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Amanda's Diary: Girlfriend

From: Radio Diaries
Series: Teenage Diaries
Length: 21:30

Amanda's family is Catholic. Amanda is bisexual. And she's having a hard time getting her parents to understand that this is not just a phase. "When I was in the first grade, I remember one day we were playing a game that was kind of like Sleeping Beauty where like the prettiest girl on the block fell asleep on a picnic bench. And you know, somebody had to go and wake her up, to like, kiss her and revive her and it would always be one of the boys. And I always felt like I wanted to go and revive her." Amanda first recorded her story with Radio Diaries 16 years ago. We've given her a recorder again to document her life today and to hear what's happened since. Hear Amanda's original diary below and our recent podcast with the Amanda of today. This story is part of the Teenage Diaries series produced by Radio Diaries for NPR. Read the full description.

Td_amanda_001_l_small Amanda's family is Catholic. Amanda is bisexual. And she's having a hard time getting her parents to understand that this is not just a phase. "When I was in the first grade, I remember one day we were playing a game that was kind of like Sleeping Beauty where like the prettiest girl on the block fell asleep on a picnic bench. And you know, somebody had to go and wake her up, to like, kiss her and revive her and it would always be one of the boys. And I always felt like I wanted to go and revive her."

This story is part of the Teenage Diaries series  produced by Radio Diaries for NPR. Since 1996, Executive Producer Joe Richman has been giving tape recorders to young people around the country to document their lives. In December of 2012, Radio Diaries will revisit five of the original diarists 16 years after their first recordings. The series is broadcast on NPR's All Things Considered.

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Piece Description

Amanda's family is Catholic. Amanda is bisexual. And she's having a hard time getting her parents to understand that this is not just a phase. "When I was in the first grade, I remember one day we were playing a game that was kind of like Sleeping Beauty where like the prettiest girl on the block fell asleep on a picnic bench. And you know, somebody had to go and wake her up, to like, kiss her and revive her and it would always be one of the boys. And I always felt like I wanted to go and revive her."

This story is part of the Teenage Diaries series  produced by Radio Diaries for NPR. Since 1996, Executive Producer Joe Richman has been giving tape recorders to young people around the country to document their lives. In December of 2012, Radio Diaries will revisit five of the original diarists 16 years after their first recordings. The series is broadcast on NPR's All Things Considered.

2 Comments Atom Feed

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Review of Amanda from New York: Girlfriend

This piece is an audio diary from Amanda, a seventeen-year-old bisexual from Brooklyn, detailing her life and relationship with Dawn, a girl she's been dating for two years. Her parents try to be open, but definitely do not approve (or completely buy into the idea) of Amanda's stated sexuality. Amanda says the disconnection from her parents doesn't bother her, but it obviously does. Though she identifies herself as a "bisexual" early in the piece, as her story goes on (and she becomes more adamant, she seems to focus her thoughts solely on her attraction to women).

Listening to this diary is an odd experience. It provides intimate insight into Amanda's life and the conflict with her parents, but stops short of any type of conclusion, transitional moment, or resolution. It is as if a window into Amanda's life is randomly opened, then quickly closed. While the piece feels so real, a listener could be confused as to the purpose of the piece or what they should make of it.

In programming discussing gay rights, gay (or even straight) teen culture, or nontraditional relationships, this piece can put a human voice to issues that tend to get lost in loud rhetoric and heated debate. However, if a station wants to use this piece, they need to be prepared to provide the missing sense of closure and context.

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Review of Amanda from New York: Girlfriend

First off, I'm so glad these Radio Diaries are available again.

There's a segment in here with Amanda talking to her parents about her sexuality. It is so real, and completely captures the essence of what children face when they confront their parents' traditional values. Something I love about this is that there's no resolution to the story. It ends in the middle, where Amanda is.

I'm planning to use this, along with other Teen Diaries, and stories from Blunt Youth to do a special program on teens.

Related Website

http://www.radiodiaries.org/amanda-from-new-york-girlfriend/