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An online space for queer, questioning, lesbian, bi, trans and everything else in between women at Yale

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Choosing to be Straight

I come from a very conservative background. My parents are exceedingly religious and, to a point, homophobic. Needless to say, I have not come out to them as being bisexual; in my opinion, at this point in my life, it would cause far more harm than good.

This creates an interesting predicament for me: as bi, I could simply choose to be with men. Overall, making that decision would make my life a hell of a lot easier. I would never have to explain myself to my family, never have to worry about being disowned or abandoned by people I love, never have awkward moments with my mom in which I have to skirt my sexuality with very clever (not really) wordplay. While my sexuality is not a choice, my actions are, and my actions could fit into the heteronormative lifestyle my parents would prefer.


Mom and Dad Approved

The fact remains, however, that I won’t diminish or dismiss a part of me in order to make other people happy. I am aware of this. I am, actually, hyperaware of this, and a large part of me marvels at my selfishness for choosing to do this.

Why, though? Why take this path? Why not be self sacrificing, a “good daughter” of whom my parents can be proud? Pre-self acceptance, these questions circled around in my head every damn day, every time I saw a beautiful woman and wanted her, every time I kissed or held or fell asleep in the arms of a girl, I wondered what I was doing and who I was potentially hurting because of my actions.

Then I came out to myself. Or, really, I had a very liberating night and was forced to reevaluate my preconceptions about my sexuality (turns out, if you force yourself into the closet for 18 years, you emerge with a bang). I said out loud what I had always known, “I am bisexual,” and I found a community and a support group here that is better than any I could have imagined.

I no longer have those questions circling around in my head because I know who and what I am. Denying my attraction to women made me unhappy and incomplete; I was never able to be myself or to act on my emotions free of fear. Continuing on that path would be rejecting part of myself and cause me to be living a lie. I have come to the resolution that even if I did decide to be with only men, that would not make me any less attracted to women, and eventually I would have to face that. Yes, my sexuality may isolate me from people I love, but ultimately my life is my own, and I cannot and will not sacrifice my own mental and emotional well being in order to satisfy social norms.


1 comment:

Hilary said...

"Denying my attraction to women made me unhappy and incomplete; I was never able to be myself or to act on my emotions free of fear. Continuing on that path would be rejecting part of myself and cause me to be living a lie. I have come to the resolution that even if I did decide to be with only men, that would not make me any less attracted to women, and eventually I would have to face that."

I couldn't agree more. Great post :)