Note: This series of blogs will be my truth and personal history. I am the type of person who writes to vent. I am sharing to purge my past and leave it behind. A handful of people have given me permission to use their names, others I have changed in order to protect their privacy. Also because I didn’t want to ask in order to protect my sanity.
A Celibate Lesbian: not everything needs a definition but when it does, define it
I have thought about this many times - being celibate. I figured it would be easy to refrain from sexual activity, being that I had managed to go two years without having sex. I thought ‘I might as well be celibate, right?’ It’s different saying those words though, making that promise, taking the step to change your life in a dramatic way. It is not easy, but it is possible.
It was my birthday May 3, 2013 and two of my dearest friends called to wish me a happy birthday. We hadn’t spoken in a while, so the conversation extended past the horrible birthday song and my boring birthday plans. We talked about family, work, school, love and recent breakups. Then somehow we drifted into spiritual conversation. All three of us being southern girls raised in Baptist churches we had a similar antiqued view of love and sex. We knew we were doing it all wrong. I knew the few partners I had sex with were completely outside relationships in general. Only one turned into a somewhat committed relationship. As the early morning went on, they began to tell me why they have chosen to be celibate. I laughed in disbelief. My friends (all of them) are the type to complain about going two weeks without sex. They look at me in amazement that I have gone years without it. So to me this was a joke. I had doubt they could do this past a month. Although I didn’t think celibacy would change anything, I wasn’t disengage from discussing all their reasons. They were still hopeful despite my cynicism. By the end of the night I realized my friends were in fact serious. Now I thought if they could do it so could I. I mean, I was a twenty-two years old and the last time I had sex I was nineteen. I was already celibate. Thus began my process of changing my life - giving my current status a name.
Upon hanging up the phone I started to think about what I wanted. Was this change for me? Was it worth giving it a name? Through the two years that I unintentionally refrained from having sex, I exhibited excellent self-control. I was new to Chicago, a big city. I dated a number of young ladies, and managed to keep my sexual partners on one hand. I wasn’t celibate, I was just picky. So there I was, laying in bed, contemplating celibacy as a real thing with real intention. Did I really want to make the decision to wait?
The next few days after my birthday were filled with ‘yes - no’, ‘yes - no’. I found reasons then dissected those reasons until they were no longer valid. Then I got new reasons. It was that one reason that made complete sense. I decided to wait for the love I deserve and not the one I have continuously lowered my standards to have.
I decided to wait until marriage. I chose this for myself and for the person I am. I spent years trying not to be this person who still lived by hetero-normative standards. I wanted to be open-minded and to be modern. To be sexually free. Truth is, I was only sexually free with the words coming out of my mouth. What I learned is that when you believe in something, in my case the power of patience and intimacy of being with one person, you mustn’t go against. Going against my beliefs was leaving me unbalanced. What works for others doesn’t always work for yourself. I wasn’t sure celibacy was going to work for me but I had to try.
So my journey began.
A month later.
To Be Continued...