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By Lauren (ltb2511)

I kinda remember the first day I noticed a girl and went ‘Wow.’ It was a Saturday and we had just got Sky+ on and I was flicking through the channels as you do and I discovered Charmed, and I was in awe of how beautiful the ladies of Charmed were, but being only about 10 I thought nothing of it, it was just an admiration to me not a crush, I could have sworn before then I didn't have a sexuality.
I remember kissing a boy at about six and I never wanted to do it again so I thought the same about girls, although at six I had no idea what sexuality was even if I was quite mature for my age.

Religiously from when I was 10 I watched Charmed, guaranteed at 5.00pm I was in my room watching the LivingTV channel, practically drooling over the Charmed Ones.

Then at 11 something clicked. My old best friend at the time started dating this boy and well if I was any more jealous I would have turned the colour of the Hulk, but I convinced myself I was jealous of her not him. They had their first kiss in front of me and in true dramatic fashion I cried, but I still told myself it was because I was jealous of her.

I started becoming withdrawn as I entered secondary school, I can't even explain why to this day, but when my friends knocked on me it was at an inconvenient time, half the time I was watching Charmed and then one day at school I put the most gorgeous picture of Holly Marie Combs on as my wallpaper on the computer at school and that's when peoples suspicions started to begin.

Year 8 began and it was hell, by this time I knew what sexuality was and I had figured out I was more inclined towards the females than the males but I saw the stigma of what some gays went through and it petrified me so I kept quite and began to put pictures of Leo or Chris from Charmed on my backgrounds and pretended I was ‘in love’ with them. It turns out I wouldn’t win an Oscar.

Then the dreams began, and I couldn't sleep and I wouldn’t eat cause the dreams made me sick to my stomach thinking about them because they were about girls, not boys as all the other girls bragged about, but a friend noticed the bags under my eyes and they asked what was wrong. Not thinking I said I was having dreams, and when asked what about I explained they were sexual dreams but when asked who about I lied and said it was this ‘hot’ boy of the class.

I went home that night, grabbed a scraping tool from a scraping foil image set and carved the words ‘Bitch’, ‘Whore’, ‘Liar’, and ‘Fat’ into my arms. The next day I regretted it cause they were just scratches and those ones that don't bleed much just itch, so I began to scratch my arm taking away the scabs and causing some blood to go on my white shirt so I quickly went over to the sink and washed my arm. Sadly people had already saw some blood and began asking my friends if I had slit my wrists. That made me worse so I went home and carved more words into my skin this time with a razor blade the cutting became a ritual for the next couple of years.

I went through phases of being really hyper and being depressed and during one hyper time I told my friends I had a secret and naturally they quizzed me about it, and they asked if I was gay I said no cause of the stigma I knew I would get, and when asked if I was bisexual I replied yes.
That was one of the biggest mistakes of my life yet one of my best decisions.
Those friends found the gossip too much I was the first ‘Bisexual’ in the school in a long time and it got around some of the class, I was lucky it died down after a while as I didn't want it getting out cause I was making friends with these two girls in the class Marie (nodoubtjunkie) and Kirsty and I didn't know if they were homophobic or not, sadly it did get round to them but they were cool about it.

The coming out as a Lesbian came when I publicly read a book called ‘Sugar Rush’ which is about a lesbian falling for her friend, I was in the same boat as I was slowly falling for Marie . But being a lesbian wasn’t that big of a deal to them either, sure it went round for a while but it died down again before it got to other forms.

Then I was having a conversation with Marie one night on MSN and her personal message said I <3 someone you’ll never guess or something along those lines and being the nosey person I am I asked who and I got the shock of my life when she said it was Lenora Crichlow, a GIRL from the TV series Sugar Rush. I was gob smacked, one of my close friends was at the time Bi and it turned out to be one I was crushing on. Sadly due to self esteem issues I knew nothing would ever come of it and I began to hurt myself more severely.
When mum and dad found out about the cutting they sent me to see a counselor, and after 6 weeks she discharged me, apparently I could now act.

Cue year 10, Marie revealed she was gay and September 19th Marie got asked if she was gay, and when she replied yeah, I was in awe how she could have the courage... and all of a sudden I spoke up and said I was too. Now that's when it travelled and didn't die down.
People in school were narrow-minded about it, thinking back I knew I shouldn't have said anything I knew about the stigma but due to a moment of madness I let slip what I didn't want people to know and didn't think about the repercussions.
That's when the bad bullying began and the vulgar names were shouted at us. Cue sinking back into depression although I wasn’t diagnosed until much later.
Friday the 10th of November I snapped and walked out of school, I was mad, I didn't think about anything and I was just in a daze for the entire weekend, that's when I attempted suicide for the first time properly. I nearly died apparently all because I couldn't handle the stigma.
I was off school for about a month on note of the psychiatrist, who I refused to tell them why I tried to kill myself, I didn't know whether or not they were homophobic so again I kept quiet.

November 26th the day after my birthday Marie came around to my house and she was trying to get out of me who I liked. I wasn’t going to tell her it was her, but as usual Marie got it out of me over text and we confessed we liked each other but I was too scared to go into a relationship with her, I also came out to my mum and dad that day through another lesbian friend.
My parents accepted me.
Phew one thing off my mind, I then went back to school and the stigma was still there but I persevered, however, one thing the school couldn't grasp however was that 2 lesbians could be best friends and not be together. Oh the rumors that went round school, my favourite being we had sex together during school so we had to be separated for the school photo.

February 13th I admitted over text I loved Marie, we decided to get together, inside I was still struggling with my inner homophobia, I didn't mind gays I just hated the fact I was gay so we decided to come out as a couple through anonymous text but on the Sunday before school I panicked and cut myself so bad I had to go to hospital and get stitches but I eventually did go to school and we suffered the stigma of being a couple but we were strong enough for a while, after so long I broke up with Marie. I couldn't handle the inner homophobia battle I had and the comments of other people. I attempted suicide again that night, I couldn't forgive myself for hurting Marie and myself like that and again I survived, I was then recommended to go to a specialist young people mental health clinic which I am still going to.
I began to over come my self hate and depression, me and Marie were back together I was getting happy again.
July came and I purposely broke Marie’s heart for which I will never forgive myself because I was planning to kill myself and I didn’t want to hurt her.
I was diagnosed with Dysthymia and Borderline Personality disorder after my third suicide attempt. I was then told I either went willingly to the child mental health hospital at Newcastle or they would section me so I went quietly. After 2 weeks of it I was allowed home after intense therapy, most of it working on my self hate stemming from the hatred of my sexuality.

Me and Marie decided to try again.

Me and Marie broke up for the final time in September and lost contact, those next few months were the hardest of my life. Everyday I wanted to text her and apologize profusely but I never did and I just left it and slowly I was getting better. In May we began talking, and we are and always will be close friends no matter how many times we fall out and she will always be part of my heart.

So here we are today and I still have my days struggling with my sexuality but when I do I just chat to Marie or people on EC and they get me through it which I am thankful for.

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