Relate and Relations: The excluded minority

Coming out of older lesbians.

We focus primarily on the coming out stories of the younger generation but what we forget to acknowledge is that it is the past generations that have paved the way for today’s acceptance of the LGBT community across Western societies. My goal was to research on how the older lesbians perceive the rose to fame lesbian community. I had found a lady that I had met at a monthly meet-up in London’s famous Retro Bar. Little did I know, the story I was seeking was about to open an entirely new chapter parallel to my initial works. I had carefully prepared triggering questions only to find myself engulfed and thrown deep into the life of an individual, who at first glance one would consider to be your usual Londoner having her well deserved pint after a long day at work.

We sat at the back of the pub and before I could ask her a question she dove right into her life story. At the age of 51, she had made her coming out in 2016 and was finally able to take a step back to acknowledge her sexuality. It was as if a breath of fresh air had overcome her core but I felt she still kept her guard up and was reluctant to let go. Having grown up in a small town up North, she was unable to be who she was. Coming from a working class family, she didn’t quite adhere to Northern standards which would consist of leaving school, finding work and getting married. Instead, Ellie decided to graduate school and applied to become a police officer. Unfortunately, as she was of below standardised height requirement, she shifted to the HR department. Ellie is 5’4, slim build, brown mousy hair pulled back into a ponytail while her reading glasses laid firmly on her head. She was dressed in an every day business manner with her shirt slightly unbuttoned, exposing a necklace I couldn’t quite make out; however, it dawned on me that this was the only piece of jewelry she wore that had a hidden significance. As she went on a never ending tale about her life, I noticed that though this kind and gentle featured woman was of high importance in the policing world and had accomplished what many of us could only dream of, she seemed somewhat alone. Alone would undoubtedly translate as lonely but Ellie was far from that. When Ellie came back from war torn Afghanistan, little did she know she had begun developing PTSD and with a point to prove to the world and to herself, she embarked on a mission to Pakistan, subconsciously purposely depriving herself of ‘coming out’ and enhancing her denial that has been ruling her life for more than 30 years. On her arrival back to London, she finally got lost in this magical city we all succumb to. She has become a true Londoner with her ‘I don’t give a shit attitude’ yet ‘I do actually give a shit’. Life has passed Ellie by without a thought or a care in the world but here is where the underlying story lies.

From the eyes of a woman newly introduced to the Lesbian community, she has picked up on a point I have written about in my previous articles. She had quite a bit to say about todays lesbian community. Bear in mind that Ellie fits the term ‘what you see is what you get’ and thus speaks her mind. She has noticed that the lesbians see fit the need to come to a meet-up dressed in what Ellied describes as ‘house wear’. With their unironed plain t-shirts, jeans that look as if they need a good wash, trainers that a homeless person would refuse to accept, greasy hair either pulled back where the dandruff lays comfortably on top or fixed behind the ears giving their cheeks a shiny glow from the grease, she is shocked by how lesbians have dropped all standards. Ellie is a highly intelligent individual who sees people for what and who they are in the first 3 minutes of meeting them. When I had met her, my initial thought was ‘at least someone made an effort tonight’. She was smartly dressed with a light touch of

makeup and her hair nicely permed. She had the graces of a well respected and educated lady. Unsurprisingly, she couldn’t award a compliment to the shabbiness that attended the soiree. When I asked her what would you have liked to have said to the women in the room, she replied ‘make an effort ! and leave your scruffs at home.’ The women made no good lasting impressions for Ellie since they couldn’t even make a first half decent impression. She added to her out of work engagements other meetup events in hope of meeting someone special. Yet again, she was not only in the company of ‘let themselves go’ type of women but had found that their political opinions were a matter of importance in determining who could be part of their shabby definitely not chic group. She went on an outing with a group of women who were all highly educated with most holding a PhD. Sat at a table having dinner and drinks, the women began their political discussions since the country was radically submerged with the December 2019 elections. Ellie was the natural candidate to vote Labour based on her background but since she was off the typical mark of living the life of a working class citizen and having surpassed a higher education that led to an intelligence work position, she bears no particular support to a political party but would base her judgement on the presented candidates. She sat quietly, listening to people’s conversations and making her deductions. She noticed that the women were overwhelmingly bitter and held a tainted view of society. They had a tendency to primarily focus on women and disregarded the fact that men were part of society. While the group led their pro-Corbyn discussions, Ellie had voted to remain but was going to vote for Boris Johnson as she believed he was more genuine than the opposition. If she was to voice her opinions to which she made the reasonable decision to avoid verbal altercations, she would have been disregarded, looked down upon and most certainly called a racist, a white privileged individual, moralless, unethical and down right destructive.

Having just come out and ready and willing to explore the lesbian community, she didn’t know how to open the door to the wider LGBT world and after her experiences, she most certainly prefers to keep that door shut. Women like Ellie are not greeted and accepted with the welcoming smile and respect they deserve but instead are turned away by the regressive behaviours of lesbians and their attitudes to what and how the community should represent. Fidel Castro, the infamous dictator who tore Cuba’s soul and brought her to her knees once said ‘ I find capitalism repugnant. It is filthy, it is gross, it is alienating…because it causes war, hypocrisy, and competition.’ The lesbian community certainly have something in common with him. Ellie is part of a minority community that seeks open mindedness, reason, democracy, respect and inclusiveness. Ellie is the community I chose to be part of. She might be walking life alone but at least she isn’t walking it alongside Narnia.


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