You probably opened this post because you thought I was going to confess some deep seated struggle I’ve had and the fact that I was coming to terms with being a lesbian. Well you’re wrong. I’m not a lesbian, but I wouldn’t be any different if I were one.
I am a Women’s Studies Major. Part of that includes having an unabashed love for women: their bodies, their minds, their capabilities, their weaknesses, and their strengths. All of them- every single part. To say that I only love women, though, would undermine the love that I have for people.
Yes, I love people.
I think that we are often too generalized in the expression of love. Maybe it has something to do with the heteronormative nature of our society (that’s what my Women’s Studies degree tells me). I have to say I agree with that to a certain extent. It’s not as acceptable to express the love I have for my best friends, Alice, Alyssa, and Grace, because, socially, they “should not” be the focus of my affection.
I “should” be focusing my time and energy on learning to love a man: a man who could potentially be my husband, potentially father my children, potentially beat me, potentially make me feel loved and important, potentially put his own needs before my own, potentially abandon his needs in pursuit of mine, or potentially be the best thing that’s ever happened to me.
But that’s not my focus.
I love people.
Alyssa, Alice, and Grace are my best friends. I would do anything for them. I know people say that sometimes, and I know Bruno Mars sings that obnoxious song about how he’d “catch a grenade” for the one that he loves. However, this is much different. I love these women with every ounce of my heart. When they hurt, I hurt. I could piece together every piece of love that anyone in the world has ever felt and try to contain it in language, and it still wouldn’t be a representation of how much I love them.
So I have all this love that I funnel to my friends, my family, and myself, and I am just sure that there’s no more room for anyone else.
Maybe I’m scared that loving anyone else is a cop out. I don’t know if there’s room for anyone else. Maybe I’m scared that loving someone else means that I’m “subscribing to social norms about heterosexual love and marriage.” Maybe I’m just not supposed to love anyone else, and that’s okay.
What does love look like, anyway?