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Finding community (IRL)?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I have recently come out, and live in a great, but very small town. I have a great job and a great (non-gay) community. I don't have a gay community where I live, and I'm ready to find one (to clarify: there are many lesbian couples here in their 50's and 60's - not sure why there aren't younger women here!). There is a community an hour from me, but I'm not sure how to find a way in! I'm on the state's LBGT listserv, but events are few and far between, and nothing appears to be coming up for some time. Most events that do happen occur two hours from me, in the state's biggest city. Through FB I discovered that there are locally (in the town an hour from me) organized events among friends that get planned... but I am not (yet!) one of the "circle" - they don't even know I exist. So, how do I meet people? I'm willing to travel to be a part of a gay community, but I as I don't live there, it seems like a bigger challenge. I don't think I appear gay to most people either, especially with my two kids in tow. I've searched the internet for events/groups/etc., but from what I've been able to determine, a lot of this info is inside info. Advice, tips? TIA!
post #2 of 6
For me, being gay was a huge factor--probably pretty close to the #1 factor--in choosing where to live. I came out when I was 15, so I chose my ideal hometown when choosing where to go to college. Certainly you can be gay and happily live anywhere, but for me it was important to live in a community with a large lesbian population. We really don't have to go looking for other queer folks here--they're everywhere! It's lovely.

Not sure if moving is a possibility for you?

Otherwise, hopefully someone will respond who lives in a more remote area.


post #3 of 6
you might want to ask people you know in your community - albeit straight people - if they know any lesbians and could they introduce you to them or finding out if any of the older lesbian couples are familiar with a younger crowd and could get you in touch with any of them. maybe there are younger lesbians around but you aren't seeing them.

good luck in your search!
post #4 of 6
You know, here where I live a local woman was also wondering where "all the lesbians are" and started a local listserve. It has since ballooned into a ton of social events and political gatherings that has created a really solid community where there once was a big void. Of course she has put a lot of time and effort into fostering the growth of the community - but I think it could be replicated.

I would start a listserve on google groups and add the few LGBT people you know. Ask them to invite any LGBT people they know - maybe put up some flyers etc. Once you have a core group I'd put out some ideas for meet-ups over the group. Even just dinner. Get at least one friend to go with you and if more people show up great! (In our city this has evolved into a monthly catered event). Other things that have been successful here are happy hours, book clubs, and game nights. The great part is that it's super diverse.

Best of luck to you!
post #5 of 6
Maybe see if there's a meetup.com group around you? Sometimes you can find people there, we did! Or possibly a yahoo group?

Good luck!
post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the welcomes and advice! I would consider moving, but I would have to give up custody if I did, so that's out. I will try to ask around and see if anyone knows anything... there aren't any meetup groups, and I did send a request to join a yahoo group, but haven't heard anything. I'm guessing that it's not used much. A lot of the information seems to be inside information. I will definitely consider starting a listserv in the near future! If anyone has tips on how to approach a woman when my "gaydar" goes off, I'd appreciate it. I met a woman from a neighboring city recently and am 99% sure she'd know of insider info... and she'll be at my workplace in a few weeks. This is all so new to me, so any advice on how to ask her about community would be wonderful. I feel like a teenager - actually, like I should have felt as a teenager, but never did!
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