News » International

Lesbian Escapes Russia By Boat, Sails to Canada With Woman She Loves

by Winnie McCroy
EDGE Editor
Friday May 19, 2017

In what is an amazing story, a Russian lesbian escaped her homophobic family and sailed ten months to Canada to be with the woman she loves.

In a heartwarming story by Joe Morgan in Gay Star News, he reports about the life of twenty-something Elena from Ivanova, a city 250 km east of Moscow, whose parents forced her to wear high heels and makeup and be a "proper woman." She tried to make them happy by getting a boyfriend but met a Canadian woman online named Meg.

"Meg can do everything; she is a musician, she plays the piano, flies planes, sails boats... To me she was this incredible woman, she simply stunned me with what she could do, and, of course, I pretty much instantly fell in love with her," she said.

The couple met in Kiev, Ukraine, where she planned to escape. Telling her family she was headed to the opera, she secretly packed a small bag. When Elena met Meg at the Kiev airport, she told Prospekt Mag "When I saw her, I saw she was standing in the crowd of people. I don't know how to explain how I felt, but I think I was so excited that I could hardly understand what was going on around me."

Elena eventually decided to be honest with her mother and boyfriend, but when they arrived in Kiev, they brought her dad, and "they attacked us. They grabbed me, held both my arms tight and brought me to a McDonalds near the train station. My father slapped three tickets on the table and said 'you're coming with us to Ivanovo.' That was their ultimatum for me, and it was the first time that I ever disagreed with them in my life."

A fight broke out, and all four were led to a police station. Unexpectedly, the police chose the couple's side and, eventually, the parents went back to Russia. But Elena's mom had taken her passport, stranded her. A friend finally retrieved it from the family's home and took it to Elena in Odessa.

The couple went to Turkey, where Meg put a mortgage on her house in Canada so they could buy a boat and sailing lessons. Two months later, the women were on the open sea. They crossed the Mediterranean, survived a hurricane in the Atlantic, and sailed without stopping until they reached Canada.

After 10 months, they arrived in Canada in April 2007.

"When we arrived, it was all very quiet, it was 2 am, we simply parked the boat at the yacht club, and there was nobody there," said Elena. "And that was the irony of it. We had completed such a huge journey for love, but there was nobody to meet us. It was pretty silent. We didn't actually need anything, we just wanted to sleep, to rest, and to start living our life."

The couple still live on the boat they bought in Turkey, and Elena has written a book, "Talking to the Moon."

Winnie McCroy is the Women on the EDGE Editor, HIV/Health Editor, and Assistant Entertainment Editor for EDGE Media Network, handling all women's news, HIV health stories and theater reviews throughout the U.S. She has contributed to other publications, including The Village Voice, Gay City News, Chelsea Now and The Advocate, and lives in Brooklyn, New York.


Add New Comment

Comments on Facebook