Plumb 1 Name of interviewee: Stacy Plumb Name of interviewers: Dejanique Moore and Mekyll Robinson Date of interview: File uploaded October 15, 2020 Length of interview: 11:13 Location of interview: Jackson County Stacy Plumb discusses her coming out story while in high school and her relationship with the church. She also describes her experience as a freshman at WCU in the LGBTQ+ community. Start of Interview Dejanique Moore: Alright, so I’m Dejanique Moore Mekyll Robinson: I’m Mekyll Robinson. DM: And we’re doing the LGBTQ+ project archive for Western Carolina and the person we’re interviewing now is Stacy Plumb. MR: Hey Stacy DM: [laughs] Stacy Plumb: Hi MR: Hi Stacy DM: So um, do you wanna start asking the questions first Mekyll, then we can go back and forth? MR: I can so, how are you today, first off? SP: I’m good, how are you? MR: I’m great. So, our first question would be… how and when did you know you were attracted to, well what do you go by, first? SP: Uh, lesbian. MR: Lesbian, OK. So how and when did you know that you were attracted to women? SP: Um… well I first came out as bi, last summer, is when I realized that I don’t really remember how it started but, I just started consuming a lot of LGBT content, like Youtubers and stuff. MR: Mmhmm. Plumb 2 SP: I feel like there’s always been like a part of me growing up that that was like—I always thought it was normal to wanna kiss girls. But then I was talking to my friend once and she was like “No I could never do it, that sounds gross.” I was like “Oh, okay.” But yeah last summer I started doing some research into, you know, the different identities, and I was like okay I think bi fits me. And so for a year I identified as bi and then a month ago, I realized that I didn- I wasn’t actually attracted to men. Cause I was, I don’t know if you’ve heard of Comp Het, it’s compulsory heterosexuality. Which is basically society pushes the idea that women have to be attracted to men. So, growing up I’ve always been told I have to find a husband and be attracted to all these male celebrities, so, I just thought that I had to. But then I was like, wait, no, I can’t ever picture myself being with a, with a guy. Yeah. MR: Okay. And just to put this out there, we’re, when we ask these questions, we’re not trying to seem offensive or anything, ‘cause we truly don’t know. SP: Yeah. MR: So, I just wanna put that out there, we’re you know, trying to be— hopefully our questions don’t offend you in any way. SP or DM: [Inaudible] MR: And if it does, you can just tell us. SP: Yeah MR: Okay. So, does anyone know, have you come out to anyone? Or—And, if so, how do they feel about it? SP: Um, yeah. For bi, I came out to pretty much every important person in my life. I was outed to my mom because she found my Twitter. Twitter is like where I’m totally out. I don’t hide anything. MR: Yeah. SP: Her reaction was… interesting. She said she didn’t care but, I don’t know, she was more mad about the fact that I told the internet before I told her. MR: Okay. SP: And then I came out to my close school friends, and they were all cool with it. And then, a month ago, I came out again on my spam Instagram account, which has my close friends on it and some people just kinda ignored it. They liked it and then didn’t comment anything. Which kinda sucks, but yeah. But all my friends on Twitter have been super supportive of it. Plumb 3 MR: Okay, yeah that’s good. SP: Mhmm. DM: Alright, and then for those that did comment, how did you handle yourself from others, from their opinion? SP: Well, thankfully, the only ones who commented were positive. So… but, there were some of my old friends from school made comments about it the first time I came out. They were like, “Oh, it’s like a choice,” or whatever. I went to a very Christian private school so, they all told me I was, you know, committing a sin and going to Hell. Which wasn’t great but, you know it happens. DM: And what about the… did you get any, any opinions from, or comments from anyone on Twitter also? When you outed on Twitter? SP: Um, nothing negative on Twitter. I’m on a good side of Twitter so, everyone’s been supportive. There’s always the random old men who will troll you but, nothing too bad. DM: Um okay, well are you—so do you do anything in the LGBTQ+ community? Like, are you, do you do anything that’s… do you do parades and stuff? Or, are you, what do you do in the LGBTQ+ community, if you do anything? SP: Well I haven’t—well, since I kinda, by the time I came out COVID had happened so I couldn’t really go to parades or anything. DM and MR: [humming in agreement] SP: But I’m hoping to. And I’m, pretty sure there’s like a club or something on campus, but I just haven’t looked into it yet. DM: Oh okay. So, you’re—Do you have a religion first, before I ask? SP: Yeah. DM: Before I assume, yeah. SP: Yeah, just like, Christianity. DM: So how do you handle people with the religious view, you being Christian and everything? How do you handle that, and also, you know be a lesbian and stuff like… how do you just, you know I’m sorry, I can’t even word this right, but… Plumb 4 SP: Yeah. I mean it’s definitely hard. I’ve tried to separate my relationship with the church from my relationship with God, because my relationship with the church is not great since a lot of them don’t like me because of how I identify. So I try not to—it’s been, it’s definitely been weirder. I used to feel safe at church but now I go back to visit and it’s not a safe space for me anymore. Which kinda sucks, but, you know, that’s how it is. DM: So what do they do to make you not feel safe anymore at the church? Are you just—do they know, first of all? SP: They don’t. MR: Does everyone know? SP: No, no, they don’t know. MR: Oh okay. SP: But just knowing that if they did know they would treat me completely different and probably not want me there. Just, you know, makes me uncomfortable. DM: Yeah, that’s understandable. MR: Alright, and then the last question would be, if you were to give any advice to anyone else coming out, what would it be, and why? SP: I would say don’t care too much about what other people think, don’t let them police your identity because you’re gonna find friends who actually support you fully and won’t treat you differently because of who you are. So don’t be too discouraged when you lose some of your old friends, cause they were never good friends in the first place if they treat you differently because of who you are. MR: And on to that, do you still have some of the same friends now that when you first came out were basically supporting you then, are they still your friends now? Or did you lose a lot of them? SP: Some of them, some of them… my relationships were stronger, because actually one of my friends came out to me after I came out. And we’ve been a stronger friendship. But there are a couple of them who I thought would be the ride or die type who, have just kinda ignored it. And, I’m not… I didn’t completely cut them off, but I’m not best friends with them anymore. MR: Okay. SP: So. Plumb 5 DM: And I also have another question too, since you been at Western, this is your freshman year, right? SP: Yeah. DM: This is your first time? Does anyone else know on campus, that your friends would, like do your roommate know, or is it just you that knows? SP: No, my roommate knows. And then you know, but.. DM: Yeah. SP: And then, Jennifer knows. DM: Yeah. SP: But, no one else really. DM: Do you think— SP: I’m not trying to hide it, but it’s just, it’s a weird concept of having to come out to everyone you meet, you know? MR: Yeah. DM: Yeah. MR: You have to give certain things time, that’s understandable. Do you think you would, if they were to have LGBTQ community activities here on campus, would you be more than happy to join and be invested into any of those? SP: Yeah, I’d like to meet more people. DM: Do you think the way, the way Western handles LGBTQ+ stuff, do you think they handle it well? Or do you think they should have more activities on campus for it? What do you think about that? SP: I mean definitely in the classes that I’ve been, but I am in like the theatre program so they tend to be more accepting about stuff. They’ve been very supportive of it, um, definitely compared to my high school, which, you know, treated it like a sin. Um, but I would like to see more activities and advertising for stuff, ‘cause I haven’t really seen a lot of pamphlets or anything around campus to tell me how to get involved. Plumb 6 DM: Yeah. And I also have another question, so do you think people are treating you better here at Western than you were treated back at home, or do you think it’s just equal? SP: Definitely better at Western. People are much more accepting in college. DM: Yeah. MR: Alrighty! That’ll be it, thank you so much for helping us with our project since… DM: Yeah, thank you Stacy, I really appreciate this, and I’m glad, that you know, you came out to help us, cause I couldn’t find anyone else, and so.. MR: And I’m glad that you took this time to actually help us educate ourselves on this, because we’re… DM: I applaud you for that. MR: Yeah I learned a little bit more than what I did know before. SP: Mhmm, no problem. MR: Alright. DM: Okay.