Community Rainbow Waves

Out Is The New In​

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I have been struggling with my sexuality a lot recently. Dominique’s story really touched me in that I understand the struggle and confusion that often goes with coming to terms with who we are and how we want to identify ourselves. I did not really think about my sexuality until college and then it hit me one day that my feelings were probably not those of a person who would identify as straight. I am still not out and the only person I have told about my confusing thoughts and feelings is my therapist. I want to be brave and live my truth but that is so scary to do. I am still so confused about everything but I am hoping that with time my feelings will become more clear. I am so happy that I have found this community through being a relatively new fan of Wynonna Earp and I am blown away by the support and happiness that comes from the cast and the fans. Thank you for creating a platform where everyone feels welcome!

Gay

I was never really attracted to anyone growing up, I never understood the whole thing. I just didn’t feel the ‘oh my God I like him so much’ thing that all my friends seemed to be experiencing. Until one day I saw a scene from the show ‘faking it’ where two girls kissed and I was immediately thinking, that looks right. I watched more episodes and I found myself drawn to the main couple and their trials and tribulations, I was never this invested in a relationship before. After I ran out of episodes I started looking online and turns out there was more than one show with a girl and girl relationship. I started to know the show by the scenes I saw on YouTube. I started realizing people in my life who I had always thought I just really wanted to be friends with them and realizing that that feeling was what a crush is. I had attractions to people for years I just never knew that those attractions being girls was an option so I suppressed those emotions and changed them subconsciously. My world changed around me. About a year later and I was up to date an all the wlw couples on TV and I decided to finally tell someone, my best friend. After school one day I sent her the link to a YouTube video of a coming out song. Her response ” hooray you’re gay!”. I was fully accepted by her and that was incredible. A feeling of freedom and openness. I started college and my new friends just kinda thought I wasn’t really into relationships and just let me off with that. Which would be great if that was the case. One day we all decided to make tinder accounts for each other for fun and when my flatmate gave me my phone back she had it set to see guys. She asked what I thought (meaning her choice of pictures) and I just said ‘ it’s great but I will change one thing’ and I switched it to see girls. None of them even reacted, my flatmate said okay fair enough and that was that. I still haven’t come out to any more friends from home, they seem like a bigger deal and it never seems to come up so it’s difficult. My parents are a different kettle of fish all together but we’ll get there soon enough.

Lesbian/gay

I started coming to the realization that I was gay in high school. I was dating a guy at the time and I realized that I didn’t actually like him, but rather the IDEA of him. I wanted someone to like me; it gave me BUTTERFLIES! It made me feel happy; but I knew that I was not. I didn’t ever feel love for this boy. So after I broke up with him, I began to notice how attracted I was to girl, specifically my best friend. I fell in love with her and got my heart broken, but I am blessed for the experience because it helped me figure out who I am. I didn’t tell anyone in my family or school because I was afraid of the responses and repercussions. There weren’t many people openly LGBTQ+ in my area/life that I could use for support. In college, I fell in love with a girl who loved me back. It was the most amazing feeling! I started becoming way more confident in my sexuality and even told my close friends and parents about it. Over my college years, I became PROUD to be gay, proud to be me, and proud to love who I love. I continue to meet more and more LGBTQ+ people and increase my pride in the community. I hope to come out to the rest of my family and friends soon! I don’t want to live in fear any longer. Life is too short to hide your true authentic self!

Nicole (not Haught)

I am on my mid-30s, have been married to a man for 10 years, have 2 young kids and have just recently begun to come out. It’s in some ways a sad journey because it marks the end of my marriage to a truly amazing man who gave me the security and space to find myself, but it is not the end of my family. I feel an incredible sense of relief at finally being able to love and accept myself and live an honest life. My children will be better for having a happy mother, and they still have 2 loving parents who love them very much.
Announcing your divorce and your queerness all at once is quite a lot, but I have been so lucky to receive nothing but support from my friends and family.
I think part of what scared me for so long was being defined by my sexuality, but we are all so much more than that aren’t we? I am a mother, a friend, a damn successful businesswoman, a sister, a daughter…and I happen to also be a lesbian.

Luisa- CONTENT WARNING: THIS COMING OUT STORY CONTAINS DESCRIPTION AND/OR DISCUSSION ABOUT DEPRESSION

I had felt “different” from others since I was very very young, I didn’t necessarily understand that I liked girls but I knew I didn’t feel for boys the same way my friends felt for them.
Growing up, being gay didn’t even cross my mind until I was maybe in high school and all my friends had crushes and boyfriends and I felt pressured to have a crush. It never occurred to me that I had crushes because they were not boys. I felt like I needed to like boys so I “tricked” myself into thinking I did.
The fact that I had never seen or known any gay people or specifically any lesbians and the fact that I started listening to some homophobic things from my friends and family made it difficult for me to get in touch with this part of my identity. Deep down I always felt I wasn’t allowed to be myself and I didn’t want to tolerate that.
So fast forward, I graduated high school I moved from my home country of Colombia to Argentina, went to university there and started meeting so many different people from all walks of life, straight, gay, bi. People who accepted and loved me and made me feel safe and seen. The 4 years I lived in Argentina where some of the hardest years I’ve had yet. I was diagnosed with depression and was really struggling to find my voice. After many years of therapy and working on understanding myself I finally realized and accepted that the reason why I hadn’t had any romantic relationships with men wasn’t that I was unlovable or ugly or not girlfriend material but because I wasn’t attracted to men. I was 22.
I felt like the weight of the world had lifted off of my shoulders and I wanted everyone to know that I thought girls were beautiful. I came out right away, I felt like 22 years was enough time to hide this and feel ashamed, and I didn’t wanna do it anymore. I was lucky enough to have friends and family who opened their arms to this part of me and still loved me for all that I am.

My name is Luisa and I am a Lesbian. 🙂

Happily working on it…

My best friend at primary school was my first love. I remember a lot from that time although frustratingly not first meeting her. But I remember her vividly. Tall (obviously relatively) with long dark hair and a lick right in the centre of her forehead. Her name was Cassie and when one day she wasn’t well enough for us to hang out, it was the first time I recall my heart hurt. I sat on my swing and I cried.

But even at primary school at the same time I was clearly in love with Cassie I had a boyfriend with whom I shared my first kiss, and more boys and more kisses followed. I liked boys a lot – I still do, they are often the people with whom I feel most comfortable and share the most in common. But it’s easy to confuse these two feelings when you are 5! And once they are set you barely question them; society gives you no call or space to.

I didn’t know there was any other option to the fairytale ending of when boy meets girl, that was and mostly remains, ever present in our society. Until I watched Ellen coming out when I was 15. Channel 4 made it a big Friday night special – they celebrated. In 1997. At peak Friday night TV mania! I’ve never had an opportunity to say thank you to whoever made that happen (btw a generation of queers salute you) – but thanks to them I started to think about myself and who I was. And although I knew in my little world it would be hard – I had this possibility that in the big world I would join there were ways I could be me and maybe even celebrated.

I came out at university. I was 20 years old. I was practically the only gay in the village. It was 2003…

I have continued and evolved to at least try to be authentically me. What that means changes. The recent explosion (or at least it seems to me) of gender fluidity is another expansion of who you can be. And another moment for me to reflect. Who knows what that means for me yet because now I’m older there are more layers to peel back.

But the culmination of it all is where I am now. And I have a job I love, amazing supportive friends, a wonderful family – one I was born into, and one I made. The later of which includes my two beautiful little boys, who warm my world.

I’m an unconventional traditionalist. Or at least I am for now.

Woman, lesbian, polyamorous

When I was 14, I met a new girl in town. She was lesbian and has came out a long time ago, she was 18. We see each other during one year, I taught it was friendship first until the holidays (June-August) where I miss her so much. So we see each other again, run and kissed in a public place. I didn’t came out to my parents at this moment, but two years later. My parents just says “OK” when I say it. But they don’t know that I’m polyamorous (saying that is much difficult that saying that I like girls.)

I had been holding my breath for so long, and I needed to exhale at one point or another, or I would explode from holding it in.

I’ve had crushes on girls for as long as I can remember. Never made much of it, figured it was “normal”. Thought maybe it was just because I admired them and wanted to be them, or that it was a typical part of growing up.

In high school, I had crushes on boys and girls. I didn’t know much about anything back then, so I figured it was just a phase and one side would fade and disappear over time. That I was just figuring myself out and, one day, one side would win.
Since all I knew that existed was either gay or straight, it had to be one or the other, right?

I always hoped I would end up being only into boys, so that I could be “normal”. I wanted to be normal more than anything in this world.
My whole life, I had never fit in at all. With anyone, or anywhere. So I needed to at least be “normal” for one freaking thing, you know what I mean?

But then in college… I mean, classic story I guess, I fell for my straight female best friend. It didn’t go anywhere, but because at the time the only representation of bisexuality was the toxic version I had seen in the media, as well as the horrible things people would say about bisexuals, I decided to bury my attraction to guys.
I could NOT be bi… I’d rather be gay than bi. The examples I had seen were evil and toxic, and I just couldn’t be like them. There was no way. Absolutely no way. Never. Nope.

So I did everything I could to bury that side of me.
I would be so mean to myself.
…Fear and shame can make you think terrible words and do terrible things.

After a while, still in college, I ended up coming out as a lesbian. I hoped that by saying it, it would make it real. That it would erase the other part I didn’t want to think about.
I came out online to my classmates, after testing the waters for a while, trying to see if they would be accepting or not.

It was mostly fine. The more religious ones would often remind me that I would be going to hell for it, but apart from that it was great and the guys invited me to hang out with them. That was fun 🙂

Some time later, I came out to my parents through a letter I left in a place I knew they’d see it.

I was absolutely terrified they would kick me out.

The thing is… I come from a really judgmental family. My mum is very religious, but I’ve also heard a lot of racist and homophobic things growing up. And that’s just a tiny part of the range of judging comments I’ve heard all my life.

I’ve never been close to my family.
Discussions have never been a thing.
Disagreements mean either silence or terrible fights. Or both.

So I had no idea how that would turn out, but I felt like I needed to do it, if only to stop hearing “when are you gonna get a boyfriend?” that always tore me up inside.

I couldn’t breathe. I had been holding my breath for so long, and I needed to exhale at one point or another, or I would explode from holding it in.

Fortunately, in the end it was okay. I mean, at least they didn’t kick me out.

The “conversation” lasted for about 2 minutes, max, and then we never spoke about it again. (Except for the “maybe it’s just a phase” that I got a few times over the early years.)

That was around… 2004 I think?

Then once, in a birthday message a few years ago, my mum mentioned that she hoped I would find a woman I could be happy with. But that’s pretty much it. (And even today, I still hear homophobic things sometimes when I visit, if there’s something on TV about our beautiful community.)

Some time after I came out to my parents, I came out by email to most of my extended family. Again, I’ve never been close to anyone, and it’s always been easier for me to write than speak, so that’s how I chose to do it.
As far as I know, they’re all accepting. The ones I’ve told, anyway. But for other reasons, I stopped seeing them around that time, so who knows, really.

But to this day, except my godmother who I told recently when the topic came up, they all still think I’m gay.
Since emotionally I’ve only fallen for women, I didn’t want my parents to start hoping I would end up with a man when I don’t see it ever happening.

I mean, I’m pansexual, so I could end up with anyone I connect with no matter their gender, but… I’ve fallen for 3 women so far. No one else.

When I find “the one”, I want to finally feel safe using my chosen label. But until then, I feel safer just not talking about it around my parents.

But speaking of pansexuality… At some point I decided that no matter what society thought about bisexuality, I was only hurting myself by trying to fight who I was.
And then I heard about pansexuality, and it was the first label that I really connected with. The definition made so much sense to me, and it just felt right.

The puzzle pieces finally clicked into place. Falling for someone’s soul, regardless of their gender, regardless of their genitalia, made all the sense in the world to me.
And by learning about the different labels, by finding great people who identified as them, I started to really accept myself and eventually started to love this part of me.

I mean… I’m just me, you know? 🙂

I’m also out in my workplace now. Took me years and for an openly gay man to be hired for me to feel safe enough to do it, but it’s done. Haven’t had any problems so far.

And I want to believe that I would also be open if I ever got a different job.

I can’t go back to hiding. I need to breathe.
Now that I know how great and freeing it feels to have air moving through my lungs, I don’t want to hide this huge part of who I am.

And today, well… I’m just fighting for better representation. And for bisexuality and pansexuality to be seen in a better light (and to be seen, period), so that the next generations don’t have to feel all the shame I’ve felt back when I was still figuring it out.

Labels or no labels, people should have access to amazing examples of every shade of our beautiful and colourful rainbow, so they can find a place to fit in somewhere along the way.

I’m convinced that love is stronger than everything else, so… I do believe that one day love will truly win.

And what a world this will be. x

A butterfly who loves flowers

When I was 5 yrs old I had a huge crush on my female teacher. I knew it was different because I felt butterflies in my stomach. It was way different from my admiration to boys. After that I had another crush on a 6th grader when I was in my 3rd grade. She didn’t like the attention and the fact that I had a deep admiration to her so she ended our friendship. I was so heartbroken and confused. What did I do wrong? Why can’t I just like her? Then on my 5th grade I had a 6th grader gf whom I invited to go to my house. My mom was open about it and made a joke of how weird and abnormal I am. I think my family knew I am into girls since I am more boyish than girlish. I love playing ball games, wearing shorts and big shirts. They even call me “Cathy Boy” for standing up to boys (who bullied me and some girls) and for just being me. I haven’t had any struggle coming out with my family probably because I have a colorful family (gay aunt, sister, and cousins).

Though I am fortunate of having a family like them, I had difficulty coming out to the entire world. Coming from a Catholic and patriarcal country like the Philippines, it is still a big deal if you’re part of LGBTQIA++ community. I could remember back in my college days that some of my friends lectured me from acting on being gay. They told me that it is a sin to engage into sexual lesbian acts but being one is not. Some told me it is just a phase in my life. So back then I had few experiments. I tried dating and kissing men for a week or two but it didn’t work out. I knew there was something wrong. Something lacking. SPARK! It is different when I kiss a woman. There is magic. There are butterflies in my stomach. There is fire. There is passion. There is care. There is love. There is happiness.

It’s been more than a decade since I decided to just be me regardless of what people say. All I know now is that I am proud of being me and for being in the LGBTQIA++ COMMUNITY.

Woman/Lesbian/Gay/Queer…it’s all good! ; )

I properly came out I when I was 25 as a lesbian, but I called myself Bi when I 1st talked about liking women when I was 22 and I fell in love with my best friend.
Growing up in a very religious family I didn’t hear the word gay until my early teens, but never heard the word “lesbian” spoken out loud.
Looking back it was so obvious I was gay as I’ve always “liked” girls/women. I had a crushes on celebrities and my mum’s and older sisters friends, but never put 2 and 2 together.
When I broke away from my family and started travelling the world from 19 year of age I discovered about the gay community. But it really hit home when I fell in love with my best friend when we were in the army.
I was so confused, so embarrassed and thought I didn’t want to be different. My religious upbringing really made me feel guilty and wrong. But luckily my friend was so understand, even though it was unrequited love and I was heartbroken. I went backpacking to Australia after leaving the army and really started hitting the gay scene. There I discovered I was a lesbian as I never was physically attracted to men.
After that, I travelled to London where I had several relationships with women, partied hard on the lesbian/queer scene and years later met my future wife.
We now have 2 kids and been together for 17 years.
So it’s been a long journey and I could tell you so many stories, but that is for another time!
Anyway, I wish everyone discovering themselves a great journey. It will all be ok xxx Romy aka MamaGoo5e