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In October 1998, Matthew Shepard, a 21-year-old student at the University of Wyoming, was brutally attacked and tied to a fence outside of Laramie, Wyoming. Five days later he died of deep wounds inflicted in one of the most vicious anti-gay attacks in American history. In this wide-ranging interview with PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce, Jeff Mack, a personal friend of Matt’s and today the Executive Vice President of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, talks movingly about Matt, his life, and the Foundation started by his parents, Judy and Dennis Shepard, just months after Matt’s gruesome death. Jeff talks about the foundation’s ongoing work to combat hate and prejudice. He talks, too, about the Laramie Project, a now famous play by Moises Kaufman about the city and its residents that was produced after Matthew’s murder. And finally, Jeff talks about the day, in 2018, 20 years after his death, when Matthew was finally laid to rest in the safe sanctuary of Washington DC’s National Cathedral. Please click the button to subscribe so you don't miss any episodes and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you! For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2022 PFLAG Cape Cod
Alex Hagler is a Latin and history teacher at a prestigious private school outside Boston. They’re also the recent co-founder of their school’s first Gay Straight Alliance. GSA’s (also known as Genders & Sexualities Alliances) operate in many school systems across the country today. As clubs, they’re intended to serve as safe spaces for LGBTQ+ youth in middle schools and high schools. Increasingly, however, they’re also serving as catalysts for social, racial, and gender justice. In this interview, conducted just after they founded their school’s GSA Chapter, Alex talks with PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce about the valuable role GSAs can play in schools today. Not just as safe places for young people to be affirmed in their sexual orientation and gender identity, but also as resources for educating entire communities about human sexuality, sexual orientation, and gender diversity. Please click the button to subscribe so you don't miss any episodes and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you! For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2022 PFLAG Cape Cod
Imagine being in a traditional heterosexual marriage for many years and then discovering that your husband or wife is gay or lesbian. What would you think? How would you react? What would you do? And where would you go to get help and find understanding in dealing with your situation? In the late 1980s, Kimberly Brooks Mazella found herself in this very situation, after being married to her husband Rob for less than three years. Today, she is a McLean, VA-based counselor and therapist who specializes in working with individuals and couples who find themselves in “mixed sexual orientation” marriages. In this fascinating interview with PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce, Kimberly describes the complicated psychological dynamics at play within mixed sexual orientation marriages. She explains the challenges for both the gay partner and the straight spouse in navigating these situations. And, she talks about why it’s so important that the pain and perspectives of both parties in such relationships be respected, acknowledged, and seen as valid in their own respective ways. Please click the button to subscribe so you don't miss any episodes and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you! For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2022 PFLAG Cape Cod
“Vernon Diannah Porter” is probably not a name you readily recognize. But that’s because he’s much better known by his stage name and alter ego, “Lady Di”, host of the popular Friday evening radio show, Leggs Up and Dancing, on WOMR-FM in Provincetown, Massachusetts. Lady Di has been a popular fixture at WOMR for the last 22 years. Each week, she hosts her show from her home in Sandwich, MA, playing music -- mostly from the 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s, -- all the while presiding over a one-person house party that she enthusiastically invites all her listeners to attend. And her fans? They’re both numerous and diverse. Young and old, they include lots of members of Provincetown‘s LGBTQ+ community but also legions of loyal straight listeners, as well as veterans, active-duty military, and fans who live as far away as Spain and Guam. During her show, Lady Di makes her audience feel very much at home, calling listeners “Honey” and “Darling.” And more often than not, when on air, she can be heard singing along – often off key – with the likes of Connie Francis and Anne Murray, the latter of whom was a childhood friend back in their hometown of Spring Hill, Nova Scotia. But Lady Di is much more than her on-air persona might imply. Besides being one of P’town’s most recognizable public figures, she’s also a life coach, a prodigious fundraiser for local causes, and a minister who’s officiated at over 900 straight and same-sex weddings. In this wide-ranging interview with PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce, Lady Di talks not only about the public personality all of her listeners know, but also about more private matters … How she was bullied and made fun of as a kid. Why she’s been described by others as “gender-gifted.” Why she finds such a strong sense of purpose in helping members of the LGBTQ+ community embrace their true identity. And finally about her battle with cancer. Please click the button to subscribe so you don't miss any episodes and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you! For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2022 PFLAG Cape Cod
Some life partners first spot each other from across a crowded room. But not Helen Malone. With a piece of birthday cake in hand, she literally bumped into her future wife, Jane Martin from behind, at a birthday party for a mutual friend back in 2002. From the moment they met, the lives of both women changed rapidly. And while their lives today on Cape Cod -- with three dogs – seems like the picture of domestic bliss, their back stories include marriages by both women to former husbands... three kids of Helen’s – one by artificial insemination... Jane’s journey to becoming a parent, and even a child custody battle that, at one point in their relationship, tested Helen and Jane’s collective mettle. In this interview with PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce, Jane and Helen, together now for over 19 years, describe what they say are the secrets to creating and sustaining a loving, long-term lesbian marriage. What matters most, they say, are good communication, patience, compromise, and the courage and confidence to be yourself.   Please click the button to subscribe so you don't miss any episodes and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you!   For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html   © 2022 PFLAG Cape Cod
Dr. Joan Beilstein is a Lesbian Episcopal Priest, and Rector of the Church of the Ascension in Silver Spring MD. Today, though a senior, well-respected pastor in the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, DC, there was a time when Joan was rejected by her own priest for being gay. And even after being ordained a priest herself in 1994, Joan struggled to find employment, because no one wanted to hire an openly lesbian priest. In this revealing interview with PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce, Joan looks back on a storied career that has spanned nearly 30 years. And she talks movingly about how, for her, human sexuality, sexual orientation, gender identity, and spirituality are all beautifully and inextricably intertwined. Please click the button to subscribe so you don't miss any episodes and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you! For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2022 PFLAG Cape Cod
Hollis L. | Ep #20

Hollis L. | Ep #20

2022-01-1432:49

Hollis L. is a 25-year-old individual who identifies as both non-binary and transmasculine. That means that, though assigned a designation of female at birth, they don’t fully identify with being a person of either gender. But, in Hollis' case, it does mean they tend to embrace more of a “masculine” identity than a feminine one. In this fascinating interview with PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce, the two explore the issue of gender identity in detail. As the interview reveals, agreeing on definitions of what constitutes “masculine” and “feminine” can be a struggle, and open to broad, subjective, and personal interpretation. The two also discuss the challenges of being non-binary at work, how to talk to one’s family about one’s gender identity, and what it means to be in a relationship with another person who also identifies as non-binary and transmasculine. Please click the like button above and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you! For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2022 PFLAG Cape Cod
David Bermudez and Bob Isadore are a same-sex couple who have been together for 47 years. David, a veteran of the Stonewall uprising of 1969, met Bob, in 1974, when the two were both living and working in New York City. At the time, David was a Manhattan-based interior designer. Bob, was an assistant buyer for Saks Fifth Avenue who hailed from Queens. As they tell PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce in this insightful, wide-ranging interview, their relationship began with a bounced check, and a chance glance by David of Bob in a New York City phone booth. Soon afterwards, the two realized they’d both met someone very special. And so began a decades-long relationship between a Portuguese Catholic from Fall River, Massachusetts who loves to cook, and a burly, Bronx-born Puerto Rican who loves Judy Garland, and has a passion for rhythm and blues. Please click the like button above and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you! For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
David Bermudez's work on behalf of gay rights has continued since the days of the Stonewall uprising. Listen, as he tells PFLAG Cape Cod's Rick Koonce, about the letter he received in the mail one day, acknowledging his decades of work on behalf of all gay and lesbian Americans. Please click the like button above and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you! For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
In the history of the gay rights movement, there are few moments as pivotal as the Stonewall uprising – a night in June 1969, when, confronted by a police raid at the Stonewall Inn in New York City, members of the gay and lesbian communities fought back against police injustice. The rebellion that ensued that night – and on subsequent nights at the Stonewall – eventually helped spark the gay rights movement. It set in motion a social justice juggernaut that would see the nullification of same-sex sodomy laws by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2003, and the legalization of same-sex marriage by the Court in 2015. One of those present in the bar in the early morning hours of June 28th 1969 was David Bermudez. A window dresser for a leading NY department store at the time, Bermudez was grabbing a beer with friends at the Stonewall shortly after midnight. Then, the lights came on and the police burst in. In this moving interview with PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce, Bermudez, today a member of PFLAG Cape Cod along with his partner, Bob Isadore, describes the events of that fateful evening more than a half century ago. I'd really appreciate it if you would click the like button above and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you! For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
Ryan R. is a 24-year-old non-binary lesbian. In Ryan’s case, that means that though they are lesbian and like to date women, they don’t identify with being a girl, a woman, or, with the attributes of traditional femininity. It was a discovery that Ryan made after dating boys in high school, faking physical attraction to males at the time, and then discovering their true gender identity in college and afterwards. “I don’t feel like the words girl or woman describe me,” Ryan tells PFLAG’s Rick Koonce in this wide-ranging interview. Ryan goes on to say that being non-binary means different things to different people, but, in their case, has given them the freedom to pursue both personal relationships -- and their continuing discovery of self -- without feeling hemmed in by traditional gender roles or social expectations. I'd really appreciate it if you would click the like button above and leave a review if your favorite podcast app has that ability. Thank you! For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
Nell Fields is a born-again Christian, social justice advocate, and a happily married lesbian who’s been with her wife Sarah, a lawyer, for over 20 years. She’s also the minister of Waquoit Congregational church in East Falmouth, MA. The youngest of five daughters whose father was a career Army officer, Nell initially pursued a career in business and journalism. But, at a pivotal point in her early professional life, when living in the closet was exacting a heavy personal toll, Nell says she felt God’s call to enter the ministry. As she tells PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce in this compelling interview, her coming out story wasn’t easy. In fact, she and a partner were once told by a minister at their church in California not to share with other members of the congregation that they were lesbian. For Nell, it was a moment of shock, hurt, and deep disappointment. Yet, in retrospect, that moment of exclusion -- of being the other, the outsider -- proved a key turning point in Nell’s pastoral career. In fact, it has shaped her progressive pastoral vision and inclusive ministry to people of all kinds ever since. “God gives all of us the gift to be who we are -- be it straight or LGBTQ+,” says Nell. She goes on to say, “God loves diversity. There’s so much diversity and variety in nature, why wouldn’t there be diversity in humanity as well?” For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
Bisexuality... Even among members of the LGBTQ+ community it’s a concept and reality that often is not fully understood – or appreciated. As a result, bisexuals sometimes feel marginalized and rejected, even among people who identify as members of other sexual minorities. And that means being bisexual can be a lonely and misunderstood place to be. So says Deer Sullivan, a bisexual educator and counselor who, over the years, has had long-term relationships with both women and men. In this revealing interview with PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce, Deer talks about the realities of being bisexual in a world that tends to see sexuality in binary – black and white – terms. "I don’t like to put people’s sexuality in boxes," says Deer. She goes on to say, with a combination of both passion and good humor, that there are a lot more people in the MIDDLE of the sexuality continuum than we commonly imagine. For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
Dr. Maureen Osborne is a psychologist and gender therapist who has spent over two decades serving the needs of transgender clients. In this fascinating interview with PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce, Maureen talks, in depth, about her work with a variety of transgender men and women over the years. She describes the human anguish, confusion, and shame transgender people often experience, when they feel trapped in bodies that feel alien to them. And, she offers both compassion and hope to anyone who either thinks they might be transgender, or who has embarked upon the difficult path of gender exploration and transition. For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
Ali Sands is an author and professional speaker who writes and speaks frequently on the topics of love, relationships, intimacy, and gender expression and identity. They’re topics she knows a lot about. Married for 23 years to a straight man, and mother of two children, in 2002 Ali began a relationship with a new partner, who, at the time, inhabited a physically female body, but who soon told Ali that they were, in fact, transgender. Thereafter began an epic 10-year journey, as Ali accompanied her partner, who took the male name “Rhys,” as he embarked on the emotionally and physically painful transition to become a transgender man, a story Ali tells in riveting day-by-day detail in her book, I Know Who You Are but What am I? As Ali tells PFLAG Cape Cod’s Rick Koonce, in this moving and wide-ranging interview, the journey Ali took with her partner was one that taught her a great deal, not only about love, intimacy, and gender expression, but also about perseverance, courage, her steadfast commitment to the love of her life, and the simultaneous search for her own identity. For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
Dirk Correia is a twenty-something transgender male who identifies as nonbinary -- meaning that they don't identify with being either entirely male or female, as society typically understands those terms. As Dirk explains to PFLAG Cape Cod's Rick Koonce in this illuminating interview, their journey to accepting themselves as nonbinary has been a long, and at times, difficult process -- one that has required courage, grit, and a steadfast resolve and self-reliance to be something that society today doesn't yet fully understand, appreciate or embrace. For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
Lori Duron | Ep #10

Lori Duron | Ep #10

2021-02-2644:54

She calls herself “a fierce Mama bear” when it comes to safeguarding the rights and safety of her two boys. So says Lori Duron, author of Raising My Rainbow, a book that chronicles her family’s adventures raising a gender creative child named C.J., a boy who, from the age of just two and a half, displayed clues that he wasn’t like other kids. While Duron’s older son, Chase, grew up as a sports-playing boy’s boy, even as a small child, C.J. enjoyed playing with Barbie dolls, and twirling around in a pink sparkly tutu. As Duron tells PFLAG’s Rick Koonce in this interview, raising C.J. and his brother Chase, hasn't been easy. Over the years, she’s had to become a fierce advocate of C.J. with teachers and psychiatrists. On playgrounds, she had to sometimes face down other, non-approving parents. And at home and on social media, she and her family have been targets of hate mail and angry tweets. For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
Rabbi Elias Lieberman has been Rabbi of the Falmouth Jewish Congregation on Cape Cod since 1990. In that time, he’s been a steadfast champion of LGBTQ rights, signing on early to support same-sex marriage when it first became law in Massachusetts, and later, becoming an outspoken advocate of transgender rights as well. His congregation also served as the host location for meetings of PFLAG Cape Cod for many years. For Rabbi Lieberman, social justice efforts are all in a day’s work, and in keeping with Reform Judaism’s focus on “repairing the world through a commitment to social justice.” A concept referred to as Tee Koon oh lahm. As he tells PFLAG’s Rick Koonce in this interview, the roots of Rabbi Lieberman’s commitment to social justice run deep, and have been a constant in his life, since his boyhood years in Baltimore, when his family gathered for the observance of Shabbat, often welcoming others to their Friday night dinner table. For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
You might call Joanne Hush a social pioneer. It’s probably not a label she would ascribe to herself. But, Joanne is the mother of a gay son and a lesbian daughter, both of whom came out to her (and her husband Paul) decades ago –- in the 1980s and early 90s -- when having openly gay or lesbian children was far more controversial and uncommon than it is today. Joanne learned her son was gay in the late 1980s, at the peak of the AIDS epidemic. Back then, there wasn’t a good public understanding of how the disease was transmitted. There was, however, widespread fear and stigma associated with AIDS; factors that Joanne, her husband, and their two straight children had to deal with. There was also the challenge that Joanne and her husband faced in “coming out” themselves -- as the parents of gay children. As Joanne tells PFLAG’s Rick Koonce in this moving interview, it was through her involvement with PFLAG Cape Cod, beginning in the mid 1990s, that Joanne and her husband Paul found a community of support and encouragement among other parents of gays, lesbians, and transgender youth. For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
36-year-old Alex Smith knew, from an early age, that he was different. But, as a child, he didn't have the vocabulary to describe his feelings, or the psychological maturity to understand the emotions that stirred in him. Born female, it would be years before he realized he was, in fact, transgender. In this revealing interview with interviewer and PFLAG - Cape Cod member Rick Koonce, Alex describes his decades-long journey in search of himself, a journey that was both colorful and insightful, affirming and sometimes mind-blowing, but which ultimately laid the foundation for Alex's happy life today. For more information, visit the PFLAG Cape Cod website: https://www.pflagcapecod.org/podcasts.html © 2021 PFLAG Cape Cod
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