My Invisible Sexuality
I've always felt different while growing up. Even at the age of 11-12 yrs, I felt there was something beyond typical boy-girl relationship and it took me a while to realize that I am a bisexual. It was only when I began going to college, did I find like-minded people, who helped me understand that it was perfectly normal to prefer something out of hetero-normative relationships.
I had never had any romantic relationship. It’s not like I was averse to interacting with people, only I never feel the urge to establish any sort of romantic bond with them. I remember the time when I was 16 and it was like a rule to have a boyfriend/girlfriend but I managed to stay out of the peer pressure. I rarely got sexually attracted to others even when everyone around was exploring their libido with their partners. That is when I realized that apart from being a bisexual, I was an asexual too.
Being an asexual came with its own set of problems. Sometimes, I felt lonely in the crowd because when other people talked about the problems they face in their relationships, there was always someone to point out “I know exactly what you’re going through.'' Despite being accepted, I always craved for that kind of camaraderie. Later on, I got physically intimate a few times as well, which made me realize that I was grey sexual and not completely asexual. Thanks to social media and online communities, I could not only understand myself, but also feel included. I joined Tumblr specifically to follow posts by queer pages that made me feel included. In a world like ours that thrive on social media validation, I feel glad that even if I don't know these people personally, they are out there and I feel supported.
However, I do have a sexual drive and I do pleasure myself sometimes. But I still can’t reciprocate the romantic feelings anyone expresses toward me. My partners sometimes find it difficult to understand me and my sexuality, in those cases I try my best to make them understand, other times I just have to lie about not being ready for a relationship.
With my story, I’d like to point out here that not all queer people are alike. We belong to a spectrum where no two bisexuals or asexuals are alike and two spectrums can overlap at times. In India, we’ve always had a rich and diverse culture that welcomed and harbored all kinds of sexual preferences. I hope more of us to speak up and share their stories to make things easier.