Last July, in the midst of The Real L Word airing, Lauren Bedford Russell was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. As most people's first natural reaction, Lauren was frightened and shocked to receive such diagnosis at age 31.
The timing was as well quite ironic as the young reality TV star was at her prime in both her professional and personal life with a successful show, The Real L Word, airing to record breaking ratings, and a burgeoning successful relationship with her cast mate Kiyomi McCloskey, lead singer of Hunter Valentine, who both became the darlings of the show.
What about coming out at work? When people ask if I am in a relationship should I tell them the truth? People from other cultures seem to be especially distraught to find I don't have a man at home. Or should I just lie and let them believe that my partner is a man? I am torn between true to myself and making peace with a homophobic society.
Shy and Sly
After Sandy, the Ali Forney center, which help homeless young LGBTQ people in New York, devastated, was successful thanks to generosity to collect the funds necessary to replace what had been lost and to find a new home. It stills remains a lot to do and each day new young people need assistance.
There are so many steps in transition: changing your name and documentation, counseling, surgery, hormone therapy. They all are part of a process to help reach a place where you are more comfortable in your own skin. Transition means something different for everyone, and it is important to remember there is no certain set of things you need to do to transition. Whatever you feel you need to do for yourself is what you should do. Do not prescribe to the concept of being trans* enough. Your identity is your own and no one else can tell you what you need. Whatever decisions you come to, though, it is important to research all of these parts of transition so you can be informed of your options. One of the things I have been struggling with the most has been the thought of testosterone (T). So what do you need to know about T?
I can’t understand why some people think being gay is a choice. I was born gay. The signs have all been there since I was 3 years old. I was always a tomboy who preferred boy’s toys and games over dolls and make-up. I was compelled to be gay if I was to continue being true to myself. It’s not like I had a choice. I feel like my sexual orientation was predetermined by my DNA and possibly past lifetime experiences or karma.