when i knew #14.
by Michael King
“When did I know? That’s kind of a tough question. Deep down, I think I always knew I was bisexual, but it wasn’t until I was about 25 that I could truly come to terms with it. I have always had a logical, straightforward type of outlook, so spending 25 years essentially lying to myself and coming up with justifications for my thoughts and feelings rather than accept the truth was exhausting.
“I remember growing up, my friends would talk about celebrity crushes. I had to hide the fact that I had just as many crushes on male celebrities as I did on female celebrities. In middle school, one of my classmates introduced me to the black hole that was/is porn. He showed me a bunch of girl-on-girl stuff, but after he left, I gravitated to straight porn. I found myself focusing on the guy more, but I explained it to myself that I was imagining it was me and I wasn’t actually attracted to the guy. Then I stumbled upon bi and gay porn. Most of the porn I watched was all men, though I rationalized that porn only objectified women and I didn’t want to support that.
“Throughout high school and college I had a few girlfriends who I really did like – some of them love – but, no matter what, I couldn’t shake the tendency to stare when I saw an attractive guy walk by. I kept suppressing the feelings because, even without being fully honest, I was happy. I opened up to the girl I was planning to marry about my feelings of bisexuality. The conversation seemed to go well, but between physical distance and subpar communication, things changed and we called it off.
“That was the first time in my life that I was in a place to be fully honest with myself. I knew there would be a lot of questions if I came out as bi to my friends and family right away. I wasn’t ready for that. I needed to figure out myself and overcome 25 years of lying to myself before I could talk to anyone about it. It was and continues to be a tough road sometimes, but I am extremely happy that I can be open and honest to myself and to others. The exhaustion of holding this secret for the first 25 years of my life is quickly fading away…”