My whole life, I was told that girls were supposed to be with boys. So when boys started showing interest when I was 14, I gladly went along with it.
But I quickly recognized that I didn’t feel any of the butterflies or excitement that I was told I’d feel. Even worse, when I looked at boys and tried to decide if I was attracted to them, I felt… absolutely nothing.
Instead of looking deeper, though, I figured that there was just something wrong with 𝘮𝘦, and all I needed to do was meet the right boy who would make me feel 𝘴𝘰𝘮𝘦𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘯𝘨.
Flash forward to my 2nd year of college — I’d had numerous bad, unsatisfying experiences with men, and I’d convinced myself that the nothingness I felt actually 𝘸𝘢𝘴 attraction — I was just weird and broken for not feeling it deeply.
But this all changed one fateful day when I went to see the movie The Huntsman: Winter’s War, which starred Chris Hemsworth and Jessica Chastain, with one of my friends.
My friend let me know how excited she was to see Chris take his shirt off in the movie. I agreed with her — wouldn’t I, a straight person, love to see a handsome man shirtless?
Yet, when the time came for Chris to take his shirt off, my friend squealed in glee, and I…. still felt absolutely nothing.
But I 𝘥𝘪𝘥 start to recognize something else — throughout the whole movie, I could not take my eyes off of Jessica Chastain. Every time she came on screen, I felt excited and in awe of her.
Suddenly, it hit me — is this what it feels like to be attracted to someone? Are these the butterflies everyone told me I would feel for boys? Am I not broken? Am I not straight??
These realizations were startling (so much so that I didn’t fully accept my sexuality for another 6 months), but I no longer felt like there was something wrong with me.
Instead, I felt free to re-discover what it meant to be attracted to someone — and to figure out who I am attracted to 👭