Help me, if you will, loosen the ferociously tangled knot of my sexual orientation.
I know, of course, that none of you are omniscient or psychic, and I'm not looking for an arbitrary assignment or diagnosis. I suppose I'm looking for general advice and feedback, personal anecdotes, and assurance that I'm not entirely abnormal - maybe a sort of sexuality compass.
I've assumed I was bisexual, or something like it, ever since I was a young teenager and fell in love - genuinely in love - with a girl (but never acted on it). Now I'm in my mid-20's and sadly, rather than clearing up like they said it would, my sexuality is even more nebulous to me than it was when I was fourteen.
Points in the GAY column:
- I generally only masturbate to fantasies of women. Fantasies of guys are eh.
- I really like lesbian porn (even that marketed to straight men). When I was younger, I could get off watching lesbian porn without even touching myself. Seriously! Straight porn, or any porn involving a man (although gay porn is slightly better), is really unappealing to me, even gross.
- As mentioned above, I've been in love with, or had intense crushes on, several women. Big fluttering stomach butterflies, makeout/marriage fantasies, secret stratagems, the whole bit. Nothing has ever come of them, due to me being young or shy, or them being straight (although some were gay, and all were at least somewhat stereotypically "gay-acting").
- I have a saucer-eyed fascination with lesbian culture. I love lesbian storylines in movies and books - they hit me deep. Reading The Color Purple and Annie on My Mind in high school - after I'd come out as bisexual to myself and a few friends - were very piercing and very lovely experiences for me.
- I have, at times, even assumed I was a lesbian. I have a diary entry from when I was sixteen saying that I'd be willing to sleep with a guy I sort of liked, just to get it over with, but that was only because (I wrote) "I think it'll be only girls for me from now on."
So, if that was all you knew, you'd think I was a big old dyke, right? Well, let me tell you a few somethings:
- I have been in love with, or had intense crushes on, more guys than girls. Starting from when I was about seven - big fluttering butterflies, makeout/marriage fantasies, secret stratagems...and so forth. When I was in high school, I almost solely liked girls, but otherwise, I've mostly preferred, and mostly fallen for, men.
- I have slept with a girl. It was eh. It was such a non-event to me that I hardly even remember it. Kissing her was like kissing my own arm. The way I thought of it afterward was that it was how I imagine a very straight girl would feel about sleeping with another girl. I wasn't in love with her or anything prior - it was an experimentation thing for both of us - but I wasn't not attracted to her or anything beforehand.
- I've unequivocally enjoyed being with the handful of guys I've slept with or hooked up with much more than sleeping with the girl - even guys that I wasn't totally wild about beforehand. It just felt right, at a very fundamental level, while being with the girl felt weird and kind of wrong.
- Likewise, the idea of meeting and dating girls also seems weird and kind of wrong. Meeting and dating guys isn't actually that appealing either, but for a different reason - not because it feels wrong, but because I hate dating. Dating a girl seems weird because I think of girls, in general, as friends. I'd feel like I was participating in a weird charade if I tried to date one (other than the girls I've had crushes on).
- I see myself marrying or settling down with a guy much more easily than with a girl.
- I've been to lesbian clubs and went to a few meetings of my college's GLBT association. I have rarely felt like such an imposter. I felt like a straight girl crashing the party.
- My good friends, who know most or all of the above, think I'm pretty straight. It's not wishful thinking - they'd be fine with me being gay. Whether or not it matters, I'm incredibly feminine and stereotypically straight-acting.
I am overthinking this, you say. Well, yeah, maybe, but it's been an unsettled part of myself for about ten years now, and any guidance would be nice since I feel like I'm sort of flailing with my own self-assessment. My easiest answer is that old overchewed gumwad "I fall for the person," but that doesn't really help with regards to finding a partner because I don't take much of an active role in it - it's always just happened (although less so lately, I like to think because my heart has turned cold and hard in post-adolescence.). It would also be nice to feel like I'm not totally alone here, since I clearly don't have an obvious subculture waiting with open arms.
I sort of feel like Margaret Cho - am I gay? Am I straight? Except I'm just not particularly slutty.
Advice appreciated! Land ho!