I considered myself straight until I fell in love with my gay best friend.
This guy on Reddit did an amazing AMA that TOTALLY reminded me of Zankie. I highly recommend reading it.
Here are quotes that I found really stood out the most:
“I realized that I had fallen in love with him when I realized that it physically hurt not to be around him and all I could think about was when I could see him or talk to him again.”
“There was confusion on my end but that was to be expected. It was my first and, to this date, only same sex attraction, so I didn’t exactly know how to react to something like that. Once I started to accept it for what it was then it started to click, and we moved very fast after that, owing mainly to the fact that we had been friends for years.”
“I was hesitant, mainly because I didn’t know how my friends and family would react, but also because I didn’t want to hurt him if it didn’t work out. Even before I fell in love with him I cared about him so much, that I didn’t want to put both our feelings at risk for what might have been just a strange anomaly in my sexual development (which seems strange to say about stuff that happened at age 24, but you get the point).”
“I think the whole process started when he told me that he had feelings for me, and I told him that I would always love him, just not in that way. He told me he understood and that he still valued our friendship, so much so that he still wanted to be my friend even though he knew that, at the time, there was no chance of me reciprocating his feelings. I really did love him as a friend, and I was so grateful that he was willing to keep it that way even though it might be painful for him. No one had ever done something that selfless for me before and I think that was when my love from him started to move from friendly to romantic.”
“Realizing I was in love with him was kind of earth-shattering for a few reasons. There’s the obvious gender issue which was very difficult to work my way through, but once I broke it down to the bare bones, I realized that this was a person that I would be happy with and what the fuck else matters? The other thing about that is that I had never been in love before, so I didn’t know how to react at first. Eventually I just told him, “Look man, I fucking love you. And I’m in love with you. And I don’t care about what that means in terms of my sexuality, I just know I want to be with you in whatever capacity.” That’s what it was like, it was so strong a force that eventually it made every other issue in my life seem irrelevant.”
“My parents are on board and they see how happy I am, but it was hard for me to explain to them that it’s not like I’ve been gay and closeted my whole life. My mom told me that I’m just gay and in denial (I actually had a good laugh over that) and my dad told me that he still hopes that someday I will meet a girl that will steal my heart. I can understand their confusion, but I don’t concern myself with it, that’s something that they need to work through themselves.”
“I also spent a lot of time trying to write off my attraction to him as just a very very strong friendship. But I had never before missed any of my friends to the point of near physical incapacitation, so this was quite clearly something new”
“With your friend, the best thing you can do is give him enough space and allow any feelings that he has to develop on their own. That’s what my boyfriend did, because he figured that being friends was much better than not being in each other’s lives.”
“I know my boyfriend has tried to date other guys, but nothing really clicked for him on the emotional level that he was hoping for (ie, the level that he and I were on, even just as friends).. .Given some time he probably would have been able to get over his feelings for me but if you asked him I bet he would tell you that he didn’t really want to. I don’t think he was “waiting” for me, per se, because I made it pretty clear that I didn’t think of him in that way. Though my feelings for him eventually changed, I don’t think he really expected anything to happen between us. He hoped maybe, but I don’t think he really thought anything would come of it.”
“So sure, some people are going to assume I’m gay, and that’s fine. I probably am according to their definition of “gay,” being that I am currently involved in a romantic and sexual relationship with another male. But what labels like “gay” and “bisexual” and even “straight” don’t take into account are previous histories. I have never before had romantic or sexual feelings for another male, and I still feel attraction towards women even though I am currently dating a guy. Does that make me bi? Maybe…but that still doesn’t answer the question of why haven’t I ever felt an attraction to other men before this one?
People can call me gay, bi, whatever, and that’s fine because labels make it easier to understand the world around us and if that’s the label they need to understand me then who am I to object? I’m happy as I am right now and it really doesn’t matter to me how other’s identify me.”