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Thursday, 18 November 2010 03:34

Exploring Gender: Let Me Introduce Myself

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I was never one of the normal little girls: no bows, no Barbies, no dresses. God help my mom if there were dresses. I loved action figures (Spider-Man is the best super hero), climbed trees, jumped in mud puddles, cut my hair short, and played a sport every season the recreation club in the neighborhood had enough kids to play. I epitomized the gender stereotype of the tomboy.

And then, I grew up and tried to leave the stereotype behind me. I grew my hair out, wore tight-fitting clothes, and tried to fit in. I went to high school and began going out with one of my friends, a boy. He took me to Homecoming. We kissed; we danced; he parked his car; and we made out in the back seat—because that is what is expected. But I knew it wasn’t right. I fell in love with him anyway and tore him apart when I told him I couldn’t be with him. I think I would have married him. Only recently have I come to terms with the fact that I can’t be with that first love.

I struggled with my identity as a lesbian. I knew I was attracted to girls, but I kept demanding of the world: I am already different. I am already one of the outcasts. Why this one thing, this one part of me, that people are going to hate me for? Why must I be hated for the rest of my life simply for who I am? I tried my best to fight back those feelings, to cover them in homework and fantasy books and poetry. But the more poetry I wrote, the more I revealed to myself how running away was hurting me. I came out to my mom my junior year because I was tired of hiding. I came out at school the following year.

This is my last year of college before I go on to graduate school. When I arrived here, I felt my first inkling of freedom, even just to wear what clothes I wanted on a day to day basis after being at a school with a dress code for over ten years. And with this freedom came thoughts, doubts, questions, about who I am, who I feel like I should be physically.

I had never questioned my gender identity, but now that I had the freedom to do so, I did. I do. It is an on-going process which I am here to share with you. This is my personal search for identity, for a place, for courage. These are my thoughts, my feelings, and I hope that through sharing myself I might help others to find the courage to ask themselves those tough questions: Who am I? Who do I feel like I should be?

I will be posting every Wednesday. If you have questions or suggestions for topics relating to gender, you are welcome to contact me. Until then.


Lezbelib is the online magazine that helps LGBTQ+ women to stay updated with entertaining blogs and breaking news about LGBT rights.