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Shalini - not putting a label on your sexuality

Young Indian Woman
Photos are used for illustrative purposes. They do not imply health status or behaviour.

My emotional and physical journey of exploring my sexuality started during puberty. School programmes teach the basics about sexual orientation, but they never explain how to handle things when you’re not completely heterosexual. This is what I'm experiencing.

Guys rarely interest me in a sexual manner. When I'm around a girl I automatically feel that sexual energy flow through me. The feeling of your heart beating, nervousness, the tingling feeling you get down there, etc. These feelings thrill me and just the thought of doing something with a girl excites me. All these emotions mixed together give off a wonderful vibe. It feels like you’re on a cloud, so amazing and wonderful when felt, but to actually explain your orientation to someone else is terrifying.

Overall, my feelings towards girls have intensified 10x in the last year and guys are, in all truthfulness, out of the picture. I'm just afraid to label myself. When I come out to people, I don't like to brand myself a certain orientation. I want my freedom to learn, to grow, and to experiment.

I find that coming out to someone that I truly care about and love is the hardest. The first family member I have come out to is my cousin. I wrote an email to her a day ago explaining my feelings. I hope to god she loves me for being myself.

My advice to anyone else: Discovering your true orientation is not easy, but having the freedom to experiment is a gift. Being 15, this is the age where I slowly want to try new things and to find out who I want and what I want. To anyone I come out to, I'm willing to give them the time to adjust. Give them the same freedom. I wouldn't trade these feelings for anything else in the world. The excitement is actually not knowing – just learning is a big thrill and through experimentation you can learn a lot about yourself.

What we say: When you go through puberty, you may start to feel and experience things you hadn’t felt previously. This may also include trying to understand your sexual identity. Take your time to understand what is happening and don’t be so quick to put a label on things if you do not feel comfortable – like Shalini. For more information check out our pages on Puberty and How to have sex.

These personal stories have been submitted to us anonymously by individuals who use our site. Some of the stories have been edited for clarity purposes. Some names have been changed to protect identities.

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Last updated: 01 October 2019