Joie Cosby, Lesbian
INVOLVEMENTS AT OU:
Ohio Office of Sustainability Compost Facility (Volunteer) and Former Varsity Ohio Women's Soccer Program (former member)
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO BE OUT?:
It is important to be out to show people that we, the LGBT community, are everyday people just like them. For the most part we want the same thing that our fellow heterosexual counterparts want out of life. Being out also allows us to be honest with ourselves and others around us, not hiding in fear of something that we have no control over.
WHY ARE YOU PROUD?:
I am most proud of the fact that I have been able to overcome all the negativity associated with being a lesbian and have fully accepted who I am as an individual. I refuse to denounce who I am because society identifies it with deviant behavior. Why not be proud of that?
WHAT WAS THE MOST DIFFICULT PART ABOUT COMING OUT?:
The most difficult part about coming out wasn't the reactions of my parents or peers but accepting myself for who I am. I thought that if I could be confident with myself and my sexuality then the people who cared about me most would stick around to deal with the "new" me, but getting to accept myself was a difficult process.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO OTHERS WHO COME OUT?:
Come out on your time. The coming out experience is a process of ups and downs but in the end you will look back and feel relieved that you have been able to discover a new part of yourself.
THOUGHTS FOR NON-LGBT PEOPLE ABOUT LGBT PEOPLE AND CONCERNS:
Try to be open minded. We are a diverse group of people who are capable of love, hurt, frustration, happiness and all sorts of emotions that "normal" people experience in their lifetimes. Our community is continuously being oppressed and discriminated against because our government and society try to steer its member’s thoughts to thinking that there is only one correct way to live. Try putting yourself in our shoes and seeing if you would enjoy living a life where equality is only something you dream of.