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Lou Anne Smoot – Out – A Courageous Woman’s Journey

Posted in Book reviews, and Non-fiction

There’s a never right time to say goodbye, especially to the ones who love us. Story of Lou Anne cannot be bigger example how truthful this saying is. She was married for almost forty years, have children, even grandchildren, yet was hiding her real self, trying to forget her sexual orientation. Nevertheless she decided to come out of the closet at the age of 61, said goodbye to her past, and since then everything changed incredibly much – she became even an advocate for gay rights.

Out – A Courageous Woman’s Journey is a very special book. There are 2 main reasons why I think so – it is a coming ut story written by someone, who has now even grandchildren. (It’s never too late!) That someone happens also to be a Christian, and is determined to become an example of how homosexuality and Christianity can coexist in one person.

Lou Anne was in her sixities, when she decided to divorce from her husband, and come out as a homosexual to the most of her family members, friends and fellow church members, as she has been an active member of Baptist church. Lou Anne’s domination was unfortunately more conservative, believing in ‘traditional’ marriage between one and one woman, not understanding her ‘choice of a lifestyle’. Surprising, but also sad enough, was the outcome of her confession to the church members. To be a part of something for more than three decades, and be rejected/not supported anymore because of the person you really are, well, is heartbreaking and incomprehensible. However, she didn’t plan to give up on her faith, and has remained as the best possible example of Christian gay.

What I found original is the way the whole book is written. You can almost say it’s a mix of biography and collection of letters/emails. While sometimes I was almost feeling embarrassed to read such personal confessions, other times it was probably the best way how to share what Lou Anne went through. There’s a big truth in saying that time heals all wounds, but what more – there are some traumas, pains we experienced, which are with us all the time. However our mind and forgiveness erase the worst pains, so later in life lot of those events/experiences don’t seem so painful anymore. Not because they weren’t, just because our mind helped us move on. Lou Anne shared her fears and disappointment with her closest friends over the years via email correspondence, and therefore for me, as a reader, it was much easier to understand her situation. Not only easier, also it made her story more relatable. She surely has my admiration for being courageous enough to share her memories with all of us.

Out – A Courageous Woman’s Journey breaks both hearts and stereotypes and makes reader think outside of the box. It‘s a celebration of courage, love, diversity and I wish best of luck to both Anne Lou and Brenda, who created their dream together.

Note: I received this book in NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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