Jamaica Gleaner
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Bisexual woman struggles with identity

SHARON ADAMS (name changed to protect identity) is fighting an inner battle with herself. Good looking, impressionable and extremely bright, she has never been able to maintain a meaningful relationship, at least not with men.

"I have been in a number of relationships, several, I guess you could say, high profile ones too," she explained, her eyes hardly wanting to make contact. "There was this one guy that I thought I was really going to marry but like the other relationships I have had, that one too fell by the wayside."

Adams explained that she has always found herself admiring women but justified it by saying that she was simply an admirer of beautiful things. "That was my way of rationalizing it," she continued. "I have had these kinds of feelings since about age 12 but I never considered them strange or abnormal."

Adams, now 29 and "deeply involved" with another woman three years her senior, "the most satisfying lover I have ever had," she explained, said she came face to face with her own sexuality five years ago but is still not sure if she is on the right pathway.

"I know this sounds crazy but I really want to get married to a man and have children," Adams confessed. "I love women for the sex and men for the companionship, I suppose. This is something that most bisexuals probably go through."

Adams, who lives by herself, said that she met her present companion at a party in 1996 and that they "instantly hit it off". She noted that their relationship blossomed over the years and to the point where they are now inseparable. "I am totally at peace, at least that's how I feel, whenever I am with her," Adams added. "I never thought it was possible to feel this good in bed."

Adams, though, said that the yearning for children and having a stable family life is haunting her. "This is what my lover cannot give me," she said. "I know I love her but I want more. Life has to be more than sex which is probably what has been keeping me in this relationship."

When asked to explain the contradiction, she responded, somewhat agitatedly, "I know what I just said. I love her because she makes me happy and is also good to me. However, what I really want I can only get from a man, does that make me crazy?"

Adams said that she has prayed about her plight and has even sought counselling. She also admitted to be privately seeing one of her old boyfriends whom she described as "the ideal substitute". "We are not sleeping with each other or anything but he provides me with a distraction," she said. "He is an intelligent man who listens more than he talks. I wonder what he would say, though, if he knew my secret."

She noted that she has done a good job in concealing her sexuality from others and added that, "many people would really be taken by surprise."

Adams said that one day she hopes to find total inner peace and has resigned herself to the fact that she has to live her life to "the best of my ability". Adams also noted that the homophobic nature of the Jamaican society has been making life difficult for gays in the country, many of whom she claims have been waging private wars with themselves.

"My situation is very common with other gays in this country," she added. "If only society was just a little kinder, life would be so much easier for all of us. There are homosexuals who have committed suicide because they
couldn't deal with their sexuality.
There are gays in the church who have to sit in congregation after congregation and listen to their pastor blasting homosexuals. The prospects of coming out of the closet are very frightening and which explains why so many gays are so reluctant to go public. To openly declare one's sexuality in today's Jamaica could be the difference between life and death. We have to maintain the faith and keep fighting though."

Articles In This Series
I was born this way July 25,2001
Sexuality and the law July 25,2001
Homophobia remains HIGH July 26,2001
Bisexual woman struggles with identity July 26,2001
Is there a gay gene? July 26,2001
Homos at risk July 26,2001
Sexual orientation: Is there a conclusion? July 278,2001
'I was sleeping with their husband and father' July 27,2001
Sexual orientation:Critiquing the theories, looking at the realities (new) August 13, 2001
US Church divided on issue (new) August 13, 2001

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A Go- Jamaica Feature 2001