County of Residence: Fayette, previously Morgantown, West Virginia
Preferred Pronouns: She
How do you describe your identity? Lesbian mom psychologist photographer and activist
Please describe your coming out experience. Where did you find support? What challenges did you face? Well it didn’t go well. I was married with kids. My now ex and I are best friends he is a really great guy. We coparent well. My family has had a harder time with this as it goes against their beliefs
How would you describe yourself NOW in terms of “being out”? Out and proud
Tell me about the first LGBTQ person whom you met. What impact did they have on your life? Not totally sure most memorable was in college when I did dance and theatre
Past or present, favorite LGBTQ character or creator in television, film or literature? Please tell us why. Joanne from rent and Bette from L word as they are strong powerful lesbian women
How do you stay informed about LGBTQ issues? Mostly Facebook groups and glsen and school ally groups
Describe your geographical community. Same small town not much resources.
Describe your local or regional LGBTQ community. Very narrow minded
Have you ever experienced discrimination based on your identity? Specifically, in a job setting, when applying for housing or while in public. A little especially after trump was elected. My work place is pretty awesome though
Tell us about your access to health care in Western PA. Has it been LGBTQ competent (or not?) I typically use West Virginia
Are there issues impacting your LGBTQ neighbors that aren’t visible or part of the local dialogue? Absolutely usually revolving around religion homelessness and healthcare.
What would you like to see elected officials do to improve life for LGBTQ Pennsylvanians? Fair and equity for everyone
Please share a lived experience, anecdote or fact about life as an LGBTQ person in your community. Don’t be afraid of who you are those who truly love you will always love you no matter what
Beyond discrimination, what other barriers create challenges for your LGBTQ neighbors? Not sure
What LGBTQ friendly resources are available for your neighbors? Persad center
What is your greatest fear for the LGBTQ community in Western Pennsylvania? Fair treatment
What is your greatest hope for the LGBTQ community in Western Pennsylvania? That one day it won’t matter if I am gay straight purple polka dot or blue. A person is that a human and should be treated as such
What can allies do to support your LGBTQ community? Keep supporting us
How can gay men and lesbians support the bisexual, transgender and queer members of our community? Same way we support each other
What motivated you to take part in this project? To help others
Finally, what question should I have asked? Please also share your answer. No clue.
Thank you, Laura!
Read the entire AMPLIFY LGBTQ Q&A archive.
AMPLIFY LGBTQ is a series of blog posts designed to give a “signal boost” to the voices of our LGBTQ neighbors throughout Western Pennsylvania. These are glimpses in to the lived experiences of LGBTQ people in Western Pennsylvania as told in their own voices.
Our intent is to highlight the voices of marginalized members of our community who are not always invited to the table or whose voices are not heard. If you would like to participate, visit the online Q&A which takes about 30 minutes.