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LGBTQ+, Sexuality and Gender Identity This forum is for you to explore your sexuality and identity, whatever that may be.

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How do I stop doubting myself??? - May 11th 2021, 06:59 AM

Iíve labeled myself bi since 2014 when I was 13 and came out to myself as grey-ace when I was 18. And recently (Iím 19 now) I figured out I was genderfluid (switching from female to male to agender to neurosis). At the moment, I canít express anything other than female, (transphobic household) and with the constant switching Iím constantly thinking Iím just faking the other genders even if Iím not out. And Iím bi with a preference for women but I canít help but question if Iím really just a lesbian experiencing comphet. Especially since itís apparently common for comphet lesbians to identify with aspec labels before discovering they are a lesbian. Iíve read a bit and read to some things on an extent.

Iím 19 and have only really dated two people (both male) back when I was 14 and havenít dated since then.

I donít know how to stop the doubt because I felt confident when I found these labels but as more time goes on Iím still questioning everything. I know labels are flexible and change over time, but I seek comfort knowing something fits me

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Re: How do I stop doubting myself??? - May 11th 2021, 12:47 PM

It's quite common to want to attach a label to ourselves because they give us some sort of closure. The problem is that labels are still exceptionally limiting. We give them to ourselves from a snapshot of how we feel in that moment in time. However, they don't always encompass how we permanently feel.

When I was growing up I thought maybe I was bisexual. I'd finally accepted that much at 15. But then I realised I have no sexual attraction to men and so I'm gay. In fact I have labelled myself as gay solely out of convenience. Despite coming out as a gay female, I've been intimate with a couple of men.

I'm nearly 30 years old and I've just come to accept that while I have no sexual attraction to men, I can enjoy their company. I like having sex with men, and I do like the romantic side of things. I like kisses and cuddles etc. However, those feelings I have for men are very few and far between. They come and go all the time. The one thing that remains the same is my sexual and romantic attraction to women. That hasn't changed.

I don't think there's any real good way to stop yourself from doubting, but sometimes it is better to stop trying to put labels on yourself and just simply exist. The more you try and put a label on an ever-changing sexuality, the more difficult you're going to find things.

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Re: How do I stop doubting myself??? - May 11th 2021, 11:56 PM

So I am going to impart something to you, and I hope it helps. Maybe you'll be able to identify with it.

I came out as non-binary in the spring of 2020, smack dab in the middle of the pandemic. In the summer I started HRT with testosterone injections that I did weekly. Some people questioned why I would start T if I am non-binary, not a trans man, but I took them because I liked how they made me feel about myself and my body.

My ex, who I am still extremely close to, is a trans woman. She'd been open as such for many, many years before I met her, but she was one of the few trans people in my life I felt I could ask questions. I told her I was questioning my gender and whether taking T was a drastic choice. She told me to think about how I feel when I take T, and I told her it makes me feel joy. She then told me that if I weren't trans I wouldn't feel so excited for all the changes that were happening to my body. And I realized she was right. I had every right to feel how I felt and identify with that.

I know finding a label that fits can be scary, but I stand by what my ex said: think about how a label makes you feel. If it makes you feel good, or happy, or "right," it's probably accurate. And, of course, be open to changing, as we change over time. It's exciting to explore gender and sexuality and I hope you can do so with an optimistic and open mind.
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Re: How do I stop doubting myself??? - May 13th 2021, 08:03 PM

I think the advice above is already really good so I'm going to say pretty much the same. If your labels feel right to you, even if they are fluid and subject to change often enough, then they are the right ones. The very nature of being genderfluid means that your labels and your identifications do change, and just because that's the case doesn't invalidate any of the labels you identify with.

In terms of your thoughts about being grey-ace, I completely understand the doubt you feel and I've been there. I'm 26, and I've identified as asexual since around 2015 when I figured out what the term meant. Since then, I've gone back and forth, questioning if ace is the best word for me, wondering if certain emotional traumas are the real reason for my lack of attraction to others, wondering if I'm just straight but haven't met the right person yet. Doubt exists, and it's an absolute nightmare when it creeps back in.

My advice would be similar to the above. I know that labels bring comfort, so if the labels you have are what feel right, then use them. You don't need to be out (especially when it's not safe to be) in order to be who you are. Just because right now it's not a good time or place for you to be out, doesn't mean you have to readjust your own image of yourself. If that image changes later and new words fit better, then that's okay too. It doesn't invalidate anything if things change later, and nobody else's opinion of you should change who you feel comfortable being.

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doubting, stop

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