My Story

Growing up in conservative West Michigan, I watched lesbian and gay friends and family members struggle to be accepted and be treated equally. There are gains and losses in this fight every day, and it is vital for LGBT individuals and their straight allies to stand up and to pay attention.

05 February 2011


NPR shared an interesting article on Facebook this morning, and I thought it deserved further sharing. There's a new blog called "Born This Way!" It shares pictures of LGBT individuals from their childhood accompanied by an essay chronicling their experiences. With Lady GaGa's newest single bearing the same name, it's bound to increase in popularity.

However, NPR raises some important issues. Is the blog furthering stereotypes by showing stories of feminine gay men and masculine lesbian women?

This is what the blog's creator has to say about that:

"So, some of the pix here feature gay boys with feminine traits, and some gay girls with masculine traits. And even more gay kids with NONE of those traits. Just like real life, these gay kids come in all shades and layers of masculine and feminine. And this project is not about furthering stereotypes."

So, is this blog a step forward or a step backward? While I think it's important to recognize and reject stereotypes, pride is extremely significant in the LGBTQ community. Why shouldn't they celebrate the way they were born, whether that be masculine, feminine, or somewhere in between? Why shouldn't we all?

"I didn't even figure out I was gay until my 20's, but I always knew I was different...I love this picture, now that I love myself as a gay adult."

[Mike from Jacksonville, Florida, at age 2. Click here for his full post.]


  1. I finally took the time to check out the "born this way" blog, and I think it's kinda cool. It does show some stereotypes, but it has variety in people and stories. The thing about gender is that it is even more confusing as a child when you don't feel you fit into traditional gender roles, there are only two that you can look to to imitate. I don't feel very masculine, but as a child I knew I didn't fit into the traditional gender role of a female, so I went by the name of Johnny and tried my best to fit that gender role. I didn't quite fit there either, go figure! Perhaps as we become more open as a society, our children will not feel so confined to two traditional gender roles.

  2. That's a very interesting point! Thanks sister.