12.26.2009

Dec.: Self-Discovery

Thanks to Abe for posting the poll questions I suggested and the accompanying theme. I hope people got something out of the results; as for me, I was quite intrigued. I posed those questions because I'm interested in seeing how people first realize their sexuality and subsequently identify themselves, something I'm finding difficult to do. If someone asked me if I were gay, bi or straight, I really wouldn't know how to answer. (As for the importance of having an answer, that's where the last poll question came from.)

Some might wonder why I'm finding it so hard to figure out such a basic part of myself. But as you probably know, it's not a matter of checking a box and moving on. Sexuality is a spectrum, and I have found both fluidity and ambiguity on mine.

When did I first know I was different? 'When did I not know' may be a more appropriate question. I was always different, dressing up in costumes, sporting a very unique style, doing things my own way. At the same time, I also clung to authority and never had trouble following the rules. I was a good, precocious, and odd boy.

At fifteen yrs-old at scout camp, I first realized I had a same-sex attraction. It was like, "I'm flirting with a guy" (lamely, but still). I racked my memory and concluded I was gay: As a child in a store with my mom, I would sometimes fall behind as I found myself stopped, looking at the model on the poster marking the boys' section. I remembered the boys in my kindergarten class, J---- and C----, whom I had always been mysteriously drawn to. In elementary school there was a boy with whom I waited for a bus once a week; I came to look forward to that day of the week, but passed off my protective feelings for him as 'paternalistic'.

But the reality was not that simple, because there were girls I had had my eyes on, too. M---- in kindergarten, A--- as an early-grader, and A----- in late elem. school.

Junior high brought hormones and crushes, on both a girl and guys (though I didn't use that term then).

Today, my physical attractions vary--I sometimes dream of gals, sometimes of guys. Emotionally, I connect with guys, more or less, though I relate with girls as well. Socially, I have wonderful friendships with both genders. And as for the stomach-bound butterflies, thinking of females can make my breaths somehow deeper (the right word? maybe 'tighter' is better), but when the right male enters the room, there can be a sort of--how to put it--yearning that I feel in my gut. It's like having a straight mind and a gay core, if that makes any sense (I'm sure it doesn't).

I suppose my best--well, only--option is to give myself time to figure out who I am.

Anyway, thanks to everyone who has responded to the poll and theme!

4 comments:

Bravone said...

I think you are very wise to take time and figure things out. We are all different beings with varying degrees of sexuality and emotional connectivity. You have a good head on your shoulders and the spirit to guide you to become your best self. I love and admire you.

Bravone

Sensitivity 101 said...

Don't let anyone put a label on you--especially yourself. It took me a long time to figure out who I was too. If you are interested, you can read about my journey of self discovery in the book "Sensitivity 101 for the Heterosexual Male." The title doesn't tell the whole story...it is about the journey I took as I searched for the two desires all humans share: to be accepted as who they are and to be truly happy.
Hang in there, things have a way of working themselves out...

Mister Curie said...

Thanks for directing me to your blog. I think we may have a lot in common. In the coming weeks I plan to have some posts that look back on my past that may be clues to my sexual orientation (seems to be a common thing on MoHo blogs, and an exercise that I think will be useful). I think some of my experiences will parallel yours, crushes on boys and girls in Elem. school, etc.

I look forward to following your journey.

Frank Lee Scarlet said...

@Bravone: Yes, I do want to be sure about things before I come out as *anything*. Of course, this need for certainty is not always a good thing, but this isn't something to be rash about!
@Sensitivity: I'll look into that book, it does sound interesting. And thanks for your advice :)
@Mr Curie: I've only recently found the Curie blog, and I was glad when I had done so because I too saw many similarities between us. I so look forward to reading your blog!