What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

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NYgirl04
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What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby NYgirl04 » Thu Feb 11, 2021 6:49 am

I'm a fourteen year old girl living in New York, I don't mean to sound bigoted or anything when I say any of what I will I'm just venting. My entire life all of my friends were either gay or bisexual, very few of them were straight. When I was 7 I tried kissing my best friend who was a girl lets call her Kate [I'm using fake names] and then she came out as gay. When we were 9 we started making out almost every time we saw each other. I never really liked it but for some reason I kept doing it. There was another friend, I was 6 this one is Laura, I visited her in New Jersey once a year. Twice we made out. Then when I was 11 I made out with another friend, her fake name is Mia this time it was more times then I can count. But I have never actually liked kissing girls and never thought of girls romantically. I only ever had crushes on boys, a lot of celebrity boys a few neighbors a boy from school, but nothing ever happened. I barely ever spoke to them especially not celebrity boys or their on screen fictional characters. Then for the last seven months I've been questioning if I'm actually straight. I've seen porn before and didn't only look at the guy. I watched a few new TV shows and am attracted to the girls as well as the boys. I write books not like published or having actual covers, they're just for me. Nobody has seen them but I needed a picture for one so I was going to draw something similar to whatever I could find. It is a very long story but I had to draw lingerie I saw all of those girls and just sunk. I realized that I didn't only like boys. Then a few days later Mia called me and said she thought she might be bisexual. I think I might be bisexual. I have called my self bi a few times and it just doesn't feel right. I just don't like saying it and I don't like feeling it. But when I say I'm straight I feel normal but also as if I'm lying to everyone including myself. It's not like my family wouldn't be accepting. I was raised by my older sister and my mother, who are both very accepting and would support me through anything. Now I live with my father and am very close to my grandmother, who I used to barely ever see. My mother and I aren't close at all we don't ever talk. My sister is my best friend. My grandmother and father are homophobic and what's even worse my grandmother is religious and expects me to be straight and nothing else. I just don't know anything anymore.

Heather
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Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby Heather » Thu Feb 11, 2021 8:36 am

Hey there.

So, you don't ever have to use any words for yourself that you don't want to, for any reason, or even if you have no reason. You also can not use a given word or term now because you're not comfortable (or again, for any or no reason) and change your mind later and use it if you want. And if you're not using that word because of biphobia or homophobia you have internalized, or that you don't want to live with, you get to do that. I just want to make sure you know all of that first and foremost and have that affirmed.

Alas, while you get choices about what you say or call yourself, none of us gets choices about what we feel: our feelings are going to be what they are. So, since it sounds like you're having a lot of uncomfortable feelings, including a lot of fears about acceptance by your family, it seems to me like that's the more important place to start talking and to see what we can't do to try and help you work through before we get to identity words. What do you think?
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

NYgirl04
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Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby NYgirl04 » Thu Feb 11, 2021 1:57 pm

Hi again. So I don't think I have internalized anything wether it's biphobia or homophobia. But I'm not really afraid about acceptance by my family because of my sister. Like I said she's my best friend so I know that even if someone in my family doesn't support me she always will. I don't really think I care that much if anyone in my family doesn't accept me because I'm not very close with them, and I know my sister would always accept me. Then there are my friends but I'm not scared of them not accepting me, because like eighty percent of them are gay or bi themselves.

Heather
scarleteen founder & director
Posts: 8548
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2014 11:43 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I know every word of The Lorax by heart.
My primary language: english
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My sexual identity and orientation: queery-queer-queer
Location: Chicago

Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby Heather » Thu Feb 11, 2021 3:01 pm

It'd be really difficult for *anyone* in this world not to have internalized bipphobia and homophobia. It's pretty safe to say we all have it, because it's so ingrained in so much of our culture -- even if and when it's not in our immediate family or community -- it's impossible to escape. It also often tends to seep in before we even know we're taking it in because we absorb some of it when we're too young to know what it is, you know?

I'm sorry if I misread the bit about your family, I see now you were only talking about your grandmother.

You say you don't like how this all feels: if you don't think it's fears of acceptance or any internalized biphobia or homophobia that has you feeling not good with it, any sense fo what it might be?
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

NYgirl04
not a newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Feb 11, 2021 12:05 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I'm the movie and TV show suggestion queen
My primary language: English
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My sexual identity and orientation: figuring it out
Location: New York

Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby NYgirl04 » Thu Feb 11, 2021 7:48 pm

That's my problem I don't know why I just don't like using the word bisexual on myself. I'm fine with using it for my friends or even if it was a family member, but to introduce myself as bisexual just feels strange.

Sam W
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Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby Sam W » Fri Feb 12, 2021 7:41 am

Hi NYgirl04,

I hope it's okay if I hope in here!

Does it feel like some of the strangeness is coming from the fact that this is a fairly new development (at least in terms of attaching a word to your identity)? And if you use another term that describes attraction to multiple genders (like pan or queer) for yourself, does the feeling change?

NYgirl04
not a newbie
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Joined: Thu Feb 11, 2021 12:05 am
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My primary language: English
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My sexual identity and orientation: figuring it out
Location: New York

Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby NYgirl04 » Sat Feb 13, 2021 2:15 am

It might be because it's a new thing but I'm not sure. And the feeling doesn't really change it feels just as strange.

Sam W
scarleteen staff/volunteer
Posts: 7294
Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:06 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I raise carnivorous plants
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Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby Sam W » Sat Feb 13, 2021 8:51 am

Got it. Can I ask if it feels as strange if other people refer to you as bi? And when you think about the feelings you get when introducing yourself that way, is it a more "this is weird/different than I'm used to" or "this is kind of scary?"

Since you mentioned many of your friends are gay or bi themselves, have you talked about these feelings with any of them?

NYgirl04
not a newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Feb 11, 2021 12:05 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I'm the movie and TV show suggestion queen
My primary language: English
My pronouns: she/her
My sexual identity and orientation: figuring it out
Location: New York

Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby NYgirl04 » Sun Feb 14, 2021 4:15 pm

It feels strange if I or anyone else refers to me as bi. And when I think about the feeling I get when introducing myself as bi it feels both weird and scary, it feels like a bunch of things all at once, but as if I can't define them. I talked to my best friend but she was just confused and didn't understand what I was talking about at all.

Sam W
scarleteen staff/volunteer
Posts: 7294
Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:06 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I raise carnivorous plants
My primary language: english
My pronouns: she/her
My sexual identity and orientation: queer
Location: Desert

Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby Sam W » Mon Feb 15, 2021 7:53 am

Since it sounds like you're still in the process of learning what your sexual orientation might be, would you feel more comfortable referring to yourself as "questioning?" Or does that still feel strange?

With that fear you feel when referring to yourself as bi, is it fear over how the other people in the conversation will react? Or fear about what it means for you to identify this way?

NYgirl04
not a newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Feb 11, 2021 12:05 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I'm the movie and TV show suggestion queen
My primary language: English
My pronouns: she/her
My sexual identity and orientation: figuring it out
Location: New York

Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby NYgirl04 » Mon Feb 15, 2021 3:33 pm

I don't think I would be more comfortable with anything. Straight just feels like a lie and everything else feels strange. And it's kind of a fear of both.

Mo
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Re: What if I don't want to start calling myself Bi?

Unread postby Mo » Mon Feb 15, 2021 6:01 pm

If nothing feels great or comfortable right now, it's okay to let people know, if they ask about your orientation, that you're still figuring things out; I would hope that anyone hearing that would respect it and not push you for more until you're ready.
I wonder if it would be helpful at all to do some journaling; having a private space to write down some of the fears and other feelings that are coming up for you around this might be a way to spot thoughts or patterns that you may not have noticed before.


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