Why is this question so hard to answer?
It’s less obvious for women
My gay guy friend, Todd, always says he thinks it’s easier for guys to figure out that they’re gay because they have a “compass” that tells them clearly “I want to stick THIS right THERE.”
But for women it’s oftentimes less obvious.
I always assumed love had to come from a guy
I had to endure years of unease and awkwardness before I finally figured it out.
I’m romantic. I’m a lover. I always wanted to have someone to call my own. I wanted to feel the kind of love that people write songs about.
Since I didn’t know I was a lesbian, I thought that this romantic love would come from a guy.
So when I was younger, I tried so hard and wanted so badly to connect with guys in that way and to find one who I would truly crave.
But I never felt that craving when I hooked up with guys (and let me tell you, I tried with A LOT of them.)
I tried too hard
I put so much pressure on myself to make it work with guys that I started getting stomach ulcers. I didn’t realize it was just my body trying to tell me something.
When I went on dates with guys I used to dread the part of the night when we would kiss. I always got uncomfortable when that moment arrived and he would make a move to start making out.
I would get SO bored kissing the guys I dated. I didn’t feel turned on and my mind would go someplace else. But they’d be getting more and more turned on, breathing heavily in my ear… It would creep me out. I really wished I could like them more. These were nice, classy, handsome guys who treated me well. I thought it was my fault for being cold and intolerant with them.
I blamed myself and tried to find solutions. I remember asking my best friend “how” she was able to enjoy hooking up with guys. She couldn’t even answer the question because she said feeling turned wasn’t something she had to “try” to do, it just happened on its own. (I thought: Wow. She’s so lucky.)
The fantasy I didn’t know I had
I came out before I ever kissed a girl before, so I had no way of predicting how good it would feel or how different it would be to try a female instead of a male. For whatever reason, my mind literally never went there. I never imagined what it would be like to hook up with a girl (the way I did with guys) with her wanting me, the ways guys did.
In fact, thinking about that idea for the first time was the way I realized I was a lesbian.
When I actually allowed myself to imagine how it would feel to be intimate with a woman my entire body said “WHOA! YES!!!” That’s how I knew I was definitely gay.
Every woman is different
But that’s just my own experience. Every lesbian, bi and pansexual woman is unique. All that really matters is being true to yourself and honoring your desires without shame.
So now I want to hear from you. Leave a comment below (or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org) and tell me how you knew you liked women?
Coming Out Archives – Women Wanting Women