One woman tells of how her parents, upon discovering her crush on a physical education teacher when she was fourteen years old, first sent her to a psychologist “to find out if I was crazy.” When her parents’ persistent rejection of her sexual identification during her teen years caused her to be so depressed that she attempted suicide, they committed her to a hospital psychiatric ward where the nurses “tried to fix me up with boys” and the psychiatrists “made me feel I was the only one who ever felt love for someone of the same sex.” When her depression continued after her release, her parents again had her hospitalized, this time in a state mental hospital. She was not alone there, she says. She met a thirty-year-old lesbian who claimed “she had been in and out of institutions all her life for being a lesbian. I thought she was the sanest person there.” Similar stories were not uncommon during the mid-twentieth-century.
— Lillian Faderman, Odd Girls and Twilight Lovers: A History of Lesbian Life in Twentieth-Century America