September 26 2005 12:00 AM ET
I am what is
called a “closet case.” I was raised in a
Christian home where homosexuality didn’t
exist. Knowing what I was but fearing it, I pretended
to be like all my friends, talking about guys at school.
Without realizing it, I became a homophobe in public.
Then in high
school I started watching Queer as Folk. I
loved it from the first episode.
I was obsessed,
but my obsession was kept a secret. I would sneak
downstairs after everyone was in bed and watch it.
that I was approached by a friend who also watched the
show. It was great! She was straight, yet she watched a gay
show! Her sister is bisexual, and they invited me to
go with them to the 2003 pride parade in Cincinnati. I
think that was when I finally came to terms with the
fact that I was a closeted lesbian. I felt like I actually
belonged, like I was meant to be there.
wasn’t pleased when she found out what the parade
really was. I had told her it was a “rainbow
festival.” She says that she’s not
homophobic, but when it comes to her own daughter, I think
she is. After going to the parade I vowed to come out
to my mom, so I allowed her to find out about my
obsession with Queer as Folk, my collection of
pride trinkets, and my subscriptions to The Advocate
and Out. She seems distant and uninterested, but I
do have to give her credit; I think she’s trying.
anything I want for my family and friends to know more about
the real me, but I fear losing everything I have if they do.
It sounds stupid, but this fear has been there for
years, and even now I’m scared out of my mind
of what writing this will bring. But I have to take a
chance if I ever want to be happy. I’m 20 and
I’ve never been in love. I’ve never been
kissed or been on a date. In fact, I’ve never been
asked out or had anyone interested in me. Why? Because
I’m a closet case who won’t let anyone