I am a student, in high school in New Jersey. I'm almost 19. Where can I go to meet other gay girls. I'm so alone. I live in northern New Jersey.
No need to worry — there are many social, political, health, and academic resources for lesbians and other non-heterosexual people living in New Jersey...and in the other 49 states, too. Sometimes, it takes a little sleuthing, but patience will likely pay off. A great place to start is right here on the Internet: search using the words "gay" and "lesbian" combined with "centers," "community groups," or "New Jersey." You may also want to look for gay-related sections which are part of many on-line networks. With any online search, you may encounter some sites that are less than desirable for your purposes, but a few minutes should yield some helpful resources. You may also consider checking to see if your school has a gay-straight alliance, LGBT student group or office, Office of Multicultural Affairs, LBGT studies program, or other resources to help you find a connection. Chances are good that you are not the only one seeking sexual orientation or identity-based support. Also, you can usually call up specific resources in your region by checking online directories, the yellow pages, etc. This is not a bad idea if you are looking for resources in other locations, like when planning a trip.
Here are a few contacts to start you off. If you are searching for similar resources outside the Garden State, many like-types of outlets and organizations exist elsewhere, so think creatively.
- Pride Center of New Jersey provides resources for LGBTQI youth
- The Department of Child and Family Services also provides a wealth of resources for LGBTQI youth
Rutgers University in New Brunswick, William Patterson University, Montclair State University, and many others have a few gay and lesbian student organizations which would probably be happy to point you in the right direction. There's also the New Jersey/New York edition of the Gay & Lesbian Yellow Pages: gay bookstores and large chain booksellers should have this extensive guide in stock.
And, finally, don't forget about your own backyard. That is, keep your eyes open and "radar" tuned for schoolmates who might share your interests.
Good luck with your search,Alice!