The Republic of T.

Black. Gay. Father. Vegetarian. Buddhist. Liberal.

Two Girls in Love?

Jim over at Vigilance, has been blogging about the story of two teenage girls from Montgomery County, MD, who'd been missing for two weeks.

Photobucket - Video and Image HostingThe disappearance of two Montgomery County teenagers has prompted a nationwide search amid fears about the meaning behind a note left by one of the young women about her desire to "stay with my true love, buried next to her."

Rachel Crites, 18, of Gaithersburg and Rachel Smith, 16, of North Potomac both called their parents Friday afternoon to say they were in Georgetown and planning to see a movie.

But cell phone records showed the call was placed from Charles Town, W.Va., a small town south of Frederick best known for its horseracing track.

That was the last their parents heard from them. Now the Montgomery County Police have issued a nationwide search for the teens and for Crites’ dark blue 1997 Subaru Outback station wagon.

Sadly, the two girls were found dead. They appear to have committed suicide.

The bodies of two girls were discovered yesterday in Loudoun County in a car that belongs to the family of one of two Montgomery County teenagers missing for two weeks, law enforcement authorities said. Some officials said the victims apparently committed suicide.

Loudoun sheriff's deputies found the girls dead in the front seat of the car on an access road off Route 9 near the West Virginia border yesterday afternoon. There were no signs of trauma on their bodies, and the cause of death was not known, deputies said.

It appears to be a case of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Over at Vigilance, I was moved by one of the comments.

I just learned that according to the American Psychological Association, suicide is the number one cause of death for gay teens.

We don't know, and may never know what was really going on in those girls' lives. All we know is that two beautiful young people, are no longer here. And we know that every child is precious, and deserves total love and acceptance.

I hope that as moral human beings, we can at least agree on that.

Unfortunately, not everyone can agree on that, like the mom I posted about earlier.

I don't know what went on in these girls' lives. Their families seemed truly concerned about finding them, and genuinely grieved at losing their children. But, as I've pointed out before, suicide and homelessness are huge problems among gay youth in general. And in many of those cases it almost always stems from a lack of acceptance and understanding at home. Sometimes that includes violence and abuse, or even being kicked out of the house by parents.

Being a teenager is hard enough without having to deal with being rejected by your own family. At that age, you can have a kind of tunnel vision, and think that things will always be as bad as they are right then.

That is, if there's nobody around to tell you any different; to tell you that you're OK, that there's life, love, and acceptance beyond your back yard. And that you will find it.

And that's exactly what some people, right here in Montgomery County, don't want gay & lesbian youth to hear.

13 Comments

  1. Pingback: Rachel Crites and Rachel Smith: A Continuing Tragedy - from The Zero Boss by Jay Andrew Allen

  2. Wow, it’s so nice to find your blog. That was my comment on Vigilance that you quoted.

    But, notice I did say “I hope that as *moral* human beings, we can at least agree on that.” Those who cannot agree that every child deserves to be loved and accepted, for who they are, and exactly as they are…are morally bankrupt.

    This is a wonderful blog, and a great tribute to Rachel and Rachel. As I said on Vigilance, we don’t know what was going on in their lives. But as you’ve pointed out, we do know that far too many gay teens do choose to leave this world because the people who were asked nothing more than to love them, wouldn’t.

  3. We don’t know what the parents were thinking or how they would have reacted to their kids’ coming out, so I’m hesitant to blame them for this–but clearly these girls thought that there was no place for them in the world. How terrible.

  4. I am a 47 year old mother of two teenagers. Having grown up in New York and having been living in Northern Virginia for 7 years I still cannot get over the intolerance and prejudice against gays here. I don’t understand how all these super religious people who believe in a higher power can have the audacity to judge others. I teach my teenagers to love everyone and not judge others. It is very tough sometimes to listen to the ignorance of my coworkers who say gays will go to hell. When I tell them that God loves everyone and that he created gay people as well…they have no comeback. It is hard to teach my teenagers tolerance and acceptance when all around them is this ultra religious facade of people who preach love but exclude certain people based on their ignorant beliefs. All I know is that if any of my children came to me and told me that they were gay or if I found out by by being so in tune with them, there would be nothing but love and acceptance on my and my husbands part. How sad that these two girls did not find acceptance from their families instead their families have said they were “worried about their state of mind” upon finding a journal entry.. This to me is intolerance as being gay is not a state of mind. As sad as this is, maybe it will make other parents realize that they must love and accept their children regardless of sexual preference.

  5. Love your babies. Hug and love your babies. And I MEAN hug and love your babies.

    Sadly, even though you may already do that to the nth degree, mental illness is more powerful than love.

    Mental illness coupled with the issues surrounding coming out, are much more powerful and profound than I can understand at my age, let alone how I would have coped at 18.

    The Rachel’s could have come from the most loving and supportive families imaginable, yet still they would deal with peers and their community.

    Teach your children love, tolerance and acceptance. Hug them and love them.

    Teach them to love, not hate.

  6. One news report has this comment:

    “Troy Crites, Rachel’s father told NBC4, “She sings in the choir in the Catholic church. She’s just a great kid. I just don’t understand what’s going on””

    Its a safe bet that the church and potentially her family would have been very upset over the homosexuality issue.

    Also I found this: http://www.myspace.com/kpcrl58127

    There were also reports in the local media that the father was asked to stop saying what was in the diary. Perhaps someone – i.e. the other family did not want more details released about there friendship.

  7. I personally know the families. It has not been proven that the girls were gay. Whether they were or not is immaterial. The real issue is teen depression and feeling like there is no hope to have to do something so final. Both girls were from very loving, supportive families and were active in the community. Both girls came from families who would have still loved them and supported them in every way even if they came out saying they were gay. BUT, much of what you have on here is pure speculation. Please respect the families and community and do not speculate into what you do not know.

  8. I don’t think that we should all be so convinced that both these girls wanted to kill themselves. RC had a psych history and according to news reports attempted suicide before. RC left the note which said she wanted to be buried alonside her true love not that she wanted to die alongside her true love. RS didn’t leave a note and as stated by RC’s father RS helped RC. We’ll never really know what happened other than two beautiful babies are gone forever and their families will forever grieve their loss.
    JL

  9. I know both families. I knew both girls. Your suggestion that the parents did not know and would have “reacted” to their coming out is at the least, pure guessing. Their sexual preference is not to be debated. Their loss is. WE ARE ALL DEVASTATED!

    What these families need is PRIVACY and RESPECT in order to grieve. And, like the vultures from Channel 7 who keep hanging around Wootton High School, it would be really really nice if you could all just shut up and give us all some space.

  10. shame on you for blaming their families in a time like this

  11. I’m Rachel Crites’ cousin. I would like to personally say that my family is quite possibly the most accepting family ever. I was pretty upset with the blog saying that they ran away because of lack of acceptance. Besides, the word “true love” doesn’t necessarily mean lover, but the girls were best friends. Please stop speculating about their lives. you all know nothing.

  12. As I said when I posted on my blog, it’s true that we don’t know what exactly when on in these girls’ lives. We also don’t know the families of either girl. They seemed genuinely concerned to find their daughters, and grieved to hasve lost them, and there’s no reason to think otherwise. I couldn’t help, when I read the story, thinking about what I’d recently read about suicide and homelessness among LGBT youth. But

    I don’t know of anyone blames the parents. i don’t, and did not in my post. As a parent myself, my heart goes out to them. My point was just that this story brought to mind the general issues of suicide and homelessness among gay & lesbian youth, which have been in the news recently.

    We do know that one of them wrote about wanting “stay with my true love, buried next to her.” That implies at least a romantic same-sex relationship. Whether the parents opposed that relationship or not, we don’t know. Whether they even knew of it is something we don’t know.

    It’s possible that, if the relationship existed, their daughters may have kept it a secret. If so, it’s not a stretch to consider that keeping that secret, and keeping silent, might lead to or increase the likelihood of depression. At the same time, it’s possible they looked around them and felt the odds were overwhelmingly against their relationship. It’s also possible that they were distraught over being separated somehow, and this was the only course they could think of.

    Like I said before, at that age it’s easy to have tunnel vision, and think that things will always be as bad as they are, if there’s no one to tell you different.

    What’s interesting to me is the reaction to suggesting a relationship between the two girls. If a heterosexual teenage couple had carried out a suicide pact, no one would think twice about mentioning their relationship. (Of course, a heterosexual couple probably wouldn’t have to keep their relationship a secret, unless their parents objected.) But for some reason, even if it seems obvious from the little we do know, we have to stop short of suggesting a relationship between the girls.

    It’s almost as if mentioning the possibility of a relationship is “speaking ill of the dead.” Because there would be something wrong with them having a romantic relationship.

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