“I am a gay woman with a Jewish surname, now questioning whether I will be prevented from marrying whom I love, be denied access to adequate women’s health care, or be victim of anti-Semitism,” writes Audrey Goldfarb, sports editor at University of Rochester, New York’s paper
For the majority of my young life, I was constantly reminded by many of my peers that my sexual identity was immoral and offensive.
Some of my best friends were outwardly and shamelessly homophobic, and I genuinely believed that I would become estranged from them if I chose to come out. A typical young girl’s fear of rejection, and a desire for acceptance, deeply affected my high school experience.
When I came to UR, I felt unshackled, free to love whomever I wanted, and confident that my expressions of that love would be respected and viewed as normal. After a year of adjusting to this newfound acceptance, I stopped hesitating when introducing my girlfriend to others.
Walking hand-in-hand across campus with another girl felt unremarkable. When meeting new people, I didn’t feel that my sexuality was an elephant in the room that needed to be addressed—it came up as naturally as if I had been straight.
I felt comfortable in my own skin for the first time. I began to believe that the oppressive elements of the community where I grew up represented an ignorant minority in a greater and more enlightened America.
Last Wednesday at 3 a.m., I came to the sudden realization that I had been naïve.