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What do I do next?

Discussion in 'LGBT Later in Life' started by NurseJP, May 25, 2020.

  1. NurseJP

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    Hi everyone! I’m new to the forum and recently found it while researching coming out later in life. My background: I’m 27 and have always identified as straight, but have never had a major interest in pursuing a long term relationship with a man or really even one night stands. In college, I tried to sleep with several guys. Tried being the imperative word...it wasn’t pleasurable, I was always close to black out drunk and I never felt comfortable. After several of these attempts, I decided that maybe I just wasn’t in a place in my life where relationships or sex were important and put all of my focus into school, my work and friends. Besides only a handful of awkward first dates with a few guys and a few failed attempts at ######, I spent the rest of college and my early twenties content being single. Fast forward 7 years and here I am without any long term relationships under my belt. During this time, I never thought I could be anything but straight. I’m not naive to different sexual orientations (I worked at a reproductive health clinic in college and my best friend has been in a committed relationship with his partner for years), but I just always assumed I was heterosexual.
    The last few months my thinking has majorly shifted. I started to notice women more, saw ones that I found to be really attractive and began to wonder what their sexual orientation was. It was a gradual change so I didn’t realize a big shift until the last month when I downloaded Tik Tok (probably way too old for it but yeah it happened haha.) All of a sudden I was surrounded by videos of lesbians that I found super attractive. Women I was attracted to way more than I had ever been to a man. I ended up telling my best friend about my conflicting feelings and he suggested I download a dating app and talk to some women. I’ve only talked to a few people on the app, but I feel awkward telling them that I’m questioning my sexual orientation and have never had any experience with women when most of them are looking for long term relationships and have been out of the confused phase for so long. Any advice on how to approach this or what I should be doing to help figure out where I stand? Should I be trying to find LGBTQ+ women peers/friends before anything else? Thanks for your help and any advice you can give me!
     
  2. ToldMeSo

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    I'm in the same boat, sort of, and I'm wondering what to do next also. I'm 33 and I know that I've always been attracted to women yet I've only ever been with men since they usually tend to initiate (I'm a bit shy). After a few serious relationships, there's no denying that I am a full-fledged lesbian. I've told a few people, but I need a support system, before telling friends and family, which is why I'm here.

    I thought of going on ######### to meet someone but I was concerned that about being a baby gay. And not having ever been with a woman, I thought many lesbians might not want to waste any time with me. Before trying to meet someone, I thought it might be better to find support in the community, either in person or online. I think the biggest thing is just being comfortable with being your new self, which means you have to spend some time getting to know yourself as a lesbian and get comfortable with identifying as a lesbian.

    Hopefully someone will offer us some guidance.
     
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  3. silverhalo

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    Hey @NurseJP and @ToldMeSo welcome to EC. It is a really great place and I am really sure it will help you both a lot. It certainly helped me when I arrived in a not so different place to where you are now. I was in my mid 20's had always assumed I was straight despite never actually being attracted to a men. It wasn't that I was unaware of same sex relationships, I just think perhaps my brain wasn't ready to deal with it. I still totally remember the first moment I questioned my sexuality, I was watching a TV program with a lesbian storyline and suddenly realised I was enjoying it more than the average straight girl. That led to confusion and panic and every emotion under the sun.
    Anyway I promise it gets better and that the journey will be worth it. EC helped me figure out my sexualty and come to terms with it and lots more so I am sure it can do the same for you.
    I dont think there is anything wrong with dating but my advice would be to try and make some LGBT friends as well so it doesnt all hinge around a relationship.
     
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  4. ToldMeSo

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    I think I've always known as well, I just wasnt ready to for it yet. There are a lot of things that I learned being with men. Without learning those things and learning to accept myself before realizing I was a lesbian, I dont think I'd have been able to handle it. Now, I'm ready. Making friends is already hard for me so I'm not sure how to even start to make lesbian friends.
     
  5. NurseJP

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    Thanks for the advice and reassurance! As much as my best friend can relate, I feel like going through this at an older age makes our situations and responses different. I’m glad to find others that have similar experiences and to hear that it gets better. I really do appreciate the help.

     
  6. LostInDaydreams

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    Welcome to EC. :slight_smile:

    Have you looked for local lesbian groups? You might not be able to meet them at the moment, but you could research and they might be on social media, so chatting might be possible.

    I was nervous about joining, but there are a few later in lifers in the group so that aspect doesn't worry me as much now.
     
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  7. silverhalo

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    Once I started questioning my sexuality the more I looked back over my teenage/adult life and the more it all made sense. For a while I felt a bit stupid for not having realised it sooner but I came to the conclusion that I just wasn't ready before.
    When I joined EC I was literally terrified, I was really shy, socially awkward and a bit confused but I had no idea what to do. So as much as it may not seem like it now, I do understand a lot of what you are going through.

    Well EC is a great place to start making friends, I mean they arent real life friends and so not replacement but a really good start. It is a really friendly place and so a great place to feel more comfortable about everything.
     
  8. silverhalo

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    Yeah I think it can be difficult for other people to fully understand exactly what it is you are going through, if they are not gay or if their experiences were vastly different. You are welcome to any help we can give you. If you have questions, you can always ask :slight_smile:.
     
  9. ToldMeSo

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    I've joined a few local groups on social media but they dont look very active. I guess just getting out more in general and taking up some new hobbies wouldnt hurt.
     
  10. ToldMeSo

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    Thank you for the reassurance. I'm looking forward to meeting new people, even if they are anonymous.
     
  11. silverhalo

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    Pleased to meet you, I am Emily.