Feeling not only ashamed, but also confused, I cleared my Internet browsing history to keep the content of what I was looking at a secret.
I crouched under the evergreen branches and made my way to the centre of the tree. This is where my friends and I would gather at recess.
I lost my balance and grabbed for a branch to stabilise myself. Once stabilised, I pulled back my sap-covered hand. Making a noise of complaint, I made the mistake of smearing my hand on my jeans. This just spread the sticky mess around.
A boy, knowing my predicament all too well, laughed, and then made an innuendo referring to the sticky mess and one of our teachers. This began the unchangeable topic of our hot teacher.
These talks were all too familiar with me, and I dreaded them. I was questioned many times for my lack of participation. I learned that trying to change the topic would only draw further criticism, so I learned to change the focus, mentioning a different lusted after teacher.
The truth is, I was not attracted to the female teachers. Yes, many of them were beautiful and pleasing to look at, but in the same way a sunset is, not warranting lust and blood rush.
This is when I turned to porn, thinking that maybe my lack of imagination was the cause of my lack of lust. As I watched, my body didn’t respond except for a few faces of disgust. After clearing the history, I decided I preferred women with clothes.
Not wanting to tell my friends what I discovered, I continued to play along. Over time they began to discover I was different. I was banished from the group and was friendless for a year until high school, where I expanded my horizons and surrounded myself with better people.
This is when the dismay that I might be gay started to settle in. I thought this as I walked the hallways of my school. I thought this as I openly denied it when people would publically ask me. I thought this as I asked a girl I had fallen in love with to be my girlfriend. I thought this as I changed in the men’s locker room.
I continued to question myself. I questioned myself as I held my girlfriends hand and kissed her quietly in abandoned hallways. I turned to porn again for answers. I didn’t know men came in so many shapes and sized. Again, I cleared the history, and again, I discovered I preferred men with clothes.
I told no one. I felt broken.
What was wrong with me?
I questioned myself for five years when I turned to the Internet, but this time, not for porn. It wasn’t until recently that I discovered that I’m asexual. I have learned that most people don’t understand what that is. Some refuse to believe it’s a thing, while others say they find it “hard to believe.”
If experience is any indicator, you most likely are unfamiliar with asexuality as well.
Well, to put in in the wise words of Nicki Minaj, “My Anaconda don’t want none.” Except in my version, the lyrics abruptly stop there.
Being asexual means I have no sexual urges. I do however, still love to love and be loved for who I am.
The queer movement has always been about inclusion, being able to love who we love.
Let’s expand that to being able to love how we love.