How Old Was I When I Knew?

I mean knew what?

Funnily enough I remember thinking deeply (for my age at the time not in comparison with deep adult thoughts) about gender but sexuality didn’t make an appearance for a while.

I remember wondering what made a boy a boy and a girl a girl mostly because I did not like wearing skirts. My utter hatred and disdain aged about three for pinafore dresses can only be matched by my love aged about twenty three for Lolita fashion pinafore dresses… The link there absolutely has to be rebellion against expectations. This wasn’t the proper questioning of my gender that happened in my late teens/early twenties, but I think it was a prototype of those points.

How old was I when I knew I liked girls? I know that sometime around ten or eleven years old I started hearing that it was normal for girls to have crushes on older girls and then grow out of it. I remember thinking a girl in sixth form was utterly beautiful when I was a little first or second year at secondary.

The guy who sat next to me in form period, I loved his accent and the way he walked, hell if a man walked past me now with the swagger I remember him having at twelve I’d probably look twice. I kissed a boy for the first time when I was thirteen, so I was pretty confident that I liked boys. Then I got a crush on the girl who sat next to me in French, I seem to recall that my first kiss also had a crush on her and I found a weird enjoyment in encouraging him to go for it with her because she was straight and I knew I couldn’t.

When you think of that in the context of my adult love life that’s some kind of harbinger I think.

But I knew I liked her when I was twelve, it took me two years to figure out that liking boys too wasn’t just social conditioning. I guess my deep thoughts about gender where I was very aware that other people had expectations of me based entirely around my being a girl left me with the notion that I could be influenced if enough people thought the same thing about me. That I’d somehow choose to please a group. Which is an interesting notion considering quite how deliberately awkward and oppositional I was.

In anycase age thirteen and fourteen I really was asking myself if I was just posing at liking boys because that’s what I was supposed to do as a girl. Then I had a summer romance with a girl aged about fifteen and I think the next year although it may have been later in the same summer I had a weird romance with two possibly Dutch or Belgian girls which was a bit weird and I suppose foreshadowed my preference for multiple people.

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