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I’ve always had a sense of who I am. I never really cared what society told me or believed I should be.I always knew I was different. People close to me would always change my opinion on myself. For a long time I was afraid of who I was inside, but recently I learned no matter what other say to not be afraid of who I am.

Knowing I wasn't straight was easy, but discovering who I was became difficult. Growing up my sister would always pick on me and call me a lesbian and I started seeing it as an insult. After that I was afraid to identify as anything else, so I always called myself straight even though I knew deep down I wasn't.

My sophomore year of high school was the year I started to discover myself. One of my best friends just discovered herself and came out as a lesbian. My friends and I were very supportive of her decision. That made me start questioning myself for again. One day, she told me how all weren’t accepting of her like our friends. That disgusted me. My assumption was that most people were pretty accepting. To hear about someone that wasn't made me upset. Once again I stopped questioning myself and continued to identify as straight. I feared people hating me and not accepting me.

That year I developed a huge crush on my guy best friend. I hoped that would truly help me get over this questioning. I thought that liking him was a sign that I was just straight. Not questioning myself was a huge relief . I knew I would be accepted if I was straight. 

Then one day he decided to tell me that he had a crush on my very best friend. That hurt me so much.

Immediately after that,  I was trying to get over my crush on him so I started questioning my sexuality once more. I developed mini crush of my friend who came out that year. That was truly the moment I knew I wasn't straight.
Soon after I developed that small crush on her, she started telling me about this other girl she was really into and my feelings faded away. That teensy crush I developed on her allowed me to get over my guy friend. This helped me to start trying to discover myself more.

At the start of junior year I began playing tennis. I started getting closer with someone I met sophomore year because she played tennis. I got to know her and she was so such a nice girl and she had such a great personality. At the end of the end of the tennis season I developed a crush on her. This was a different crush than I had ever experienced. I never caught myself looking at her. I only caught myself trying to figure out more about her beautiful personality.

During the school year my friends kept asking me my sexuality and my only response was “not straight” because I was still so unsure of what my sexuality was. Since my friends kept asking about my sexuality, I decided to start looking into it.

One day I came across the term “pansexual” and I felt extremely joyed. Pansexual means you like someone based on their personalities and don’t really have a need to pay attention to their gender (If they are good looking, it's a bonus for me). The first time I called myself pansexual out loud it felt so good to hear. Finally being able to call myself something and being happy with it was great.

Even though most of my friends are apart of the LGBT+ community, I was still afraid of how they would see me so I decide not to tell them. Then one day me and my friend went on a walk and I decided to tell her. She was happy and proud of me for my discovery. It felt so great to say it out loud. The next school day, I told all of my friends.
Their reactions were priceless and indescribable. It felt so nice for them to finally know who I am. They were one hundred percent accepting, but that didn’t surprise me yet it gave me so much joy. Most of them weren’t surprised when I told them. They had all figured it out who I was before I did (I wish they could have told me). Since then I have had crushes and went on dates with both guys and girls with great personalities and it feels so great to be out.

The biggest message I’ve learned is to not care what people think and to not hide who I am. As long as my friends and family loves and accepts me, I don't care what others think and I will never hide such a huge part of me ever again.

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