“I believe the significance of my journey is that I had the freedom to seek out help”

I was born in New Zealand. At a very young age, I tragically lost my father, which also resulted in a short period of separation from my family. As a young teenager, and over the course of some years, I was sexually abused, by an older male. These three factors had a huge impact on my life.

I spent most of my teenage years engaged in sports, which suited me as I was very much a ‘Tom Boy,’ and had no interest in girly things. In my late teens I gradually developed feelings of same sex attraction. They weren’t overwhelming, but the thought would cross my mind on occasion, although I never acted out on these feelings. All this was very confusing as I had steady boyfriends throughout that time frame. 

I decided to mention these same sex attracted feelings to a family friend. She very wisely told me that this was all part of growing up, that it was just a phase, and that it would probably pass. And she was right, as I matured this phase passed. Had I not had some perspective on those feelings, it may have taken me on a very different path. Even though I do not have a dramatic experience in the gay lifestyle, I believe the significance of my journey is that I had the freedom to seek out help.

Unfortunately, young teenagers now, may be denied such good sound family advise. I would dare to say that if I had been a teenager in this day and age, due to my feelings, I may have been encouraged to engage in a same sex attracted life. Or even been misdiagnosed as gender dysphoric due to my Tom Boy personality.  

I am grateful that I was not encouraged into either of these directions. I am happily married to a man and have several children and grandchildren.

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