Dear Papa Bear,
I got into a relationship with this girl at school, hereafter referred to as Cheryl. This was before I had accepted that I was gay, before that whole fiasco with my family, and it was a fun relationship; it was the first relationship I'd ever had with anyone, guy or girl.
She was cute, though the rest of the guys didn't like her; she is kinda... overweight, and she has a forceful, tomboy-ish personality...
Anyway, she was overreaching a lot of the time, and I was initially uncomfortable with her PDAs... Again, first relationship EVER! I had trouble holding hands with her at first, then I got comfortable with hugging her... And then kissing her, VERY short ones... In class, she would poke my sides, or reach her arm around me and grasp my love handles, which ALWAYS made me jump, seeing as they are very sensitive.. I got used to all of the above, except for the last one, and we had a good relationship for a few months... We never... Well... Never DID anything, even though she asked several times... I just... NO.
Then came the winter-break, two weeks of no school. I sat around, reading books, watching TV, taking my nephew out to play, and texting my friend in PA, hereafter referred to as Quinn. I talked to Quinn about... Stuff... He was actually what made it possible for me to accept that I'm gay; otherwise I'd probably have realized when I was twenty-ish in college.
When I realized this, I knew why I felt so uncomfortable with Cheryl... It made sense to me, at that point. When the break was over, I broke up with her, feeling VERY bad that I was going to hurt her in doing so (Don't put the words in these parentheses into the site, if/when you do put it in, just letting you know as to WHY I felt so bad hurting her; She'd had, like, 25 "boyfriends" by this point, some who "used" her and dumped her right after... Yes, THAT kind of "used".)
Anyway, I broke up with her, and she hated me for a week, and I felt absolutely terrible about it... But she came around, trying to get be back into a BF/GF relationship, and when she saw that I wouldn't, she asked me, when we were alone, point-blank, WHY I wouldn't... I told her why.
She flipped out for a few days, hating that, quote, "Another guy has turned gay on me, F*** THIS!!!"
She became less belligerent, eventually accepting that she was in the "Friend-Zone," and things became semi-normal...
But here's my problem:
She's STILL hugging me, STILL holding my hand, STILL trying to kiss me, STILL grabbing my sides and poking me...
I STILL feel uncomfortable with it all, but SHE is the one doing it all. I hold my arms at my sides when she hugs me, I leave my hand open when she curls her fingers into my hand, I turn my head away when she tries to kiss me, and I TRY to block her poking and grabbing, but she won't let up... Doesn't help that I share my 3rd period class with her...
How can I make her stop?
* * *
This reminds me of something from my past. My ex had a boyfriend in school and she really liked him and, eventually, he discovered he was gay and that was that. Much later, she and I met, fell in love, and, after years of marriage, I figured out I was gay and we divorced. Did she turn me and her old bf gay? No, not at all. The thing is, and I really believe this, that many gay men have qualities that some women are attracted to, such as being kind, sensitive, emotional, funny, caring, etc. Some women are attracted to “tough guys” or “bad boys,” others like men who are more gentle. These men are not all gay, but gay men tend to be much more in touch with what society calls the “feminine side.”
So, first of all, “Cheryl” needs to understand this. She’s not turning men gay; rather, she is attracted to certain qualities that are more common in gay men than they are in more “macho” straight men.
Now, for your side of it. You’re uncomfortable with her, shall we call them, friendly advances. If she is doing this because she still thinks she has a shot at you or (God forbid because this is such a fallacy) because she believes she can change you, then you need to sit down with her and straighten her out. If, on the other hand, she is just an affectionate person and she just likes you a lot but understands this is on a friendly basis, then (assuming you still like her, too) I would recommend you calm down and enjoy her friendly affections.
American society is bizarrely uptight about outward displays of affection on one hand, but on the other Americans are crazy about sexuality in the media. It’s a disparity I have never fully understood. I, for one, love affection. I love hugs, friendly pats, even kisses, from men or even women. Affection is something we need more of in our lives. Good friends in our lives, friends who love us and can show it, are rare and should be treasured.
As long as you and Cheryl both know and accept where you stand when it comes to sex, then relax and enjoy her company. Physical contact of any kind is a wonderful thing in this life and is what makes REAL life so much more awesome than the virtual life so many furries retreat into.
Hope that helps,
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