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Finding My Lesbian Sexuality
By: Therese Jansen

Have you ever reminisced about the time when you first realized you were a lesbian? Some women tell me they always knew their sexual desires were different from other women. Once they learned the words, they understood the meaning behind being different.

I did not notice boys until a friend pointed out the class hunk to me in sixth grade. It did not have a big impact on my life, as I can recall. I still played on the girls' volleyball team and basketball team as if my life depended on winning. During baseball season, I was a cheerleader for the girls' baseball team. I imagine there were boy's teams as well; I just do not remember anything about them. My mother figured I was a late bloomer.

I was very unconventional. I was the kid who grew up being involved in eve cause in town. I was the kid who read -- for the fun of it! I was the kid who did not care what the neighbors thought. Somewhere I had picked up the notion that life was to be lived on your own terms. My mother could not figure out from where I came.

I remember having crushes on men as a teen, but I remember being more hurt when my girlfriends dumped me for a date. I remember having sleepover parties with my girlfriends and lying awake half the night thinking about sex. I figured it was hormones gone nuts.

I dated boys from high school through my twenties. I did not look for boys they just found me. Other than the brief entanglement that was supposed to get me out of my parents' house, I was not looking for a Relationship. In fact, once I discovered I could move myself out, I actively looked not to be serious when dating boys. I liked doing what I want, when I wanted to do it. My father advised me to play dumb to catch a man. I laughed.

One day, in my 30s, I found Love. I was not looking for it; in fact I was actively trying to stay away from it. You know that feeling when you have known someone for a long time -- someone who you respect a great deal, but they are not really a part of your life -- and you are having a lunch with them for some reason, and you are suddenly hit over the head with how do I get you into my life?

Suddenly everything makes sense. All the avoidance of relationships, the inability to bond with someone of the opposite gender, the strange dreams, the late blooming, the being different, the crazed hormones. I fell in love with a woman, and suddenly I felt like I belonged to myself.

I cannot say I do not enjoy men; I enjoy them immensely, as dear friends. I have found men so much more enjoyable now that there is no issue of sex and/or emotional entanglement between us. I cannot say that I do not enjoy sex with men, but I enjoy sex with women, this woman in particular, more. There are many reasons women give for being a lesbian.

There are instances where men have abused women, and those women can turn to women in the hopes of finding safety. Some women are lesbians because it's the current fad. However my reason (so it must be the best reason, right?) for being a lesbian is because I am drawn to women. I love the softness, the look, the texture, the smell, and the taste of a woman. I even love the way they will make you crazy.

Over the next few weeks, I thought we might all go down memory lane. Coming out to yourself, coming out (or not) to family and friends, coming out (or not) to your fellow employees, coming to terms with religious beliefs. And just as no one's life and experience are the same as another's, I would love to hear your stories as well. Please email me with your story, and let me know if I can post it.

Until next time...


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