Dear Young, Sweet, Confused Girl

Mar 1, 2024 | 2024 Spring - Letters to Myself

By Taylor Raucher

You’re not broken. I think we need to establish that right out of the gate. You are NOT broken. There is nothing wrong with what you feel, what you desire, or what you don’t desire. I know it feels like you’re supposed to be and want all of these things. You’re getting these messages from outside of yourself, but you need to trust what’s inside. Try not to listen to the voices that are infiltrating your mind. Don’t buy into the stereotypes that are broadcasted at you, the notions of what it “means” to love and what that looks like.

You’re feeling conflicted. You’re feeling things that you don’t quite know how to explain. You’re noticing people, all people, in a way that is exciting but strange. You know that it’s okay to be gay, but you don’t think you are. It’s a little confusing: you like boys, but you are realizing you also like girls. You feel the same sort of ache and longing, that pit in your stomach and tingle in your extremities for all genders, and that’s scary. No one has ever explained this to you, that it’s okay and valid and real to be attracted to more than one gender—and that’s a societal failing, not your failing.

You’re going to hide that part of yourself—the part that just wants to love—for a long time. And that’s okay. You don’t have the words yet, and it’s hard to make sense of the world without language. You’re going to stumble through young relationships with boys and learn what you do and don’t like, make mistakes, and get hurt. There’s going to be a lot of hurt. I wish we could make different choices and avoid the pain but, unfortunately, we have to fall to learn how to stand. 

There’s going to be darkness. There’s going to be a time when you think that it’s over, that it’s all come to a crescendo, and that it’s going to end in a spectacular BOOM. But you are going to survive that night. You’ll rediscover yourself and all that makes you special and wonderful, all that makes you want to live and thrive. You’re going to be open to new experiences. And you’re going to find the words.

You’ll finally allow yourself to love freely and openly. You’ll meet a girl, and she will awaken something long dormant in you. And you will finally realize that it’s all going to be okay and that what you feel and have felt is okay. You will understand the whole of yourself for the first time. And it will be remarkable. Breathtaking. Affirming. 

Over time, you will realize that you also love a little differently. You will find that “bi” feels good and fits like a well-worn coat, but there will be a piece that is missing—the piece that always felt awkward and shameful and ugly. And once you embrace the word “ace,” it will all come into clarity. It will take some adjusting and finding out how to wear it because it is new and different and so taboo. But it doesn’t make the love you experience any less real. 

And you will feel broken sometimes. A little worse for wear, a little lost. But you’re on the right path, finding yourself and your own way. You just need to remember that you are a full and complete and beautiful piece of art, a mosaic of the life you’ve led thus far. 

Taylor Raucher is a queer writer who lives in Easthampton, Massachusetts with her two cats. Her work has been featured in The DG Sentinel, Historic Northampton’s COVID-19 Stories, and in Dialogue at the Bar with Drinking Partner (Free Spirit).

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