Before I start this letter, let me just say that I happen to be very picky when it comes to having crushes, which makes it very rare for me to like people this much.
A couple of weeks ago, I was introduced to someone by my friend. He was very very sweet, and we shared so many things in common (including being in the furry fandom, and there aren't many furries in my school.) He just seemed like the perfect guy. And he still does. He's more than perfect to me. He's the first guy that I can see in a relationship with me. I could never see myself in a relationship with anyone before. Little did I know, the he, out of all of the people in my school, is gay. I'm all for LGBT rights (I'm pansexual myself, but I don't like saying it because, in my opinion, I’m too young to come to conclusion about my sexuality just yet.) If he likes guys, than he likes guys, and I have no problem with that. It’s not really his fault, because its not really a choice.
But I still really like him. I don't think it'd be a good idea to try to make him straight or anything, because I wouldn't react well to anyone if they asked me to be straight. I don't think anyone would like to be asked to change their sexuality. I don't want to just ignore the fact that he likes guys and tell him, because I don't want him to feel bad, or be pressured to say that he likes me back (I know that it doesn't seem like anything that someone would do, but he actually told me a story about how he was asked out by a girl that was a friend of his a long time ago, and he was really stressed out because she was a very good friend of his, and he said yes and ended up doing the right thing and telling her that he likes guys and now everything's awkward between them, so they don't talk anymore, etc.).
And even if we don't end up together, I'd still want to be friends with him. I'd never want to lose a good friend by doing something that'd make him feel awkward around me. I have no idea what to do in this situation. Can you help??
Kachebe the Shiba-inu (age 12)
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Welcome back, Kachebe :-3
My goodness, you’re only 12 and actively dating, and you also have a very mature attitude about LGBT people, realizing, unlike many adults, that this is how people are born; it’s not a choice. Good for you. Forgive Papabear for saying that he is still a bit disoriented by the fact that he is getting letters these days from 11, 12, and 13 year olds who are having romantic relationships. In his day, people that age were still kids, playing with dolls, plastic horses, army men, and Matchbox® cars. Ah, well, a topic for another day....
You don’t mention the age of the boy, so I’ll assume he is your age or very close. You might know this (or not), but boys tend to mature a bit later than girls, so he might be behind you a bit on figuring out his sexuality. Also—and no one knows this better than I—one can be very confused, even misguided, as to his or her sexuality until much later in life (you might have read in previous columns that I didn’t realize I was gay until I was 40, for a number of reasons I won’t go into here). So, one possibility is that your friend might not have settled into where he really is in life. Of course, the other possibility is that he is very sure of his sexual orientation, which is a good thing for one’s sanity to know who you are at such an early age.
In either case, as you already know, too, it is never wise to try and influence someone in this area—especially for selfish reasons. In your case, you would prefer him to like girls so that the two of you could have a romantic relationship that would someday include sex.
This is another one of those letters Papabear gets in which the writer already knows the answer but just wants some verification. That answer is that you should not try to push him in any direction. One of the biggest mistakes a woman can make in a relationship can be summed up in one quote: “I can change him.” Nuh-uh. While he certainly could change, if he does, he changes of his own free will. Forcing the change will just foster bitterness and resentment.
What you do is this: be his friend! And, at your age, honey, you should not be thinking about sex, anyway. Good grief! You’re too young! And, believe me, you do NOT want to have a baby at your age! Or, God forbid, an STD. At this point in your life, you should be practicing aspirin therapy: take an aspirin, hold it between your knees, and keep it there.
With sex off the table, there is no reason you can’t have a beautiful friendship with this boy, and one that even includes a lot of affection. Gay guys love to kiss and hug, even kissing and hugging women.
My advice to you is to keep it at a friendly level. And be patient. Who knows what might transpire years from now, but for now, live in the moment and treasure having someone in your life who shares your interests and with whom you love spending time.
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