This is a great article in The New York Times; if you’re unfamiliar with the two cases, click here.
In celebration of the SCOTUS decision, I am going to share my “coming out letter” for the first time on my blog. I sent this letter to my entire family in October, 2008. I’m talking parents, grandparents, godparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, the whole family and friends (It took A LOT of stamps). Most of those closest to us already knew that Georgia and I were together and planned to marry, but I sent it to them anyway. ;) I don’t for one minute regret that I shared this letter with my loved ones all those years ago. As my wife would say, “you came out of the closet like the Kool-Aid Man busts through a wall”. Direct is my style, I guess. So here is my letter, and best of luck to all of us.
I hope that this letter is finding you all healthy and happy. I wish I could sit and visit with each of you, but I realize how busy our lives are, so I decided to write instead. I haven’t seen some of you since Christmas, and for others it’s been even longer than that. A lot has happened in my life over the past year, which is why I’m writing you today.
Some of you may have already heard the news I wish to share, and for those of you who have, please know that I did want to be the first to tell you. My news to all of you is that I am getting married! My bigger news is that I am engaged to a woman named Georgia. This brings about the third piece of me that I wanted to share with each of you. I am a Lesbian. Georgia and I have been together for over two years. We own a beautiful home and we have three dogs. We met at work three years ago and at the risk of sounding cliché, it was love at first sight. Georgia’s Mom and Dad are native New Mexicans. She has one brother and like me, she has a really big family. They are all wonderful people who love and care for me very much. I can’t wait for you to meet all of them.
I realize that this may be shocking news for some of you, primarily because many times being gay comes with a negative stigma and is not accepted by everyone in our culture. Without going into a deep explanation of why I have chosen to accept myself for me, more than anything I want to remind you that I am still the Kristin you have always known. I am a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a niece and most importantly a Christian. Many times people who don’t know gay people think that being gay is a choice, something that can be changed. The fact is- it is not. I would never choose something that may offend my family and go against the social norm; however, choosing to live a lie would only hurt me emotionally and psychologically. Accepting myself as a gay person was a process for me. It took a really long time to accept who I was and disregard what other people may think of me. I know “acceptance” of this news may take some time for you, but more than anything I would ask for your love and respect. I truly believe I am the person my parents and you all wanted me to be, the fact that I am a lesbian is just a part of what makes me whole. I have always felt that the most important thing you can do for yourself, and as an example to others, is to live an authentic life. My faith in God has never faltered. Even though I still struggle with the fact that the Catholic faith does not accept me, I will leave that up to God to decide. God is still a part of my daily life and I thank him everyday for all he’s done to keep me strong and make the person I am today. I am “coming out” to you all today because I wish to have a closer, more genuine relationship with each of you. I wish to dispel myths and stereotypes about who gay people really are. We are human beings who love each other just like you, and as you can see, we do not all fit the common socially constructed mold.
I have been blessed in finding someone who loves and supports me, that shares my hopes and dreams for the future and most importantly, someone who loves her family as much as I do. From this point forward, when you see me, Georgia will be by my side. All I can ask from each of you is for your love and support as we begin our lives together. Please do not hesitate to call or email me. I would love to hear from you.
P.S. The date for the “big day” is November 7, 2009 in Los Cabos, MexicoLove, Kristin
In the weeks following my mailing of this letter, I received countless calls, emails and letters from our loved ones and every single one came from a loving place. I never thought that this would be the reaction… Just goes to show, don’t ever underestimate the people who love you, and never let your fear of the unknown keep you for living an authentic life.