County of Residence: Elk County, formerly Jefferson County
Pronouns: Her or she
How do you describe your identity? I’m a white lesbian
Please describe your coming out experience. Where did you find support? What challenges did you face? I came out to my mom when I was 12. I had a signature on my phone with my girlfriends name so when my mom seen it she asked who the girl was so I told her.. she told me for years that it was a phase and she also don’t like that I’m lesbian but she has to except it .
How would you describe yourself NOW in terms of “being out”? I’m proud of being out
Tell me about the first LGBTQ person whom you met. What impact did they have on your life? My cousin is a lesbian. She made me feel comfortable to come out to being a lesbian myself.
Past or present, favorite LGBTQ character or creator in television, film or literature? Please tell us why. Ellen degeneres because she is hilarious and openly lesbian
How do you stay informed about LGBTQ issues? I’m in lesbian groups.
Describe your geographical community. I wouldn’t say it is lgbtq friends! Most people are against it
Describe your local or regional LGBTQ community. There is no lgbtq community around here most people are against the lgbtq unfortunately
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Have you ever experienced discrimination based on your identity? Specifically, in a job setting, when applying for housing or while in public. No.
Tell us about your access to health care in Western PA. Has it been LGBTQ competent (or not?) I wouldn’t say it is lgbtq friends! Most people are against it
Are there issues impacting your LGBTQ neighbors that aren’t visible or part of the local dialogue? Not sure.
What would you like to see elected officials do to improve life for LGBTQ Pennsylvanians? For people who bash or beat up a lgbtq person they go away for something
Please share a lived experience, anecdote or fact about life as an LGBTQ person in your community. Nothing.
Beyond discrimination, what other barriers create challenges for your LGBTQ neighbors? Not sure.
What LGBTQ friendly resources are available for your neighbors? I’m not sure honestly
What is your greatest fear for the LGBTQ community in Western Pennsylvania? People will be more scared to come out
What is your greatest hope for the LGBTQ community in Western Pennsylvania? People could except lgbtq people
What can allies do to support your LGBTQ community? Not bash them
How can gay men and lesbians support the bisexual, transgender and queer members of our community? By just supporting them because love is love
What motivated you to take part in this project? I think everyone should state their opinion and I’m lesbian so why not participate
Finally, what question should I have asked? Please also share your answer. How did you know if you were gay lesbian bi straight trans? I started to think women are attractive and never thought about being with a man
Thank you, Kelsey!
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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.
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