Continuing on from my last post…
Yes, there was a guy. A guy that I could have said “I love you” to, given the chance. He came along at just the right time – I was mourning the loss of my very best friend (let’s be honest – the girl I kind of thought of as my soulmate) and he stepped in, all funny, sporty and sarcastic, and possibly the best male listener-type that I’ve ever met.
He filled in the void that she had left, making me think that perhaps – after all this waiting – that I *had* found that elusive “right guy” which I had been searching for. To give you an idea of how much “in like” I was, I did his laundry and cleaned his house. Now, I’m not the domestic type. AT ALL. For my own house, I hire a cleaning service, but here I was cleaning up for him? Without being asked? Was the world coming to an end?
At the time, I couldn’t even adequately express how relieved I was at this turn of events: I wasn’t gay! I liked a guy! I wanted to spend time with him! I was normal, no more worries. No more wondering why my friends always wanted to spend time with their significant others rather than me. I finally had my own socially accepted significant other to monopolize my time.
And it was good. For awhile, at least. In the end, this relationship didn’t work out — one of the very few times that I was the dumpee rather than the dumper.
The relationship fundamentally changed me, though. I went from thinking: “I just need to find the right guy to prove that I’m not gay” to “I had the right guy, now I just have to find another right guy” and feeling like I finally had proof that I wasn’t a lesbian (despite still being attracted to some of my female friends). It felt like a much better place to be in. At least an easier place to be in, as long as I kept a blinders-on focus on what I thought I had learned.
Looking back (my, how hindsight is 20/20!), I can see that this relationship worked because of the unique timing combined with just the right personality. This guy was my rebound guy, so to speak. And he brought me on all sorts of new adventures, and cliche-ishly broadened my horizons. And at a time when I needed someone to love me and take care of me, more than anything in the world.
And because of all that, I was spent the better part of that decade ignoring my attraction to women. I’d fall for some girl, and would just assure myself that all I wanted was to be good friends. I mean, heck – I had been with a guy and liked it and I wasn’t even the one who ended the relationship. It was easy to think that I didn’t have to make the tough choice.
I failed to understand the fluid nature of sexuality; how orientation is a less an black/white, but more of a spectrum with infinite shades of gray. That yes – I could have a hetero relationship, get something out of it and yet – still be attracted to women and moreover, have my affinity fall more on the gay side of the spectrum than not.
I’m a little dense sometimes – it took me years to fully comprehend this concept. Once I did, I finally started to own my identity – though quietly and privately. On New Year’s Eve a few years ago, I broke up with my then-current boyfriend (yea, yea, NYE… bad form and all, but I did it in the afternoon so he’d have a chance to make alternative plans! I’m a giver like that…) because I didn’t want to start the new year in a relationship that was a lie. After that, it took over a year to gather up my courage and finally say it out loud to someone: I’m gay.
Better late than never, right? I may have been tardy to the party, but I made it. Now it’s time to get the lampshade on my head and start gettin’ crazy… or something like that.