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Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a teen?

Discussion in 'LGBT Later in Life' started by I am straight, Apr 20, 2016.

  1. CapColors

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    I didn't know until I was 36.

    Looking back, I can see that I was probably attracted to women all along, but since I'm bi, I just focused on the males I was attracted to; it never occurred to me to be bi before suddenly I was.

    It can happen.
     
  2. I am straight

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    Greatwhale, I remember you first started posting at this message board in February 2013, right when I first started lurking here. I remember just about every day back then you would post a few messages about your situation. Did you ever even have any time periods where you were questioning whether or not you felt attracted to some males before 2013?
     
  3. SHACH

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    It's interesting to read this thread. I'm not really old enough to answer the question, but it relates to me somewhat. I mean... a lot of kids in my generation know from 13-14 and it never even occurred to me that I like girls till 17. So yeah I find this interesting. During my teenage years I was always afraid that I could easily be "turned lesbian" if I ever saw a girl in porn (so watched gay male porn only), or was pursued by a gay girl. I crushed on boys in a very formulaic way, like I assessed them and then chose a current crush and if one went out with a friend, I moved on quickly. And I perved over guys in porn. Therefore, I ignored the persistent dreams about making out with female friends, my disproportionate adoration of female celebrities, how happy it made me to sit next to that beautiful girl in English class and my huge keenness with this one friend that people kept warning me was a lesbian... Once I accepted it I just started feeling that I just wanted to be with girls. I still don't know if this makes me bi or gay but at least threads like this help me realise that everyone works it out at vastly different times.
     
  4. Jade 81

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    Hei, for me this is certainly true in a way. I had no feelings that I identified as romantic or attraction to girls. Now I do and I realize,I have been before, just misinterpreting.
    The way this was possible is that I grew up in an environment were feelings were not the guide of one's definitions and experiences but rather rational thinking and social norms. So it came about (in my humble interpretation looking back) that feeling for men (as a women) were what was called love and attraction, feelings for women friendship. That way I came about with a rather twisted idea of love and of friendship. One that wasn't leading to happiness but to great confusion. Now I have to figure out these feelings all over and define by my personal feelings. At the moment also very confusing but getting better :slight_smile:
    What I still don't understand is the excessively wobbly knees I had after my first French kiss and the full on stomach butterfly exciting of my first relationship (at 17 with a guy). And no such feelings for girls (not even dreams).. But I guess the former was purely ego related and also never left me with good feelings AFTER. the latter must have been a mix of misinterpretation and denial after an early-teen girl-to-girl play scene series disrupted by a parent and never repeated or talked about with the other girl after (my closest and best friend from age 5 through out my teens).
    So yes, with a little bending of definitions it is possible to not have had any romantic feelings or attraction to the same sex, at least it was for me. What I always had though was a sense of feeling different and a fear connected to that sadly.
    Hope this helps to understand.
    :slight_smile:

    ---------- Post added 21st Apr 2016 at 11:10 PM ----------

    For you and for me :wink:
     
    #24 Jade 81, Apr 21, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2016
  5. nuggetbiscuit

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    My "I'm so not straight!" moment was 7 months ago and I still have 4 months to be 20 so I think my answer is not yes but I realized too late though.
    There are some things that you are supposed to know but you don't know because your brain cannot make sense of it. My situation was just like that. My first "lesbian experiences" happened when I was between 9-12 years old I guess. For years. Even though I liked it very much I've never thought I was gay or bisexual, in fact the first time I've learned the word gay was when I was 13. When I look back I see I've misread some feelings for girls which were actually crushes. I had crushes on many guys in high school but nothing physical or sexual, for this reason I thought I was asexual. Because I had no desire to have sex with a man. There were just deep feelings for some guys. Feelings that disappeared once they made a move on me. And I often got irritated while looking at pictures of them or seeing their faces. I really don't understand what kind of love that was :grin: But I also thought once I have sex with someone, I would turn out to be a nymphomaniac because I often fantasized about women and adored many of them but I didn't have actual feelings, it was just sexual. And for the reason that I did not see liking girls as an option, I wasn't aware I like girls. My first major crush on a girl made me realize actually. I really loved her and she made me understand how love is supposed to feel. And after my last sexual experiences with a girl, I am pretty sure now I am not straight.

    I've never been in a relationship or had a sexual experience with a man and I barely wanted to. I considered relationships unnecessary and suffocating. But after I realized I like girls, relationships even marriage seem so tempting and beautiful (with a woman, obviously).
     
  6. WanderingMind

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    I really had no idea until last year, and I'm 44. Looking back, I should have realized this a lot sooner. My first kiss was *literally* in a closet, with a girl. Because of a multitude of circumstances (a household mired in control, religion, a very sheltered life), I simply didn't acknowledge my attraction to girls. I was SUPER relieved to learn I could be attracted to a guy... that beach volleyball scene in Top Gun did the trick. :icon_wink From there, I just moved through life as I expected it would go. I fell in love with and married a wonderful man; we still love each other very much. Perhaps the fact I'm bisexual allowed me to stay in denial for as long as I did.

    What I call "waking up" --- recognizing my attraction to women --- was a very disconcerting experience for me. The day I finally came out to myself took me completely by surprise.

    So, yes. It's entirely possible to be in denial about having attraction to the same sex when you're a teenager. Or, when you're twenty. Or, thirty. Or, forty.
     
  7. OutofZCloset

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    I didn't really figure it out until I was 26. I can look back and say OK that's why I did this or that but to actually identify and label it....26 years old for me. And I'm getting gayer everyday. :slight_smile:
     
  8. I am straight

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    I'm more interested if whether or not you knew that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a teenager, not when you labeled it.
     
  9. guitar

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    I think it gets rarer and rarer each year with the world becoming more accepting. For a lot of gay teens I talk to, they say they're totally accepted in school and GSAs are quite active. 10-15 years ago when I was in school this definitely wasn't the case. I grew up playing hockey, listened to metal... homophobic sentiments were still present. You didn't want to be the gay kid in a locker room - still don't, really - though it's always improving.

    Most of the gay people I knew in my own life knew by the time they hit puberty. Some of which knew around like ages 5-7, which sort of blows my mind because I figure that sort of thing wouldn't kick in until puberty / hormones awaken. I certainly "knew" around the age of 12-13 but completely repressed being gay because I didn't want to be an outcast/different/whatever. I didn't want to be a target, so I largely ignored sex and my sexuality entirely... enter playing a lot of sports, engrossing myself in music and academia, etc. Basically I tried to avoid sex. I was certainly horny like most teenage boys, but I didn't want to face it.

    Like Chip said, social forces can be extremely powerful and are something most people in this thread can relate to being subjected to.
     
  10. OutofZCloset

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    No I did not recognize it as a same sex attraction until I was 26.
     
  11. AKTodd

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    Had no clue I was attracted to the same-sex until age 19. Prior to that, I didn't feel attraction for anyone, male or female. Romantic love, affection, or sexual attraction were all things that the 'little people' felt and I was far beyond any of them. I had no desire to ever have a relationship or children growing up so it wasn't something I ever really thought about.

    There were some things that, in hindsight, I can see were probably signs, but I was completely unaware of them. Not due to repression or any sense from those around me that being gay was wrong - I barely had any awareness that homosexuality existed and then only as a vague abstraction that had nothing to do with me.

    The only reason I learned otherwise was because a guy hit on me (repeatedly and with decreasing levels of subtlety over a couple of weeks before I figured out what he wanted) in the locker room where my martial arts club showered after class.

    Todd
     
  12. nerdbrain

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    No clue whatsoever until I was 18, when it hit me very suddenly. I am still having big problems integrating it into my personality.

    I can recall having crushes on girls from a very early age. I envied and admired many boys in school and wished I could be more like them. I felt inferior and not masculine enough. But I never considered any kind of sexual or romantic contact with them. Possibly because I was unaware such a thing was even possible.

    I had sexual relationships with women, and got married a few years ago. All this time, my gay feelings have been an undercurrent in my life.

    I think the mind is able to dissociate from parts of itself that it deems threatening. It's probably a survival mechanism, as others have stated, similar to experiencing a powerful trauma at a young age before you are able to understand and process it.
     
  13. Jade 81

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    Same for me. My parents were open minded and would have accepted me being gay. But I had no gay teenagers in my life whatsoever or TV or internet that could make me realize my admiration for some girls was something. Though I do recall 'lesbian' being used as a swear word. But I did not know what that meant to be with a woman or man at the time (i was perhaps 11 or so when it was used for outcasts in school) and later I had no relation to it being something to do with me as I fell badly for a man and I had no personal contact with queer people until my midtwenties.
     
  14. Chicagoblue

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    I had good male friends and loved to hang out. Life was much less sexualized back then. I had crushes on girls and dated a few in high school. It tended to be girls who asked me to dances. I did note guys genitals in the shower but did not lose sleep over those close encounters. All that said if had grown up in today's(!) environment I would have been out of the closet by age 20.
     
  15. greatwhale

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    Wow, that is a long time to lurk!

    Yes, by 2013 I was quite aware of my propensities for same-sex attraction, but this became compartmentalized into that "thing" that I was interested in, I refused to name it, or to confront it. I refused to, as is often said, "come to terms" with it. It was sealed off from my reality.

    Indeed the very night I joined EC is the night I finally came out to myself. But just prior to that, I was still thinking "straight" as it were, thinking, while already sleeping on the couch as my marriage was dying, that all I had to do was to find the right woman.

    But I finally realized that no woman would be right for me...
     
  16. brainwashed

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    A very good point. Very good.

    ---------- Post added 22nd Apr 2016 at 06:53 AM ----------

    Lol, different world indeed and one that surprises me. One time I was beat up and left out in a field, a possible contributor, the fact I was "different".

    "Others" can see into you.
     
    #36 brainwashed, Apr 22, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2016
  17. I am straight

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    I started lurking in February 2013, but I have not only been lurking from then to now. I started posting in April 2013. I even communicated with you once or twice. You told me, "I wouldn't have seen it if I didn't believe it."


    Did you have any awareness of your propensities for same-sex attraction in 2012?
     
  18. greatwhale

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    Sorry! You're right, not such a long lurk, LOL!

    Yes, in 2012 and well before that as well, more like early forties to be honest...may I ask why you ask?
     
  19. I am straight

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    The short answer is I ask because it's very germane to the topic of this thread, but I will elaborate. You're the first person who I ever heard of who it seemed to just suddenly realize that you were gay when you were middle aged (as opposed to realizing it when you were starting puberty). After I read your post, I read more posts on this board, and there seemed to be others with the same story. But yours was the first. At first, it seemed like you just suddenly realized you're gay, but when you got into more detail, it seems that maybe you had a bit of awareness before that night you were sleeping on the couch in 2013. Sometimes you say you had no awareness, and then other times it seems like you did know you felt attraction to some males but you didn't think that made you gay or bisexual.
     
  20. dirtyshirt84

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    Re: Did any of you not know that you were attracted to the same sex when you were a t

    All through high school I was only attracted to boys, but I grew up in a rural, fairly conservative community, and I didn't know anyone who was openly gay. So I wonder now if it just didn't seem like a possibility for me. I didn't even know 'bisexual' existed. I was never attracted to any of my friends but looking back I probably did have crushes on girls, I just didn't understand that's what they were. Like I admired them and wanted to be like them.

    When I went to University and moved to the city I had a very close female friend who then became my girlfriend. I think I had a hard time accepting I was also attracted to women and that has been an ongoing process. I think with her it became something else without me even realising it for a while but thankfully she felt the same way. If I hadn't met her I'm sure it might have taken me a lot longer to realise my attraction to women.