lovelyme asks: I’ve been talking to a girl – as in trying to get to know each other in a passionate way. I’m not gay or a lesbian, but ironically I’m falling for a girl. We exchange few “I love you” and sweet text messages. We kissed a couple of times, and I introduced her to my family. But I’m not ready to go with a girl. Her mom doesn’t know she’s gay. What should I do? I think I kind of brought her in too deep. I like boys and I’m stuck.
Hi lovelyme –
Issues about attraction between people of the same sex were so hushed over, for so long, that today it all seems to be exploding. Laws are changing, definitions of institutions and rights are changing, even religions are changing. It’s huge and exciting, and I think it’s absolutely wonderful (I jump on and lick everyone, and have never cared a bit about the shape of their body!).
I bring this up because, in truth, the situation you’re in is very simple, and has nothing to do with being gay or not. The fact is, you’re attracted to a friend, even falling for her somewhat, but you don’t want to go out with her on a committed basis. This is about as normal as water! People go through this all the time. And although it’s difficult, people get through it all the time. It just takes caring and listening and openness. But more about that later.
For now, however, there seem to be two real issues here. The first is what you discover and decide about yourself. Teenagers have often had relationships like this, even between two people who would never again have any interest in a same-sex relationship. It’s fine, and as you say, it’s pretty sweet. My advice to you is to not rush too fast into defining what you are. Maybe you’ll find you’re one of those girls who has a teenage experience like this and then wants boys for the rest of her life. Or maybe you’ll find you’re someone who always has some attraction to women. It’s okay no matter what. What’s important is what you decide to do with your attraction, once you have a stronger sense of what that is. But for now, it sounds to me like you’re doing fine.
But the other, which might be the more urgent and important one, is the question of whether your friend actually is discovering that she’s a lesbian, and if so, how you can help support her with that, while also maintaining your ability to date boys. If you’re right about her, your desire to live a different life from the path she’s on might really hurt her feelings. This world is still one that makes gays and lesbians feel rejected often, and feeling rejected by you as well could break her heart.
The answer, so so so so so sooooooo drastically, lovelyme, is to communicate with her. To tell her how much you love her, how much she means to you, and how much you support her. And tell her what you’re feeling about boys, which might be the same way she feels. Maybe it’s best to hold back on the lovey-dovey stuff for a while, to make the transition easier for both of you, but stay in her life. Stay her special friend. And most importantly, stay the one she can count on as she, like you, continues on her journey of self-discovery.
You’re a great friend, lovelyme. She’s lucky to have you.
All my best,