Am I Oriented Correctly?

I remember when I was fifteen, I thought I was gay. This was the end of my world. I felt a sense of guilt that was deep and unending. I had no clue where this guilt was coming from. My uncle and aunt are gay, and my parents were always surrounded by gay people due to their work, so I was always around loving gay people. My parents never spoke ill about gays, and they always have supported my sexuality. I discovered this guilt was a self-inflicted punishment for me thinking that I would not fit into society anymore. I was afraid of being persecuted and judged for being something that I couldn’t control. This was mostly caused by a lot of gay people I knew, and still know, telling me that being gay was impossible, and that if they had the choice they would be straight. I was very ashamed of myself, and much later of them! I was fifteen and confused, isn’t that typical anyway? The realization of being gay changed everything about me. I became shy, depressed, and started to partake in self-harm. This was a painful time in my life, and even though I was surrounded by gay individuals, I was too afraid to talk about the subject.

The most confusing part was that I had a girlfriend at the time, which I loved very much, and was very attracted to. So, how could I be gay and be attracted to someone of the opposite sex. Then it dawned on me, I’m bisexual. This threw me into an even deeper depression. See, being gay is very hard when integrating into society, but being bisexual, in my experience, is much worse. Even though I could be with someone of the opposite sex and be “normal” I found that if anyone found out, I would be too straight to be gay, and too gay to be straight. So, I found myself not fitting in with any groups of people.

Throughout my high school years, I had a very good friend. He was my first crush. We even came out of the closet to each other. Now thinking about it our innocence was almost beautiful. I never knew how he felt about me, and eventually he got a boyfriend, and I a girlfriend, so nothing ever happened. I remember, as kids, all of us friends sat at a table and told each other what we didn’t like about each other. Real healthy, right? I didn’t really care about the others, because at that point I was not at good ends with most of them, but I really cared what my gay friend had to say about me. That would be the first time I encountered discrimination against bisexuals. He told me that there was no such thing as bisexuality, and that I had to pick one or the other. Oh boy was I hurt. I went home and cried for hours. This would just reinforce the self-punishment and depression that I was feeling.

Throughout the years I have heard it all. “Oh, you’re just confused,” “Oh you must be very promiscuous being able to have sex with everybody.” I have even heard, “You must love threesomes!” The truth is, I’m not confused! Now, more than ever, I know who I am. The other two are ridiculous. I’m the least promiscuous person you could ever meet! I believe in monogamy, and I believe in being in love before sex. So, no one night stands for me. Call me old-fashioned if you like, but I tend to be more of a romantic lol. So I have found that what I do behind closed doors is none of anybody’s business! Also, sexuality is just that, it shouldn’t define a person. It is just part of that person. I’m not proud to be bisexual. I’m proud to be alive and relatively healthy. I’m also proud to be myself however that is! After all of the suffering I have had due to my bipolar illness, being bisexual is not that big of a deal in my head anymore. It seems I have skipped to the end of the article too quickly, let me continue the story.

Throughout the years I found a need to belong to a group, so I would convince myself that I was straight or gay just so that I could fit in. I would later be disappointed when I would be attracted to the wrong sex. I went to Boston for treatment at Mclean hospital, and later I would move into a residential treatment center for six months. There I was encouraged to find myself again. This involved partaking in the arts, reading, writing, playing music, going to events, etc. I remember going to my first pride parade and starting to cry. For the first time, I didn’t feel like I didn’t belong, and not feeling like being bisexual was wrong. I stopped the self-punishment. My shyness began to subside, and I felt alive again. Soon I would realize that I didn’t need to belong to any groups, I just needed to be myself.

People need a boogie man to pick on. Once it was women’s rights, then African Americans. It was gays for some time, now it’s transgendered people, and soon it will be Hispanics (Sorry, “Mexicans”. There is nothing wrong with Mexicans. I’m just stating the term that people use to refer to Hispanics now.). I guess what I’m trying to say is just try to be yourself. Don’t just be proud of your sexuality, be proud of all of you. I feel we are lucky to even be alive!