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Since we are addressing women coming out as a lesbian after 50 in life, many questions arise which we will answer before we move to the life of being a “late bloomer”. There are several reasons as to the curious questions of “Why So Late” and “Why Now”.
Why Do Some Women Come Out So Late In Life?
An increasing number of women are choosing to come out of their closets and identifying themselves today. Though the sheer numbers of such women are aged in their late forties or older, this is no surprise. The times of their youth were different from yours and there were several things that were considered a stigma. The move to legalize same sex marriages and adoption options available to same sex couples has encouraged people to talk openly about them being a part of the LGBTQ community.
Well, the answer is staring everyone right in the face. The world perceived the LGBTQ community as a taboo subject back then. There was just one term given to all the preferences rather than the distinct identities they hold currently, and that term was “Wrong”. Back then, being lesbian or bi sexual was unheard of. A family comprised of a husband, a wife and their children who would go on to have their own similar units. Sexual attraction towards similar or multiple genders was not spoken about, and hence women thought of themselves as confused or going through a phase. The religious centers announced homosexuality as a sin and an act against God- which is why God-fearing, religious and good people were forced to hide under the facade of a Normal Standard. They got married to men, had children and played the role of a model wife and nurturing mother.
When the times and tides changed, with celebrities, artists and leaders coming out and openly encouraging others to do the same, these ladies felt that they could be brave and honest too. Our world in 2018 is much more supportive towards the equal rights of all sexual preferences and gender orientations, even if it’s not completely accepting. Coming out today is a lot easier because of the sources that are available for a better understanding when it concerns what to expect and how to go about it. There are Support Groups all over the world, and ones especially for women who come out late in their lives. The knowledge of you not being alone gives one some courage to step forward and drop the lie they’ve been living.
Why Come Out Now?
It’s a legitimate question closeted women ask themselves, so the same is expected from curious family members and friends who don’t understand why they waited so long! You have to understand and empathize with what these ladies went through to try fitting into a mold that was not meant for them in the first place. With years and years of pretending and suppressing, you lose touch with your true self. To find that real person hiding within layers and layers of pretense takes time.
Sometimes it so happens that the ladies in question never thought about themselves that way. They felt fine just as they were. They had sex with men, married them and had kids; only to realize later in life that something felt out of place. Maybe the onset of menopause has taken away their libido, or they’re just not interested in sex anymore. Maybe an event made them introspect and led them to the conclusion that somewhere in the back of their mind they always had their doubts. It also takes time to figure out the best way to admit their sexuality to their family without completely shattering it. So yes, now is as good as any time can be.
Moving Towards Moving Forward
Now that we have the two important questions answered, we can move further into helping women come out and find their footing after the revelation.
Women over the age of 50 often are deterred by their age when they think of coming out. “What is the point of admitting things so late and destabilizing the family and settled bonds? I might as well let things continue as they are at present.” What I’d like to explain to you is something that you already know in even more depth than I can comprehend, which is the fact that Life Is Short. The life is too short to live hidden away. Your life is too short to suppress the real you from flourishing to the best potential. Your life is way too short to live anything but honest to God truth.
You have many wonderful years ahead of yourselves; just imagine the possibilities of finding a love true to your desires. You deserve to be happy and loved in your own skin. The reactions of your family and friends are not reasons enough to continue hiding. Many people will react positively, the others will be neutral and a few may be hostile. The hostility does not stem from you but a conflict they feel about their relationship with you changing.
Over time, when they see that it really doesn’t make much of a difference to anyone, they will come to an acceptance. As for your husband or boyfriend, if they knew you well, they would understand. Your honesty would give them closure, but by no means should you spiral into self-blame. You will feel a range of emotions from terrified and anxious to happy, but the ones you should focus on are relief and freedom. You will also realize how incredibly new you feel.
So, where do we go from here? Once you’ve come out to your family and friends, they need time to process the change. They may or may not come around. But for you, life will go on. There are so many support groups and communities with the same stories as yours. Connecting with the one closest is as easy as signing in to a newsletter or writing an email. You can share your stories, read about other women’s experiences and how they went about their problems. These communities also gather from time to time to bond. You will find your tribe too. And you will learn to embrace this newness you have stepped into.
Your new life with your true sexuality is an amazing journey waiting for self-discovery. You probably already have feelings for some lucky woman and could try pursuing that relationship. Or you might want to experiment with your authentic sexuality. Emotional bonds aside, sex with a woman will be enthralling and exciting to you where you want to learn new things. There are so many ways to educate yourself, from books to movies and hands-on experiences. By all means, dive in! Go out on dates; don’t be hesitant to take things to the bed, use lubricants, toys like vibrators and strap-ons to find new ways of pleasuring yourself and your date. You’ll soon learn to paddle around and then swim the sea like you belonged there all along.
There are many people who prefer not functioning in couples, but triples. You heard us correctly. It is an arrangement where bisexual partners can explore both their sexual sides freely, and every partner gets to try their fantasies. If you are attracted by this concept, you will definitely find other bisexual couples or singles who love to experiment and play in threes.
Your life can be so much more than what it is right now. All that is needed is you showing up just as you are. These announcements don’t have to be grand gestures and full of drama. Admitting that you belong to the “Late But Never Too Late Tribe” and moving forward from there is a gesture enough. We celebrate every single victory when a woman chooses to live authentically with courage and bravery. And here, we celebrate every single day.