*I’m coming out by Diana Ross starts playing*
I’ve been openly gay for about three years, in that time I’ve been lucky enough to come to terms with who I am as a person and not just my sexuality but my personality and who I want to be, and the life I want to lead. Before I came out, I struggled with my sexuality a lot growing up and I was alone in doing so due to being scared about what other people would think plus why would I talk about something I wasn’t even sure of myself. Through school I had a lot of “boyfriends”, it was kind of like I was trying to force myself to see them more than a friend or maybe it was so no one suspected that my eyes were swaying towards girls. Every year that went by it became harder and harder for me to hide who I really was, I felt lost and I knew I was putting on a mask every day that would portray a girl who was happy and had everything figured out. I’d make up scenarios in my head on how my friends and family would react, they were all negative which made me even more frightened. What if I never came out and I’d have to live a lie whilst being miserable?
I remember the month before I came out, I was watching YouTube videos on peoples coming out stories, some good and some bad. Even that wasn’t enough to convince me, it was only until I started to really like a girl in my friendship group who identified as bisexual, that’s when I knew that I had to do something. If I wanted a chance with this girl then I needed to pluck up the courage and tell my friendship group, that being said on the 14th February 2016 I finally told my friends and let my shield down. The response from them was incredible, they were all so supportive and I couldn’t be more appreciative, what was I even worried about. As expected, the next day I had people at school coming up to me asking it was true, it was too late to back out now so I guess I couldn’t deny what people were saying. A few weeks went by and I had such a positive reaction at school, I could finally be myself fully without anyone questioning anything, I started seeing the girl I liked which didn’t come of anything but we still stayed really good friends. I’d almost forgotten that I still needed to tell my family, I told my mum first a few months after I told my friends, she took it so well and even to this day she’s so supportive of who I am and the choices that I continue to make in life.
Fast forward a few months, everyone in my family knew apart from my dad. This wasn’t an issue for me as we didn’t have a close relationship anyway, and I guess in a way it was better that I didn’t tell him as he’d probably start to think that all my friends who are girls are now my love interests. In June of that year, I started talking to a girl that I really liked and one that I even came to having really strong feelings for, I guess you can say I loved her. I started travelling 4 hours away to meet and stay with this girl who later became my girlfriend (this ended after being on and off for a year), the following month I decided that I couldn’t keep lying to my dad about where I was going and who I was seeing so I messaged him and I told him that I have a girlfriend. I still think about his reply to this day and it was “okay, by the way we just signed a new player” all them months from hiding it from him and he couldn’t care less whether I’m with a girl or a boy, secretly I think he was glad that I couldn’t accidentally get pregnant haha!
Sexuality is a hard thing to come to terms with for some people, when you’re unsure of who you are it can really make you feel alone. It took me years to figure out who I was in this big world, although your sexuality definitely does not define you. I’ve never once regretted telling the world who I’d rather kiss, saying that I don’t even coming out should be a thing. We love who we love. I’m content that in the past few years everyone is more understanding about the LGBTQ+ community, I’m hoping that we’re educating not only older generations but new generations that they shouldn’t feel uncomfortable in their own skin.
Be what you want, love who you want.
Life is too short to stay hidden.
P.S I now live with my gorgeous girlfriend who I’ve been with for over a year, and she is undoubtedly the best thing that’s ever happened to me. I adore you B x