KATHY: And Kathy! With a special mini-episode of the show.
KATHY: So a couple weeks ago, we had a story about a lovely guy named Joe who really wanted to make new queer friends.
TOBIN: And I helped him find a new group.
KATHY: A gaggle, as it were.
TOBIN: But then we were like, a lot of us want to make new friends, why not make this a thing?
TOBIN: So we created this project called, "How to Get a Gaggle." You sign up, we send you a month of coaching, advice, challenges.
KATHY: And almost immediately our inbox was overflowing with messages from people all over the U.S.
TOBIN: Everywhere, Georgia, Missouri, Texas.
KATHY: Actually, all over the world!
TOBIN: Hmhmm. Australia, Germany, Taiwan.
KATHY: We've heard from hundreds of lovely, lovely people.
TOBIN: The loveliest people.
KATHY: And we couldn't wait to share some more of their stories.
TOBIN: So here we go.
VOX 1: I'm just interested in finding people who I can talk to about things that I'm experiencing without having to explain first that yes I'm experiencing them and you know, yes my experiences are real.
VOX 2: I noticed that especially two or three years ago with the Supreme Court decision about gay marriage, and people asking what do you think about that but inherent with that was like, I'm the gay spokesperson. I think with having LGBT friends, I don't think that would be there. And not having to kind of explain that, like okay this is just my opinion, we don't all meet once a month and like decide our opinion about things. That's not how it works. Or if it does work, they don't invite me to those meetings so I'm not aware of that.
VOX 3: Well I was really interested in the episode because it's something that I've been struggling with ever since I came out. I was raised one of Jehovah's Witnesses. Once I came out, I had no foundation in the outside world. So learning skills on how to meet with other queer people or just people that you can connect with, that was difficult. It still is difficult.
VOX 4: I think it's probably harder for us in China to find our own gaggles because of, take my school for example. I tried to put up posters to find queer friends, but my school was not happy about it because they didn't want LGBT related posters around on campus. So that's just like, the everyday struggle of my life.
VOX 5: I sort of came out a few years ago, but I don't have a gaggle. And even though I live in San Francisco, which is a great town, and I have some queer friends and I have some trans friends, none of them are moms. So I'm missing that. I'm sure there are other queer moms in San Francisco, I just don't know where they are. They're probably home with their kids.
VOX 6: I live in a town that is really well known for being super queer friendly. If you look on Wikipedia, it's known as Lesbianville. It is strange to me, I moved up here thinking, "Oh my God, I'm going to find a gaggle, I'm going to find a group." And I've been up here for a few years and it has just never really materialized.
VOX 7: I feel like a lot of people want the same things as me, to be able to have a group of queer friends, but they might be a little quiet about it. So if I can be the one person that makes them more comfortable, and they'll want to be friends, then I'll be that person.
TOBIN: Nancy listeners, it's time for you to join us.
KATHY: Sign up at nancypodcast.org/friends.
TOBIN: We'll be sharing more stories about friendship in the weeks ahead and we'll have a brand new full episode of the show this weekend. We had production help this week from Laine Kaplan-Levenson and Ania Grzesik.