Post by want2bhappy on Dec 29, 2018 7:30:18 GMT -5
Hi there. I have been married over 18 years, have kids. Life wasn’ always happy but my family is great. I fell for a woman over 3 years ago. My first real lesbian encounter. We’ve been seeing each other ever since. I’m currently separated. My husband isn’t a bad person, there have been a few turn offs along the way, but overall he is genuinely good at heart. Sex was never my favorite thing to do with him, but sex with her is a whole different experience. I would love to know, how do I know if I am lesbian or bisexual, or just bored?
When I read this, what I see is the underlying question: Should I leave my marriage?
Once again I'm struck by the pervasiveness of homophobia and sexism. We've all internalized these "isms" as member in the dominant culture, i.e., the way things "should be."
For women on this journey, identifying as "bisexual" often serves as a way to minimize the collateral damage of one's attraction to a woman, i.e., acknowledging same-sex attraction, but preserving an unfulfilling marriage. A true bisexual identity, on the other hand, involves informed consent and experience. I wonder about the impact of porn on this kind of thing. The popularity of "girl-on-girl action," which is produced for the benefit of men - trivializes women's desire, women's lives. I suspect the question of boredom is part of the same phenomenon. But it's not merely sex with your GF, is it? Three years is a long time.
Dealing with internalized homophobia is a part of this process. What do you imagine a lesbian to be? This is where the stereotypes rear their ugly heads, right? It's easy to say, "Well, I'm not like 'that', so I'm not a lesbian," affording an excuse to stay in a mediocre marriage, and avoid the conflict that comes with upsetting the apple cart.
The third aspect of this is how we as women treat each other. It's not uncommon to see teenage girls dump their friends once they get a boyfriend. This behavior far too often continues into adulthood. It's a function of heterosexism, which holds that male/female relationships, no matter how vacant, have a higher status than female friendships. Your GF is more than a distraction from boredom, but internalized homophobia reduces her humanity.
As JulieKatt says in her post: "One of the biggest lessons I have learned is that I am not responsible for anyone else's happiness but myself -- it's been a hard lesson and one I still struggle with, it goes against everything that is instilled in females. Don't be selfish, put others first, females are the gentler sex, they are to nurture and sacrifice their wants for the sake of others."
In my experience, there is "no way out but through" this chapter of your life, this new awareness of who you are. Your old one is identity is dying, and a new, more honest, authentic one is emerging.
I believe it is a natural part of the journey to be uncertain about your identity. I identified as bi/queer for a long time and am now (internally) identifying as lesbian....which is hard sometimes because of the stereotype that bi folks are confused or “actually “ gay or straight. Hard because I love my husband and we have had amazing intimacy in the past. Hard because maintaining my bisexuality meant holding on to a comfortable piece of what heterosexuality and it’s privileges have to offer...esp as a member of other marginalized groups. Super hard because admitting that I may be gay would create more earthquakes.
I struggled with this question for a while and when it got overwhelming I decided that it’s ok to sit in the unknown, to not have an answer. To just be.
But what I have also come to is this: when I quiet everything down...and listen, and I mean really listen, then the truth can be heard. The truth lives beneath the guilt and shame, beneath obligation and duty, beneath the internalized homophobia, beneath all the ways I have been taught to question my innate wisdom and intuition. It lives beneath who I thought I was or should be. And that’s when I know.
Honestly I found power in even just pondering whether I was bi or lesbian...I had never thought to even question. Reading Adrienne Rich’s Compulsory Heterosexuality essay and Audre Lord (among others), therapy, meditation, talking with friends...all these things help me to reconstruct the construction and to learn to trust what is within. My first step was to ask...then to ask out loud, then to declare it in my head, then to whisper “I’m gay” and see how it feels in my body, in my spirit. It is still new and sometimes I still question because there are parts of the old me that want have some power, but I’m in negotiations with all these parts and relearning how to decipher all of their voices.
You may not know you are bisexual or lesbian yet and that is okay. We are always trying to figure things out, especially if we feel it could provide a solution to a complicated situation. But there is no easy answer.
Just remember to do the things that feel good, write and reflect, spend time in nature, talk it out, feel it out. Like Italiana said, there’s no way out but through.
Thankyou for this thread ... it’s something I ask myself all the time too... I’m trying to find a way through to my truth.. sometimes it seems clear other-times I lose myself in a fog of doubt and confusion .. love and peace to you all .x