Love, Simon

Hey!

*contains spoilers*

Just been to see ‘Love, Simon’ at the cinema. I didn’t know the film existed until last night. Just another coming out story I thought!

Do hold onto your seat belts. Its a cringey film. But also a very good and very well portrayed coming out film. I definitely recommend it.

The main guy Simon, privileged guy with a perfect life etc. And he’s known for a while that he’s gay but too scared to come out.

I liked in this film that Simon was inspired to come out. If I hadn’t have met anyone special I don’t think I would have told anyone when I did. Because I suppose, I wasn’t sure? Or there wasn’t the motivation? What if it is just a phase. Why go through all the grief?

I also loved how the film made what Simon was going through a massive deal and we could to a degree appreciate the difficulty while also looking on the outside and understanding that actually…. things will probably be fine. A mixture of teenage angst but also actually this is difficult. I liked how they described Simon’s fear of change and being somehow a different person post coming out. And just how he was annoyed that he had to come out, how he wouldn’t have to if he was straight. There were some very good insights on the film. I’m impressed.

It was pretty classic cringe-y teenager film in that it had magically unrealistic love scenes. And Simon’s best friend turned out to fancy him. It all turned out totally fine in the end. obviously.

I had a bit of an incident earlier on. About a month ago. And I think I kinda thought I was done with coming out and hadn’t really done it in a long time.

I had just been offered a job at a vet practice I has really liked and the following weekend Rosie, my cousins and I went to visit the practice. To say I was slightly nervous would be an exaggeration. I hadn’t really slept that week because of the nerves of the vets finding out about Rosie. More the fact that I didn’t want them to know this about me before they know me otherwise. We all ended up at the vet’s house and I simply introduced them all by their names and not who they were. The vet’s wife was also around and in time Rosie and my cousins chatted to her. The vet took me to aside and we talked about things and he told me some bits!

I then drove down two weeks later for a meeting with some of the other vets. During the meeting the vet who I had visited at this house asked me to explain who the guest were. He thought my cousins were my parents. I could feel dread in my stomach and I felt pretty sick. I really wanted the job, i didn’t want this to affect it. But I wouldn’t lie about it, i couldn’t deny it, i’ll just avoid mentioning it. I explained that they were my cousins who I had been staying with. He said, right, and the other was their daughter?

I can’t remember quite what I said. something like, ‘Ah sorry, no, to put another spanner into the works, she is my partner.’

I couldn’t and still can’t believe how badly I came out. How nervous I felt. I suppose two older male vets who live in the countryside,, it’s just very far from the London tolerance I’m used to (in my mind). But he didn’t seem very surprised and I looked at the other guy who did look surprised but not bothered. They shrugged it off and asked me about Rosie.

I’m slightly kicking myself about it now. I hope they don’t think it’s a problem or a big deal in my life. I hope they don’t think it’s something that’s going to affect me in anyway from being a good vet.

I have had it very lucky, mostly the fear has been from within my head rather than on anything I have experienced.

I watched a video a while back from a gay guy who said that he has learned to love coming out to people. I’m not there yet, I still find it usually leads to a moments awkward silence, even if the person really couldn’t care less. It is probably because it takes them by surprise.

I casually came out to one girl at a vets when she asked if I had got up to much with my boyfriend at the weekend. I said, oh it’s girlfriend (in a light hearted way) and she went to apologise but I just said, ah you weren’t to know. I just carried on saying what we had got up to to avoid the awkward silence where the other person is deciding what to say.

It’s a strange world. But I’m very lucky to live in a more tolerant part of it.

Rebecca x

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Hiding the real you

I have been on vet placements for the last three weeks. I haven’t mentioned my partner to anyone in that time apart from the female bisexual couple I’m staying with at the moment.

It just isn’t really worth it. Telling people. Well that’s what I’ve been saying to myself.

In conversations about people’s partners which does come up over lunch, tea break or during surgery, I hold my tongue from getting involved, for them to assume I suppose that I’m single and have nothing to contribute.

I don’t want the understanding look, the pity, the sympathy. I want the non-chalent look, the same I’d get if it was a normal bloke who is normal. But you can’t blame a person for it. It’s just not totally normal enough yet. Something slightly abnormal – like saying your vegan, saying you’re religious. Something against the norm still gets the odd look. Except you can choose to be vegan and so that becomes more understood with the fads and popularity phases it sees. And religion has always been known to everyone even if not personally religious.

And it isn’t the fact often that it’s that I haven’t told anyone but that I stopped myself from letting it slip out when I was about to. If the topic never comes up then it’s never mentioned. I’m not strolling in saying ‘btw I’m gay’. Makes a thing a bigger thing than it is. Makes it something worth thinking about, which isn’t what I want.

I stopped it from slipping out because I feel like telling people could cause them to react or treating me differently. To overthink it and think I’ll be less capable, more emotional, less accepted, suddenly a different person to the one that they are getting to know.. something like that.

One place that I’d love to work, I didn’t mention Rosie at all. Specifically held off mentioning her when if she’d have been a bloke I’d have mentioned him. Just in passing. And it does hurt. I do feel like I’m lying, to myself and to others and to Rosie and it doesn’t feel good. But something tells me that it’s for the best.

I went home at the weekend to see a friend who is over from Australia at the moment. I saw Rosie and and family too all the while getting drunk, eating lots of great food and going to a comedy and one of Rosie’s after parties.

In London there is no issue with walking down Soho (the gay scene) and walking into a bar. It’s like walking into any bar. In Dumfries there was a coffee shop/ youth centre/ club place called The Stove and there was an LGBT section. I was very aware of looking at it, being seen to look at it. In London I would feel almost proud and have no issue to look at something similar.

The contrast between the two places made me realise I was hiding myself. And it isn’t the end of the world, at all, but shouldn’t be something that happens. I feel like I’ve lost the nack of ‘coming out’ and it feels harder again.

I’ve had it lucky and I think younger people coming out are more likely to have it easier. There are still so many LGBT people that have an awful time of it. Being so cold at the moment i’m in constant reminded of the homeless people out on the streets in this weather. If you see someone, buy them a coffee, buy them some hot food!

Rebecca x

 

Looking back.

It’s scary how two months have gone since my last blog post. My initial thoughts were that It has just been an empty kind of two months. It has felt like I’ve just been eating, working and sleeping. The eating and sleeping bits have been great! But I haven’t enjoyed them as much as I could have because of the working bit.

I don’t have much to complain about, I’m just being worked hard at the moment. I want more freedom, I want to know what the day is going to bring and when I will be able to go home. I’m quite fed up of being a student and I’d like a job and to stay in one place for more than two weeks is a dream at the moment. It feels like i’m tip-toeing around trying to please everyone and even pander to their whims just to pass each week. I just can’t be arsed anymore. I feel like maybe I don’t need to prove myself anymore. It’s a nice feeling in a way.

But here are some of the good things I’ve been up to in the past two months!

Dorset

I spent a month around Dorset on some farm placements. I explored Chesil beach before spending the weekend with Rosie and her family. We visited the beautiful Sherborne Castle.

I spent two weeks with two other vet students in Shitterton. It was really nice to get to know the two of them. It was a hard two weeks with tons of work to do but we still managed to have fun and visit a couple of pubs while we were there.

I have also discovered Huel, a meal replacement type thing. It’s now what I have for lunch. It is vegan and supposed to have all the dietary requirements needed. I’m usually and was at first against the idea of it. But actually I bought it in the end to make it easier to travel and not to have to worry about lunch, to be able to monitor how much i’m eating better and i think really, i just wanted some control over what I was eating and in my life in general! It has been a blessing regards lunched. Just three scoops and add some water and i’m good to go. I don’t have to get up early or make sure I get to a shop or buy anything. Just that extra thing to not worry about. Possibly lazy, but I’ll take it.

Utrecht

I visited Utrecht university for another farm placement. It was a very long and tiring and sometimes hard two weeks. But it was fantastic getting to spend a decent amount of time in one European city. It was great to get to know a place. We cycled into the campus every morning and evening and checked out a decent number of pubs.. again.

I love stroopwafels! Ah!

Rosie even managed to come and visit at the weekend and we rented a gorgeously cute little apartment looking over one of the canals. It was lovely. We all checked out the gay bars one night forgetting how bad we are at drinking these days.

We did all the touristy classics going up the tower and going on a boat trip.

 

London

But I was glad to finally get home and chill with the Doggo!

I’m working in central london for three weeks and got to stay with Rosie for nearly two of them which was great fun! One Tuesday evening we bought tickets to a book talk with Ali Smith at Foyles. We’re both big fans of her work and just her in general. She is so grounded and fair and honest and sees the world in such an incredible way.

One evening we watched a documentary about an anorexia clinic in London. Rosie knew of someone who had been into one. It was a hard documentary to watch. But a very thought provoking one. I have had some issues in the past that could have been a lot lot worse and I watched the people in the clinic and wondered why I seemed able to avoid getting as low as they were. Why i seem able to get by by knowing my signs and managing them yet others can’t and suffer so much more.  This will have to be another blog sometime in the future. It just made us think about personality types and how difficult, demanding, intimidating and out of control our world is at the moment.

Glasgow

Rosie went to Glasgow while I still had work in London. She went up for a concert on Saturday evening. I joined her on Friday evening and we had some of the weekend to chill and explore Glasgow together. Rosie knows the place a little from previous work but i had never been. It was a beautiful weekend which probably made it even better, but I loved Glasgow. It has some amazing places and spaces, parks and museums, shops and resturants. We got a hostel looking over a park and it was beautiful. Crisp air with everyone walking around in scarves, lots of doggies, we could see ourselves living there. Maybe one day!

On the evening of the concert we met up just before to grab some dinner. We went to a Southern India restaurant which was delish! Never eaten Southern before, we tried different chapatis and a lamb curry and it was so yum!

I was a bit of a soppy git and bought Rosie some roses and a keyring with out photo on it before the concert. It was a big deal for her and I could tell she was quite nervous. But she was fantastic and pleased with how it went. She definitely underestimates how good she is, but I feel like most people do when they’re trying to get somewhere. It’s hard to know what people expect and want and are looking for… in many careers i think.

After the concert we checked out a couple of gay bars and got ridiculously tipsy and giddy and no drinks whatsoever (cheap dates) and headed back picking up some  Belgian fries on the way home 😛 nommm

In the morning we checked out one of the restaurants Rosie has been too for breakfast and I had a full English which was FULL ON.

Glasgow

London

Back to London. I Stayed at Rosie’s for a couple more days and we had dinner with some of her friends and made mince pies one evening! We were both doing different hours to each other so often we didn’t have much time in the mornings or evenings but I love spending an hour or two just chilling with her or even just talking about our day in bed before one of us falls asleep first.

I’ve got into crosswords and puzzles again, first time since I was a kid! The guys in my placement group have been picking up the newspaper on the train and we’ve been working on them during lunch. It made me want to go back home and finish them with Rosie. We spent a good couple of evenings working on them. We are rubbishly awful at the cryptic ones though!

I had the first Amnesty talk this week too! It wasn’t very well attended but it was really interesting to hear more about what Amnesty does and make some connections. I feel like our group can only get better and stronger as it’s only early days yet. It’s just a shame that I’m not on campus very often and so it is difficult to meet up regularly or get bits done.

Rosie has gone back up to Scotland for more work so I’m currently staying with my grandparents who live in central London too. I’m so lucky to have family in London.

I went to watch Young Marx last night at the Bridge theatre. It is supposed to be one of, if not the newest theatre in London. It was great, a fantastic theatre with leather seats. Different. Doesn’t have the same detail architecture that the older theatres have. But a nice big stage!. The play was great, really funny, definitely recommend. I got a £15 ticket and it was definitely worth it and I could see most of the stage, all of the action anyway!.

The story outline kind of annoyed me though. Marx in the play was an absolute arsehole that used and was awful to his friends, family and supporters and yet he got away with it because he was a genius. I don’t know. Just rung of ‘boys will be boys’ and that’s rubbish. It was funny and lighthearted but not a great message. There was remorse at the end of course. And it was a comedy but just a bit samey really.

You can see a photo of one of the cuties that I helped look after while being in London. It has reminded me of how much I enjoy small animal work. I really do enjoy both small and farm. And I wonder whether I could just do small animal. It would be quite a lot easier than finding somewhere that has both. Would I regret only going into one and not the other though?

 

So yeah! Actually really an amazing couple of months! Haha! I really don’t have anything to complain about. Just haven’t had a massive amount of time to myself to be able to write a blog I guess! I have basically been working and then chilling to recoup for the following day.

Na, yeah I have nothing to complain about in life.

I do feel used by my university and I am fed up of being a student but diddums! I’ll suck it up and keep going. There isn’t really a huge amount left!

Glad I have written this blog. Need to remind myself actually how great things are for me. You so easily get absorbed into the problems of you’re own life and forget how easy you actually have it.

Write again, sooner next time.

Rebecca x

Pages for us

Feeling a little lethargic this morning!

Have now finished reading Pages for her and Pages for you.

I read them the wrong way round but it’s actually worked out perfectly. I read the older story (for her) before finding out the original story of when Anne and Flannery met. (for you)

While reading both books they made me look into my own relationship and some of the past. Anne and Flannery have an age gap. Flannery is 17 while Anne is 28. The gap is more of a mental and experience age gap than actual numbers.

It made me uncomfortable because I got so into it and it reminded me of relationships, especially one that I had when I was about 18. Made me cringe and made me think about the differences and what I thought I wanted and the naivety of me and Flannery. And knowing how the first novel ends after reading the second there’s just so many what could have beens or what have beens and how differently lives could have played out. But actually the end of Pages for her is pretty wonderful and each is in a much greater position.

There was something very delicious about the words in the book. Like I couldn’t be satisfied and kept on reading. There was so much connection and understanding and the words rung like satiety and hunger and devour. It was quite a naked carnal kind of book. Ripped of convention and propriety, honest and truthful, grounded lust and hunger, human raw emotion kind of book.

Signs of a good book I would say.

They could be placed in the LGBT category in a book shop. But what I loved about the books is that the fact that they’re two women hardly ever comes up. More so in the second. It’s not a coming of age book. It’s two people falling in love and a book about their relationship. It was refreshing. The women are probably bisexual, Anne certainly is but again, the word is never mentioned nor discussed. It would be very very easy to replace Anne or Flannery with a male character and the story would still work.

I’m glad I read the second book first, I think I’d be heartbroken to have finished the first without access the second. Ahh. I’m seriously moping.

Rebecca  x

 

 

Gay Britannia and Bisexuality 

*This post started as a mind explosion and I typed whatever came to mind on Sunday evening. I have tidied it up a little but I’ve noticed this with a lot of my posts…that I’m not very good at concluding or keeping a good flow….. I’ll work on it.*

So the BBC is showing a load of LGBTQ+ programmes at the moment and so far what I’ve seen has been great! I know so little about LGBT history, it’s shocking. And with all this and pride at the moment it’s really got me thinking about who I am and what makes me me.

I can’t imagine living with constant fear and not being able to be who you are. I know it is still often the case, but we can’t be arrested for it! These programmes are making me realise really how much we really do have to thank the older generations for pushing through and doing what they did. So brave, so courageous.

I’ve watched ‘Prejudice and Pride: The people’s History of LGBTQ Britain’ and ‘against the law’,  ‘queer art’ and ‘The man in the orange shirt’.  While watching some of the programmes with Rosie (I have the irritating tendency to talk through a programme. Rosie pauses it. haha soz) we talked about bisexuality and how it never has been that much of a deal. I mean even the programmes so far have been predominantly about gay male relationships. (It is the 50th year since the act was abolished so there’s justification behind it.)

A big thing we have realised is that gay men suffer their own insults but they don’t generally get the brush off that bisexuals and lesbians do. …The number of times I have heard, “they just haven’t found the right cock yet.”  How many times have you heard someone say a gay man hasn’t found the right vagina yet?

However! I’ve got a big buzz with it all at the moment! The “Everything is great and will be great and I’m bisexual and being bisexual is amazing”. It’s a nice feeling! Feeling that it is perfectly fine and there’s nothing wrong and just have a good time and love who you feel like loving.

When I can talk about my relationship freely like those in straight relationships, it feels so natural. Withholding what I want to say because i don’t think people will understand or take it the right way or if i’m worried they’ll respond badly is really hard to handle (let alone not telling anyone and having to hide it entirely!).  It’s like a subtle and ongoing sensation that makes you continually doubt your validity.   Being able to sit with my arm around Rosie while chatting to other people and couples is one of the greatest feelings in the world to me. Just the unity and fuzzy feeling is a guilty pleasure. ❤

We also brought up how the things we have read about women’s sexuality have always been pretty negative and hard: depicting the struggle. Which is great for inclusiveness when you feel like you’re dealing with it all by yourself. But it doesn’t often bring hope. So I want to be positive on here! Show why It’s so worthwhile!

If anyone asks me, I say that I am bisexual. It has been a long and winding path to get to this point but it’s definitely what rings truest. If I found myself single one day, I have no idea if the next person I would date would be male or female. I like it. It’s exciting. I definitely go through phases where I feel like I’m more attracted to one than the other but the ability to feel towards both is always there. Often, i’ll just be spending more time with a group of one or the other sex and that can sometimes feel like it’s shifting a preference. For example, at university it’s pretty much 85% female so the chances that I’m going to find people I get on with that are women is pretty high, so maybe that swings my preferences.

It is a shame to be put into the wrong LGBT group. I guess most people that know of me will assume I’m a lesbian. * It’s Tuesday now and a conversation I had today proves this more for me*  But it cuts out so much of my life and story and makes it all seem so clear and easy. Being LGBTQ+ is hard, and I know most about being bisexual.

Bisexuality is hard because when you have the option to go with the ‘normal’ and easier sex (I.e hetero) it makes it harder for others to understand why you would choose to be in a homo relationship. I certainly think that’s why It took me a long time to think about the possibility of dating women. Because if I know I’m happy enough looking for Mr Right why would I make life that more difficult by being open to finding a Mrs Right too? Obviously, it just doesn’t work like that, but I suppose it kind of does, I suppose it could be possible to hide one part of your sexuality forever for the ease. But that wouldn’t be fair on you or do you any favours.

It’s a mindfuck when i consider that I would likely never have met nor spoken to Rosie if I hadn’t have decided to try dating women. And yet she is the closest person I have ever been to, my bestfriend and I am absolutely ridiculously head over heels in love with her… except when she does something that annoys me 😉
So therefore I do think that bisexuality is an invisible sexuality at the moment and there are a couple of campaigns running along this line too.  Basically, If a bisexual woman is with a girl, she’s a lesbian and a guy, she’s straight. And bisexual men are men that are actually gay but don’t want to totally admit it. Excellent.

There’s also a lot of talk about promiscuity with bisexuals. Like how can you trust a bisexual when they literally fancy everyone? Haha… Because there’s never been any cheating in straight or gay relationships…? But perhaps as some bisexuals will agree that the sex of a person is far less important than the person they are, it suggests that we could be fussy because we’re looking for someone we really connect with.

So onto Sexual fluidity. The concept that every single person is on a spectrum and lay somewhere between straight and gay and where you are on that spectrum can change throughout your life. Before I go any further, this really does have to be the simplified version as there are groups in LGBTQ+ that aren’t included in the spectrum. (asexual, pansexuals etc)

I know a lot of girls (probably because we’re more happy to talk openly about it) who have considered their sexuality once or twice or quite a lot.  They’ve wondered if they had had a crush on a girl previously or have kissed girls on drunken nights out etc.

I’m not saying that every one of these girls is a bisexual and should relate and be categorised under this term (no way!), but they are on the spectrum like everyone else and would probably be placed somewhere closer to the middle between straight and gay than just one or the other side.

So, for me, sexual fluidity would be something like this…

For example, let’s say if a girl is 80% straight, she only dates men and has only had relationships with men. But, she has wondered about being with a woman once or twice. Now, whether she would ever take it any further, think more, act on her thoughts and whether she would even feel right in a relationship with another woman is a totally separate thing. But say a couple of years later, for whatever reason, it’s now 60:40, that could be enough for her to start thinking and acting on it. She’s still more into men and it’s all she knows and starting to date a woman is going to take a lot of encouragement and persuasion. It’s going to be confusing and baffling for most of the time too. It’s going to be a case of getting to a point where she feels she needs to answer this niggling question… Can she be with another woman, does she fancy women? I feel like a lot of women don’t feel the need to answer this niggle. And obviously, that’s entirely fine, they’ll be closer to the straight side of the spectrum,

So for me, when I was younger I only ever thought of men. I had the occasionally feeling towards girls but brushed it aside thinking i was in awe etc. Then i got older (obviously), met new people, saw new places, read new things and my mindset altered, I became open to other options.

I have read blogs and discussions about how bisexuality is it’s own entitity entirely. And i don’t think that’s wrong. The spectrum really helped me come to terms with my sudden shift a couple of years back and it works for me.
When talking to people about bisexuality there’s a sense from them that you are or you aren’t and you must have an answer. Whereas if you’re happy with the sexual fluidity perspective, you do what feels right for you at the time. Possibly partly why I struggle to accept the term bisexual. It’s actually quite inflexible and vast and doesn’t say much about an individual at all.

So yeah, this is where I originally came to a totally dead end in my word splurge on Sunday evening. Not even a hint of a conclusion. haha. But today I had a conversation with two girls that I have been working alongside with at university a lot recently. They’re absolutely lovely and we get on well but this just proves an inability to understand the concept of bisexuality.

So basically we were working with two absolutely gorgeous male clinicians. They’re charming and they bought us coffee. Putty in their hands we were. And we were talking together about one in particular. And I said how I liked his blue eyes. (drowning in crystal blue seas and all that… ). One of the girls said to me,

“Well it doesn’t matter to you as you’re not into men.”

I mean for one thing, you don’t have to fancy a person to be able to appreciate how good they look.  But anyway!

I was a bit taken aback but we were all messing around and so i didn’t get particularly serious. I just replied that I do like men. The other girl shook her head and put her hands out to show the separation and said “no, you just can’t like both, one or the other.”  And so I looked into her eyes and said “watch me.”  To which we all laughed.

But actually, how can you feel so confident to tell me that I’m wrong about who I feel attracted to? Why would I lie or pretend when I’m so open about other things? I used to think that I could only like one or the other but that was the most confusing part of all because I couldn’t choose which. I don’t need to choose.

It was lighthearted and they did not mean to insult me. It just showed the ignorance that is out there.

What if I became single and started dating a chap? Would they tell me that I was straight (and just experimented or went through a phase with Rosie) or actually just a lesbian who’s hiding how she really feels? There’s seems to be no understanding that the sex of a person is just not on my priority list. It’s absolutely the person.

So, I could just not care I suppose. I could just not right this article and not care how people see me or how they categorise me. To be honest, I don’t really mind. But i don’t like that people don’t understand me, what I’ve gone through and how I think and feel, especially those people that I otherwise have a good time with. Though actually i don’t like the feeling it’s assumed to be a phase, as though i’m just messing around with people and testing waters. That would belittle any relationship I had over another persons, when to me, my relationship is the best and strongest and most serious and loving and stable relationship I have had.

So let’s conclude lol. The BBC is doing a great job in celebrating LGBT. But there is still a long way to go. If you’re in the LGBT club, you are still considered different and I don’t think that should be the case. There are misunderstandings everywhere regarding LGBTQ+ groups and one of them is not appreciating bisexuality. What does it mean to be bisexual? why it’s not a bad thing, a phase or experimenting. One of the ways I explain it is through the sexual fluidity concept. And it is hurtful and harsh to brush off a person when they say they’re bisexual because you’re invalidating their entire history. You’re saying that they actually were never really in love or felt for the one person they used to see because they’re now in love with a new person of a different sex.  Maybe not on purpose but you’re telling me that a big part of my life that probably helped shape the person i am wasn’t real and wasn’t significant. And we can entirely talk about crushing on any sex. But we can also talk about how hot someone is without bringing sex into it too.

A bisexual is someone who has the ability to feel attraction to another person they’ve connected with regardless of this person’s sex.

Rebecca x

Don’t judge for adding a wikipedia link.. it explains it well – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bisexual_erasure

http://everydayfeminism.com/2014/12/bi-erasure-hurts/

i feel this article a lot :http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ravishly/on-bisexual-erasure-in-th_b_9995418.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p059lylf