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Old 12-03-2006, 09:52 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,204 posts, read 67,358,468 times
Reputation: 15855

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Good evening folks!

Well, those who know me best know that I rant and rave about how much I want to remain in my beloved hometown of Scranton, PA to rise to elected office and steer it onto the path to a brighter future. However, after crying my eyes out tonight after the roughest bout of loneliness I've had in over two years, I now realize that Scranton, as safe, affordable, and convenient it may be, just is not a great place to be a gay college student. I'm tiring of being the 19th wheel on outings with nine straight friend couples when I could easily be part of a 10th couple in a different, more GLBT-friendly environment. For all the positives that Scranton has, it certainly is not at all diverse in any sense of the word!

Here's my question to you all. I'll probably continue to suffer here, depressed, until I graduate from King's College in 2.5 years. Considering I'll have dual Bachelor's Degrees in Accounting and Finance and a strong GPA, I won't have much trouble securing employment no matter where I decide to relocate. As such, the condition of the city's economy is negligible to me. (The term "Rust-Belt" doesn't strike any sort of fear into my heart). What I'm looking for is a city in the Northeast or Midwest that is home to a thriving community of youths, artists, hippies, yuppies, and other eccentrics. I want a community where I could have an easier time finding a boyfriend than here in Scranton where your only option is to let them grab you at a sleazy gay dance club. What I also want is a city with a decent cost-of-living. (I thought I'd throw this sentence in before you all went on ranting about Frisco and Greenwich Village!) I hear that Boston is very GLBT-friendly, but housing prices up there are outrageous; is the same true for smaller MA cities, such as Worcester, Fall River, and Springfield? What about Portland, ME? Hartford, CT? I've often tossed the Twin Cities around in my mind as well as potential spot for relocation due to the literate population (I'm apparently the rare "classy" gay type in Scranton who prefers Borders and Barnes & Noble over adult video stores and strip clubs).

Could someone please help me out! I'm 20, and I'm already in a mid-life crisis (okay, so a 1/4-life crisis, but you get the idea! LOL!) I want to stay in my beloved Scranton, but the loneliness of being practically the only gay college student here has me crying myself to sleep every night. I want to live amongst more Liberal people in a place such as Boston or Minneapolis, but the thought of leaving Scranton also tears me up inside! What should I do? Do you all think I should relocate to Boston, land the love of my life, and then convince him to move with me back down to Scranton where I could start to make a positive difference in the community? Should I just move to Boston and stay there, as Scranton's GLBT scene isn't getting any "hotter" anytime soon? Wow! I'm a nervous wreck right now! AHHHH!!!

Last edited by SteelCityRising; 12-03-2006 at 09:58 PM.. Reason: Typo
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Old 12-03-2006, 10:36 PM
 
88 posts, read 71,739 times
Reputation: 26
Well. All I can tell you is if you're ready for frigid cold, Boston might be nice. Obviously liberal, pretty nice looking, nice history, city amenities etc, but the cost is not too pretty.
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Old 12-03-2006, 10:43 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,204 posts, read 67,358,468 times
Reputation: 15855
Quote:
Originally Posted by kdm31091 View Post
Well. All I can tell you is if you're ready for frigid cold, Boston might be nice. Obviously liberal, pretty nice looking, nice history, city amenities etc, but the cost is not too pretty.
A-hem...Kevin! Shouldn't we be in bed for school right now? Don't make me come down to DE and (oh...wait...I forgot you have a day off tomorrow!) LOL! Well, perhaps Boston it is then! Besides, I've been to the city before and loved every bit of it (with the exception of the "Big Dig.")
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Old 12-03-2006, 10:54 PM
 
88 posts, read 71,739 times
Reputation: 26
I actually like the idea of Boston too, in my premature research of my future it was one place I considered. A nice amount of snow outside while sitting near a fireplace w/ hot chocolate sounds pretty darn good! Hah I love winter. So if you go to Boston, you might love it if you love the snow (like I do!)
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Old 12-03-2006, 11:00 PM
 
Location: Sherman Oaks, CA
6,239 posts, read 15,449,701 times
Reputation: 8110
I'm sorry that you're so lonely. I wish I had answers for you.

It does sound like you need a chance of pace and place. Boston seems like a good option, and you can decide later if you want to stay there forever and put down roots. A lot can change in your outlook between 20 and 25!

You seem so nice and down-to-earth. I'm sure there's someone out there for you; it's just a shame that you have to leave Scranton to find him! Even 2 1/2 years is a long time to suffer until you graduate. Aren't there any colleges in Boston that you could transfer to?

Also, do you have any good friends that you can talk to, so you might not feel so isolated? It helps to have a support system even if all you can do right now is vent. (Oh, wait, that's what we're all here for! Haha...)
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Old 12-04-2006, 05:11 AM
 
Location: Portland, OR
414 posts, read 2,416,777 times
Reputation: 296
Well I kind of asked the same question myself. Hmm in the Midwest or Northeast I would say

Minneapolis
Tulsa
Hartford, CT?

The big problem you have going is that you are going to have a rude, cliquey, expensive, fast paced city to live in the Northeast with the same kind of gay community that you are not going to want. By the time you can afford a house you will be 45.

Why do I love having a house so much? I'm not sure but I grew up in a nice one with some land in a suburb and have lived happily except for a lack of a gay scene in suburbia ever since. You could go to the South perhaps Atlanta and it would be a little better and friendlier. You will not feel very comfortable much outside of the city in the state of Georgia.

Minneapolis is a fairly affordable city and relaxed with a large gay community. It also has great hockey and skiing. Go with a boyfriend for the weekend to Lutsen or up the coast to Thunder Bay. Makes for a fabulous, romantic outing. I've done it myself with an ex from school in Chicago. I don't know if I would want the extreme cold but it seems like for everything in life you sacrifice at least something. It's gonna be colder than Scranton, colder than Boston, colder than Plattsburgh New York, it is on par with Quebec City or Northern Ontario.

The Pacific Northwest is nice but very foreign. Its 3000 miles away from your folks and I think that the economy isnt great. You might make 40K a year with a starting finance job instead of the 50K you would get in Minneapolis. If you go to Seattle the cost of living is as high as Boston.

Another Midwestern thought is Omaha Nebraska. It's a somewhat boring state but you have the Sandhills and Colorado skiing a long 7 or 8 hours away. Avoid Indianapolis or Ohio. There is nothing to do and it is not very pretty.
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Old 12-04-2006, 06:26 AM
 
Location: Bay Area, CA
29,038 posts, read 45,039,938 times
Reputation: 20425
Default Hmmmm...

I'm no expert on the northeast and midwest (I was born in D.C., but moved at age 7 to Calif.), but for some reason Madison, WI. popped into my mind... I've known people from that area, and they described it as similar to what you're looking for. I've actually thought it sounds like a good fit for myself, and once considered going to school there.

I know central Massachussetts a bit, since my relatives live in the Worcester area; it is more affordable than Boston, but seems pretty conservative. It's also a fairly slow-paced life for the most part, which is why my 89 year old Grandmother loves it! I've never felt it's "uber" conservative, or hostile toward any particular groups, but it's just a more old-fashioned kind of place. You also mentioned Hartford, and I have a close gay friend who went to Yale (and hence lived there for 4 years). I remember him complaining about it sometimes, but just over general stuff like crime & weather... he also happens to be black, and never mentioned issues over his race or sexuality. Maybe I'll ask him for opinions next time we talk? You sound a bit similar to him, so he might be a good source of info!
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Old 12-04-2006, 06:40 AM
 
Location: Bay Area, CA
29,038 posts, read 45,039,938 times
Reputation: 20425
P.S. The friend I mentioned above has lived in a variety of places... Ohio, New Hampshire, NYC, CT, Calif., and London. His favorite place was probably London, and he even met his one really "serious" boyfriend there (they unfortunately broke up when he moved back to the US). But I'm guessing that's a little far for your taste!
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Old 12-04-2006, 04:31 PM
 
Location: New Paltz
9 posts, read 40,669 times
Reputation: 14
Smile NP is the Place to Be!

haha, sorry for the lame title, it was the first thing that came to mind

Come to New Paltz!!! We have a great liberal community, and hippies and artists galore! Our town mayor (really cool guy hes like 26 and apart of the Green Party) was like one of the first mayors in NYS to push for gay marraige as well. We have a cute little town with lots of shops and resturants and a ton of history. Its a great place, I go to SUNY NP right now and love it! Even if you don't move here permanantly, it is a great place to visit and we have a pretty large gay community.

best of luck

(-<) <3 : )
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Old 12-04-2006, 06:23 PM
 
Location: In exile, plotting my coup
2,408 posts, read 13,363,313 times
Reputation: 1792
I've said this before SWB, but I really think you should leave Scranton just for a short time at the very least as you seem to be very conflicted about your sexuality living there and I think some exposure to a more gay-friendly environment, to a large number of gays who you can relate to and that can provide a much larger pool, would really do wonders for you. I would take it one step at a time. Worry about whether or not you want to return to Scranton when the situation pops up. You can't predict how lifestyle changes, location changes and just general maturation may affect your wants and worldview in the coming years, so it's best to not worry about this situation that may occur years from now and rather concentrate on the present. Scranton will always be there for you. Take a risk and see what else is out there. You're young and not strapped down. As cliched as it may be, the whole world is your oyster. See what it has to offer.

Ever consider Philadelphia? It's not that far, with a vibrant gay scene and is a bit cheaper than Boston and New York, and also close enough to home for you to be able to dart home for a weekend with friends or make a day trip to hang out with family.
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