"I don't think that being a strong person is about ignoring your emotions and fighting your feelings. Putting on a brave face doesn't mean you're a brave person. That's why everybody in my life knows everything that I'm going through. I can't hide anything from them. People need to realise that being open isn't the same as being weak."

- Taylor Swift

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

speak now #7: becoming bisexual

Now Playing: Sweet Nothing by Calvin Harris ft. Florence Welch (I put my faith in something unknown, I'm living on such sweet nothing) 

So, for most of my life I have identified as heterosexual and so when I came out earlier this year a lot of people were like 'say what?'

I identified as heterosexual because I thought that being bisexual was kind of like being heterosexual and homosexual in equal measure, at the same time - and that you would want women the same way you wanted men and that relationships with women wouldn't be any different to relationships with men. Bisexuality...doesn't necessarily work like that; actually, I think the difference between bisexuality and pansexuality is that bisexuals are capable of two distinct forms of attraction to two distinct groups of people. My crushes on girls are very different to my crushes on guys, and what I want out of the two genders are totally different. All that being said, when I tried identifying as heterosexual there was a lot of me that I was trying to ignore or suppress and that...kind of...fucked me up a bit.

When I was younger I didn't really understand my attraction to women. It never occurred to me that I could be gay and I didn't even know what bisexuality was. So I thought that all the women I were attracted to were just exceptionally beautiful and what I should look like, but all the women who I thought were attractive had very different bodies to mine - in the same way that my body is very different to the bodies of all the men I've been attracted to. So instead of enjoying having crushes and falling in love I just became massively insecure about how I looked like and how I thought people perceived me as a woman.

It was really confusing for me to sort out my feelings because I live in such a heteronormative society where even though we accept the existence of non heterosexual individuals it never really occurs to us that the people around us might not be heterosexual, or that you yourself might not be heterosexual. I had always categorised LGBT individuals as the 'other' - not in a bad way, but I really had to rethink my attitude when I realised that hey, I'm LGBT too.

There are some people who don't get it, of course - every time I'm swooning over one guy or another they'll say something like 'but aren't you bi?' YES. But last time I checked being bisexual means being attracted to men AND women, not just women. I think the hardest part for the haters is that you can hate on me all you want, but I'm really not that much different. For all intents and purposes I'm a boy-crazy little girl just like the rest of you, quite a lot of the time. I'm not the gay other they love to hate on. I think the most intimidating thing about the bisexual community to homophobes is that the existence of bisexuality makes it impossible to make any specific gender or sex or sexual orientation 'the other'. We're all human. It's all love.

This revelation that I might not be 'as straight as they come' really started last year, in high school, but coming out in high school is just downright terrifying; it's such a claustrophobic cut-throat society where you can get cut down for holding eye contact for half a heartbeat too long. University isn't nirvana, but it's definitely an upgrade from the clique wars and petty playground politics of grade school, and I came out to my best friend earlier this year and now it's more or less public knowledge. I really feel like bisexuality is misunderstood and certainly something that people will consider to be one more thing they can give me hell over, but I'm not ashamed or embarassed about who I am anymore. I'm human, and love is human. However and whoever you love.

Stay tuned and stay beautiful!


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