Dear Joanna: “Am I bisexual… or not?”

118HDear Joanna,

I’m so confused and don’t know what to do! I don’t know if I am bisexual or not. I have been through the experimental time as a teenager and seen girls and had an attraction to them but I don’t know how I can find out if I really am without meeting someone and trying it out which is obviously not the way to go about it because someone who is a fully established bisexual would be hurt if I was to use them as an experiment. I have watched lesbian porn as I heard many straight people also do. I just don’t know what to do and I’m scared of telling anyone because I haven’t yet seen what it’s like to date a girl. Please help!

 

This is something many people go through in their life, so don’t worry, you’re not alone in your confusion!
It’s sensible of you to recognise that another woman might be hurt if they realised you were using them in the quest to put a definitive label on your sexuality. Not only this, but such a situation wouldn’t be healthy for you, either, as it may only further your confusion if you “try it out” with a woman you have no feelings for (sexual or romantic). If a woman does come along who you genuinely want to date, either because she gives you fuzzy feelings in your stomach or/and tingles downstairs, then great, you’ve come to your conclusion naturally: You like women, too!

Unless that happens, however, try not to think too much more about this if it’s making you unhappy. What we do when we are young and trying to figure ourselves out doesn’t necessarily reflect on who we are and what/who we like when we’re older. Similarly, the porn we watch doesn’t always reflect our sexuality. I know gay women, for example, who enjoy watching men on film – in real life, they might not touch them (there) with a bargepole, but they’ll happily give themselves the big O whilst watching these guys do the same.

With that said, if it’s something you can’t help but dwell on, consider braving a visit to a “gay club” or, if you’re too young or if that’s not your scene, look up local LGBT group meetings you might be able to attend. Give yourself a chance to at least interact with girls who like girls. See how you feel around them and how comfortable you are.

You won’t be deceiving anyone, because you won’t have gone there with the intention of hooking up with a woman to test the waters. You’re simply getting to know them as you explore this (possible) side of yourself. Be honest with them, even. Whilst some women know they’re bisexual or gay from a young age, many don’t. Hopefully they will empathise with your confusion and be happy just to interact with you.

If at some point during these interactions you start to have feelings for any of the girls – or if this is the case at any point in your life – then, again, you’ve found your answer. If it doesn’t happen, there’s probably no reason to think you’re bisexual (unless you have serious crushes on female celebs and you’re waiting for one of them to come along!)

As frustrating as the wait can be, sexuality is often something that takes a while to figure out. Be patient. It’s not something we can rush. Try to enjoy life’s natural course and meet as many people as possible. Male or female (or other!), you’ll find the right person for you sooner or later, and hopefully you’ll have fun along the way. 🙂

And as for telling people – if there’s anyone in your life who you trust enough to confide in, do so. Tell them it’s something that’s been weighing on your mind and you’re not sure where you stand right now. It’s important to have a support system in our lives. They might not know what to say, but the simple act of sharing one’s feelings can help lift the burden even a little. If you don’t have anyone you trust this much, it’s even more reason to join an LGBT group. There should be people there who can give you that much needed support.

Best of luck!

Joanna

 

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