To celebrate Pride in June, there have been many queer people taking the ‘30 Days of Pride‘ challenge, so I thought I may as well join the challenge!
Day 1: Share your name, age, and identity. Share a picture of yourself.
My name is Natasha Taylor, and I’m a 25 year-old lesbian woman. ‘Lesbian’ is important to my identity, as I identify strongly with lesbian and Women-Loving-Women culture, but it isn’t the whole story behind my ‘it’s complicated’.
I am demiromantic, meaning that I only feel romantically attracted to people who I have a strong platonic relationship with first: this means that the concept of just dating someone after a couple of chats on a dating sites is completely alien to me (although whatever works for you is good!).
I’m also grey-asexual, meaning that I only rarely experience sexual attraction; I’m not sexually repulsed, but I simply do not find anyone sexually attractive most of the time, and when I do, it’s only with people I am closely romantically attracted. This does serve to somewhat alienate me from some of the lesbian community, where casual sex is relatively common.
I also consider myself ‘homoflexible’: I am primarily attracted to other women (homo-), but there have definitely been other types of people I’ve felt myself attracted to (-flexible). I don’t consider myself ‘bisexual’ – although I’d definitely fit into the multi-gender attracted umbrella – because of my heavy preference (aesthetic, romantic and sexual) towards other women.
Day 2: How old were you when you first discovered you were LGBTQ?
This is a difficult question to answer: do I start from when I first started thinking something was ‘wrong’ with me (around the age of 10)? From when I realised what it was (around 16)? From when I accepted it and came out for the first time (around 18)?
I’ve been out to everyone for two years now, and am happy with that decision every day. Do I mourn the years I lost in the closet? Yes, but now I can make the best of the future.
Day 3: Who was your first (real-life) crush?
My first crush would have to have been A, whose full name I won’t be including. We met online, and became fast-friends. We were both lesbians, but we never became romantically involved: she said we could either be partners or friends, and we each valued the other’s friendship too much to jeopardise it. Still, she was very supportive of me as a baby queer, and she and her partner(s) helped me find myself, so she’ll always hold a special place in my heart.
If people met online don’t count, then I would have to say K (again, not her full name): she was someone I worked with and respected throughout undergrad, but I was still finding myself and didn’t want to risk our friendship on something I wasn’t even sure was real. And honestly, I’m glad I didn’t: we’re both in a happy relationship now (not with each other) after figuring out who we are as people.
Day 4: Who was your first celebrity crush?
I can’t say that I’ve ever had a crush on a celebrity; being demiromantic, I need to build a relationship before ‘crushes’ will develop. That said, even as a kid I found Aladdin, Pocahontas, Belle and Mulan very aesthetically pleasing, and Patrick Stewart’s voice is gorgeous. If I had to pick someone, though, I would have to say Amanda Tapping: she was a role-model for me as Major Samantha Carter in Stargate SG-1, and was definitely a character I would have liked to know more about (as fictional as she is).
Day 5 & 6: Are you out? How did you come out? Who was the first person you came out to?
I am out! I first came out to A through an online discussion when I was about 18, and she was very supportive of me as we talked to explore my identity; I am very much a fan of having big/difficult/serious conversations in writing. Later, when I was in undergraduate, I came out to my flatmate T by MSN; I also closed and locked my door so I could hide from him out of embarrassment. Again, I received nothing but support, and T was always there to give me hugs. From then I gradually came out to my friends, who are a super-supportive bunch, and only had one reject me for who I am.
It wasn’t until I was 22 that I came out to my parents: I didn’t expect it to go badly, but I was still nervous. I sent Father an e-mail, with the message that I was turning off my phone and I would talk tomorrow, and spent the rest of the day with T for comfort. When the next day came, I saw the response from Father and Mother: they had been worried about me for a while, and were relieved that I wasn’t in danger, as well as glad that I confided in them.
The last people I came out to were my grandparents, Oma and Opa. For them, I followed my tried-and-true method of sending an e-mail, and hoping for the best. The best happened: I have a truly supportive family, and I feel so lucky. I know many other queer people don’t have such a positive experience.
Day 7: Share something about your family.
My immediate family consists of my younger brother (who just started his first job after uni), my Mother (who works at a school), my Father (a clerk in the public service), and our little puppy RK (a hairless Chinese crested dog). They live in Melbourne, and since I live in Brisbane I miss them dearly, but I’m glad when I get to see them again! My brother is a giant nerd like me, and Father is also into comics.
But they’re not my only family: I consider my close friends here to be my family just as much as my biological one. From my supportive partner and her family, to friends that helped me integrate and grow when I moved up here, and I love every one of them.