Being gay in USAFA

usafagirl99

Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2017
Messages
12
I am a lesbian and have been appointed to class of 2021. I know a lot of people who go to the academy are conservative and might not be accepting to homosexuality. I was wondering if anyone knows if being gay is looked down upon at the academy?
Thanks!
 

AviatorJane

Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2016
Messages
17
I am a lesbian and have been appointed to class of 2021. I know a lot of people who go to the academy are conservative and might not be accepting to homosexuality. I was wondering if anyone knows if being gay is looked down upon at the academy?
Thanks!

Big blue tells everyone to be accepting or else risk running the risk of severe disciplinary action to include jail time. I would recommend talking as much about your preferences as the other cadets do, which hopefully isn't much. Homosexuality is a lot more common than even ten years ago, nowadays even transgendered individuals are valued in our military and we must treat everyone with respect. I would not worry about being hazed or anything like that. If it does occur talk to an upper class man to help get it sorted out with minimal reprisals for everyone. Good job for getting accepted into the academy it's a huge feat!!
 

Vitalzt

Member
Joined
Jan 10, 2017
Messages
278
The military is one place where sexuality is respected by law, Though I won't say you won't find certain people that won't be very nice and respectful about your sexuall orientation. Many of your peers won't mind because you are a girl, if you were a boy and is known by a lot of people, then it might be a little but more judgment coming from the male cadets. Good luck.
 

tug_boat

5-Year Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2012
Messages
2,102
Who cares what others think of you! You are protected under law equally like everyone else. Enjoy yourself at AFA, work hard, be yourself, develop lasting friendships with your classmates. You've been selected by AFA for your unique abilities that will contribute to the Air Force

What people look down on? Dishonesty, cheaters, selfishness and a heart of larceny.

Push Hard, Press Forward
 

DrMom

Moderator
10-Year Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2011
Messages
1,595
Good Morning! This is an area that I feel very comfortable addressing. As a cadet, I do not want you to worry about being a lesbian (or gay). Don't worry--your peers do not care/will not harass you. You will be fine. Any resistance to the lifting of Don't Ask, Don't Tell was from those in the military who grew up and were successful in a separate, non-mainstream American society so that senior, senior leaders who testified about Dogs and Cats Living in Sin--and young men and women refusing to re-enlist and join the service--were just that, men and women who had fallen out of touch with America. It was generational--and that generation of very senior men and women is almost completely gone--and they won't know you and you won't know them. However, when the Supreme Court handed down the decision around DADT, the DoD stepped out to embrace those who had already been serving with honor--full spousal benefits, full housing, full everything. In the DoD, marriage is marriage with no discrimination. Actually, the Dept of Defense is incredibly progressive compared to other agencies and to the private sector in our country. An exemplar to the Nation. You will run into conservative people but there are conservative people everywhere...the majority of your peers and leaders simply want you to show up and do your job and give it your all every single day. Fight on--and good luck at USAFA.
 

BlahuKahuna

5-Year Member
Joined
May 10, 2011
Messages
642
OP-you're not going to get a good answer until you talk to current cadets. You seem to have too few posts for me to send you a PM, but if that changes, shoot me a message and we can chat.
 
Joined
Dec 15, 2015
Messages
90
When DS1 was a cadet at a SMC (one of the two most conservative SMCs and commonly thought to be far more conservative than any of the SAs), I asked him about the acceptance of homosexuals in military schools. DS1, the product of conservative Catholic schools and a conservative Republican, looked at me and said, "Mom, I don't care if my fellow cadets are gay. It's none of my business." I pressed him about the right to marry issue, which was a hot issue at the time. He looked at me with the exasperated expression that I have come to know over the years and replied, "Mom, let me be perfectly clear: I don't care who people marry. They can marry a squishy piece of chocolate cake for all I care." Enough said.
 
Last edited:

Maplerock

Proud to be an American
5-Year Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2013
Messages
1,019
Why the question? Are you going to flaunt it? If you do your job, you'll be fine. There has been plenty written here regarding the military's approach. Human nature is another thing, and USAFA will be no different than most other schools in the perception of you and your activities.
 

AFrpaso

USAFA Alumnus
5-Year Member
Joined
Mar 5, 2012
Messages
865
I am a cadet and have friends who are gay/lesbian. I cannot speak for the entire cadet wing, but I can say that our friendship and professional relationship is unaffected.

Feel free to PM if you would like to talk.
 

unkown1961

5-Year Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2016
Messages
913
I am a lesbian and have been appointed to class of 2021. I know a lot of people who go to the academy are conservative and might not be accepting to homosexuality. I was wondering if anyone knows if being gay is looked down upon at the academy?
Thanks!
We've sponsored USAFA cadets over the past few years (which means they can come spend the weekend at our house and have some time away from the base) and the impression we've received is that overall everyone is accepted. There will be a small conservative contingent who won't agree with your lifestyle, but most don't care. But you should take up BlahuKahuna's or AFrpaso offer.
 

Hoodlum15

Member
Joined
Mar 27, 2016
Messages
278
I'm a cadet, and there are at least 3 gay cadets in my squadron. I have never seen them disrespected or treated differently whatsoever. Just be a normal, decent human being and your sexuality won't matter.
 

fencersmother

10-Year Member
Founding Member
Joined
Oct 10, 2007
Messages
3,203
OK, I don't do this often but I am now:

I take offense at the accusation that anyone who may be "conservative" is "against" gays/lesbians. That whole line of thought is intolerant.

To our OP, listen to Maplerock and CaptMJ. Do your job, be honest, hardworking, kindly, and a "team player." You'll be fine.

Flaunting anything will get you into some swampy ground. That means that you have something to prove to yourself, not that anyone else is uncomfortable with your choices.

We have members here on this forum who have gone through USAFA and other SA's as gays and lesbians. They've had their fair share of troubles, but so have people with heterosexual orientations.
 

cb7893

5-Year Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2011
Messages
2,813
I take offense at the accusation that anyone who may be "conservative" is "against" gays/lesbians. That whole line of thought is intolerant.

Tilting at windmills? OP asked a reasonable question and has received thoughtful answers. Mostly.

Why the question? Are you going to flaunt it?

I take offense that anyone would presume that an 18-19 year old woman--gay or straight--might possibly "flaunt it".
 

Maplerock

Proud to be an American
5-Year Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2013
Messages
1,019
Tilting at windmills? OP asked a reasonable question and has received thoughtful answers. Mostly.



I take offense that anyone would presume that an 18-19 year old woman--gay or straight--might possibly "flaunt it".

Why take offense? Good grief.
The academies are about fitting in, not standing out. I did not presume, simply advised. I know it's 2017. Many things are acceptable today that weren't when I grew up. Fencers mother said it pretty well.
 

haleym

5-Year Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2011
Messages
417
To this whole thread.... all I have to say is, "lol".
Listen to the cadets on here who have offered their help. They will be able to give you a good gauge on the climate here. Enjoy your last few months of freedom, and I wish you the best of luck at USAFA!
 

Wishful

"Land of the free, because of the brave..."
5-Year Member
Joined
Dec 12, 2012
Messages
2,168
I have seen this type of bahavior (flaunting) used & believed it to be a defense mechinism. I had just taken over a new unit when a subordinate (mid 30's) approached me in front of others and stated, "My name is xxxx & I am gay." I thought their behavior was to illicit a reaction. I didn't react in a negatative way, but thought their actions revealed insecurity which, in time, proved to be correct.
 

BlahuKahuna

5-Year Member
Joined
May 10, 2011
Messages
642
Why take offense? Good grief.
The academies are about fitting in, not standing out. I did not presume, simply advised. I know it's 2017. Many things are acceptable today that weren't when I grew up. Fencers mother said it pretty well.

I'm going to pick at this post too. There's a difference between fitting in and hiding who you are, for fear of "flaunting." Sure, conformity is big here, and you have to be a team player. But diversity of thought, backgrounds, and yes, even sexual orientation are part of what makes the Cadet Wing unique. I can think of a handful of people who never met someone of a different race before coming to the academy, and I think for those cadets especially, knowing that there are different people around them is important to their development as future officers.

If the academy was afraid of people "flaunting" who they are, we probably wouldn't have:

-religious groups that sometimes advertise to the entire wing
-diversity clubs/affinity organizations that periodically host events for the whole wing (ie, Pacific Rim club)
-speakers from all walks of life that come in for major conferences or evening briefings (ie, NCLS)

You know, I've never thought of receiving an invitation to a SPIRE event as someone "flaunting" their religion-and I'm looking at a facebook invite I received last week to one. It's okay to have a personal identity other than "cadet."

source: 3.5 years of actual experience at the actual Air Force Academy
 
Top