Home' LOTL : Aug 12 Contents 14 Lesbians On The Loose Magazine • lotl.com
Special Feature | Coming Out
Wee all have many parts to our
personal identities. Our sexuality
is a part of our personal identity ;
it’s a part of who we are. Having to hide a part
of our identity can lead to emotional pain and
It can be like that for same-sex attracted
people who feel forced to hide or suppress
their sexuality. This may be one of the
contributing factors that have led to higher
suicide rates for same-sex attracted people
compared to straight people. Many same-
sex attracted young people simply want to
be themselves, to be able to relax around
friends, to bring their partner home to family
celebrations, to do everything that ‘straight’
people take for granted. This means coming
out or going public. Some same-sex attracted
young people come out simply because they’re
proud of who they are and want others to
COMING OUT CHECK LIST:
▶ Don’t let anyone pressure you into going
public. It’s your life ; it’s your decision; it’s
your choice. You don’t have to come out.
▶ Only tell someone if you have enough
support to cope with their reaction. Not
everyone will feel happy for you.
▶ If someone rejects you, consider whether
the relationship is really worthwhile.
▶ Be prepared that once you start to tell
people, others might find out pretty quickly.
▶ Give others time to get used to the idea.
▶ Don’t come out during an argument.
Timing , timing , timing! It’s so important.
▶ Don’t do it when you’ve been drinking
alcohol or using any other substance.
▶ Tell them that you’re still the same person as
you were yesterday.
▶ You could have some leaflets or other
▶ Think about some of the things your
parents or others might say, and have some
▶ If it’s too hard to talk about to your parents,
can you write a letter?
▶ Get support before coming out from a local
support group or trusted friend.relative.
There are times when coming out can put
you at risk.
If you are young and live with your parents,
and they pay for you to live (eg. food, clothes,
schooling ) and you think they might ‘kick you
out’ of home or reject you, it may be best to
wait until you are sure they’ll be supportive or
until you are old enough to look after yourself.
If you are working in a place where your
sexuality could put you at risk either of
violence or discrimination in the job, it may
be worth checking out laws and policies that
protect your rights. Do you have the support ?
For more information go to comingout.com.au
Let’s face it, we live in a world that worships
youth - so it’s little wonder that women past
a certain age begin to feel less valued even
useless in the face of a lack of visibility in the
Enter 55Upitty a website devoted to putting
a face and a story to the older women in our
community.According to founder Terese Savage,
“the idea came from my growing awareness of
ageism in our community.
“Instead of grumbling and getting into
negative arguments, I thought it would be better
to showcase some fabulous LGBTI women
who have made a difference.” From this idea a
website was born, 55Upitty.com that celebrates
the wonderful older women in our community.
According to Savage she wanted to challenge
the stereotypes about older LGBTI women.
“It’s about our feisty over-55Upitty women. We
want to pull apart the clichés about women and
aging; about the diminishing of sexuality and
the relaxation of passions; about what older
dykes and queers and lezzos wear and think
Diversity, political awareness and activism,
style and beauty, so valued and represented in
youth-oriented queer cultures, is not the sole
purview of the young, and 55 Upitty aims to
represent—through collaboration, photographic
portraits, and interviews with the mysteriously
disappearing older LGBTI woman.
“We are still here,” says Savage. “This project
aims to record the history of women who have
been, and the women who still are, involved in
lesbian, feminist, gay, bisexual, transgender,
intersex and queer activism and culture, but also
to represent that we are still here. That age does
not make us irrelevant, asexual, harmless, style-
less, conservative, invisible, or insignificant.”
Savage says she developed the concept in
conjunction with photographer Viv McGregor.
Savage writes the words, McGregor shoots the
images.Savage and McGregor are always on
the lookout for new 55Upitty stars, “To qualify
you have to be over 55 years of age and see
yourself as part of the LGBTI community,” says
Savage “and, as we have no travel budget, live
in Sydney or surrounds.”
More at 55upitty.com
A new website is shining the light on our
older community members.
Coming out is now a well known
term, but it’s still understood
differently by different people.
Wayne Elliott fron Coming Out
0413 427 700
C. Wilkinson& J. Rea
(02) 9810 1818
(03) 9489 9974
Dr Jennifer Flatt,
Sydney & Blue Mountains
(02) 9564 1998
0412 004 576
Glebe & Brookvale
(02) 9938 5860
0418 294 293
Surry Hills & Newtown
0439 890 844
0410 636 314
Newtown & Austinmer
0431 701 729
0407 286 738
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