Toledo Pride: Hickey: Dating worries the same whether gay, straightWritten by Emily Hickey | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Dating. A mess of emotions and steps come with dating a person. You develop a crush, catch their eye, begin to date, casually date, seriously date, have their hearts broken, make unpleasant decisions, mend hearts — all in hopes of one day finding your soul mate.
Does this process sound familiar? Yes, these are some of the steps involved in a same-sex relationship. Determining compatibility, quality of communication, financial history and future plans should not be forgotten either.
I still remember meeting my girlfriend for the first time. I was at a bar during an LGBTQA Pride event and saw her walking across the room. She was so beautiful I felt like I stopped breathing. Straight or gay, I can imagine most of you have had one of these breathless moments in your life.
While I am usually a confident person, she had me weak at the knees. I got nervous just saying,”Hello,” so I could not imagine how nerve-racking it would have been to have a full conversation with her as I was so eager to do. I had nerves like the kind that make your palms sweat, face turn red and volts of electricity run through your body.
After months of dating and a trip to Georgia and parties with my family, we took another huge step: We spent a weekend in her hometown so that I could meet her parents.
Whether straight or gay, the anticipation and anxiety that comes with meeting the parents is no different. I hoped they could genuinely give me a chance and see just how much I care about their daughter. I wanted to have the opportunity for them to really get to know what makes me who I am: my family, my career, my volunteer work, etc. My fingers were crossed that I would impress them so much that the fact I was a lesbian dating their daughter would not matter.
While there are significant similarities when it comes to dating regardless of whether it’s a straight relationship or gay relationship, there is still an unfortunate difference.
Parents of a straight couple may pay more attention to the significant other’s job or personality traits, but the parents of an LGBTQA person have to first accept that their son or daughter is in a gay relationship before even giving the significant other a chance to show his or her personality or talk about their job.
Fortunately, my girlfriend’s parents were amazing.
I was hugged immediately upon entering their house. They asked me questions, we laughed and I even became so comfortable I took a nap on the couch while my girlfriend and her mother talked.
In reading articles and hearing stories
from my friends, I know that my reality is not a typical reality for many people in
I have heard about fathers who refuse to walk their daughters down the aisle to their wife, relationships disintegrate before they even start because one person lacks their parents support and even mothers who ask their son’s partner to step out of the family picture because they don’t have an actual marriage — just to name a few.
So while many argue that same-sex couples are ruining the world, I wanted to remind you all that same-sex couples want exactly what straight couples want. We want someone to kiss goodnight before we sleep. We want someone who will stick by us no matter what curveball life throws our way. We want someone to go on adventures with during the weekends.
More than anything, we want to be loved completely for who we were meant to be, especially since that means we will forever be an LGBTQ couple.
Emily Hickey is an advocate for the LGBTQA community through Toledo Pride and OUTSKiRTS Toledo. For more information, visit www.toledopride.com or OUTSKiRTS Toledo on Facebook.