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[coming out stories]

Mary W. (aka Packerbacker)
Landscaper, Portland, OR
October 11, 2005

Born and raised in Oregon. When I was young, I would go to rodeo with my dad and uncle to watch. Each time a woman walk by us, I would pinch her butt. They would turn around see my dad & uncle sitting there with me and slap their faces. They never realized it was me all along who did it. I dated men because I had no idea that there is queer community out there that time. In my early 20s, my feelings toward women became stronger but never acted on it. I was in straight relationship with my fiance for 14 years then broke up.

Five years later in 2003 I decided to have my first lesbian encounter out of curiousity. Just want see if I wanted to be a lesbian or not. I realized its the lifestyle I was most comfortable with! I came out to my family. The reaction was they have suspected all along that I had feelings for women. They accepted for who I am. I'm lucky to have a loving family. I'm proud to be a lesbian!

Then I met Nanette from Sacramento on DeafQueer chatroom right after the last encounter. This was my first serious queer relationship. Nanette took me to my first Gay Parade in SF (June 2004) to meet Drago. It was an amazing experience!! See all those proud queer people come together as one. We have been together for 2 years now and much happier with who I am as lesbian. I'm glad to have met her & Drago who introduced me to the Deaf Queer Community. I'm lucky today to have a wonderful support system with family, friends and my partner. Just be yourself!

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