I don’t know about you, but nothing about me ever fit into the cookie cutter mold that society expects of us. I always knew that I was different from “typical” girls. Yet I spent years living in denial, hoping that my feelings would eventually change. I tried living up to the facade of a hetero-normative life. I went to great lengths to keep up appearances and hide my true identity from almost everyone I knew.
By hiding my true self, I avoided years of torment and harsh judgments from narrow-minded people who seem to think there’s only one real way to love. Unfortunately, I also missed out on years of sexual exploration and potential partners. This is all because I couldn’t stand the thought of even more rejection or abandonment from my family, my friends, and my community.
I eventually embraced my sexuality whole-heartedly nearly three years ago, but I did so more quietly than you’d think. In fact, my “coming out story” sounded more like a whisper stuffed between several other juicy bits of information. Even after I “came out,” I still presented myself to the world as a typical heterosexual white girl because I could.
Maybe I finally hit my quarter-life crisis, or maybe I’ve finally lost my mind once and for all. It doesn’t matter, though, because I’m finally ready to live my truth. So this is me coming out (for real this time).
I’m done hiding behind half-assed excuses or stumbling over my words when someone comments on my androgynous appearance or the “bi pride” badges on my bag. Instead of trying to change myself to fit others’ expectations, I want to use my voice to educate and correct the unintentional misnomers that people outside the community spread.
I want people to know that my sexuality isn’t “just a phase” and that love is love regardless of the genitals between your legs. I don’t expect everyone to understand (or even to agree). However, I need to live my truth.
I’m done closing myself in the closet and letting fear hold me back. I want to start making memories rather than continuing to live with countless regrets. It’s time to flirt with women and take them out on dates, even if I crash and burn before I learn to fly. After all, those who dare, win.
I just want to feel comfortable in the skin I’m in instead of living with a deep, dark secret. I know that it won’t be nearly as easy, but at least when I’m “out in the open,” maybe I’ll finally feel free.
I’m done lying to everyone. But most of all, I’m done tormenting myself. This is me coming out (for real this time), embracing that I love women and I love men. So if you’re still reading this, now you know — I’m bisexual, and I’m no longer afraid to say it.
Previously Published on Thought Catalog