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TRISTAN'S STORY
I told my mom that I like boys and that I fall romantically in love with boys aged 12-14 and maybe a bit older (depends on their development). She responded by saying I must be gay.

I never thought I was gay, because I don't act feminine, and I also liked girls at one time. And gay seems to be about attraction to men and masculinity.

When growing up I was interested in girls and boys. I fell in love with girls, and had a fond and playful sexual interest in boys. I can remember encounters where we just went to a limit when being experimental where the homophobia boundary strikes. I was active in setting up that boundary too of course. We would look at each other and compare, or we would masturbate to the same late night TV show. But always tried to keep the impression of ourselves as straight.

My crushes on girls never happened again by around the time I turned 15. I have a theory that I must have repressed crushes on girls somehow. I find them so blank now. For some reason they just don't light the same spark in me that they used to. Instead, I fall romantically in love with boys. I love their looks and their personalities, much similar to how straight men like women. I get along well with boys, I can tell they really enjoy my admiration and companionship, but I know there is always that boundary of homophobia and such that there is no passing of. At this point I feel chronic emotional pain from loving what I just can't have.

My mom introduced me to some really gay dude from her work. I'm not really into men at the moment. I recall a time growing up at about 13, I bottled in feelings for some older boy. There were a few other times when I was affectionate to men who where in position of my trust. Women or men can arouse me. But I seem to only love younger boys, and so fiercely it keeps me up at night. I have certain crushes. There is no fighting it.

So what do I do? How I do I find any form of happiness or a kind of relationship I want? How do I understand my weird orientation? Would counseling be helpful? I get the impression from society that people like me are sick. I think of killing myself.

And when I think of killing myself, it's not because of my dissatisfaction about myself. In fact I love myself; I am smart, coordinated, and good looking, and a very kind person. I am confident that I could do anything I pursued. It's just my disagreement with the world and my nature being against social conformity that causes everyday of my life to feel like I'm chained down and hated. Am I sick?

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