The Penny Just Dropped

I have always thought I was straight. So now at 43 why have I at last realised I'm lesbian? Am I kidding myself? I'm married to the man I fell in love with at age 17 (I was 15 when we first met). I used to think I was really open minded and sexually liberal, and that we had a good sex life and I had no hangups. I also thought I'd never had sexual abuse, and came from a normal family and had a close relationship with my mother.

The truth was I dissociated the emotional, sexual, physical and psychological abuse I'd been given by my mother. So with that part sealed up inside me where I was unaware of it, I guess I also sealed up my female sexual feelings in there with it. That is no sexual feelings in the vagina, only in the clitoris. But since I thought I was normal, I assumed this was normal too.

The evidence is there: my most intense feelings were always for girls. While I always had other friends to begin with I always ended up singling out one best friend and neglecting the others till they were no longer friends, then getting intensely jealous and possessive of my best friend. I had no boyfriends after age six, until my now husband. I did have one very close male friend though, only one, he was different from other boys as he was a ballet dancer and very sweet natured, and I had strong feelings for him.

In my teens my best girlfriend and I got very physical in our relationship, with intense feelings, but I always reasoned I was just doing it initially to shock people, then as a game between us. I later looking back on it thought of her as having gay feelings to me but that I was just going along with it.

As a teen I also had sexual dreams about a female rock star I was obsessed with (Annie Lennox). When I dreamed about a male rock star I loved, it was more about meeting him and him liking me, and loving the feeling that he liked me as I liked him, but nothing sexual. The men I had crushes on were all pop musicians and were somewhat androgynous such as David Bowie, transgender like Marilyn, or young and boyish and feminine like Roddy frame. There was only one boy I had a crush on, I think because he reminded me so much of my close friend who was the dancer.

My husband was the only other boy I had strong feelings about, but I was always a bit uncertain about getting into a relationship, and kept pulling back and wondering if maybe I didn't feel as strongly as I thought, and I might end up hurting him. But finally I got infatuated enough to override my reluctance and commit to it. Even then I would hold back physically. I loved to hug, and our first sexual experiences were ******* with our clothes on, but still I wouldn't kiss him. The first time I kissed him I hated it. I got used to it later, and we used to kiss a lot, but I think I dissociated when we did it.

Later in our relationship I was disappointed that intercourse wasn't what I'd imagined it to be. I never was able to have ****** from intercourse, only ************. I wouldn't let him give me oral sex or ********** me at first. I prefered to ********** when he was asleep or not there. I eventually let him ********** me, and later I got over my inhibitions more and allowed him to give me oral sex, yet I always needed to retreat into fantasy to reach ******.

My fantasies were very secret - I was ashamed of them because I didn't know I had been abused so didn't understand why they were so deviant. More normal fantasies could arouse me, but to reach ****** I always had to be a man in my head, usually having sex with a woman.

In our thirties we did some swinging and I was surprised to find I was able to have fun with women, I then decided I must be bisexual. But I couldn't relax in these situations and didn't really ever find that sexual experience I'd always fantasised about, with intense feelings. I have never experienced that. I'm so messed up by my abuse that I dissociate in sex and go into my head, my emotions shut down and I have only partial physical sensations. From sexual experiences I never could have guessed my sexual orientation.

I went through many stages in my life of dressing in mens clothing. Men's shirts, suit jackets, hats, I borrowed my Dad's clothes, wore my husband's jeans. I even bought a strapless strap-on and was so proud of it though I never had an occasion to use it though I would wear it and walk around the house. I often would be aroused by petite feminine women, and put myself easily into the male character in a film when they were making love to such a woman, I could imagine being him more easily than being her.

In terms of genetic signs of being gay, I have the stumpy index fingers that indicates being male-brained, and the characteristics that go along with that. I am left handed, and my son is gay and left handed and my daughter is pan-sexual, though sometimes thinks she is lesbian, but never thinks she is straight.

I have certainly been attracted to particular men. I am not immune to men by any means. However I spent some time working in sex work and though many men tried very hard, I never was able to ****** with them unless using a vibrator or by oral sex or ************. It is possible I'm pansexual as I do think I fall in love with the person regardless of gender.

But whatever I am now, I have been altered by my abuse, and I believe environment combines with genetics in making a person's sexual orientation. I have had nightmares about sex with an old woman with disgusting nipples that turned into genital-like things, like a clitoris with a foreskin that pulled back, and I had a feeling of horror and revulsion in it. I feel that my negative experiences from my incestuous abuses and torture from my mother have turned me away from my original sexual orientation.

Since I'm going through very great difficulties sexually now because of my recovering memories, it is irrelevant whether I'm gay or straight or bi or pan. What's important is that I'm with a loving, caring, understanding partner that is there for me, and I am. I know I love him, we've been through hell together, and his touch is so loving and gentle.

My sex is no better or worse with him depending on what orientation I decide I am. It is good enough, and couldn't be better at the moment because of my issues. I finally learned to ****** in intercourse with him, though I still have to fantasise. I rid myself of the deviant fantasies and only have nice ones of me as a boy with a girl I'm in love with. This seems to work without me feeling ashamed afterwards.

I have had to write this just to solidify in my mind how my life has been impacted by my abuse, as part of my healing process. I acknowledge that one impact of my abuse was to give me sexual dysfunction, one was to make it difficult for me to have trusting relationships with women (either love relationships or friendships), and another is to shift my sexual orientation along the spectrum more towards men and less towards women. The result of this hasn't been unhappy, as I have been fortunate in my husband and children. So that is where I stand. Thankyou if you made it this far for reading!

Handed Handed
41-45, F
1 Response Sep 15, 2012

So have you figured out a way to explore your lesbian interests in the context of your marriage? I think many men (not all) would welcome your interest in women, especially if you can share stories of your encounters with him.