“I just think women are better.”
Would you believe I have recollections of liking women ever since I was five? She was an older girl and I’d just met her. Although it wasn’t anything I’d have identified as a crush, looking back now, I know what it was.
I must admit going to an all-girls school and interacting with girls most of the time did cultivate my being a lesbian, though I doubt it would have made a difference either way. To me, it just proves the possibility that you can naturally be attracted to the same sex given a certain environment—something like gays in the military!
I had mutual crushes in high school, but none that I’d really call a serious relationship. In college lang talaga meron. Knowing if you’re in love with another girl is harder to tell. Pareho kami ng girlfriend ko in this experience; we were friends for three years before we got together. What’s easier to identify as “being in love” kung guy yung object of affection mo is harder kung girl siya. First, you’d think you’re just really fond of this person. Then you start to wonder why you’re jealous and bakit parang hindi enough yung “friend” status for you. Then it’ll just hit you: OF COURSE! I’m in love! Why hadn’t I thought of it years before? Suddenly it all makes sense.
I questioned my identity a lot. But that is what makes my character and principles all the more secure. You really have to be sure of yourself to withstand prejudice and malice present in society. What lesbians go through that perhaps many heterosexuals do not is deep questioning, not just of their sexuality, but their identity in general. It’s tough being a lesbian if you’re not conscious of the choice that you’re making and what you are doing it for. There’s a wider world out there beyond high school that will not think lesbianism is “cool” or “in.” But it’s an important choice to make because it means being honest with yourself.
I don’t think lesbianism is inherent. It’s a choice not to allow society’s ideas of “normal” to suppress your feelings for other women. What is “normal” and who defines it anyway? I just tell people: I appreciate the beauty in human beings. I just don’t want to be in a relationship with guys. I don’t hate men nor do I want to be one. I just think women are better.
All my friends know that I’m liberal, so it wasn’t a problem for them. But I wanted to be honest with my family. Sometimes parents just need to hear that you know what you’re doing. My mom cried when she found out, but it was more because she feared the prejudice I would have to face. I assured her, “I can look God in the eye and say I am not doing anything wrong. In fact, I feel that God is the one guiding me to love and giving me courage.” What it all boils down to, what it’s really about, anyway, is love. My dad’s reaction touched me. He told me na mahal na rin niya kung sino ang mahal ko.
Some people find gay relationships threatening since they feel it might destroy the family. Unfair! Mahalaga ang gays and lesbians sa mag-anak at sa lipunan. Some gays and lesbians are actually the breadwinners and nurturers of families. They keep their families together. For me, advocacy is a way of fighting this and other kinds of discrimination. I was kicked out of my high school because I was a lesbian. I don’t want that to happen to others. You don’t have to be an activist to be an advocate. Just being proud of “who you are” is advocacy.
Despite the restrictions, my girlfriend and I are very happy. I find deeper connection and sensitivity in same-sex relationships. You have very common sensibilities and interests but that also does not mean that both of you cannot be diverse. So on the one hand, there’s the comfort and nurturing feeling of being so familiar with one another, but on the other, there’s the exhilaration and excitement that you’re also two different individuals.
There’s also less role playing—who’s the guy, who should be doing this or that. You just do what you feel more comfortable doing. Hindi lang porke’t babae ka, you should be the more nurturing and understanding one in the relationship; babae kayo pareho, so you strive for balance. You try to be more nurturing, but at the same time strong and rational in the relationship; hindi lang yung isang side mo yung dine-develop mo, but both masculine/feminine aspects.
You know it’s not a phase because like love, its not just some fleeting emotion that comes and goes: it’s a will, a stand, a determination that you constantly choose. Ang daya naman kung phase lang iyon, tapos the other girl will feel na nagamit lang siya or science experiment lang siya. Take the time to get to know your real preferences and identities first, that way, you’re not being unfair to the other person and you’re sure to have a more stable and sincere relationship.
The real sin is not going after love—it’s turning your back on a relationship that will make you grow just because it’s too scary or it’s too inconvenient. It’s nice to have fun and enjoy the company of people as long as you know your limits. Don’t play with fire if you don’t know how to handle it yet.
Despite the restrictions, my girlfriend and I are very happy. I find deeper connection and sensitivity in same-sex relationships.
Photo used for illustrative purposes only.