I confess: I love science and technology.
That might seem like a really weird confession, but let me tell you what, it’s not exactly the easiest love to have when you’re a woman. The mansplain factor goes through the roof in some circumstances. Tech support is a frequent “first career” for a lot of young technology enthusiasts (it was for me) and the number of times someone underestimates you because you’re female is at first insulting, then absurd, then depressing at times and infuriating at others.
The insidious part is that it makes you allergic to explanation. I got so good at avoiding having people explain things to me that I slowly ensured I could only learn from books, tutorials, or anything that didn’t involve a person. (Well, it’s a thing I’m working on.)
You might wonder where I’m going with this. Lesbians Who Tech is where I’m going with this. Leanne Pittsford has created something awesome for women like me, and more importantly, younger women like me.
In my previous career (arguably my second one, as I count the melange of tech support, customer service, and retail as my first), I had a technical job and I still had inordinate insecurity about my skills and capabilities. I became involved with LWT, and I don’t have enough time in the day to say good things about them. They’re uniquely positioned to help network young women who are frequently left high and dry by ‘typical’ women’s professional organizations, and they don’t play the identity police game — they have goals and help is welcome from anybody.
One of my goals this year is to start going to their meetings again. It was always a great time, it was always good people, and I always learned something, whether it was about a new tech I hadn’t had the courage to ask Real People about or people I hadn’t even thought of connecting to.
Bottom line: It’s a fantastic organization, and if you’ve got an ambition of being Alex Winters someday, LWT would be a huge asset in that endeavor. ^_^