Getting a Voice, Changing Minds: Lesbian Life Stories
The Center for Equality Advancement is proud to announce the publication of the groundbreaking book, Getting a Voice, Changing Minds: Lesbian Life Stories (Drąsa-kalbėti, aistra-gyventi). It is the first attempt of its kind to give Lithuanian lesbians, bisexuals and transsexuals a voice. Getting a Voice, Changing Minds seeks to reduce the “invisibility” of lesbians in Lithuanian society and to reduce prejudiced attitudes towards lesbians.
Based on interviews with dozens of Lithuanian lesbians, the book details the experiences and viewpoints of these women as they fearlessly assert themselves in a society that many decry as homophobic. The book is divided into nine chapters, each dedicated to a different aspect of the lives of the women who were interviewed. The subjects range from their childhood experiences and their coming-out stories to issues that concern us all—gay or straight—such as child-bearing and relationships with their families. The interviews were transcribed directly into the book, preserving the informal and unguarded language that characterized the conversations.
Excerpts from Getting a Voice, Changing Minds:
I remember… when in biology class we had a talk about sex. And, the teacher... mentioned sexual orientation, stating that homosexuality is a disease. I wanted to stand up and say that I did not want to be cured.—Kristina, 21
Honestly, I am lesbian since my earliest days, however I honestly never had… any “trauma.” My childhood was wonderful.—Miglė, 23
All the time I thought that it was this way for everyone. If I liked my [female] teacher, then I thought that it was the case for all girls. Only later did I understand that it was not the case. —Dita, 19
I look like a woman, but inside am a man. I often remember summer in the countryside... Grandma would say…”Girls do not behave that way.” And, I would haughtily reply, “I am not a girl, I am a boy.”—Laimis, 22
I told my sister and brother… But I still needed to hide it from mom... But mom herself wrote me a message, “I know everything. We need to talk.” We spoke and she said that she understood and accepted, that it was not important who I love.—Dagnė, 25
It would be great if I did not have to justify myself, what I am. —Miglė, 23
To read more excerpts from the book, please click here.