(Ed. note: This letter was sent to Oasis writer Beverly Greene, and was reprinted with the sender's permission.)
I am a 16 year old lesbian/bisexual. I have been out to varying degrees throughout high school. Although it has been hard, I wouldn't trade my experience for anything.
I have gotten the opportunity to open people's minds by seeing that I, a bright, friendly, individual, am queer. It's a Catholic school, and a lot of people were influenced by their religion.
I started coming out in 9th grade. By the end of that year, probably 20% of the people who knew who I was knew I was queer. I have always been blessed with a support system of friends, both straight and queer. Also during 9th grade, I told my family--they were very supportive, as I knew they would be.
This year, 10th grade, people began coming to me with questions about their sexualities even more than they had before. I am basically the only out person in the whole school; certainly the only out lesbian. Rumors were flying about me, so I stood up in my physics class (all seniors, who spread rumors about people even faster than my grade) and said "Yeah, its true that I'm a dyke. But if you want to know just ask me from now on. about any sexual rumors about me."
And people did. I got so many questions that amazed me. However, I also got tormented. A lot. Walking down the hall, people screamed names at me and even threw things at me. If I fought back I'd get detention (They wouldn't). So I had to make a tough decision. I was offered a place at the Indiana Academy, a boarding school for gifted students. If I took it, it would be less harassment because I'd be on a college campus and with intelligent, not-all-religious people. But I would have to leave my friends. I decided to go.
I will be out when I am there too. People who are emotionally able to be out in high school have a gift of openness that they have an obligation to share w/their closeted peers. I will continue to be out probably forever. I have dealt with the harassment, but I have also dealt with the ability to help someone by being out. which is an amazing thing--and I would never give that up.
(Ed. note: This month, we've progressed from being considered to be affiliated with the band Oasis to getting reader mail from Seventeen magazine.)
My favorite guys are
1) Matthew Perry
2) Gavin Rossdale
3) Brad Renfro
4) Stephen Baldwin
5) Chris Hardwick
Please do something on Matthew Perry! You always write little things about him. But never a full story. And I'm sorry, but I'm tired of seeing girl models on the cover. The buyers of Seventeen are girls and frankly we'd much rather see a hot guy on the front. Oh, by the way thanx for the readers poll, I voted and most of what I voted for won. It was fun. Anyway I hope you really are who you say you are. See Ya.
I was so relieved to come across your magazine outline in an article file put together by GLCF Agape. I am 21 and have not come out to my family, or many friends either.
Things have just been a total nightmare since I decided to listen to my heart and not my head since and came to the conclusion that I am lesbian. I'm sure I knew from before, but I feel into the societal trap of denying what I felt because I would get "punished" by a society that has no idea who I am and what I'm all about.
It has been a mental struggle these past few years to make all my jigsaw puzzle pieces fit. And let me tell you that they still ain't fitting, but I've come to learn that it's okay. I gotta love who I am totally before I can be comfortable around other people. My best friend taught me that and I have to credit him for it. He is also gay and my greatest cheering section. I love him to pieces, and I hope to find the way for both of us.