Andrea, age 3
Baltimore, Maryland (1993)
I had no clue that I was gay while growing up. Looking back, there honestly weren't many clues, as I was obsessed with many typically "girly" things. I loved baby dolls, my Littlest Pet Shop, and my princess nightgowns.
Although I had a tomboy streak,
I largely attribute that to growing up with a twin brother.
Everything between us was a competition, but there was nothing to hint at my future sexuality.
In fact, it took me well into my college years to begin to question things. I developed a significant crush on one of my roommates during junior and senior year but was too oblivious (and definitely subconsciously afraid) to act on it.
It wasn't until I was age 23 that I officially told my family that I was interested in girls.
I'm one of the lucky ones, as I was born into a family that has absolutely no issues with my gayness. My siblings and I were encouraged to play with whatever toys we wanted and to explore extracurricular activities we were drawn to, regardless of whether they were stereotypically male or female centric.
So I didn't have to worry that I would be treated any differently once I came out. And thankfully, I haven't been.
My only regret is that I didn't realize I was gay until so relatively late.
I think that if I had had more contact with gay people growing up, perhaps it would have occurred to me earlier than it did.
My wife knew she was gay significantly earlier than I did. She says she thinks this is largely due to the number of other gay girls she came in contact with growing up, especially while playing elite level soccer in England.
At any rate, I am now happily married and, although we currently live in Mississippi (where being openly gay can still be a bit of a crap shoot when it comes to acceptance), we have amazing family and friends and we're looking forward to starting a family in the near future.
Click here - "Born This Way: Real Stories of Growing Up Gay" book
Click here - "My First Gay Crush Blog"
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