Vacation : to gay or not to gay

The first snowflakes of the season fell unexpectedly this morning. And It has strengthened my everlasting travel cravings. My wife and I love to travel. We love exploring and having new adventures. But because we’ve been trying to get pregnant for the last 6 months, it’s been nearly impossible to plan a vacation. So lately as winter has been creeping in, I’ve been daydreaming of warm sandy beach vacations like crazy. Today I’m thinking about where we’ve been and why.

My wife and I have been on several kinds of vacations, before and after we were married. We have been to several very gay-friendly destinations including Key West, Fort Lauderdale, and Montreal. We visit Provincetown several times a year because we live so close to there. The reason we’ve chosen these vacays is not that we’re afraid to vacation with straight people, but that we simply prefer the GLBT community. I feel the most comfortable around this group. I would love to re-visit any of these places.

We’ve also been on 2 Olivia all-women cruises. Although we had great experiences on both trips, we have concluded that Olivia just isn’t for us. It’s a combination of the cruise line they use and the exorbitant price they charge in order to travel with all women.

We’ve also been to lesser-gay locales like Mexico, Clearwater FL, Niagara Falls, Maine, the Outerbanks, and Vegas. We’ve been totally out during all if our vacays and I’ve been consistently surprised by how welcomed we have felt. And it’s because of those experiences that it encourages us to want to continue exploring outside if the GLBT-majority vacay box.

We’ve found that being open to traveling with the straights is much cheaper!

The important advice I have for GLBT couples who are traveling is to always pack copies of your marriage certificates (if you are married), and health care proxies (even if you are married). And do your research about the destination before you book. Places still exist in this world where GLBT are simply not welcome.

Ugh. All this vacation talk is making me want to take a siesta on a beach chair somewhere!

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Living Out 100%

Living my life 100% out has been easier for me than some.

About 12 years ago, I came out to my family a week before I moved out of state. I was 25ish. Thankfully, it was quick and somewhat painless. I’ve been out to all of my friends ever since. But coming out at work? That was different.

I didn’t come out at my job until around 2 years later. A few co-workers I had become friends with knew earlier. Because, up until that point, I felt that I could only tell people whom I trusted.

I’ve always worked with a majority of men. Which has never bothered me. However, judging from my experience being around men, I knew that once they found out about my personal life, there was a chance it would alter my work environment for the worse. I even worked with a few men who openly spoke of their dislike of “gays”. I’ve heard my share of anti-gay jokes, and just responded to them with an “I dont get it.” I’ve even heard someone say one time that gays should be lined up and shot to death! Of course I couldn’t help but call him an idiot, but I sure as shit didn’t wave my rainbow flag in his face. Except for that douchebag, I mean, ignorant bigot, overall my experience being out at work has been surprisingly fine, and even welcoming at times.

Where I work now, I am the only female in my department out of 14 men. As far as I know, I’m the only gay in my company. The bigger issue than being a lesbian, is that I’m 1 female vs 14 males. I’m constantly wondering if I’m getting “special” treatment, or that I’m underpaid. But the lesbian thing has been a non-issue. I think it actually helps me, because I’m sort of a “soft butch” type who isn’t like the guys’ wives and girlfriends at home…I’m more like one of the guys…yet I’m not one. I talk about my wife at work…and they have all met her. They’ve been supportive at a distance, even getting me a cash-filled wedding card that had 2 girls holding hands on the front.

In hind sight, it’s been a much bigger deal to me than it has been to everyone else…at least, as far as I know.