A Coming (Out) Of Age Story

By
Carly Proud

Upgraded August 26, 2020

Image by Külli Kittus on Unsplash

By
Carly Proud

Upgraded August 26, 2020

Picture by Külli Kittus on Unsplash

I was always what you would call a tomboy. I hated anything thought about “girly.” Dolls, gown up, painting my nails/make-up, etc. I was constantly more interested in what the boys enjoyed; sports, rough housing, video games. There was absolutely nothing girly about me– ever. That makes sense thinking about the truth that I grew up with an older sibling and running around our community with him and the other neighborhood boys. At that time, I didnt see anything incorrect with myself. I was still extremely young and didnt actually appreciate what the world idea of me. Yet.

Did I ever actually desire to be a boy? No, but it was the only thing that made sense. At that minute in time, I could not fathom the idea of myself gay. I could not comprehend it. It just wasnt clicking in my head. Till it did. Up until I began having feelings towards girls I knew. Feelings that girls were just supposed to have towards young boys. I was horrified and confused. I felt lost. I keep in mind frantically attempting to encourage myself, “No shes simply an actually buddy that you really care about. Thats it. Thats all!” I would cry myself to sleep. I was angry all the time from the confusion. I was depressed. I started self-harming.

As I grew older, I thought possibly I would begin to outgrow this gamine “phase.” But I might just never ever get myself to be thinking about what common women my age enjoyed. I was still running around with the boys, I had more things in common with them. I played travel club soccer and never rather felt like I fit in with my colleagues due to the fact that off of the field, I wasnt “womanly” enough for them. We were beginning to hit the age where a “typical” woman would start thinking kids are charming and normally discovering them more. Did I believe some boys were cute? Yeah, I did. But something deep down within me constantly simply felt … off. I began seeing individuals believed I was various and weird due to the fact that I dressed like a “kid,” which was simply sports clothes due to the fact that I was a professional athlete. I started gradually realizing something may be various about me however could not quite put my finger on what..

Looking back on my youth, a lot of things about me then make sense about the person I am now.

When I hit late elementary/early junior high, I began having thoughts that I attempted not show anybody. I began feeling ways towards women that women ought to feel towards boys. I had ideas like, “Wow dude, I wish I wouldve been a boy so I could have a girlfriend.”

Why wasnt I typical?

Do I still have my minutes where I wish I wouldve been regular? No, since I dont think normal exists. “Normal” was something that had been implanted into my head from such an early age; from the media to my peers, to movies and music, anywhere I looked. I thought I needed to look and act a specific way to be typical, which I later on discovered meant straight. Im actively attempting to teach myself that there is no regular and attempting to get rid of that word from my vocabulary when it comes to me and my sexuality. Growing up this method wasnt an option. All those minutes throughout my childhood and teenage years where I was filled with absolutely nothing however confusion and worry and hatred. I would never ever pick that. No one would ever select that. I was made by doing this and I can not be altered. There are always going to be people who just cant and will not accept that. These experiences assisted shape me into a caring and loving person who isnt ashamed of who she is any longer.

I stand strongly and unapologetically in my fact. I am proud.

That relationship would go on to end and I went out and had nothing but partners after her. Because I wasnt ready, considering how it went down the last time. I eventually went through a separation from that relationship, and thats when I would state I truly took on the decision to try and start the journey on the path to being me. No matter where I went, individuals were going to look or make remarks since they disagree or just do not get it. There are constantly going to be individuals who simply cant and wont accept that.

For the very first time in my life, I was thrilled about how I was feeling about another individual. Throughout that time, I wanted to crawl into the deepest hole I could discover. Even though I still had my girlfriend, I went back into rejection.

It was pretty uncomfortable for a while after the coming out. My moms and dads, and my family in basic, didnt treat me any differently. I ultimately went through a breakup from that relationship, whichs when I would state I truly took on the decision to start the journey and attempt on the course to being me. I cut my hair various times till I lastly reached the length that I like (brief.) I did a closet overhaul. Tomboy phase? No, it was never simply a phase. It was just who I was. The most important part of coming out was discovering that I was going to have to grow a thicker skin. No matter where I went, individuals were going to look or make remarks because they disagree or just do not get it. In some cases the important things stated were painful and very nasty. Ive been called a faggot. Ive been told that people like me are ruining this nation. When I go into a public restroom, Ive felt the uneasy appearances and looks I get. At one point, I had “f * ck you d * ke” keyed into my car. I recognized that I couldnt go through life permitting all of these things to bring me down. I was lastly finding out who I was, and it was the most freeing feeling in the world.

Im able to go to her and my papa with my relationship issues and ask them for advice with no awkwardness. Ive lost some good friends along the way, but the two girls that I call my finest pals to this day were helpful from the start. From the time I was a lost and confused thirteen-year-old, to the time I was a timid yet brave seventeen-year-old all set to come out of the closet, to the here and now.

All of my good friends understood, and a lot of my classmates knew as well, I simply wasnt officially out. Because I wasnt ready, thinking about how it went down the last time. He told me he understood she wasnt just a buddy, and that he wasnt mad.

Youre still our daughter and we love you. You have to be the one to tell her.”

I hoped the conversation would go as efficiently as it did with my dad, but deep down I understood that it wouldnt. At that point in time, I didnt want to do any of those things, so I didnt think that argument was appropriate. I desired to go back to pretending.

The more the realization started to strike me, the more I pressed myself into rejection. I still dressed like a gamine for the most part, however I attempted making somewhat of an effort to look “better,” which I understand now meant more womanly. I attempted putting my interest and attraction in young boys. I had sweethearts. However it constantly just felt wrong. Forced. Like I was placing on a show. I smiled and beared it. Maybe I wasnt gay after all. This idea once again only pushed me even further into rejection. I hated myself. I hated looking in the mirror. I hated who I was. Then something occurred– I in some way handled to find my first sweetheart.

That relationship would go on to end and I headed out and had absolutely nothing however sweethearts after her. Was I doing it to appease those around me? Or was I doing it due to the fact that I was attempting to persuade myself that I was something that I wasnt? One of the couple of sweethearts that I had actually wound up unfaithful on me, and I remember the day so clear and strongly. I was sobbing frantically. Do not get me wrong, its totally normal to be upset about a relationship ending and being cheated on, but I was so distressed and rattled for other reasons. I was gradually beginning to come to terms that I couldnt keep doing this to myself. I was doing a disservice to myself by pretending to be something I wasnt to keep those around me pleased and pleased. It was harmful. It was a mix of putting on a program with the internalized homophobia that had finally taken its toll on me. This wasnt who I was.