Gender Identity/Expression and Sexual Orientation Resource Center

Kelsey Twitchell is an undergraduate senior studying Communication Advertising at Washington State University on the Pullman campus. She loves listening to hipster indie music, especially music that no one’s ever heard of. She’s also a fan of K-Pop (Korean pop music) and loves bands like Big Bang. After graduating, she would like a job in the advertising and marketing fields. 

“I had a traditional family until I was 12. My mom was married to my dad and that’s when I was born. And then my mom came out to us and they got a divorce. At first I didn’t know what that meant because I was 12 years old and nobody talked about it other than “be respectful to people.” She started dating a woman, Karen, who’d been her partner this entire time. My mom has dated only one person. I think it is a blessing in a way because sometimes parents date a whole bunch of people and I’m kind of glad my parents didn’t do that. My dad is also married to a nice lovely woman and so is my mom.”

“Anne is my mom. Karen is my other mom, my non-biological mom. They’re both in the medical field. Karen is a medical physicist. My mother Anne is a dosimetrist. They treat cancer. They’ve been in the field for a very long time. They made the choice to go to counseling and for a while because they were going separately, they decided to go together eventually and decided to talk in a safe space. We have some rules still from counseling! We only talk about serious stuff from 10am-2pm and only on weekends because that’s the time you’re not stressed out, you’re not coming home from work yelling “I hate my boss.” It’s usually after breakfast and you’ve usually had a full night sleep. You can talk about things sort of calmly and seriously and it’s actually really worked. That’s one thing I’ve learned from counseling and I try to apply that in my life.” 

“I am a cisgender individual. I go with queer mostly but I also go with bi and the Kinsey Scale where I’m a three. I find myself more attracted to men but I have been attracted to women before. If I love the person it doesn’t matter to me how they identify.” 

“I found girls attractive somewhat too and it really helped to talk to my parents. For some people, when they come out to their parents it’s very traumatic for them and I feel so bad. I’m really thankful for the parents that I have because I can talk to them about anything, not just sexuality but anything! They love me for who I am. They don’t judge me and that really helps. They were like “Hey! Maybe you like girls too!” I told them that I did like this one girl and their response was “Oh, welcome to the lesbian side.” This happened probably when I was 17 or 18, or 19, around that age.” 

“Someone asked me, “You have gay parents so does that mean you’re going to turn out gay?” and I was like no my parents don’t teach me to be gay. They teach me to be tolerant, to be accepting and a good person. That’s what people need to do. They need to not be afraid. They need to educate themselves. And if they have questions, maybe instead of being a troll online, ask some people. Don’t be insensitive and ask “Why are you gay?!” Don’t do that.” 

“If your parents aren’t accepting of you, find people that are. It’s really hard to say no to your parents or to not be accepted by your parents but you really have to find people who will support you and find that connection because that will really help. With Karen and her parents, my mom and I were there for her and that really helped her, as well as counseling, that helped. Get some counseling!”