I think from a young age we are told to have a label, to know who we are by identifying as something.
For me, I had identified as Straight, then curious, then Bisexual and then Pansexual… eventually it got to a point where the amount of labels I had under my belt felt too much. I was raised as straight and as my own individual preferences changed, I felt a need to grab at any label which was NOT Straight, anything that would seperate me from what I had be conditioned to be. I felt like I was trying to identify myself by using those words and labels, hoping that others would see me as part of that group and that I would feel as if I was part of a family… however, no matter what you have egraved on your forehead, people will make their own judgements on you and your sexuality.
Coming out to my family was difficult for me, I had feared that moment since the first time I had a crush on another girl; Ramona Flowers from Scott Pilgrim *tries not to break down over the pretty lady with coloured hair*. Luckily, I had the support of a girl I was currently seeing (Thanks Courtney) and she made sure she was there in spirit for anything that could happen- of course I feared the worst! It was easy to place my sexuality under a catergory so that my family could understand how I felt, it seemed easier to say then just ‘I’d fuck anything that moves to be honest’. I told them I was Pansexual, that I liked whoever I liked and what was between their legs didn’t matter to me. They accepted me for that, they told me that they always had a hunch about it but waited for me to be ready… but something still did not feel right. I had been accepted by my family but I felt cheated by myself.
When I told my partner about my sexuality, he said, ‘Isn’t it just Bisexuality?’ and I felt hurt at that, that I was being placed under a term that I did not believe I was. However, the stigma between Bisexuality and Pansexuality is a huge debate through society, people do not understand the differences and I have found, that even when you try to explain them, how they are two seperate beings, they always fall under one umbrella. So I kind of brushed off his comment, he was like most people. On medicial forms, Bisexuality appears but Pansexuality does not, meaning medically I am Bisexual and thus, Pansexuality gets swept under the carpet for myself and others who fill in that form.
It is insanely hard to explain to someone you love that they are wrong about your sexuality but after a while, even I questioned my label. Was he right? Was my label just a sham? Was I just trying to fit into a mould?
So I decided that I did not want any label, I did not want any word plastered on my face to which would put me in a spectrum of other individuals. I wanted to be known as me, not as part of a collective which is why I decided to throw away those labels and just be me.
Whenever, someone asks about my sexuality, I just say, ‘I love whoever I love, whatever is between their legs or on their chests does not affect my attaction or desire to be with them’ and for the first time, I can say that is from my heart. That is the truth. Just because I am currently in a heterosexual relationship, does not erase my love for those of the same gender or those who have no gender. I love someone because their soul connects to me- no matter how hippy that sounds.
Being able to just say that I love and have no need to label who it is that I love brings a huge amount of freedom. I can make jokes about playing for both teams or comment on a girls appearance in the street without worrying about people questioning my label or my individuality. I can makes jokes about being greedy when it comes to love or how I fall in love with someone new every single day (Hozier my main man!)
I think we focus too much on the labels nowadays, yes we have worked hard to get to the place we are at, the comfortability and safety of individuals within the LGBT+ community, however I do think this desire to find safety within one label can hinder your sexual freedom.
I am me, Demi, that’s all that matters. And I love with my whole heart.