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“I wasn’t comfortable coming out to them simply because of all of the negative things that have been said about the gay community around me," he said.Griffith Gardner was assaulted three times during middle and high school in Madison, Conn., by students who called him a “faggot” for being gay.Griffith Gardner said more than three quarters of his LGBT friends in high school had attempted self-harm.Griffith Gardner, Curry and Kettle highlighted the importance of being an ally, a straight person supporting an LGBT person or community, for struggling LGBT people, particularly under the new administration.

It makes us ask questions of ourselves and our school community.

Jacob Griffith Gardner speaks beside fellow LGBT activists Bernie Kettle and Barbara Curry at the Stonewall Speakers presentation as part of Diversity Week at Greenwich High School in Greenwich, Conn. less Jacob Griffith Gardner speaks beside fellow LGBT activists Bernie Kettle and Barbara Curry at the Stonewall Speakers presentation as part of Diversity Week at Greenwich High School in Greenwich, Conn. more Bernie Kettle speaks beside Barbara Curry at the Stonewall Speakers presentation as part of Diversity Week at Greenwich High School in Greenwich, Conn. less Bernie Kettle speaks beside Barbara Curry at the Stonewall Speakers presentation as part of Diversity Week at Greenwich High School in Greenwich, Conn. In a three-hour conversation, struggling to find words to sum up what she had felt for so long, she explained she was a male who identified as female and was sexually attracted to women. Just last week, the President revoked Obama-era guidelines to public schools that let transgender students use the bathroom of their choice, leaving it up to states to decide whether students must use the bathroom matching the sex on their birth certificate. “Change doesn’t necessarily have to be drastic, but it has to be justifiable and equal," said Curry.

Gardner, Kettle and Curry spoke about their lives in the LGBT community and paths to self-discovery and acceptance. LGBT activists Barbara Curry, Jacob Griffith Gardner and Bernie Kettle spoke about their lives in the LGBT community and paths to self-discovery and acceptance. Curry kept her gender questioning under wraps through high school and college, presenting as a “the most normative white straight guy that anybody could ever expect” until after was dating. Curry said since that time, some things have gotten easier. "I didn’t think there would be executive orders from the White House saying transgender kids should be allowed to use the bathrooms they want.” But some of the advances that the LGBT community has won are disappearing under the Trump presidency, she said. Supreme Court will hear the case of Gavin Grimm, a 17-year-old transgender student from Virginia who sued his school board for a policy that required students to use the bathroom that corresponds with their biological sex or a separate single-stall restroom.

Last year at the Univeristy of Connecticut, he gave some male students a ride home from a party and when they arrived at their destination, they harassed him, hit his car and prevented him from driving away until Griffith Gardner called the police.

Griffith Gardener felt scared to leave his room for the next few days and when he eventually tried to go to class, the sight of cars gave him a panic attack that left him crying and unresponsive on the floor.

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