G’s Spot

G’s Spot

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Well let me introduce myself. My name is Gigi and I will be writing a bi-weekly column. I am a 40 something gay woman that has been "out" for many years. I do not hide it and I do not flaunt it. Every job that I’ve had has known about my sexuality. All of my friends and family knows and have not really had a problem with it short of the initial "coming out" moment. I think one reason for this is that I was me and didn’t live for anyone else. I am happy and the people that truly love me are happy for me. I can be me and not let other people bring me down because of their beliefs.

That's a message that every woman should hold close to their heart no matter what their sexual persuasion is.

Back to the column, my spot is geared – but not limited to – questions about being gay in Cincinnati. Anything that peaks your curiosity but are not comfortable with asking face-to-face about the gay community and/or the lifestyle, I'm happy to answer!

One question I always get is, "Is being gay really a choice?" And I'm going to get this answer out of the way first: Yes, I believe we are born this way.

As you can imagine, being gay is not an easy way to live. People lose family members and friends over it. Some live double lives just to make others happy. Each of us has to be comfortable with ourselves and happy with what hand we are dealt or we will have a life that just isn’t what it could be. I guess we do have a choice, be ourselves and be happy or be what others want you to be and not be happy. That seems more like a forced decision and less like a choice, though. I'd rather go with myself being happy. After all, I am the only person that I can never get away from!

Remember back in the day when being left-handed was forbidden? We (yes I’m also a lefty) were told that it was wrong, and not acceptable. We would get our hands "cracked" with a ruler or even go as far as to tie one's hand behind their back to make sure they didn’t use it to write with. Then, (many) years later it was studied and come to find out this is not a bad thing, just different. As the years have gone by, more and more people are left handed. So, it seems that way. It is just that now we are aware of lefties because we are not cast aside because of this. Same with gay people, there are not more of us than there were 50 years ago. We are just able to come out a little more every year. More and more people realize that this is the way we are and it doesn’t matter.

I think we're on the cusp of seeing the same kind of "lefty" realization happen for the gay community. Ellen DeGeneres is the perfect example.

Her show "Ellen" reached its height of attention in April 1997 when she came out of the closet on national television and publicly declared that she was a lesbian to Oprah Winfrey, who played her therapist. After she publicly came out, ratings sunk and the show was canceled. DeGeneres laid low for a while and, as we all know, she re-established herself as the successful host of a daytime television talk show, "The Ellen DeGeneres Show."

Amid a crop of several talk shows surfacing in 2003 when her show first aired, DeGeneres' show has consistently risen in the ratings, received widespread critical praise and garnered 15 Emmy Awards. In just the past decade since "Ellen," a lot has happened to the social perceptions of our gay community. People are finding out this is not a bad thing, just different.

So, send me questions! I'm happy to be a part of this "realization" revolution!