I think my daughter is a lesbian? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 54 Old 03-05-2013, 10:09 PM
 
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That is another thing that hurts me about this situation. If she is gay, I wish that she would feel comfortable enough with me to tell me. I thought we were close. I don't like the idea that she is hiding from me or that she feels she can't be herself around me. I'm going to make an effort to be more accepting, and hopefully she will open up to me.


I totally understand where you are coming from. There are a lot of options here:

 

  • She's straight, which is why she hasn't told you she's gay. This could be true -- you really just don't know.
  • She's confused about how she feels, and rather than the problem being that she doesn't feel like you could hear her, she isn't sure what the truth is about herself so she isn't sure what to say. A conversation about one's sexuality is difficult enough with a parent without adding in something like, "I'm trying to figure this out -- may be I'm bi, but I'm not sure if that is a real thing."
  • She is a lesbian, but isn't ready to talk to you about it yet.  

 

(May be there are more options, as well).

 

My advice -- focus on the core of what you want for her and want for your relationship with her. You want her to be happy, you want her to have people in her life that are good to her, you want her to be true to herself and live authentically, you want her to know that what ever is going on in her life, you love her 100% and will always have her back.

 

By suspecting this ahead of time, its given you a chance to think through what you would like to say to her, so that if she does come out to you, you will be prepared to speak from your heart (not from your fears). You can tell her how happy you are that she told you, that gay or straight she'll always be your baby, and that you will always support her 100%.


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#32 of 54 Old 03-06-2013, 03:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for all the wonderful responses. You have all been so helpful to me.

 

 

 

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That's a reasonable thing to wish, but...  Here you are, having a quiet, internet freak-out about the notion that your daughter may be gay.  You've described yourself as feeling sick over it. 

 

I don't think these reactions mean anything for your relationship with your daughter in the long-term, but your daughter might expect the freak-out, and might NOT understand that it's a short-term, adjustment reaction. 

Point taken. I guess it's good that I'm getting it all out now, instead of in front of her.

 

 

 

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I totally understand where you are coming from. There are a lot of options here:

 

  • She's straight, which is why she hasn't told you she's gay. This could be true -- you really just don't know.
  • She's confused about how she feels, and rather than the problem being that she doesn't feel like you could hear her, she isn't sure what the truth is about herself so she isn't sure what to say. A conversation about one's sexuality is difficult enough with a parent without adding in something like, "I'm trying to figure this out -- may be I'm bi, but I'm not sure if that is a real thing."
  • She is a lesbian, but isn't ready to talk to you about it yet.  

I just don't like not having a clear answer. Ever since I found those books, I've been obsessing about the possibility that she might be gay. I think that if I knew for certain I could handle this better. I wish I could just ask her so that I could get a straight answer, but I'm afraid that will scare her away if she is gay.

Also this is kind of stupid (I'm just going to say it so I can get it off my chest), but I can't help thinking, what if she is gay and decides not to come out? I'm paranoid that she will never come out (if she is in fact gay) and that 30 years down the line, she will still be hiding in the closet.

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#33 of 54 Old 03-06-2013, 05:35 PM
 
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Also this is kind of stupid (I'm just going to say it so I can get it off my chest), but I can't help thinking, what if she is gay and decides not to come out? I'm paranoid that she will never come out (if she is in fact gay) and that 30 years down the line, she will still be hiding in the closet.

Think about six months or a year from now. You can cross this bridge then, if it comes to that. Six months or a year from now your daughter may have come out to you, or she may have gotten a boyfriend or proclaimed herself as straight, and it might not be an issue. But if nothing has changed and you think she is still closeted, you can approach the matter better then and you'll be a lot calmer. It's not like your window to discuss it is now or never. 

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#34 of 54 Old 03-07-2013, 04:21 AM
 
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I dunno... I think it should be up to her to decide when/if to come out and to whom. Simply being the parent doesn't give one the right to make that decision.

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#35 of 54 Old 03-07-2013, 05:03 AM
 
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I think it is ok for us to ask if our child is gay, like any other question we wonder about our kids.


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#36 of 54 Old 03-07-2013, 06:51 AM
 
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I disagree, but that's okay.

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#37 of 54 Old 03-07-2013, 08:15 AM
 
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Originally Posted by AConcernedMom View Post

 

I'm going to make an effort to be more accepting, and hopefully she will open up to me.

 

its one thing to 'be' accepting, its a whole nother matter 'showing' it.

 

the possibility of this being a 'not gay' thing might be equally a possibility.

 

she might also be figuring out if she is bisexual. 

 

like others pointed out she might indeed be experimenting. 

 

and if she is not sure how is she going to talk to you when she is trying to figure things out for herself. 

 

i think there is a fine line with asking questions. if you want purely to know - dont ask. if you want to help her coming from - it can be done. but its tough asking the right way. it could go either way. deepen the relationship or make it worse. 

 

i think you need to do a LOT of homework to gain knowledge of the whole issue - gay, transgendered, bisexual and others - emotional too - before you directly ask her - if that's what you want to do. 


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#38 of 54 Old 03-07-2013, 10:49 AM
 
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If she is gay, she won't stay in the closet for 30 years. That's not really a thing anymore. So let go of that as a worry.
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#39 of 54 Old 03-07-2013, 11:44 AM
 
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Regardless of your daughters sexual preference, you really need to take a hard look at yourself OP, because you have a lot to learn about gay (and other not straight) people. Why is it that the idea of your DD being gay is so horrible to you? Why would you hope she is not gay? if she is, that's like wishing for a different kid. If you are truly worried about her happiness, then acccepting her for who she is is the best thing you can do for her. You say you are worried about her life being harder, but if she is gay, your negative feelings about it are probably the thing making her life the most difficult right now. 

 

I am gay. Let me tell you what my life is like: It's great! I met my wife when I was 19, and we have been together ever since. We have a wonderful daughter and are trying for another baby. Sometimes I don't get enough sleep when my toddler wakes me up at night, sometimes we worry about money, last week we all got food poisoning at the same time, and let me tell you, that was hard! But I'm pretty sure that can happen to straight people, too, lol. Every once in a while I'll encounter a little bit of discrimination, a few weeks ago a woman at play group asked which one of us was the "real mom", for example, but that makes me think that I just need to keep working to make the word a better place, it doesn't make me feel like my family shouldn't exist! We have gone through some very hard times, including the loss of a baby, but not because we are gay, because we are human, and sometimes life is hard for everyone. We got through the tough times because we love and support each other. 

 

After you have seriously examined your own attitude (maybe PFLAG can help you out), you can just say, "Hey, sorry if I'm being nosy, but are you and ____ dating? You know I'll love and support you no matter what".  

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#40 of 54 Old 03-07-2013, 12:11 PM
 
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I think the OP has been really upfront and honest about where she is at and that she knows she needs to work on some things. Everybody has to start somewhere. I am very impressed with the fact that she has really done some soul searching and has dug deep to explore her feelings. She is from a very intolerant part of the country, as am I. It's not easy coming to terms with what is right among so many that disagree.
I'd say that if she is using this to be honest with herself and say "I am trying to change" that that says a lot of her character.
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#41 of 54 Old 03-08-2013, 09:04 AM
 
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You've gotten some amazing replies, OP. let me just add one voice. At that age I was figuring out who I was and if anyone, even my mom, asked me flat out if I was gay I would have been mortified and very shaken. I didn't show much interest in boys either before moving away for university but that's because I was very very private and shy about my crushes and never went past the point of thinking someone was cute or "dreamy". I had a best girl friend I was very close to and it was simply friendship, but we were teased about being lesbians in high school eyesroll.gif
In uni, I found my voice, made many friends and explored (in fantasy/chatting) sexuality and anyone looking in my diary or checking my chat history would totally have thought I was gay. For me the Internet was the equivalent of those graphic novels. To make a long story short, I maintain that I'm bicurious but today I'm married to a wonderful man, have a beautiful nearly 2 year old daughter and expecting my second child. I never shared any of my fantasies/turn ons with my mom but I figure it's not her business what gets me excited sexually. I think there's a good chance that your daughter is simply experimenting (whether in reality or fantasy) and figuring out who she is. I urge you to simply let go and tell her you're proud of the wonderful young woman she has grown into and love her more every day. If there is any news on her sexuality that is likely to have a big effect on her, trust that she will approach you in her own time. Otherwise she may simply be similar to me: enjoy some perhaps unusual erotica while not feeling interested in pursuing it in real life.

PS: I hope I haven't offended any of you proud gay mamas out there. I'm very pro gay marriage and am very proud to live in a country that recognizes everyone's right to unite with the person they love joy.gif
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#42 of 54 Old 03-08-2013, 09:28 AM
 
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AConcernedMom,

 

I read about your post on Autostraddle (a popular lesbian website that's been a great support system for me) and I'm usually not the type to post on forums, but I was moved by your post so I joined this website to give you a bit of encouragement, since I can relate to your and your daughter's circumstances.

 

As a college student from a small, conservative Southern town and a very conservative, religious family who has recently come to terms with my own sexuality, I can relate to your daughter. Even though I've always been very liberal politically and very supportive of LGBTQ equality, I grew up in an area that isn't -- for example, my high school banned gay couples from prom, and LGBTQ people in my state can be fired on the basis of their sexual orientation. When I went away to college and began to put together the pieces of the puzzle to fully grasp that I was gay, I felt horrified; I was afraid that I was going to go to Hell, and prayed that somehow I'd be turned straight. I was also terrified that I would have to hide my identity from my friends and family. It sent me into a deep depression and I struggled with it for a year before finally coming to realize that a) God still loves me, b) my friends still love me, and c) my mother and my sister will eventually come to terms with this when I come out to them, and likely my Dad, too, although it may take him a long time. Please know: I fully support everyone in the LGBTQ community, but it's one thing to support others, and another thing entirely to see this in the mirror everyday. Coming out to myself was the hardest thing I've ever done.

 

I haven't come out to my family yet because we've been going through a tough time with my mother's and my sister's health, and I don't want to burden them (and also because my sister will tell the world, and I'm a very private person and don't want many others to know just yet). But mainly, I haven't come out because I couldn't ask others to accept this in me before I fully accepted it in myself, which I now have. I recognize that I will be a much better person for being gay: I more compassionate and open-minded, and feel that I've been put on this earth at this time, in this place, to make a difference and stand up for equality.

 

My personal recommendation would be to make LGBTQ-friendly remarks to your daughter (perhaps about a news story about gay rights) to let her know that you are open-minded (once you come to terms with this, in your own time). And reaffirm every chance you get that you love her and support her no matter what, because if she is coming to terms with this herself, this could very well be a difficult time for her. Be kind to yourself; understand that this process is not easy, especially for those living in conservative rural areas. And use PFLAG as a resource if you wish; I was hesitant to go because I was afraid that I'd see people I know there, who'd "out" me in the community, but PFLAG is supposed to be an anonymous "safe space." That being said, my local PFLAG is tiny and while it's great support for many LGBTQ people and their, it didn't really help me personally. What helped me most was finding support on the Internet, and seeing that there are so many other people out there who feel just as I do, and who go on to live happy, normal lives in which their sexuality isn't a big deal.

 

I'm sorry that this is a long post, and I don't mean to be egocentric by posting about my struggles; I just hope that perhaps it can help you and any other moms who are looking at this forum, who perhaps are wondering whether their children are LGBTQ. I understand how difficult this struggle is for you, and send you a hug and wish you all the best. In fact, big thanks and hugs to everyone who has posted -- you guys are awesome!!

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#43 of 54 Old 03-08-2013, 03:46 PM
 
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I guess this shows ymmv as far as asking our children...my own daughter was happy I asked and to have it out there. I guess we should know our kids and how they'd feel, some people definately wouldn't be ok being asked. And for our family, the kids have been raised seeing gay as a normal part of life so it was easier, I think.

 

<hugs> estrelladelmar...I hope your mom&sister's health gets better soon, and your telling them goes smoothly.


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#44 of 54 Old 03-10-2013, 07:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Regardless of your daughters sexual preference, you really need to take a hard look at yourself OP, because you have a lot to learn about gay (and other not straight) people. Why is it that the idea of your DD being gay is so horrible to you? Why would you hope she is not gay? if she is, that's like wishing for a different kid. If you are truly worried about her happiness, then acccepting her for who she is is the best thing you can do for her. You say you are worried about her life being harder, but if she is gay, your negative feelings about it are probably the thing making her life the most difficult right now. 

I didn't mean to offend you or anyone else. I know that I need to change my feelings about this, and I'm working on that. And I realise that my negativity would only hurt her more, which is why I'm having it out on an internet forum instead of going straight to her.

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#45 of 54 Old 03-10-2013, 07:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I think there's a good chance that your daughter is simply experimenting (whether in reality or fantasy) and figuring out who she is. I urge you to simply let go and tell her you're proud of the wonderful young woman she has grown into and love her more every day. If there is any news on her sexuality that is likely to have a big effect on her, trust that she will approach you in her own time. Otherwise she may simply be similar to me: enjoy some perhaps unusual erotica while not feeling interested in pursuing it in real life.

Yes, I may have overreacted, and I'm starting to calm down about the whole thing. I'm trying to just let go and stop myself from constantly wondering "Is she, or isn't she?" because I will only drive myself crazy if I keep this up, but that is easier said than done. I guess/hope I'll get there eventually.

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#46 of 54 Old 03-10-2013, 07:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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But mainly, I haven't come out because I couldn't ask others to accept this in me before I fully accepted it in myself, which I now have. I recognize that I will be a much better person for being gay: I more compassionate and open-minded, and feel that I've been put on this earth at this time, in this place, to make a difference and stand up for equality.

 

My personal recommendation would be to make LGBTQ-friendly remarks to your daughter (perhaps about a news story about gay rights) to let her know that you are open-minded (once you come to terms with this, in your own time). And reaffirm every chance you get that you love her and support her no matter what, because if she is coming to terms with this herself, this could very well be a difficult time for her.

I'm sorry that you have struggled so much, and thank you for your response. I'm going to avoid asking her outright and work on doing what you have suggested. I've missed this month's PFLAG meeting (I also got nervous that someone might recognise me), but I'm going to give them a call and see if I can find someone to talk to.

I hope everything goes well for you when you tell your mom and sister.

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#47 of 54 Old 03-10-2013, 08:13 AM
 
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Yes, I may have overreacted, and I'm starting to calm down about the whole thing. I'm trying to just let go and stop myself from constantly wondering "Is she, or isn't she?" because I will only drive myself crazy if I keep this up, but that is easier said than done. I guess/hope I'll get there eventually.

Congratulations mama!!! you are entering one of the best times of your life. As you struggle through this period, as you struggle to figure out who YOU are and what matters to YOU, you are entering a new phase of your life. and if you are nearly 40 or there, it indeed is THE best time of your life. or you'll be there soon. 

 

you are just sooo awesome. you have publicly started a conversation that many should be talking about but are afraid to do so. you are working so hard to let go of your social conditioning and change. 

 

i like estrella's ideas about online help. if you have netflix perhaps you can watch some documentaries on this issue. when you see what they go through how can one not be moved. 

 

Estrelladelmar thank you so much for coming here to post your views. you have given me a perspective that i havent had before. I just love how you are so confident about your family. how well you know them. on a different issue i felt the same about my parents. my mom was open but my dad took a while to come around - but eventually they did. 

Wish you the best with your family and hope your mom and sister are on the road to recovery and you the strength to get through this. and as a mother let me tell you this - no matter what you do - no matter how shocking you are - you mother will always love you. she might show you differently outside, but know that is  her issue she is struggling with. she will always love you. 

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#48 of 54 Old 03-11-2013, 07:06 PM
 
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skycheattraffic – congrats on finding love and on , and thank you for being so open about your past! Also, thank you for being an ally. :)

 

purplerose – hugs back, and thank you for being such a great mom. Your daughter (and your other kids) are lucky to have someone so supportive and open-minded.

 

And AConcernedMom, that goes you for, too – clearly, you wouldn’t be so concerned about this if you didn’t care about your daughter very much and go above and beyond for her. I’m glad that you’ve found some peace (it’s certainly a process!) with this. From what I’ve heard from others who’ve come out to families who accept them, their bonds with their families grow deeper and stronger, and regardless of whether your daughter is “straight” or not, I hope that this is the case for you. And perhaps it’s better that you have some inkling of what she is going through so that you can deal with it at your own pace, rather than having her shock you with news for which you are unprepared.

 

Your idea about calling PFLAG is a good one, as I did the same thing and they offered to counsel me over the phone and/or meet one-on-one anytime. It can be a great way to receive support and perspective. meemee’s suggestion about Netflix documentaries is a great idea, too. If it’s not too much trouble, please let us know how things go with your daughter, and best of luck to you!! Our thoughts are with you.

 

meemee – thank you for your kind, wise words and your support. I know in my heart that you’re right about my mom, and I’m so grateful and fortunate to have her. I can’t wait for the day when I don’t have to keep this secret from her and from the rest of my family, and can finally be honest with them. I’m so glad that your family came around to fully support you, despite your Dad’s initial hesitation. It can be such a wonderful growing experience for family members and friends (and for us, of course!) if we approach it with the right perspective. Take care!! :)

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#49 of 54 Old 03-11-2013, 07:07 PM
 
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skycheattraffic – congrats on finding love, and on expecting a new addition to your family!  Thank you for being so open about your past, and for being an ally :)

 

purplerose – hugs back, and thank you for being such a great mom. Your daughter (and your other kids) are lucky to have someone so supportive.

 

And AConcernedMom, that goes you for, too – clearly, you wouldn’t be so concerned about this if you didn’t care about your daughter very much and go above and beyond for her. I’m glad that you’ve found some peace (it’s certainly a process!) with this. From what I’ve heard from others who’ve come out to families who accept them, their bonds with their families grow deeper and stronger, and regardless of whether your daughter is “straight” or not, I hope that this is the case for you. And perhaps it’s better that you have some inkling of what she is going through so that you can deal with it at your own pace, rather than having her shock you with news for which you are unprepared.

 

Your idea about calling PFLAG is a good one, as I did the same thing and they offered to counsel me over the phone and/or meet one-on-one anytime. It can be a great way to receive support and perspective. meemee’s suggestion about Netflix documentaries is a great idea, too. If it’s not too much trouble, please let us know how things go with your daughter, and best of luck to you!! Our thoughts are with you.

 

meemee – thank you for your kind, wise words and your support. I know in my heart that you’re right about my mom, and I’m so grateful and fortunate to have her. I can’t wait for the day when I don’t have to keep this secret from my family and can finally be honest with them. I’m so glad that your family came around to fully support you, despite your Dad’s initial hesitation. It can be such a wonderful growing experience for family members and friends (and for us, of course!) if we approach it with the right perspective. Take care!! :)

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#50 of 54 Old 03-11-2013, 09:42 PM
 
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IDK but those kinds of novels are really popular right now.  a lot of them have those kinds of themes. I myself have read many of them with all different sexualities. I think you are overreacting.
 

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#51 of 54 Old 03-12-2013, 02:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all so much for your help, once again. I will keep you posted if there are any changes (like if she comes out or if she ends up finding a boyfriend I I realise I've been an idiot about this whole thing).

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#52 of 54 Old 03-17-2013, 02:03 PM
 
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AConcernedMom, have you seen the letter from a Dad to his gay son that is going viral now? It might give you something to aim for when the time comes. http://now.msn.com/dad-reportedly-writes-letter-to-son-about-coming-out-of-the-closet I'm not advocating you writing a letter now since your daughter's situation really seems ambiguous at the moment, but what an admirable attitude the Dad displays.

 

I like the suggestion about making comments about gay rights issues that come up in the news to let her know that you are supportive w/o confronting her. Being confronted by a parent about sexuality whether straight or LGBT is never comfortable for most people. How many of us like talking about sexuality with our moms? I know I don't want to!

 


I live in the South and have many gay friends if that's any comfort. 

 
 
Best of luck on your journey!

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#53 of 54 Old 07-06-2013, 10:05 PM
 
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I understand how you feel. So do I. I want my kids to have a normal, happy life.

I don't think it is a good choice to confront her about the books. Trying to share her about your loving stories, find out what's her idea to having a BF or to love.

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#54 of 54 Old 07-07-2013, 12:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MeepyCat View Post

I assure you, there are gay people in Arkansas.

I lived in Arkansas and I do relate to what the OP is saying.  It can feel like there are no gay people and in some towns I am sure there are few if any openly gay people.  But times are changing and there are certainly resources available.  But Arkansas is not the best state you could live in for exposure to a thriving happy gay community by any means so I do get where the OP is coming from. 

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