In honour of National Coming Out Day today (11th October) I thought it apt to write a quick post about the fact I am pansexual. I want to preface this by saying I feel incredibly lucky to have been surrounded with so much love and support, as this is not always the case and that is why it’s so important for days like today to exist.
Ever since I began questioning my sexuality I have never felt the need to come out as such. I had always known that I was attracted to boys and often had childhood fantasies of the perfect fairytale wedding. When I reached the age of 14 I began to realise I was also attracted to girls, however I wasn’t sure what these thoughts meant. At 16 I had labelled myself as bisexual, as I felt that was the label that felt most like me at the time.
I think the first person I told was my best friend, who was fully supportive and later came out herself. I didn’t feel the need to tell anyone else. Straight people do not have to come out (although recently straight coming out parties are on the rise) and so why should I? I knew who I was and who I liked, and to me that’s all that really mattered.
The first relationship I had was with a girl, albeit it didn’t last long but it still meant a lot to me. At this time I told my younger sister I was bi as well, and to my memory, replied ‘so?’. My ex-girlfriend and I went to the same school and were fairly open about the fact we were dating. Everyone saw us together and just assumed I was bi, so in this respect I didn’t really come out as such.
I then began dating a boy in my year, who to this day is still one of the most beautiful, kind and generous souls I have met. At this point, people began asking me if I was bi outright. I wasn’t offended or embarrassed, and used this opportunity to redefine myself as pansexual. I have since flitted between the two terms to describe my sexuality, but I feel more comfortable describing myself as pansexual.
To me, being pansexual is liking people for their souls, their auras, their personalities. I don’t fall in love with a pretty face. I fall in love with the way they treat strangers, their silly mannerisms and the way they sing along to their favourite songs. I like intelligence, I like passion, I like a good sense of humour. I like people for people, no matter the package they come in.
Since school I have predominantly dated boys, and am currently in a straight relationship. This does not mean that I am straight now, I still identify as pansexual. At times though, I feel as though I am ‘faking’ being LGBTQ+ by having mostly heterosexual relationships. It is here when I have to remind myself that sexuality is a social construct and cannot be defined by others.
I will always feel the way I do, and no one will be able to tell me otherwise. Take me or leave me, I suppose.