My Coming Out Story

“So...have you ever been with a girl?”  

That is the first and most popular question asked when people find out I’m not straight. The answer? No. I have not been with a girl, and honestly I don’t know if I ever will be and I am totally fine with that.  

Here’s some backstory so it’s understandable why I am asked this so often. I’m bisexual and genderqueer. I’ve known since I was six years old that I liked girls, and I knew from the time I was thirteen that I liked the idea of being in a relationship with another girl. I was twelve when I realized I liked to dress more like a stereotypical “boy.” I was nineteen when I finally decided to come out as genderqueer.  

I have never fit the typical mold of society’s gender roles for females, but I am not confused as to my sex. I am a female, I have the parts that I want. I just happen to not identify as a woman or a man. I’m just me. I live in the in-between of femininity and masculinity,  that’s where I feel the most comfortable.  

Almost everyone in my life now knows that I don’t identify as a CISgender, straight, feminine woman. The few who don’t probably haven’t asked or just don’t pay attention. Over the past two years, I have become very open about my sexuality and my gender. I am a strong advocate for LGBTQ+ rights and I am working with an oral history project that is specifically tasked with bringing forward LGBTQ+ stories from Southwest Virginia. For more information, read my last article that goes into more detail.  

I don’t hide things that happen in my life; however, the fact that I don’t lay out my sexual and non-sexual experiences with other women is a point of curiosity for many people.  

I have no idea why it fascinates people, but apparently if someone doesn’t conform to typical gender and sexuality stereotypes, they should not get annoyed when people ask them a million times about their personal life.  

I don’t understand why I am deemed less of a bisexual simply because I’ve chosen not to be with another girl. I just happen to have only been in relationships with guys because that’s who I was attracted to at the time. I live in a town that does not make it easy for me to get to know other LGBTQ+ women. I also go to school in a part of Virginia that has so much gay history, yet still manages to hide all of it’s gay people away from the public.  

It’s not easy for someone like me to find a place in the LGBTQ+ community because I don’t come across as to others as someone who isn’t straight. I don’t make it a point to constantly express that I’m a bisexual or that I’m genderqueer, and I think that leads people to assume things about me that aren’t necessarily true.  

I like who I am, it took a long time for me to come to terms with the fact that I am always going to be an outsider in all aspects of my life. I’m a mixed kid who doesn't fit with black or white kids. I normally talk like a suburban soccer mom, but I have a country accent when I’m angry. I am a part of the LGBTQ+ community, but I’m not flamboyant, so everyone thinks I’m straight.  

I like who I am, it’s taken me years to finally come to terms with what I feel. Having people constantly question me or label me as less than because I don't fit their stereotype of what a bisexual female is, is upsetting. It’s exactly why I hated myself growing up, why I hid who I was for so long.  

It takes so much effort for people to come out and be open about who they are, and the last thing anyone needs is for others to judge them because they don’t act, dress, talk, and walk the way society expects them to.        

The last thing we need is judgment and criticism from people that we expect to be our friends and allies. Just because someone doesn't perfectly fit the stereotype others have been fed by mainstream media, does not mean that they aren’t who they say they are. Until we can live other people's’ lives, another person ultimately has no right and no reason to judge how someone else defines themselves.