Tina was born to an extremely conservative family in Arizona. Her father was a Republican politician who had extramarital affairs that her mother knew about. After her a particularly serious affair, Tina's mother left him, taking her children with her and moving them to Atlanta, Georgia. Tina's mother died around the time she graduated from college.
After college, Tina worked in the film industry as a producer, moving up the ranks to become the head of development at Alphaville film studio. One night, Tina and her then-boyfriend Eric attended an art opening at Bette Porter's gallery. Tina and Bette were immediately attracted to one another and Bette invited Tina and Eric to one of her famed artist dinners. Tina later returned to the gallery to retrieve an earring she had lost at the dinner, which Bette had found and kept for her. As Bette handed her the earring, the pair shared their first kiss.
Tina and Bette started dating and Tina moved into Bette's house at some point. After around seven years together, Tina gave up her career as a film studio development executive at Bette's urging so as to carry their child.
Ten years passed between end of The L Word and the start of Generation Q. During this time, Tina and Bette got married but the marriage only lasted a couple of years and they got divorced around one year prior to GQ. Tina was the one to instigate the breakup, wanting to step outside of Bette's dominating shadow to find herself. They remained on good terms for their daughter, Angie, who was left in Bette's care. Tina subsequently found love again with another woman, Carrie.
In "Loose Ends", Bette's campaign to become mayor of Los Angeles is scandalized by her affair with a married woman. Following a confrontation between Bette and the woman's husband, Angie calls Tina who immediately comes over to help.