Break out the corsages and boutonnières, over-the-top limos, tuxes, strapless bras and gowns, bad photos and beards. It's prom season. In honor of that rite of passage, and inspired by Ellen DeGeneres' prom pic (see above), we thought we'd collect photos of gay ladies and their proms. While a few folks who submitted pictures attended prom with a special lady plenty of us had boyfriends -- or in my case a 'gay' boyfriend-- we took to prom. Enjoy our collection of the good, the bad and the awkward photos.
Tracy (Editor in Chief of SheWired):
Here I am in the red tea length dress, with what appears to be a faux mullet (ah, the 80s). I attended my senior prom with my gay boyfriend, Tim. I think we both knew we wanted other things but we were both theater queens and I loved that he used Henna in his hair and altered his tux pants to be ‘skinny.’ That night my older sister Pam ended up crashing my prom and dancing with my English teacher while my best friend (the Marine in the pic) made passes at me, and Tim didn't seem to notice, or care. The following day we all took off to the beach on the Connectictut shore listening to The Smiths' Hatful of Hollow the entire drive there. It was the first time I'd heard of them, and, at seventeen, I thought I was just so subversive.
The year was 1992 and I went to Incarnate Word, an all-girl Catholic school. (Sally Jessy Raphael was popular so the glasses were not my fault.) And a year before I saw What's Love Got To Do With It, I somehow managed to channel Angela Bassett. :)
My name is Celeste, and I am a lesbian from a small town in Texas called Lyford. In 2004, my senior year of high school, my fiancée and I attended our senior prom together. We had been a couple for 6 months, and were not only the first openly gay couple at prom, but the first openly gay couple at our high school. We had a great time, and were fortunate enough not to have been discriminated against. After we graduated, several other students came up to me to say I encouraged them to be open about themselves.
I am now a recent law school graduate who hopes to continue to change the world, one perspective at a time. Here we are, my fiancé and I at our high school prom in 2004. I am the one in the pink dress, and my fiancé Davina is the one in the tuxedo.
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Diane (Executive Editor of Advocate):
This is me and my high school boyfriend, Cloud. I wasn’t openly queer yet, but I was constantly questioning (and dreaming of threesomes). Still Cloud was the first of many loves of my life and we went to every single school dance for two years in generally matching clothes that we picked out together (the worst was the year we both wore peach—shudder). This night I wore eye shadow called “ice” with white fishnet gloves and my grandmother’s mink stole (don’t hate me, I didn’t hear of PETA until I hit the lesbian world) and we had dinner at Idaho’s best restaurant (it was called Top of the Hoff, and it was 60 miles away) which was fancy pants for us.
Here's a picture of me and the boy I dated throughout high school. We're both in college now and both out! Gotta love it.
Michelle (Associate Editor of Advocate):
Here's a photo of me dancing with my date at my junior prom, and also one of me and my girls - I had a better time with them!
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Lucas (Advocate.com Editor) and Jami:
Jami, a stand-up comic who does The Advocate's Gaysayer) and I used to be a couple, and we went to prom together. (And, we were named King and Queen.) Oh, high school…
Jasmine and Corinne:
Prom circa 2009.
I am Lisamarie and I'm bisexual. ("Hi Lisamarie...")
The year is 1986. That's me, on the left, dressed like a Vestal Virgin who's ready to be thrown into a volcano -- complete with requisite braided rat-tail. On the right is my Prom Date from the Land of the Giants, Scott.
People in the front office at school decided he should ask me to go. I was so freaked out about going to prom with this guy, my psychiatrist actually prescribed Valium. I spent the entire prom hiding in the bathroom -- the only place he couldn't follow me, because every time I set down my bouquet he would pick it up and say, "Do you know how much I paid for this?”
I was also a vegetarian and dinner was prime rib. I clearly recall telling the waiter to "get this bloody chunk of meat off my plate.”
I was so stressed out; all night I was popping Valium like Tic-Tacs. By the end of the evening there was absolutely no filter on my mouth and you could have poured me out of the car -- which made things a little tricky passing through customs. (Our prom was held in Canada. Why? I wish I knew!)
To make things even MORE fun, when I left college and got my first job (many years later), my prom date ended up being my boss! I could have died, right there on the spot.
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My name's Megan and I had prom in 2007. It was a fun night but it was the ultimate example of a gay teenager's inexperience. I was/am a total tomboi and I never owned a dress. I always wore suits but my friend said I had to wear a dress to prom, and since I was taking another friend as a date I should wear make up. I bought a $60 dress and wore shorts under my dress. But when the 4 of us were doing make up I admitted I didn't own any make up. Couldn't use Nicole's (Philippino) or Sammi's (Japamese), so I had to use Christen's (the ginger). Sammi did my make up since I didn't know how. I ended up looking like a vampire wanna-be in my red and black dress wearing really white make up. I would've been better off not wearing any. As a butch I felt too femme wearing make up so I put my hair in a faux-hawk to counter act and make me feel normal. All were horrible ideas and the result of an insecure young stud.
To make it all worse, on the ride over I kept thinking how happy my classmates were gonna be to see me in a dress. An amazing way to end my high school years. However when I walked up to the Long Beach Aquarium where our Prom was, EVERYBODY was shocked and DISAPPOINTED that I wasn't in a suit! They knew I was taking my bi friend and they wanted me to wear a matching suit to her dress! I was crushed that I didn't stay true to who I was. Prom is about having fun for you and nobody else. As soon as we left prom to our hotel room (8 kids in one room), we all changed our clothes and had a fun night of drinking and playing games. I hardly remember anything about the dance but it was the after party with my close group of friends that I can recall perfectly. We all made dumb teenager mistakes that night (like drinking to much) but 5 years later we still laugh at ourselves that night and all the dumb antics we had.
I think we burned my dress behind the hotel that night. I learned that I shouldn't dress for any one besides me. I look too good in a fitted button shirt and a skinny tie to wear anything else. ;)
Hey, I'm Elizabeth, I'm a 17-year-old Queer. I took my brother's girlfriend with me because she never got to go to her school prom - she was chased out of town, literally. This is my "sister" Shaylyn and me. :) <3
Misty and Harley:
Here's a little back-story: my cousin Harley and I have been BFF's since our early teens. We also always liked to push EVERY boundary we could find!! So, when my junior prom rolled around in 1994, we decided to go together (neither of us are gay, though you'll never know two more PRO-GAY straight people in the world), partly for shock value, but partly because we were daring anyone to say ANYTHING to us about who we were and what we stood for. We did it up right, too - limo, corsages, pictures...dinner at Sizzler!! To this day, it's one of my favorite stories and memories. I still say we were ahead of our time! :) Sincerely, Misty (in the skintight black and form-hugging pearls) & Harley (in the shoulder cut-out green machine)