“Because love is the one commonality we all share, regardless of sexual orientation, gender, color or political party – every living, breathing human on this earth wants and needs to be loved and we can freely give that out every single day.”
1. Where are you from and where do you live now?
I was born and raised in Rowlett, TX and I now live in Dallas, TX.
2. Tell me a little bit about what you spend most of your days doing.
Outside of work, you’ll likely find me either working out, watching Dateline, or drinking wine with friends.
3. Give us a little insight into your backstory/upbringing…
I’m lucky to be able to say that when I think back on my childhood and adolescence, I can truly tell you that it was absolutely wonderful. I grew up in what I knew to be a happy home, with parents who seemed to have the perfect marriage and an older brother who I naturally loved/hated. My parents raised us as Christians and we attended a large non-denominational church for as long as I can remember. My brother and I attended church camps every summer and I grew to honestly know and love the Lord. Church, although boring at times to a bratty teenager, never felt like a punishment or prison to me, I had lots friends there and it was just what you did. What everyone did. In school, I was involved in cheerleading and drill team. I had several true & steady girlfriends and joyfully dated boys. My sexuality was never an issue for me, I didn’t question it whatsoever and being attracted to girls never entered my mind – I liked boys. This was the blissful reality I experience all the way through college; boyfriends, friends, fun and freedom. After college, I moved home for a few months until I got a job and then speedily moved out of teeny Rowlett and straight to east Dallas. The night that changed my life (as I like to call it), I can remember like it was yesterday. A group of girls and I were all going out to watch a drag show for my best friends 25th birthday. I know I know, and yes, we were 100% THAT group of straight girls at the gay bar – my retroactive apologies to you all. While we were there, a girl approached the group and began talking up some of my friends, and eventually made her way to me. I didn’t think a lot of it, however, I distinctly remember feeling something “different” as we engaged in conversation. As we were leaving, she asked me for my number and for some strange reason, I gave it to her. My friends later asked why I gave her my REAL number and I answered honestly with “I have no idea”. I never expected her to actually text me – but oh how naive I was, unaware of the unbridled persistence that comes from a lesbian intrigued. She text me the very next day. Turns out, we were both new to Dallas so we became friends. We hung out, we texted, but I remained strong in my straight-ness and never hesitated to remind her that we were “just friends”. After weeks of this, we were hanging out alone at my apartment and something came over me and I kissed her. I kissed her, and I liked it. I kissed her and the weirdest part about it was, it wasn’t weird to me at all. The next day I vividly remember g-chatting my best friend and saying “I kissed Sarah last night, and I don’t think it’s going to be the last time”. Sarah and I quickly became girlfriends and I was obsessed with her, and with us, and with everything about our relationship. I kept it quiet from my family, knowing this would not go over well, but reconciling my religion with my relationship was put on the back burner because all I wanted was her. My mom started to become suspicious and would subtly ask me about Sarah or if I was gay, all topics I would avoid with laughter and a swift exit. But one day, my mom and I met at a Starbucks and I told her everything. I told her I didn’t think I was gay, but that I had no plans to end things with Sarah – a grey statement that my very black-and-white mom could not understand. What followed were tears, insults and a batch of low blows. All of which I will never forget for as long as I live. This was the pattern for the next 6 years with my mom and I. I had 2 very serious, live-in girlfriends after Sarah and acceptance was never gained. My mom would use religion, the bible, the Lord and the afterlife in a constant and consistent attempt to get me turn from my homosexual lifestyle. She encouraged christian counselors and diversion therapy and would send me book after book about a nice young Jesus loving ex-lesbian who turned from her evil ways. My dad was understanding – always embracing the women I dated but would not-so-often remind me that he would always want more for me (*a man for me) but loved me no matter what. Even my now pastor brother would open his home, his heart & his family to my girlfriends, treating them with kindness and love as a true believer would. He doesn’t believe in homosexuality and that’s his right. We’re incredibly close and he’s never made me feel like I’m anything less than a loved child of God. Apart from my family, I wrestled endlessly and painfully with how to reconcile my love for the Lord and my relationships with women. I started going to therapy, I met with different pastors to understand what the bible REALLY says about homosexuality and I read several books about “gay christians” in desperate hope that maybe they knew something I didn’t. It ate me alive and led to the demise of two wonderful relationships. In tandem with my religious struggles, I persistently fought an internal battle with the label “gay”. Something never felt quite right about it to me, as I still felt attraction towards men, but having only dated women for 6 straight years, I didn’t know if that attraction was true, or just shame taking on a different form. All my friends were either GAY or STRAIGHT and feeling like I fell within the middle almost feels like falling into a deep, dark, lonely hole, with everyone telling you that you are what THEY are, leaving me constantly asking myself “what the fuck am I?!” It has taken me years to be able to confidently and shamelessly say that I’m a bisexual, Christian woman and I’ve never felt stronger than I do today.
4. What is your religious background?
5. On a scale of 1 – 5 (1: Not Supportive 5: All good!) how supportive was your family when you came out?
6. Do you have a message to kids out there who come out and might not have the support of their families/friends?
I feel slightly unqualified to give young kids coming out advice seeing as I didn’t struggle with that until later in life. However, I can tell whoever is reading this, regardless of your age, that God loves you. That you are beautifully and perfectly made and if your given family doesn’t accept you, find a chosen family that does. The one constant that I’ve had in my life throughout my struggle with coming out are my friends. I have incredible, understanding, supportive, and loving friends who have been there for me every step of the way.
7. Why do you feel that the simple message of the Promote Love Movement is important?
Because love is the one commonality we all share, regardless of sexual orientation, gender, color or political party – every living, breathing human on this earth wants and needs to be loved and we can freely give that out every single day.
8. What kind of person do you want to be remembered as when you die?
A kind person.
9. How do you feel like growing up in church played a part [positively or negatively] in shaping who you are?
I think growing up in church absolutely shaped me in a positive way for the simple fact that it introduced me to Jesus. Sure, as a kid, it was more of a social activity than anything else, but it gave me the foundation that as an adult I’ve willfully chosen to build my life on, imperfect as I may be.