love, life, and the pursuit of liberation
For my non-hetero readers, when did you first consciously realize that you weren’t straight?
Backstory part 1- I realized that I may not be straight when I was about 14 years old. I didn’t want to accept it and fought hard not to be gay, but gave in around 16 years old. In retrospect, I realize I definitely had tendencies all along beginning around age 5 but wasn’t conscious that I was somehow different.
Backstory part 2- I’m reading one of my student’s stories and it’s glaringly “gay” to me. Though the story is supposed to be about this tragic event that happened to a girl’s best friend, the way that the student describes the friend has this seriously gay overtone that goes beyond best-friendness. It reminds me completely about how when I was in middle school, I thought my complete and utter adoration for women was just admiration and a strong desire to have a best friend. I realize now that the desire was my pre-sexual (and alot of times it went beyond pre-sexual) connection to women in a way that’s very different than friendship. My best friend is straight and I have loved her since I was 10ish. The adoration and desire for what I felt for other women was nothing like best friendship.
So this student writes this story and it’s dripping with lesbian tendencies. There’s even a scene when the best friends are walking hand and hand the main character (the author’s first person voice) tells the friend that she doesn’t need a boyfriend as long as she has her friendship and her education and they can be friends forever. There’s the physical description of the friend’s curves and body. Then there’s the scene at the end after the friend dies and the narrator is in a daze at school until she runs into a new girl in the hallway (the whole typical tv ran-into-him-dropped-books-starry-gaze scene) and becomes “friends” with her. Those are just the highlights and there are other parts to the story but those were the huge flags for me.
I actually had a non-teacher friend read this story to see if I was just reading too much into it and she said it was painfully obvious.
Here’s the clincher. This child is 10. TEN. As in, pre-teen. She is a very gifted writer and is easily the top student in her grade. Still, I don’t think that she has any idea how her story reads in terms of the overtones.
So my question for you dear rainbow readers, when did you first realize that you weren’t straight?