Yesterday, I was exchanging emails with a friend. We were having a conversation about relationships and the expression, “You’re gay” (Not the exact words used, but the point is there) came up. It caused me pause for a moment, because there was a time when I truly had to contemplate that reality. I have always struggled with relationships; granted, I haven’t had too many serious relationships, but the ones I have been in had problems. Considering I struggled with my sexuality for a good portion of my life, and because of that, I had often wondered if the reason I couldn’t make things work with a woman is because I am gay and not accepting of that as a possibility.
The problem with that being the truth is that I have enjoyed sex with women – in spite of the fact that I have enjoyed it with men too. I have some reservations about being gay, and I have wondered, at times, if they were reservations imposed from without or from within my being. If they are from without, then they should be ignored; but if they are from within, then I need to pay attention to them – that’s an inner voice that should be a guiding light to reality (At least that’s what I think, but we all know I’m fucked up…so…there is THAT). I had serious contemplations about finding some reason, some indication, some solid understanding about myself that said it was my fault I couldn’t make a relationship work with a woman. And I had contemplated that maybe it was because I wasn’t heterosexual and some sort of sub-conscious thing women picked up in me that made it impossible for me to have a “normal” relationship.
But I have also wondered if I was even capable of having a relationship with a man. Would I be able to feel the same, or similar, romantic inclinations with men that I have had with women? The idea that I would pursue relationships with men, like I did with women, seemed preposterous to me, so I didn’t bother. But then, when I think about it, even some of my serendipitous desires for women were more passive…I didn’t always pursue, I was hopeful that some of them would pursue me. So, would that mean I’d prefer a man to pursue me, instead of me pursuing him? I played with this dichotomy in my mind over and over (a.k.a. “mental masturbation“), but all it did was confuse me more and more. I can look back on my life, however, and there were a few guys I happened to be friends with that I would have probably engaged in a relationship, but the opportunity never presented itself – and when it did, I ran from it.
Truthfully, I have become more comfortable with the “bisexual” label. I know when I had discussed this with my therapist, she had suggested I ignore the labels and simply accept the reality that I have enjoyed sexual relations with men and women. She even suggested I accept that I am completely capable of enjoying a sexual or romantic relationship with either men or women in the future and that the decision to do so was solely up to me and I can do it without reservation. Being able to discuss this matter with my therapist had brought me a lot of peace. Honestly, in my “real” life, no one would even suspect I’m “gay” or “bisexual” or anything of the sort. I am rarely on anyone’s “Gaydar” and typically only express my inner-self online – here, in fact.
But it doesn’t answer the question: Am I gay?
I don’t believe I am, I believe I am bisexual, but if I were gay, I’m so thankful I have friends that would accept me that way too.