Realising I Was Gay

Part One

Realising I Was Gay
04/07/2016 Stephanie Lyons

How I accepted realised I was gay

My earliest experience with a girl was when I was six years old, or possibly eight. Somewhere around that wonderful age where everything is exciting and nothing is taboo. Somehow declaring my love for my little ‘friend’ at school was something we both decided to keep a secret. Writing little notes to each other, and fumbling around in the bushes was a daily event. Yet, at such a young age it was still something we never outwardly displayed. Somehow, before even knowing what “gay” was, I knew it wasn’t “normal”. Talking about marrying Bob from year six was definitely more acceptable. So I did that too. I had those innocent boyfriends at school and fumbled around with them like everyone else. I fitted in quite well. Apart from being the teacher’s pet, who for some reason everyone had a problem with, I had the whole boyfriend-girlfriend thing down at primary school. All whilst keeping my little secret out of sight.

Secondary school was difficult. I’m not sure why I struggled to keep friends or fit into a certain group of people but what I did know was that daydreaming about what “that girl” had under her skirt was perhaps not something to be shared. Not something I should embrace, but something I should lock away in some metaphorical box – throw the key in some deep dark abyss with no possibility of retrieval. It didn’t help being at an all-girls school where most people thought that sort of membership resulted in the inevitable “being turned into a lesbian”. I was a smart girl, academically. Socially – not so much. So I went along with the typical teenage girl stereotype. I feigned interest in boys. Feigned probably isn’t the word. I think there was a genuine interest there. This is where it gets complicated. I felt a certain “need” to be interested in guys. A desperation maybe. Everyone else seemed to be so it was only natural that I should too. It turned out that was probably a stupid idea. I rushed into things I probably shouldn’t have, a lot sooner than was probably ideal. So the girlfriend-boyfriend thing continued through secondary school. Fifteen was definitely not the age for any sort of mature relationship.

“Linking” was the thing to do then. It was somewhere between dating and seeing each other.  I never understood the concept really. I guess for a lot of people it was a way to have all your eggs in one basket. You could link more than one person without having certain commitments. There was something quite detached about it. Just something you did at that age. Cringe-worthy to say the least. So I got through school in one piece, there was always something missing though. Batting away those images in my head of that crush I couldn’t quite admit meant more to me than a friend. Constantly telling yourself that these thoughts you are getting are just passing. Everyone gets those. All you have to do is ignore them. It wasn’t that easy but I tried nonetheless. Always being the voice of reason when some ignorant soul declares “all gay people should be shot” during lunchtime debates. It was surprising how many people had such hate in their hearts for a marginalised group of people – a group I certainly wasn’t a part of mind you. Or so I kept telling myself. It was shocking. These 15-16 year olds had some warped idea that their grotesque “opinions” had some standing. For goodness sake – we were teenagers who hadn’t left school yet and had an opinion about everything yet backed up by nothing. No wonder I had boyfriends.

Leaving school was when my understanding of who I was really started. It didn’t take long before I found myself in a very uncomfortable situation with a guy I was convinced I had feelings for. Being walked in on by your sister probably isn’t how a girl imagines her first only time with a guy. But shit happens.  I don’t know why I did it. Desperation. Intrigue. I was straight right? So this would prove that. It didn’t. It just made things more awkward. I felt stupid. Ending up taking about 10 pregnancy tests when I knew full well I wasn’t pregnant after something that lasted about a minute, wasn’t ideal. But you do what you have to. Maybe I just wanted to be loved by someone and decided sleeping with a guy would do that. Wrong. He was a nice guy don’t get me wrong. Just not right for me. It wasn’t just him that wasn’t right. There was just something not right with me. Something was missing. I’d already concluded at this point that I wasn’t gay so what was I looking for? What was I pursuing? After weeks of feeling like a complete idiot I found myself online. I stumbled across some sort of networking site: ProfilePic. Now for any of you who know about that website will hopefully agree with me when I say it contained some truly sleazy people. I’m not actually sure what the site was supposed to be for; dating/socialising/making friends? All I knew was that it was popular. I was obviously looking for something and my mind told me this was where I’d find it. It was…

…to be continued

 

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