Leaving The Dollhouse

I have always had a little crush on this girl:

Heather Matarazzo hated high school. The 22-year-old actress, best known for her movie roles in ”Welcome to the Dollhouse” and ”Saved,” said she has known since second grade that she was attracted to other girls. But shame forced the actress into years of silence and self-destruction. She abused drugs and alcohol. She ran away from home.

Yesterday, Matarazzo described her experiences to more than 500 teachers, students, and parents who attended the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network of Boston’s 15th annual conference at Brookline High School. As the keynote speaker, Matarazzo drew tears and applause when she described her struggle to gain acceptance of her sexuality.

”It was such a burden, because I had to pretend to be this person that I wasn’t,” Matarazzo told the audience…

…Jiovani Robles and Valdir DePina, eighth-graders at the Academy of the Pacific Rim, a charter school in Hyde Park, attended the conference to support their gay teachers. Robles said he had not known until hearing Matarazzo’s speech that gay youth struggled so much for acceptance. He said his Catholic parents had taught him to respect everyone. But the boys said the conference opened their eyes to how much work still needs to be done to teach tolerance in schools.

I hated these conferences in high school (god, I hated high school), in part because they always turned into Cryfest ’99 so a particular set of kids could prolong their absence from class. But maybe that is unfair. Judging from the last paragraph, if these boys are honest, talks like this might actually make a difference.

via JC. Again.

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3 comments for “Leaving The Dollhouse

  1. j swift
    May 2, 2005 at 11:01 am

    Plain fact of the matter is that we humans are socially vicious and most never out grow it. You are expected to kiss society’s ass. If you don’t then you are the target of bigots, bullies, cliquishness. What is worse is that the adults in the school setting condone this crap in some kind of tough love, “you have to learn how to get along with your peers” bullshit. They poo-poo it until some gay adolescent or obese kid offs themselves. Then they stand around and look shocked and sad. This kind of social darwinism is the base of human hate. You would think that people would get it, but no it is an insidous evil that human beings have yet to get beyond.

  2. May 2, 2005 at 2:45 pm

    It’s all the more poignant when you think of that scene in “Welcome to the Dollhouse” where her classmates mock her by calling her a lesbo. Heather Matarazzo rocks my world.

  3. May 2, 2005 at 6:46 pm


    It was such a burden, because I had to pretend to be this person that I wasn’t

    This burden. We all carry some variety of the weight. How much would the world be if we could all find away to get that weight off of us, all of us?

    Not being who we are in the eyes of the world. Who is the better for it? None of us. And the world is the lesser for it. We must all find the courage to be our true selves. We must each accept others as each truly is. Or we are doomed to false hopes. And false dreams. False dreams ride away to become nightmares. And these horses have a most terrible kick.

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