In 2010, Constance McMillan’s battle to attend her school prom with a female date became a huge national news story and, in addition to covering the actual story obsessively, we also created a “Lesbian Prom Gallery.” (Not everybody in the gallery was a lesbian, obviously, many are bisexual, queer, or otherwise-identified, but using “lesbian” in headlines helps girls-who-like-girls find our content on search engines.) We wanted to show the world how ridiculously cute we’d look if they just let us take our girlfriends to prom. The post was a hit and we still get submissions to it, five years later!
Now that it’s that time of year again, and finally we can realize our dreams of resurrecting and bringing this gallery back into the light — with some new photos added (if you have a photo to submit, directions for doing so are at the end of this post! We’re especially looking for photos from women of color and trans women!) All of these photos were submitted to us directly. (If your photo is on this list and you no longer want it included, just email bren [at] autostraddle [dot] com and she’ll take it down, no problem!)
So, without any further ado…
110 Same-Sex Female & Otherwise-Identified Queer Couples Going To Prom Together Like Champs
1985, Kansas City, MO
These girlfriends are posing with a gay male friend who went stag to prom. The submitter told me: “My inspiration for going to the prom with my girlfriend in tow in tuxes was my sister who is gay as well and had to go thru all of the bullshit of wearing a dress that she hated and looked like a freaking dork in the year before I was to go… My girlfriend and I were the only gay couple to attend but we had absolutely no issues, no wisecracks, no nothing from anyone at prom. They all either supported us, tolerated us or knew better than to say a word to me. Like I said, I got big shoulders.”
1993, Pennsylvania: Gwyn & Michele
1994, Bakersfield, CA
1994, Milton, MA
1995, Maui, HI: Noël & Sierra
1997, Berkeley, CA: Ariel Schrag & Date
1997, Guilderland, NY: Kristin Russo & Date
2000, Ephrata, PA
“I grew up in Ephrata and it was a very conservative, small, Amish town. We got plenty of glares and several snide comments, but the people in charge let us in and we weren’t hassled by staff.”
2000, Newtown, PA: Johanna & Marion
2001, Asheville, NC
2002, The Bronx, NY: Jenn (tux) & Frances
2002, Edmonds, WA: Rochelle & Morgan
2003, New Hampshire
2003, Long Island, NY: Design Director Alex Vega & Date
2004, Raleigh, NC
2004, San Francisco, CA
2006, Seattle, WA
2006, Plainsville, OH
2006, Palm Desert, CA
“The girl on the left (Katie) is the principal of the high schools daughter. The girl on the right (Haylee) was the president of the gay-straight alliance :)”
2006, Topsfield, MA: Managing Editor Rachel & Date
2006, Rochester, MI
2006, Chicago, IL
2006, Terre Haute, IN: Brittany & Britni
2006, Maryville, MO: Ashley & Trisha
2007, Corinth, NY: Kate & Barb
“We got in trouble for kissing so we went overboard.”
2007, Jacksonville, FL: Emily & Taylor
2007, Murray County, GA
2007, Orlando, FL: Editorial Assistant Chelsey & Date
2007, Springfield, MO
2007, Birmingham, AL
2007, St.Louis, MO
2007, Kansas: Kylenn & Debbie
2007, Ridgefield, CT: Sara & Caroline
2008, Yonkers, NY
“The picture was taken on the party bus on our way to prom.”
2008, South Carolina
“The girl on the left was my date and neither of our schools had a problem with us coming together. We went to two proms in two consecutive nights!”
2008, Little Rock, AR
2008, Herndon, VA: Margaret & Hope
2008, Woodbridge, VA
2008, Victoria, BC, CANADA: Julia & Maddie
2008, Portland, OR: Grace & K.
2008, Houston, TX
2008, Hampton Bay, NY: Brie & Megan
2009 & 2008, Belleville, NJ: Alex & Gabbi
2009, South Carolina
2009, Chicago, IL
2009: New York, NY
2009, Reno, NV: Charlene & Gina
2009, New Jersey
2009, Muncie, IN: Chrissy & Kara
2009, San Antonio, TX
2009, Eugene, OR: Martha & Ashley
2009, Shawnee, KS
2009, Columbia, MO: Ally & Sarina
2009, San Francisco, CA
2009, Missouri: Tracy & Cat
2009, Largo, FL: Kimberly & Brittany
2010, Natchitoches, LA: Baylea & Britney
“I was Prom KING!!!” – Bayela (she’s in the tux)”
2010, Santa Cruz, CA: Rebecca & Joya
2010, New York: Erica & Juliana
2010, Oregon: Taylor & Katie
2010, Rhode Island
2010, Eure, NC: Caitlin & Katie
2010, Ohio: Sam & Kate
“Waiting for marriage legalization in Ohio. Still in love.”
2010, Baton Rouge, LA: Chloe & Tabby
2011, Idyllwild, CA
2011, Atlanta, GA: Aja & Darya
“We’re still together to this day.”
2011, Frankfort, KY: Taylor & Keele
2011, South Bend, IN: Katie & Tiffany
“We’re the first couple – Katie’s in the vest and I’m in the black dress. Our school didn’t allow gay couples to go together.. So we each “took” one of our gay guy friends (the couple standing next to us). Once we walked through the door it no longer mattered, though. We danced the night away together and even got voted to prom court!”
2011, Arlington, TX: Mal & Ambra
2011, Chicago, IL
2012, Riverside, IL.
“I’m the redhead in the photos but we’re both genderqueer straddlers.”
2012, Worcester, MA: Emma & Catie
2012, Azusa, CA: Briana & Charli
“I fancy you, it’s our favorite saying.”
2012, Andover, MA: Kate & Ciearra
2013, Dahlonega, GA: Lauren & Emily
“[We live in a] tiny little southern conservative town in northern Georgia. We went proudly to prom together and danced our little gay asses off.”
2013, London, England
2013, Vancouver, BC: Ashley & Clea
“She went to an all girl’s private Catholic school and decided to take me, the most outwardly, proud, flamboyant, dapper lesbian in the city, to her prom. We received nothing but love and acceptance from her friends and teachers and it was a beautiful night.”
2013, Escanaba, MI
2013, Southlake, TX: Jordan & Betsy
“This was actually our second prom together. We went together the year before “as friends”. But then we started dating and Betsy came back from Bryn Mawr to take me to my senior prom. It was a magical night. We’re still together today, and no one makes me happier.”
2013, St. Paul, MN: Melissa & Nikki
2014, Chicago, IL: Laura & Lindsey
2014, Toronto, ON: Elizabeth & Ashley
“We’re two lifelong best friends who both ended up being queer, so of course we were each other’s prom dates. Love this girl and I couldn’t ask for a better date.”
2014, Charleston, SC: Jenna & Bianca
2014, Bloomington, MN: Kate & Alexa
2014, Decorah, IA: MaKenzie & Kamryn
“I’m Bisexual, she’s a lesbian, and boy did we have an awesome night!”
2014, Minneapolis, MN
2014, Cincinnati, OH
2014, Hastings-on-Hudson, NY: Lyle & Natalie
2014, Reston, VA: Stephanie & Antonia
2014, Atlanta, GA
2015, Phoenix, AZ
2015, Ann Arbor, MI: Jaz & Sam
2015, Savannah, MO: Brooke & Tayler
2015, Clio, MI: Jennifer & Syd
“Not exactly prom but High School Snowcoming. Syd on the right (genderqueer; they/them pronouns) Jennifer on the left.”
2015, Michigan: Katie & Becky
2015, Eagle, CO: Dalia & Jojo
2015, Croton, NY: Maggie & Yas
2015, Jackson, MI: Madi & Savannah
2015, Clearwater, FL
“We are fortunate enough to live in a modern society where we are more accepted. I’m a lesbian and she’s bisexual, we’ve been best friends for years and I couldn’t be more blessed to love someone so dearly. We always stand proud together , no matter what looks or judgment we might get.”
2015, Yvonne & Amy: Riverside, CA
2015, Lakeland, FL
2015, Marietta, GA
2015, Jackson, MI: Haley & Hayli
“We’ve been together for a year and five months so far.”
2015, Newton, MS: Melisa & Chelsea
2015, Ambler, PA: Rebekah & Nicole
“Our favorite part of the night was when the dj played Get Low by Lil Jon and didn’t even bother to censor it because everyone sang along anyways.”
2015, Dover, DE: Brittney & Destinee
2015, London, England: Yash and Charliy
2015: Vienna, Austria
2015, Canada: Kelsey and Friend
Do you have a cute picture from your prom you wanna share with the internet? Send it to riese [at] autostraddle [dot] com. Say PROM PHOTO in the subject line and also the year and location, e.g., PROM PHOTO: Denver, CO, 1996. The photo has to be good quality, at least 600 pixels wide or tall. If you want your names included, tell them to me and let me know! Please only submit photos of high school proms and be sure your date is okay with her photo being on Autostraddle forever!
If your photo is included here ’cause you submitted it a long time ago and you don’t want it up anymore, just e-mail bren [at] autostraddle [dot] com and she’ll take it down.
YOu ALL ARE SO CUTE!
I want those gold leggings, 2009, Washington DC….
agreed Gold Leggings is a whole nother level of gaymazing.
This whole post is just maximum awesome; gonna smile through the rest of my day; thank you. <3 <3 <3
Where did you see that picture?
^ my feelings
i second that motion. heartstringssssss
Just the best.
AHHHH…this is the cutest. If I could turn back time, if I could find the way. I didn’t go to my prom so this is giving me some feelings. Just. awwww…
Dying of Teh Cute.
Also, prom fashion never changes.
Awe so cute!! Look at the fashion of the day in each picture :). So excited for queer prom :)
oh my gosh I grew up in Dahlonega! congrats and love to Lauren and Emily. i can’t imagine if i had still been living there when i came out, so that’s awesome that y’all were able to do prom <3
So very, very, overwhelmingly WHITE…
Riese already acknowledged this openly and said that they are looking for folks of color and trans women specifically to submit. Hopefully a few do!! Tell your friends! More prom happiness for everyone, you know?
i know, it’s true! like C.P said, we definitely need more submissions, right now all we’ve got is what was sent to us in response to that post in 2010. I don’t want to use any photos that aren’t submitted to us directly because I want to be sure that everything that goes up is with the consent of the people in the picture, so I hope we get some new submissions!
ADORABLE! Where is my time machine so I can go back and not bring a boyyyyyyyyy????
My prom date is on his way to being a priest and I’m gay.
I think we can all agree that old prom pictures are amazingly awkward and wonderful, and after viewing these, I definitely want to do the cha cha slide.
CUTE. SO MUCH CUTE.
I wasn’t out during high school and I was also just really like oblivious?? Like I lived this world in my head where yes I knew I was queer but also sometimes I seemed to live in this world in my head where no one was queer and it wasn’t a thing.
Two girls came together to our school formal on a date and it was seemingly accepted, but maybe because other people were just really oblivious too? Like half the people in our all girls school didn’t bring dudes, but like friends from other schools who were girls. SO. I don’t know. I went to a weird nerd school.
BUT YEAH CUTE SO MUCH CUTE HERE.
Two girls came together at my junior prom in 2005 but they told everyone they bought a couples ticket to get a discount. It was like 40 dollars for a couples ticket and 25 for a singles ticket. We were not a rich school, so all of our single friends were like “why didn’t we all pair up and do that?” it went way over our heads.
I went to prom with a girl and no one cared- in fact several people went with girls and no one cared. Is anyone else just baffled that people make an actual big deal about who you take to prom or if you wear a tux? This was a total nonissue in at my Montana school.
In other feelings I have: these pics are so cute! It makes my day!
I feel so stupid though because I had to read this sentence like four times before I realized they weren’t trying to say the high school had a daughter.
“The girl on the left (katie) is the principal of the high schools daughter.”
You get an A+ for effort, my brain.
It wasn’t just you! Except I interpreted it as Katie being the principal???! WUT.
Right? Like ‘the principal’s daughter’ would have been pretty clear, but I also wondered for a long time about that one. Pre-coffee brain, go!
I just got it myself, thanks to you
UGH, you are all so cute! This warms my cold, cold heart in a way that I thought only babies could. Loving so many Missouri submissions, too! QUEERS, YOU DO EXIST HERE! (I mean, I know you do, but we haven’t met yet! Hi, I’m Jordan. <3)
Yes! I was impressed looking through the list at all of the couples in Missouri! I was pretty asexual in high school but my best friend went with a girl to prom with my friend wearing a blue tux in the late 90s. The next year my best friend wore a dress and went with a gay guy. I stayed away from the whole prom thing. But now my wife and I do like to go out dancing in our small town in Missouri.
Also, hi Jordan!
THESE ARE SO CUTE, I’M SO HAPPY FOR ALL OF THESE LOVELY LADIES. I wish I could have been this sure of myself when I was in high school!
Luckily though my college has “Pride Prom” every year for everyone that couldn’t or wasn’t ready yet to be as queer as possible at their hs prom so I still got to dance and get awkward photos with my gf this year~
I was casually stumbling through these endearing photos when I discovered that I am in a photo!! Her senior prom, New York, 2010. I wore the suit. Something that you could not see from that photo is that I also wore a pair of bomb ass black heels to contrast the rest of my outfit.
Thanks for including that photo! Brought back some memories and was such a funny surprise.
I thought that was you. Top-notch suit-wearing you have going on there!
YOU LOOK SMASHING!
Rachel looks exactly the same. Wow.
rachel kincaid, consummate babe
These are so cute!!!! as a queer girl still in high school these give me a lot of hope!
I’m dead. The cute hath slain me. Bury me and post this link on my tombstone.
I have also died of adorableness overdose. RIP us.
So many happy ladies* looking SO GORGEOUS, I am actually weepy right now. I love all of you.
I’m kind of bummed I didn’t see this earlier, but I had a fantastic prom experience. Long story short, I broke up with my terrible boyfriend about a month before prom. He made a snide comment about me going alone. So I asked the best person I could think of to go with me – his other ex-girlfriend. We got burgers, we made out in a sweet limo, we danced, and he got to see us there. Justice.
Comment (and life) award
This is so adorable!!! <3
Hey, I know Baylea! I was a junior the year she was a senior and elected prom king.
What a cute list.
This makes me very happy. Have you done a lesbian wedding album yet? At least I could contribute to that one. :)
These are super cute. (I especially like that one of the girls in the 2000 prom photo is wearing the same dress I wore to Prom 2000) I took a girl and a guy to my Senior prom, got a couple of eyebrows, but no real issues. Great times.
I really enjoyed seeing all these pictures. Everyone looked amazing whether they were in a suit or tux. I wish I could have worn some of those outfits to my prom! :)
dress or tux* Oopsie. ><
I loved all these photos…everyone looked beautiful.
Also- I squeed a little seeing the city I grew up represented (Yonkers NY). Back when I was going to HS there, there were very few out queer students, and none taking same sex dates to the prom.
I grow up in Yonkers too! And graduated from Gorton in 08.
Hey, funny thing, I just went to prom last night.
I had a poly-platonic date, as we joked (I went with a group of friends). Two nonbinary people of my group of five, me included.
There was me in my tux, and my dmab friend in their dress. (My mom did complain about the dress; she said it was a fall dress, they should’ve grabbed a spring dress.)
No one said anything, perks of being in a liberal area in a conservative state. I mean, maaaaaybe we got a few less compliments but even if so it was definitely worth it.
Sure, we spent more time playing cah than actually at prom, but I definitely enjoyed the opportunity to dress up. I felt pretty dapper :).
I needed this, thank you. So, so adorable!!!
Just noticed that Chelsey is standing on a step to be taller than her date NICE MOVE CHELSEY
YOU FOUND ME OUT!
Is it weird that I’m more worried about finding the right dress for prom than actually going to prom with a girl? I mean, we’ve been out at school since February and nobody exploded, but we would still be the first queer couple ever at our school’s prom. And yet, the most pressing matter is that I can’t decide if I want to wear flats or Converse.
I wore vans to all of my school dances 2002-2006, so that was before wearing sneakers to formal events was a thing people did #noregrets
flats definitely! your feet will be sweaty af and you will want to take your shoes off – easier with flats
I’m not asking to have it taken down, but where did you get the pic of me in 2007 springfield mo? Just curious how that photo made it here…
As explained in the intro, all of these pictures were submitted to us via e-mail between when we launched a previous prom gallery in 2010 and the present. That one was sent to us by Caitlin on March 19, 2010.
Squee! Baby dykes! Love it – wish I had been this confident when I was at school.
I can’t be the only one who noticed that Charli XCX was photoshopped into one of these pictures (?) Living the fantasy, Briana, ~*mega-props 2 u*~
You’re not alone, I thought of it as hilarious !
ALL THE FEELS! YOU ALL LOOK SO LOVELY! #jealous #wishiwasascoolasyouallare
I’m reading Ariel Schrag’s new book now! Love seeing these pictures, and wish I could have taken a queer date back then!
That’s my daughter and her gf looking so beautiful in 2015! SO PROUD of you!!!
this is so cute!
I would like to hire the photographer who took the purple couch shot. Holy awesome.
1985-2000…….that hair tho……lol….love these pictures
I love this!!!(: I sent in my pic! I hope it gets put up❤️
Just a quick question, who submitted my prom photo? I wasn’t even informed this was on here or how it got on here
Maybe ask the other human in the photo…
every photo on this post was submitted to us by a person in the photo, so if it wasn’t you, it was your date. as explained in the submission instructions “Please only submit photos of high school proms and be sure your date is okay with her photo being on Autostraddle forever.”
Kate and Barb from Corinth I am from GFHS and it looks like we are the same age! Excited to see us represented
I went Milton High (class of ’96) wonder who that photo is? :)
Oh my goodness, this is unbelievably cute and made me so happy.
motion to re-open this gallery for 2016 because honestly my prom pics from this year are iconic
Dahlonega! NE Georgia represent :)
These are excellent. #feelings