16 March 2010

Repulsed by men since I was raped, I don't know if I'm a lesbian

i was raped when i was 13 and i’ve adored girls since i was 14 always feeling repulsion for men, never attraction. I tried to act “normal” which also disgusted me, and i slept with 4 men to try and prove how normal i was. This whole act left me dead inside and i was utterly repulsed by me and my actions. I hated being gay and hid it from everyone. When i was twenty i met a man in a bar who i instantly fell for despite finding the male form repulsive. He is wonderful and tender and attentive and perfect, we have been married nearly 11 years. i have recently told him i am a lesbian though i have never had any girlfriends and tried to explain my past and the fact that basically i have lied about being straight. We still have sex and i adore him as a person and tend not to see him as a man, obviously everything is confusing, can you please help. He is very supportive and loving and is trying to understand, but i guess i just can’t explain who i am very well. Am i a lesbian?


Hi Linzi,

I think what’s especially important when someone does something bad to us is not to generalize. Each person is unique in his or her own way and this is why stereotyping should be avoided. I’m not trying to take away from the gravity of the incident that occurred, because it is very serious, but it’s easy to let one rotten apple spoil the whole bunch.

What’s interesting is that even though you say you never felt attraction for a man, you still fell for your husband and have stayed with him for 11 years. Why do you tend to see him not as a man? Is it because you normally don’t associate patience and understanding with men? Is his support something you would not expect of males in general? Does he hold any particularly female attributes? If so, do you believe that because he holds these traditionally feminine attributes that somehow emasculates him and thereby justifies to yourself that he is ‘not a man’?

It’s great that he is very supportive and is trying to understand, he obviously loves you very much. You haven’t said one bad word about him. Have you thought about bringing a second female into the relationship? Have you pondered an open-relationship? On the flipside, have you thought about the hassles that bringing in other people into the relationship could cause?

As far as I know, you don’t mention in detail about what you want in terms of telling your husband that you are a lesbian. Do YOU think you’re a lesbian? Does this mean that you want to leave your husband or does this mean that you want to discover and explore this side of your sexuality? If it is the latter, and your husband permits, maybe you should indeed, explore your sexuality!

Unfortunately, only you yourself know if you’re a lesbian at the end of the day. If you say that you are, do you truly believe it? I think it’s important for you to sit down and think about what exactly you hope to get out of it. “Lesbian” is just a word like any other, does it hold any significance to you other than that? If your main concern is just wanting to know how or where you fit in, sexuality and possible labels that follow it (or lack thereof) are fluid. They can change over time, and this means, that none of us are obliged to decide for certain and forever that we are “lesbian”, “bisexual”, “straight” etc. So many labels, but if they don’t particularly “fit” who you really are, are they, in the end necessary at all?

I hope that leaves you with some things to ponder. Feel free to write us again with any further concerns,


for Alterheros