, I don't like the name either, but they seem to.......so anyway here is some idle chit chat..

Hey, we have started a new social network, just exactly what the world needs, right? You have to join if you want to see the good stuff though. You can find it by clicking Late In Life Lesbians I have posted some pics for Ceara to use on her blog.........UH HUH!!!!! We think it could be fun, chatting, forums, etc., and hope you do too.

Lorrie, "taking a break from blogging and computers" still needs to sign up, by the way...... Lordy, woman, it has been long enough, your fans await!!!! Baby, they are starting to think I have thrown you OFF the bus!!!! NEVER!

Hmmmmmmmm, We need to get a new countdown clock too, it's just 6 weeks!!! (OK, that's done)

I switched my work schedule to swing shift, no more getting up at 3 am. So very nice!

AND the settings on comments are changed, per JS-Kit so that you all should be able to post comments again. You can upload avatars, pictures, videos and stuff.......
I used to ask myself this all the time........now I know!!!
What are your thoughts?

OMG! It's happening........

They said if Teh Gays got marriage, then who knows what crazy weddings would follow next!

From Business Week:

Supreme Court Clears The Way For Chrysler-Fiat Marriage

Now if they would have only heard the case against DADT..............

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Not Yet Ex's, The Ex's And The Kids, part III

This series hopes to explore what our husbands and children go through when we decide to come out of the closet. Part III will attempt to address some of the worst case scenarios in our coming out process and how we can prepare to protect ourselves.

These issues are especially hard to think and talk about, it is hard on so many levels. But like bridgeout from Building or Burning Bridges in the Community commented, we need to know to keep ourselves safe and strong. Knowing is power, if you know, you can prepare. Fear defeats more people than any other one thing in the world. - Emerson

If you are wanting to come out, and reading this, it is important to keep in mind what lies at the end of this journey: joy, light, authenticity and, most of all, the freedom to be known and loved for who you really are.

Click here for Part I and Part II

ALL human beings are capable of anything given the right or wrong set of circumstances.

What are the worst things that can, have and do happen when we come out to our spouses:
Marital rape
Physical violence
Verbal and mental abuse
Saying things about you to the children to turn them against you including attempts to take the children away by false accusations of child abuse and/or molestation

And murder.

You have an idea what type of man you are married to already. If he is already fair minded, he probably will, after a time, still be fair minded towards you, there is still a chance for abuse however, hope for the best but prepare yourself in advance for the worst.

Studies have shown spousal rape occurs in about 14% of all marriages in the United States. Women are at particularly high risk of experiencing physical and sexual violence when they attempt to leave their partners, as this represents a challenge to their abusers' control and sense of entitlement. Similarly, women who are separated or divorced from their partners also appear to be at high risk for sexual abuse for the sense of entitlement does not necessarily end when a couple ceases living together (DeKeseredy et al., 2005; Dobash & Dobash, 1992; Kurz, 1997).

If he is an authoritarian type, perhaps deeply religious with firm beliefs on how men and women should act, including that the wife must submit to her husband, there is a greater chance for him to cross the line to verbal, sexual and physical abuse even if he was not so before. Or if he has friends who make jokes about abusing women, he has a higher chance of becoming abusive himself when you attempt to leave him.

If he is like my ex, not a physical abuser but abusive in other ways, he will remain mentally or verbally abusive, but understand there is a greater chance of his type crossing the line to physical abuse than a non-abuser. Prepare in advance your resources and contacts

If he is already physically abusive: DO NOT COME OUT TO HIM. First of all, get yourself professional and police help and then get you and the kids the hell out of there. There are crisis centers, churches and women's support centers to aid you in nearly every town in America. Don't let shame keep you in a dangerous situation. [National Domestic Violence Hotline]

You will find your own self esteem growing as you become more honest with yourself, see the abuse for what it is, not your fault but entirely his.

You will NOT be able to reason with him, you WILL NOT be able to stay with him and you WILL more than likely be the recipient of violence like you have never seen before. An abuser WILL resort to spousal rape, if he hasn't already, when confronted with your lesbianism and will beat you severely and he may VERY LIKELY TRY TO KILL YOU. He may succeed.

His abusive personality is not something that is your fault, it is his own lack of self worth that causes it. You don't deserve it no matter what you do. And you are not going to be able to change him by staying with him. Not all insecure people are abusers, but all abusers are insecure people.

If you are not out yet, but are coming to the point where you must come out start taking care of yourself right now. For most of your married life you have developed a social system completely built in a straight community, and change can appear overwhelming and even impossible. Making the change from wife and mother in a straight community to lesbian life is not an easy task. It is a path fraught with loss, guilt, separation and fear. Because of this, depression is quite common among married lesbians.

Depression can lead to suicidal thoughts or action. If hurting yourself has ever even crossed your mind, seek immediate psychiatric attention. National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-SUICIDE 1-800-784-2433

Resources for victims of spousal abuse:
Don't forget you have local resources too! Find an affirming church in your area, they will know of even more resources. Your employer may offer an Employee Assistance Program, these services are of no cost to you and are confidential. Also, go to a library to use their computers so he can't see what you are looking up, call from pay phones, or talk to people in person to reduce the risk he will find out what you are doing.

National Domestic Violence Hotline 1800-799-7233 (SAFE)

Hotline Services Include:

  • Crisis intervention, safety planning, information about domestic violence and referrals to local service providers
  • A direct connection to domestic violence resources available in the caller’s area provided by a Hotline advocate
  • Assistance in both English and Spanish with Hotline advocates having access to more than 170 different languages through interpreter services
  • Assistance through e-mail on the contact page
  • Informational materials on such topics as domestic violence, sexual assault, battering intervention and prevention programs, working through the criminal justice system and related issues
Stop Abuse For Everyone, includes GLBT specific resources and has contact information nationwide
Stop Abuse For Everyone
16869 SW 65th Ave #212
Lake Oswego, OR 97035-7865
(503) 853-8686

National Online Resource Center on Violence Against Women

Gift From Within and GFW main page

Women are Dreamers Too Support and education for getting it all together after you are free

Support for overcoming depression:

Discovering Pride

I Am A Lesbian Married To A Man

Don't forget your local resources here either, there are coming out groups, therapists and affirming clergy and your workplace may offer confidential services that will assist you!

You should also be ready to contact a lawyer, just to speak with them, they all offer a free 30 minute session, don't be afraid to use this valuable resource. Ask them about divorce laws in your state, ask about child custody, how to protect yourself against false charges, etc., get a list going and if half an hour isn't enough time, then call another one to ask the rest of questions of.

Good luck, God bless and always remember what lies at the end of this journey: joy, light, authenticity and, most of all, the freedom to be known and loved for who you really are.

Continuing, our children......

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Not Yet Ex's, The Ex's And The Kids, part II

This series hopes to explore what our husbands and children go through when we decide to come out of the closet. We can't stop them from from being hurt, but maybe we can try to help them heal....
Click here for Part I

Now you have told him, he is probably angry, is certainly hurting, is afraid of others finding out and is completely confused about what to do next. We don't always know what to say or do ourselves. I can't say it was better that I divorced my husband before I came out, but I do believe it was easier on both of us in the end.

We were both still grieving our marriage ending, then after I came out to him, he still felt if he had been a better man I wouldn't be gay and I never would have divorced him and he even called me names in front of the boys. It didn't matter that he had suspected I was a lesbian all those years. Those feelings still surfaced. But he was forced to completely accept that there was no hope of me coming back. Because that was never an issue, he was able to move on rather quickly. He had already been dating another woman. He already knew there was a difference between being with her for a few months, and being with me for 18 years.

In some cases as soon as you tell him, he will file for divorce right away. He may not be willing to talk about it at all or is unable to deal with it and suddenly he moves out or asks that you do. You may have custody of the kids, or you both decide it is best that he does or you share custody. He may threaten to take custody and visitation away from you. Most, if any, courts WILL NOT take your children away from you solely because you are a lesbian. Or you both could decide it would be best if they stayed with their father. If this happens, most likely it will be a no fault divorce or irreconcilable differences clause. Same sex relationships are not seen as adultery by nearly all the courts in this country because most states require coitus for it to be even considered. You aren't going to have much time for talk if this is the case, it is best to hold on to your own ground and have someone to support you through it all. Try not to return his anger and bitterness with your own if there are kids or not. I guess the best thing is to be the bigger person.......

Usually he won't act so rashly, he will be angry, hurt and crushed, but won't want to cause more harm to the family. He is also going to hold on to the hope that it isn't true, it can't be true, after all you have been having sex with him for all these years. He naturally wants things to be how they were before you told him. He isn't going to want to tear the family apart anymore than you do. More than likely you married him because he IS a good man, try not to forget that, and let him know that you still know he is a good man.

If I am going to sound like a broken record, it would be to get him to at least look at the Straight Spouse Network. Support groups may not be his thing at all, but he can read other stories online and at least see he is not alone. They have wonderful advice for letting him come to terms with it, and even will give suggestions on knowing the best ways to handle it with the kids:
Process your own feelings as much as you need to, but please do not expose your children to these feelings. Your children deserve to process things in their own ways, rather than absorbing their dad’s/mom's process or feeling pressure to choose sides...

When children are “sheltered” (kept away) from the gay/lesbian parent, they internalize the message that the gay/lesbian parent was bad or evil, and build up a loyalty to the straight parent. Further down the line however, when the children mature and are able to form their own opinions, they often resent the straight parent for denying them a relationship with the gay/lesbian parent. Your children need to know that both their mother and father are committed to loving them unconditionally. In your case, part of that unconditional love is nurturing the relationship the children have with their mother or father.
There will come a time when he may enter into the phase of "Come back to him." Can't you just forget it and everything will go back to the way it was. We can work this out. You will get over it, please just come back. Let's see a marriage counselor together. I promise to be a better husband. He means these things. He really believes them and it is heart wrenching to hear. He is also going to continue to go through his grieving process, he will alternate between wanting you and hating you, he may be wonderfully understanding one day and ready to throw you out the next. His emotions are on a roller coaster right now and he can't always control them.

The best you can do is keep the lines of communication open, but also let him know name calling or screaming at you in front of the kids is unacceptable. Don't be afraid to let him know how hard it was for you to get to this point too, but that you do know it isn't all about you. Let him know you know how much it is hurting him and that it isn't his fault. Let him know you are willing to go to counseling with him if he wants to and make the appointments yourself. Suggest he read other straight spouses stories either from books or on the internet. If he is a religious man let him read sites like the "Letter To Louise" or "The Blue Book" or let him know about gay Christian sites like SisterFriends or the many other sites. He may not change his views, but it might get him thinking.

If you both agree to go to counseling together, find out before hand if they have real experience with this situation, and also make sure they are able to see both sides equally. It won't help him if they are all for you and just think he needs to get over it, end of story, he just won't go. If they believe your lesbianism can be cured, or it is all your fault, they give him false hope and hurt your self esteem no end. Don't be afraid to see several until it is a good fit. Your counselor needs to be able to help BOTH of you through this. Not just one of you. Your husband needs to come to a place of healing and understanding and he needs to see that you understand his point of view too.

You just may decide that you will give it a go and stay with him, or maybe you can wait until the kids are grown. Maybe now is when you start to discuss an open marriage. All of these choices are deeply, deeply personal. I think the best thing is to talk about all these things and their consequences, as honestly and openly as you can with your spouse.

Think about what it is going to do to your relationship now that he knows you don't love him the way a wife should. And if you decide to put off your feelings until after the kids are grown, can you really live with that? What are you willing to do for him to make sure is needs are met? What is he willing to do for you to make sure your needs are met? How will he react if you do end up having an affair? What if he decides to have an affair, how will you react?

If you decide to talk about an open marriage, can the two of you really handle it? How will you feel when he has a girlfriend? How will he feel about you being with your girlfriend? Will you two continue to have sexual relations? If you do how will there be a guarantee no STD's are exchanged? There are sites and books about open marriages, you might want to see what is required of one, and how others have dealt with it.

Even with counseling, talk and understanding, once the time comes that others find out, he is going to be bombarded with all kinds of advice, sympathy and hopefully even real support from his friends and family. And just like you, he will get to hear dumb things too:

Dumb things people will most likely say to your Ex or Not Yet Ex (they say them to us too) if and when they find out:
Are you sure? How do you know? When did you find out?
You’ve been married this long - think of the children. Can’t you just live together like brother and sister?
I know just the (counselor, clergy, doctor, best divorce lawyer in the state) who can fix this. You just leave it to me.
Hey you’re a lucky guy, that is SO hot. (wink, wink, elbow jab, elbow jab, and all the lewd comments that will go with this one.)
You’re not SERIOUSLY letting the children stay with her, are you?
You know she will burn in hell don't you?
Oh, we all knew (or suspected). What, you didn’t know? How could you miss this? Oh come on. You had to know.
You married a lesbian? What kind of man are you?
Just be aware that as he talks to his friends and family about this, he is hearing these things and they may reignite his anger, resentment and confusion.


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